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Training Aids

January 01, 2006  |  by - Also by this author

The various makers of less-lethal chemical weapons all make inert versions of their sprays and powders. Note: Even with inert sprays, eye protection should be worn to protect students from the hypodermic effect.
There are even inert rounds for the PepperBall launchers and the FN 303 less-lethal system.

PepperBall fills its inert ammo with baby powder. But to keep training scenarios more realistic, and to better prepare officers for the dispersion of the normal component in the product, the baby powder is scented with pepper.



PepperBall makes both inert sprays for OC canister training and harmless powder ammo for its launchers. Eye protection should be worn when training with both, and the ammo still hits with the punch of a paintball, so padding is a good idea.

offers a non-toxic glycol round for training with its FN 303 launcher. These rounds hit with the same impact as FN’s chemical ammo for the 303.


While hitting a live trainer with a baton or other blunt instrument can be fun, it’s often more desirable to use a dummy. One of the greatest advantages of training with a dummy is that you don’t need another person present to practice the techniques that you’re working to perfect.
After learning tactics from department training, take some time to try it out on a dummy. It won’t take up anyone else’s time and the dummy won’t tire out or get hurt in the process.

Cuff-Man from Dummies Unlimited is a training dummy designed for teaching proper arrest and control techniques without any chance of the injuries that are associated with this type of training.

Dummies Unlimited's Cuff-Man can stand on its own.

Cuff-Man has human features such as flexible joint action in his wrists, elbows, shoulders, knees, and hips. His hands and fingers are made from a flexible yet durable polyurethane compound for a realistic feel while cuffing. He possesses an extended chin for realistic grappling techniques while ground fighting.

A Velcro loop is sewn into his heavy- duty Cordura suit, both front and back, and a slender back board is wrapped with a Velcro hook. With the back board installed in a provided free standing mount, Cuff-Man can stand on his own at any height desired. Once the dummy is standing, arrest and control techniques can be performed on Cuff-Man from both front or rear.

Just like any resisting suspect, added force is required to pull Cuff-Man to the ground without any hindrances or obstacles. Once on the ground, he can be placed prone, supine, hog style, or on his side.

Additionally, Cuff-Man’s unique construction and joint motion can be utilized to teach officers about positional asphyxia.

OK Fine Productions’ Big Blue dummy comes in a variety of sizes and is made to stand up to a wide range of tactical practice, from throws, to grappling, to cuffing. It features side loops for attaching to a heavy bag, or for keeping it in place for continuous throwing. With a special harness, it can be hung like a heavy bag for striking techniques.

Big Blue’s legs are strong enough to support the dummy so you can step in for throws or sweeps, but they will bend for ground work. Release the tension and they will return to the original position. You can practice full force throwing and also land hard on the dummy, and go into pin, armbar, choke, or other tactical positions. Big Blue can also be used for less-lethal ballistics training.

Furniture and Furnishings

A variety of really unusual training aids can be found in Crown Gym Mats’ Nottaline of realistic looking foam furniture and objects. The line is extensive, limited only by the imagination of the company’s designers, It includes bedroom furniture, office furniture, living room furniture, and objects such as bricks, bottles, and even laptop computers.

Crown Gym Mats' Nottaline includes foam furniture and objects for safe scenario training.

The Nottaline products are ideal for realistic defensive tactics training scenarios. They are all soft and pliable. They won’t break, and they won’t break any bones of instructors or students who are hit with them or fall on them.



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