Preparation for 2020 Begins Extensive Militia Training in Houston
TSM Houston has a busy year to looking forward to, filled with a packed training schedule. As the premier Houston militia, Texas State Militia’s Houston has experienced massive growth in the past few months with the news of potential 2nd Amendment violations in VA. This could not be a better time for new members either, as Qualification Card classes usually begin each year to start militia training in Houston.
It’s important that every new member learn the vocabulary and base skills set required for the more in-depth classes to follow throughout the year. Each member must complete their “qual card”, a basic training so-to-speak, to set them on the right path for future trainings. While these qualification trainings are repeated a few times throughout the year for new members, getting them out of the way at the beginning of the year could not mark a better start.
Qualification Sets a Foundation
Throughout the year there are many skills that nearly every class series have in common, such as weapons safety, communication protocols, and squad/fire team formations. At Qual Card trainings, members learn a set of fundamental skills that will make all of the classes for the rest of the year come a little easier. While qualification is a requirement for rank and a live-fire FTX invite, the most valuable aspect is the rudimentary experience of being forced into a heightened awareness of your fire arms safety, being in a fire team or squad, responding to formation calls, learning what they are for, all while moving with a team.
Likewise, all new members are asked not to purchase any new gear until they come to their first training to get a sense of what gear is going to work and what will not (aside from maybe a set of fatigues, boots and cover). The qualification training provides this opportunity, as new members observe and speak with some of the veteran members. The veterans love helping new members avoid the “gear pitfalls” that most militia members experience un-mentored. Militia training in Houston is rarely as organized as TSM.
Formations, Movement, and Reacting to Contact
The classroom portion of each station gives each group the conceptual portion of what they are doing and why. While it can be challenging, developing a big picture of movement helps cultivate a strategic mind and develops leadership skills. Our trainers have years of experience training civilians of all capabilities and backgrounds skills sets from basic to advanced.
Remember, there is no right way, but there is a wrong way.
Peel maneuvers are part of the movement curriculum and get the teams hearts pumping. While it’s a welcome prospect on a cold morning, the purpose of the high physical activity is also to gauge individual capabilities and identify proper roles that each member would be appropriate for.
Although new members may feel overwhelmed with taking contact right from the start, overload helps develop skills strongly associated with stress. When a real life scenario occurs, those skills won’t be overcome by a stress response.
When its all said and done, the trainer will set up an ambush on his class and assault them while they are traveling. Because they’ve run through many practices, they should get away safely.
Close Quarters Battle
At another station, groups are taught room clearing strategies in a very close quarters environment. Safety here takes precedent over form. Although the class is about room domination, members are routinely placed in direct line of site with other members. The trainer is watching each member’s muzzles very closely. Although all weapons have been cleared previously, he is addressing any unsafe practice.
Our trainers routinely integrate themselves into the team to serve as an example while the rest of the class looks on. It helps the class better understand through example and learn to trust the trainer.
Although it is all new material, the change from the beginning of class to the end is dramatic. By the end of each class, each member is able to integrate themselves into any team. While they are by no means experts, they become a fluid being poured into the training room. This takes lots of practice and the class has very little classroom time.
By the time the CQB focus class comes in a few months, they will have a base level knowledge. This makes training them much easier. Their information uptake will be much higher and they’ll be able to take on more.
Medical and TCCC
The last station each group will attend is a low key medical and combat casualty care class. This is a very basic introduction on the priorities of assessing and addressing wounds and injuries. When the TCCC class happens later this year, these members will have a vocabulary to work with. They will have been shown the basic process to treating bullet wounds, broken bones, and how to use different devices such as tourniquets.
We teach each member the basic components of an IFAK and how to use them. It is important that each member knows how to take care of themselves and their fellow members.
A Few More Pictures
A Busy Year Ahead
TSM has a full year of classes scheduled. Everything from Scouting and Patrolling to Patrol Bases is planned. Come join us and prepare yourself for what is undoubtedly to come! Be ready!