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TREXPO West: Hands-On Training for Attendees

May 01, 2009  |  by - Also by this author

As Richard "Mack" Machowicz noted in his keynote address, "You'll get out of TREXPO what you put into it." Many attendees at this year's TREXPO West in Long Beach, Calif., put their minds and bodies to work advancing their tactical and technical skills. Eight tracks of conferences offered attendees a wide range of topics to explore, but hands-on courses required a physical commitment to the material, often demonstrated through drills on training mats.

Instruction in Israeli martial art Krav Maga was available both as a conference and a specialized extended training class. John Pascal opened each session with a warm-up and didn't let up on the attendees throughout the session. He focused on using the full body to execute every technique. Drill after drill kept officers moving, learning defenses against threats with handguns, knives, and improvised edged weapons, as well as how to respond in hostage situations.

Dave Young's Ground Defense conference also required time on the mats. Attendees took turns as the "bad guy" and the "cop," practicing effective strikes and escapes from the ground and mount positions, weapon deployment tactics, and escapes from common chokes.

Edged Weapon Tactics with Ernie Emerson didn't involve mats, but it required sweat just the same. Participants learned the means to stop the attack and neutralize the attacker by the quickest means possible. First, Emerson stressed the importance of having a mindset that allows you to act and take a life if need be. Then he taught tactics that included evasion techniques and ways to take control of the situation away from the attacker.

Extended training classes provided TREXPO attendees with additional instruction after the conferences were over.

Glock's Armorer's Certification course devoted a full eight-hour day to overall care of all Glock models. It covered disassembly and reassembly, cleaning, maintenance, troubleshooting, function of the passive safeties in the Glock Safe Action System, basic firearms safety, loading, and unloading.

The QuikClot Hemostatic Agent train the trainer course utilized a lifesize, and lifelike, dummy complete with extensive "injuries" such as missing limbs. After viewing video depicting scenarios involving severe wounds, attendees discussed when and how to use various QuikClot products in different situations and participated in demonstrations.

For medical care in high-risk environments, Solutions Group International (SGI) provided a Combat Trauma Care (CTC) course. Focus was on the use of the CTC Blow-Out Trauma Kit when responding to medical emergencies under the worst conditions. Each attendee received a kit to take with them and use in the field.

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