"Not the firearms training class you want but probably the firearms training class you need"
March 22nd 2015, I attended the FPF Training Street Concealed Carry Encounter Skills class in Culpeper, Virginia. John Murphy was the primary instructor. As so much can hinge upon the instructor versus the course material, my notes about John are as follows:
- professional in conduct and appearance
- served and deployed as a US Marine (this counts to Marines such as myself)
- safety is stringently adhered to in his class
- John is a student of self defense in all aspects of the phrase. That means he studies why you should use force, the legal ramifications of using force, how to use force when needed, and most important of all; how to avoid using force.
We started the day with the multi-media presentation. John showed examples of the warning signs of attacks on the street, both successful and unsuccessful attacks and self defense attempts, and in the background; he kept on hitting upon some simple tenets of common sense that are oft overlooked in firearms training classes such as:
- avoiding the fight
- "not my circus, not my monkeys, not my problem"
- deescalating a situation (better to be alive than to have died "keeping it real")
- verbal judo AKA convincing a would-be attacker that you're not an easy victim
I do not want to give the impression that John sat there and lectured as he did not. What you receive is an interactive discussion with real life examples from a true scholar of self defense who is doing his damnedest to make you a safe concealed weapons carrier and to be able to persevere if attacked/accosted on the streets. Sources as varied as YouTube videos to Colonel Cooper's Principles of Self Defense was referred to and quoted from in detail. Remember, this man is a scholar of self defense.
The presentation was broken up with "verbal judo" work in the art of convincing a would be attacker to back off. FYI, an infantry Marine's voice is quite handy in these scenarios.
The second half of the training day was spent working with firearms. Realizing that his students had different levels of skill in handling a pistol, John graded each drill according to his personal assessment of your skill. So, despite my level of skill being a bit higher than a few other students in the class, I was held accountable for every shot I fired. There was also a bit of FPF Training curriculum that I will not write in detail about but suffice it to say that you will undergo practical application of everything John teaches that day.
I've been trained by two Tier One firearms trainers (Kyle Defoor and Larry Vickers, a US Marine, NYPD/US Marine, and a civilian. I wish I had started with John. Knowing when and why to shoot count more than anything. I do not wish to give the impression that this class was full of remarks like "that will get you killed on the streets" and "competition shooters would fail here" as John doesn't have that bit of egotistical schilling in his lexicon. What he does have is a humble and professional approach to putting more educated and competent armed citizens on America's streets. It is not high speed low drag training. However, it is training that may save your life either physically or financially. If you are looking for more reviews of this training, please click here for a review from my friend Tim at GunNuts.
I cannot recommend this training enough. I plan to attend more training from FPF Training. I believe that all concealed carry permit holders should attend training like this. America would be a better place because of that.