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RamZar
08-21-12, 20:07
How would you define / characterize a Tier 1 Instructor (as opposed to top tier)? Is it their reputation and years of instruction or the fact that they have taught Tier 1 Operators (Delta & DevGru although Intelligence Support Activity is also added at times as well as some of the overseas units like SAS, SBE, etc.).

In the absence of certification or standards is it too loose a term? Is it all too subjective?

I know Paul Howe whom I respect greatly calls himself a Tier 1 Senior Instructor (I know about his experience as a Tier 1 Operator).

Even if subjective, who would you call a "Tier 1 Instructor"?


Addendum on 8.21.2012 at 17:32 PT:

This will help me in my training.

I've taken courses with the following:

ITTS, TFTT, Falcon Operations Group, Chris Costa, GPS Defense, TAC-1, Blackwater, Rob Haught, TASC, Suarez, and some others.

However, I really started improving once I started training with the following since November 2010:

Ken Hackathorn, Larry Vickers, Jason Falla, Jeff Gonzales, TigerSwan, Mike Pannone, Pat McNamara, JD Potynsky (with Kyle Defoor and Frank Proctor coming up in September and October respectively).

So, I'm looking for more instructors like the latter group including Kyle Lamb and Paul Howe.

RyanB
08-21-12, 20:36
Tiers were devised by JSOC to establish funding priorities, not as a measure of abilities. People way overthink this stuff.

ETA: Not that there isn't a strong correlation between tier and abilities wrt DA, but it comes from funding priorities.

The Virus
08-21-12, 20:57
I think according to the definition of Tier1. A Tier 1 instructor is someone who instructs Tier 1 unit members.
Frank Proctor comes to mind as someone I know actually is a Tier 1 instructor.

However I believe the term Tier 1 is used incorrectly the vast majority of the time in regards to instructors and others as well.

That being said, there are a number of instructors that would qaulify
as "Top Tier" instructors. Most of whome you have trained with,minus a couple of names.

Skintop911
08-21-12, 23:19
Imagine a world, and the dialogue therein, in which the word "tier" was uttered, typed, or imagined only by those who had served in such units.

Way too much baggage tied to the word and it's use.

Voodoo_Man
08-22-12, 00:37
Have you taken a class with f2s?

Because you'll be a tier one ninja after.

ClearedHot
08-22-12, 02:20
A lot of people seem to have the misconception that doctrine taught by instructors from Tier 1 units somehow makes them better operators in the 1st CivDiv.

RyanB
08-22-12, 02:44
Shooting is shooting. Robbie Leatham has a side gig teaching JSOC to shoot. If they can learn it from him you can learn it from them.

RamZar
08-22-12, 03:06
Robbie Leatham has a side gig teaching JSOC to shoot. If they can learn it from him you can learn it from them.

Indeed.

Rob Leatham (http://robleatham.com/wp/), Bob Vogel (http://vogelshootist.com/) and Ron Avery (http://www.practicalshootingacademy.com/instructors/ron-avery-presidentdirector-of-training/) are on my list for next year. You can definitely learn from such high caliber competitive shooters.

C4IGrant
08-22-12, 09:46
Websters definition of tier:

Noun; A rank or class.

"Tier 1 Instructor" has no defined term. For me, I lump instructors into this group because they meet ALL the below reqs:

A. They served in a Tier 1 unit.
B. Teach Tier 1 shooters.
C. Are KNOWN to be an excellent instructor (Vetted by their peers).




C4

Jeff Franz
08-22-12, 10:04
A lot of people seem to have the misconception that doctrine taught by instructors from Tier 1 units somehow makes them better operators in the 1st CivDiv.

Could you please expound on this a bit? What exactly are you saying?

mick610
08-22-12, 10:06
Tiers were devised by JSOC to establish funding priorities, not as a measure of abilities. People way overthink this stuff.

ETA: Not that there isn't a strong correlation between tier and abilities wrt DA, but it comes from funding priorities.


This is more likely the definition for those of who contract for the Feds...

You can teach in a "1st Tier Operation" but not be skilled like those other guys mentioned when you are involved in a "Government Operation".

TriumphRat675
08-22-12, 10:36
A lot of people seem to have the misconception that doctrine taught by instructors from Tier 1 units somehow makes them better operators in the 1st CivDiv.

This is smart and true.

Shooting well is sometimes necessary but certainly not sufficient to a successful outcome in a self defense incident. As or more important are things like paying attention to your surroundings and the mental preparation to use deadly force. These are things that cannot readily be taught in 8 hour increments.

Top tier military shooters spend years training. How much of that is shooting practice? Shooting is only one skill among many that they must learn. It's not much different for a civvie. Being armed to the teeth and able to shoot like LAV won't do you much good if you walk around a bad part of town staring down at your cell phone with a $20 hanging out of your fly.

Failure2Stop
08-22-12, 11:05
First there were SOCOM unit tiers, then somebody tiered carbines, now we're tiering instructors too? Damn, somebody needs to make a chart.

