The Fix: Repeat Training

posted on November 2, 2023
training certificate

The Problem
You have had the conversation multiple times with your significant other about your training expenditures. The primary point of contention is why a person would re-attend a shooting lesson or class they have already completed successfully. After all, from their perspective, in any segment of academia, once a passing grade has been attained, the next step in the progression is advancement to a higher level of the same or similar subject matter. You need some help in explaining why it is beneficial to retake a class or lesson, especially where physical skills are taught.

The Solution
Without a doubt, repetition is the cornerstone to locking in a new skill or developing a deeper understanding of a technique. There are a multitude of reasons related to the benefits of re-taking a class or lesson aside from repetition.

For instance, different instructors and training locations can be beneficial to improved performance by themselves.

Every instructor has their own style of presenting, as well as life experiences that factor into what they are teaching. Many seasoned instructors will “read” their attendees and orient the training to best fit the needs of the students. In many cases, the same material is covered, but in a different manner that might be easier to perform or understand. It is with relative certainty the material from one class to another will come with a different perspective in an effort to provide the best presentation for the recipients. Students having some familiarity with the subject matter tend to develop a deeper understanding and application of the material as opposed to what they may have learned at their initial training event. The truth is, unless the class is pre-recorded, there are differences in every presentation that sometimes offer another perspective over the original presentation.

There are new things, both academically and practically, to be learned from every class you attend. Although we may tend to forget aspects of a previously attended class or a lesson, they can usually be renewed with a short discussion or simple reminder.

Venue or location—such as the differences between the smooth concrete floor of an indoor range and the rough and uneven surfaces of an outdoor range—make a big difference when learning and practicing shooting in improvised positions and the movements necessary to enter and exit various positions. Weather conditions can have an impact on the conduct and flow of a class as well, with the addition of temperature, precipitation and elevation as new or different variables. Physical stamina is tested when attending a class at 6,000 feet for one who lives at sea level. Even something as simple as targets, what they consist of and how they are arranged add variation to the equation of the message being conveyed.

There are new things, both academically and practically, to be learned from every class you attend. Although we may tend to forget certain aspects of a previously attended class or a lesson, they can usually be renewed with a short discussion or occasionally even a simple reminder.

The practical/tactical physical skills portion of lessons and classes degrades more rapidly than the academic component, and therefore need to be refreshed more frequently. An excellent way to maintain skill proficiency in the areas desired is to periodically repeat a class or lesson that focuses on the techniques and exercises needed to keep those skills at an acceptable level.

In the professional world of academia, recertification is a means and requirement of maintaining job proficiency—and in fact the job itself—in a variety of fields. When it comes to personal defense and firearms proficiency, the parallels are undeniable to meet the need.

From an economic perspective, many firearms schools will allow previous students to repeat a class for a significantly discounted price. Try requesting a discount at your local institution of higher learning for a class previously attended.

Keep in mind when learning new information, the brain can only absorb so much. For classes heavy on critical thinking or technical information, key points may be forgotten.  The same goes for refining physical skills and learning new techniques; repetition can be invaluable in keeping actions smooth and fluid.

Hopefully, your future discussions regarding your training expenditure will be more fruitful for you with the reasoning provided, especially where personal safety is concerned.


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