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May 16, 2011
West of Boston
Pistol Skill Builder Workshop
Cape Works, Hyannis MA
May 21, 2020

Instructor: Ben DeWalt
Location: Cape Gun Works, Hyannis, MA
Time: 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Weather: Inside Range: Range #2
Clothing: Jeans, T-shirt, sneakers.
Round Count: 300 +/- PMC 9mm 115gr
Class size: 8 students

This was the first evening pistol workshop I have attended. It was good to get out of the house and away from family after nine weeks of quarantine. There were three new students, all three were new to training classes and two of them brand new shooters.

Ben did the introductions of himself and we went around the room introducing ourselves. We had our safety and medical briefings and went through the procedure if we had a training accident.

We started off with cold guns, going over the holster draw, and how to clear our cover shirt correctly. This was a new skill for half of the class so we went through it slow and methodically. I enjoy basic fundamental classes as I can always perfect my technique and learn something new.

We loaded our guns and walked back to 25yds and did shot center mass of a RangeMaster bowling silhouette target. Ben would say we were only as good as our first cold shot, in a real-world encounter there would be no warmups. It made sense to me, this was a humbling way to start off the class. We moved closer to and ran the same drill from three and five yards working on our grip, front sight concentration, and trigger press.

Before each drill, Ben would explain it, demo the entire drill, and explain it again. I like that teaching approach. I like to hear the instructions and then see it being done correctly. There was absolutely NO ego. We analyzed our target misses as possibly killed good guys by accident. Ben made you really think about what happened on each shot, the real world has consequences. Don’t be a good guy active shooter!

We worked mostly five yards from the target allowing the new shooters to get comfortable with their guns. Ben worked with each of them coaching them on the proper grip showing them that the proper grip was more important than the trigger press.

We constantly changed our targets and after each drill Ben would analyze your target and discuss how we each could improve. Ben found the right way to get each student to push their skill a little past their comfort zone so each of us was learning. He did it in a professional, kind, patient way treating each student with respect and no one was made to feel embarrassed or humiliated on the line. Not all instructors are like that. Ben is a professional teacher and he has the experience, confidence, and competence to know how to get more out of you than you think.

We did some precision shooting on a blank sheet of target paper and tried to get our groups super tight or even in the same hole. That was a great drill, that forced you to slow down and concentrate on each shot.

The three hours passed really quickly, we cleaned up the range and debriefed on what we learned and what we needed to practice. It was a very good class, it was so great to get back out there and get back to training. I really like Ben. He is super knowledgeable, skillful, funny, humble, and sometimes appropriately inappropriate. As the day goes on his jokes go downhill. He is a down to earth dude, that is easy to talk to fun to be around. I like to say I think Ben DeWalt and OnSight Firearms Training is one of the best training companies and best-kept secrets within the training community. Absolutely take his class if you have the opportunity.
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