I consider a "Tier 1" instructor to be someone that was IN a tier 1 unit (either Delta/CAG or Seal team 6/DevGru) that also delivered instruction to that unit, while they were a member of that unit.

I don't think that there is any necessity to get into the weeds about lower tier units/instructors, as the "Tier 1" aspect really is a distinct segment of the available trainers, and for those that "only tier 1 will do", tier 2 is not going to meet his requirements.

I consider a "top tier instructor" to be one that is better than most in getting the highest levels of performance out of his students. It is a function of proficiency, instruction, trouble shooting, diagnostics, and coaching ability.

Typos brought to you via Tapatalk and autocorrect.

Failure2Stop
08-22-12, 11:06
Tiers were devised by JSOC to establish funding priorities, not as a measure of abilities. People way overthink this stuff.

ETA: Not that there isn't a strong correlation between tier and abilities wrt DA, but it comes from funding priorities.

What is your source for this information?

Typos brought to you via Tapatalk and autocorrect.

6933
08-22-12, 11:09
For me, Tier 1 means they served in a Spec Ops unit, and now that they are out, have the ability to teach and pass info. to their students in an effective manner.

Sometimes examples are just as good as a definition so here is a list of who I consider Tier 1's to be: (in no particular order)

All TigerSwan instructors
Kyle DeFoor
JDP(Northern Red)
LAV
Kyle Lamb
Pat McNamara
Jeff Gonzalez
Paul Howe
Dave Harrington
Jason Falla

Arctic1
08-22-12, 12:22
What is your source for this information?

Typos brought to you via Tapatalk and autocorrect.

Not RyanB, but Jack Murphy of SOFREP talked about it in a blog post there:

http://sofrep.com/4650/three-sof-phrases-that-i-hate/

Jeff Franz
08-22-12, 12:26
This is smart and true.

Shooting well is sometimes necessary but certainly not sufficient to a successful outcome in a self defense incident. As or more important are things like paying attention to your surroundings and the mental preparation to use deadly force. These are things that cannot readily be taught in 8 hour increments.

Top tier military shooters spend years training. How much of that is shooting practice? Shooting is only one skill among many that they must learn. It's not much different for a civvie. Being armed to the teeth and able to shoot like LAV won't do you much good if you walk around a bad part of town staring down at your cell phone with a $20 hanging out of your fly.

Of course there is more to surviving or prevailing in a life or death situation. However, there are a bunch of local meatballs around here that run around chanting the "situational awareness, situational aware, situational awareness" mantra over and over, but don't ever received any training on the shooting part. They walk around at every mall and resturant in a cat-like state of readiness, looking for danger in every shadowy corner at Ruby Tuesday's and always checking the exits. But they down-play actual live fire training. As a result, when they actually start shooting, they can't hit a damn thing, even on cardboard targets that don't move and don't shoot back. Sadly, some of them are current or former military.

The doctrine taught by the top instructors in open enrollment classes is all about accurate shooting and running a gun hard with TTP's that actually helped them win by more than shear luck in real-life combat. In the more advanced classes, it's about applying fundamentals in "advanced" situations, like shooting on the move or in the dark. Many, like Ken Hackathorn, talk about de-escalation, or give tips on ways to stay safe at home or public during their classes. McNamara's TAPS class is excellent for getting students to actually think while shooting. NONE of them teach that the gun is a cloak that makes you bullet proof and invisible, so you can go where you want and do what ever you please when you get there. Furthermore, if you do shoot like LAV, don't you think your chances of survivial increase exponentially? So I just don't see how training with the best does not serve us lowly civilians to be better prepared to prevail should the bullets ever start flying. Nor do I think that since I have trained with many of the best, I am ready to go on direct action missions in a war zone. I damn sure don't let my guard down or venture into the seedy parts of town because I'm carrying and I can shoot better than most.

"Tier 1 instructors," in my opinion, are instructors that are top-notch at transferring skills to their students that will be key in helping them survive and prevail in a combat situation, be it military, LE or civilian. They are teaching cutting edge, relavant material that is proven. Their status as "tier 1" may or may not be related to what unit they served in. However, thinking of the guys I consider at the top as instructors, most seem to have served at the higher echelon of the SF community.

MAP
08-22-12, 12:26
What is your source for this information?

Typos brought to you via Tapatalk and autocorrect.

I believe LAV said the same thing in a class.

Mike

Don Robison
08-22-12, 13:03
What is your source for this information?

Typos brought to you via Tapatalk and autocorrect.


JSOC

I was in the 20th SOS in the 90's when it was still a Tier1 JSOC SMU. The entire Tier status was nothing more than a funding priority, but it did somewhat equate to qualification as well.
In the late 90's the 20th was pushed back to a Tier2 status and put on a level funding priority with the 160th.
It was often a point of contention between the two units (primarily in the leadership), but truth be told both units were/are highly capable and excellent at what they do; regardless if they use different approaches to the same problems.

RamZar
08-22-12, 15:20
...Jack Murphy of SOFREP talked about it in a blog post there:

http://sofrep.com/4650/three-sof-phrases-that-i-hate/

Thanks. Good one.

