Almost any gun owner relishes in the thought of getting the drop on an opponent at 20 feet. At 20 feet, it’s almost guaranteed bullets will hit target. However, what happens when the tables are turned? Not all attackers wander right into the open and wait.
Close quarters is generally the weakest place for a concealed or open handgun carrier to get caught. Not only is there the issue of drawing, there’s the risk of having the firearm taken away. This is why close quarters drills are some of the most important techniques to practice for an open or concealed pistol carrier.
The priorities of movement will always push towards:
- Breaking contact
- Creating space
- Redirecting your opponent away from your firearm
- Pressing initiative
This is also essential. Unless you are confident you can subdue your opponent without needing to draw your firearm, you need to take every opportunity to break contact and to create space.
This is a very dangerous game. You need room in order to draw. If your opponent has made it into close quarters and has his hands on you, you need to break contact to create that space. That opens you up to more damage.
Space is necessary to get the muzzle of your firearm safely onto target. You don’t need to draw all the way out as if you were aiming at a paper target – just enough to get the muzzle onto your opponent.
And anywhere will do! Legs, feet, hands, arms – as long as the muzzle has crossed that point, you’re good to go. Even a shot to the extremities can give you enough time to create space and gain the advantage.
Redirecting Your Attacker
If breaking contact and creating space just isn’t possible, you need to redirect your attacker away from your firearm. If you’re a concealed carrier, he may not even know you’re armed. If you’re an open carrier, it’s all the more important that he doesn’t gain access over the handle or trigger group.
If you can, grab hold of an ear, nose or any exposed soft tissue on the face. A person’s instincts are to preserve their face and head before anything else. Once an ear is in grasp, tear it off. It only takes five pounds of pressure to rip an ear right off the head of man – and this is more than enough pain and misery to redirect his attention. Slam your hand into that wound as much as possible until you’re able to create space – then use your firearm to do the rest.
Once you gain the advantage in a close quarters situation – always press the advantage. Never doubt that if the tables were turned, your attacker would gladly do the same. A moment of panic, hesitation, or fear is ammunition that can and will be used equally depending upon who’s aware.
No matter what you do, maintain control over your firearm at all times. Your firearm is your lifeline and it will be used against you if it falls in the hands of your attacker.