Whether you’re in the heat of a threatening encounter or you’ve just arrived at our range in Glen Arm, MD for your next firearms training course, there are a few fundamentals that should instantly come to mind when you are wielding a firearm. In fact, we recently posted a blog all about the rules of operating a firearm. While these rules should be in the forefront of your mind regardless of your setting, there are a few key differences between a training day at the range and a real-life encounter. 

Increased Adrenaline

It’s no secret that it’s impossible to recreate the pure adrenaline we feel when there is a legitimate attack that could pose a threat to our lives. However, we can work to replicate some of the symptoms of adrenaline in our outdoor training courses. For example, our more advanced training courses involve movement-based drills to not only replicate lifelike situations, but to increase our heart rates and get in some reps with increased pressure.


Naturally, we shoot at targets during our courses. There are two critical differences between targets and actual threats:

  • Targets are stationary
  • Targets don’t fire back

While we can’t make our targets simulate fire, we can use them to get in plenty of practice limiting our body exposure through the utilization of smart cover navigation. Because actual threats do fire back, we offer Stop the Bleed training free of charge as part of our Ultimate MD CCW Experience.

The Element of Surprise

There is no way to perfectly replicate the state of surprise of a sudden situation that requires the use of force, but it is something we attempt to simulate in order to expose our trainees to the potential of an unexpected attack. One of our favorite drills requires our trainees to carry a dummy cell phone, act as if they are walking along engaged in a text conversation, only to spring into action after the call of, “Threat!” 

So…Don’t Train?

Perfectly replicating the movement, adrenaline, and element of surprise involved in an actual threatening encounter may be impossible, but that shouldn’t discourage you from training anyway! Doing so will ensure you are as ready as possible for the real thing, and the ability to rely on muscle memory you’ve worked hard to develop can be the difference when every second counts.

Develop Your Shooting Skills with Soteria Training Academy

Soteria Training Academy provides expert pistol and first aid training with an emphasis on safety. Whether you’re a beginner in the world of firearms, or already have a wealth of experience, we look forward to helping your shooting skill set. Contact us today by visiting our website, or call us at (410) 216-3176 to learn more.