Three SOF Phrases That I Hate (http://sofrep.com/4650/three-sof-phrases-that-i-hate/) by Jack Murphy (http://sofrep.com/author/jack-murphy/):


Tier One
Operator
Elite

The Virus
08-22-12, 15:34
I know this guy who's an Elite Tier 1 Operator, he worked for Blackwater back in the day......

theblackknight
08-22-12, 17:33
I will warn you guys about speaking freely about what tier something is and so on. Remember this board really exists to sell training(centered around former JSOC dudes) and gear to do so with.

The Virus
08-22-12, 19:20
I will warn you guys about speaking freely about what tier something is and so on. Remember this board really exists to sell training(centered around former JSOC dudes) and gear to do so with.

As was stated earlier in this thread, the Tier system is based on funding.
I think what people are really meaning is trainers of the highest level of there respective area of expertise.

C4IGrant
08-22-12, 22:15
I will warn you guys about speaking freely about what tier something is and so on. Remember this board really exists to sell training(centered around former JSOC dudes) and gear to do so with.

Huh. Really? Who knew!



C4

RamZar
08-23-12, 15:02
For me, Tier 1 means they served in a Spec Ops unit, and now that they are out, have the ability to teach and pass info. to their students in an effective manner.

Sometimes examples are just as good as a definition so here is a list of who I consider Tier 1's to be: (in no particular order)

All TigerSwan instructors
Kyle DeFoor
JDP(Northern Red)
LAV
Kyle Lamb
Pat McNamara
Jeff Gonzalez
Paul Howe
Dave Harrington
Jason Falla


Dave Harrington (http://store.greygrouptraining.com/DAVE-HARRINGTON/) will be in SoCal in November and if the class is changed to Pistol/Carbine I'll probably go. We did some of his 360 Degree Pistol Skill drills during the Chris Costa (Costa Ludus) (http://www.costaludus.com/) Handgun Employment 02 class in January 2012. Good stuff although the round count of 1,000 per day for Dave's classes seems excessive!

So, any other instructors along these "subjective lines" that you know of would be helpful -- thanks in advance:


Ken Hackathorn
Larry Vickers
Jason Falla
Jeff Gonzales
TigerSwan
Mike Pannone
Pat McNamara
JD Potynsky
Kyle Defoor
Frank Proctor

For next year:


Kyle Lamb
Paul Howe
Dave Harrington
Travis Haley
Rob Leatham
Bob Vogel
Ron Avery


Contemplating Pat Rogers and Bill Rogers as well.

RamZar
08-23-12, 15:27
I will warn you guys about speaking freely about what tier something is and so on. Remember this board really exists to sell training(centered around former JSOC dudes) and gear to do so with.


Respectfully, what on earth are you talking about or driving at?

theblackknight
08-23-12, 18:00
I can't link you to posts that are deleted/edited.

NCPatrolAR
08-23-12, 18:40
I can't link you to posts that are deleted/edited.

And that prevents you from explaining your point how?

TomD
08-23-12, 20:08
Just WOW! Where do the come from?

krisjon
08-23-12, 22:51
I will warn you guys about speaking freely about what tier something is and so on. Remember this board really exists to sell training(centered around former JSOC dudes) and gear to do so with.

So that's why I'm shooting with LAV this weekend! I was wondering what the hell I was thinking. Now I know it's all completely subliminal. Damn site.

zacbol
08-24-12, 00:29
So, any other instructors along these "subjective lines" that you know of would be helpful -- thanks in advance:



Greg Hamilton
John Holschen

RamZar
08-24-12, 01:24
Greg Hamilton
John Holschen


Both from InSights Training Center (http://www.insightstraining.com/instructors.asp)?

Not to detract anything from them but I've never heard of them.

How do they fit into the list of instructors I gave assuming you've taken classes with at least some of them?

Alaskapopo
08-24-12, 02:10
Indeed.

Rob Leatham (http://robleatham.com/wp/), Bob Vogel (http://vogelshootist.com/) and Ron Avery (http://www.practicalshootingacademy.com/instructors/ron-avery-presidentdirector-of-training/) are on my list for next year. You can definitely learn from such high caliber competitive shooters.

Bennie Cooley is also a great instructor to add to your list.
Frankly I could care less what tier status someone is. I care about how well they can shoot and how well they can pass that ability onto me through training.
Pat

RamZar
08-24-12, 02:28
Bennie Cooley is also a great instructor to add to your list.


I'll check Bennie Cooley (http://www.benniecooley.com/aboutus.html) out. I like his background.



Frankly I could care less what tier status someone is. I care about how well they can shoot and how well they can pass that ability onto me through training.


Indeed. To that I add how well they can readily diagnose. It may seem obvious to some and a given but to me it's a crucial element.

zacbol
08-24-12, 09:32
Both from InSights Training Center (http://www.insightstraining.com/instructors.asp)?

Not to detract anything from them but I've never heard of them.

How do they fit into the list of instructors I gave assuming you've taken classes with at least some of them?
You've never heard of them? That's why I put them forward. Insights has up until now not done a huge amount in the way of self-promotion. Hamilton and Holschen both meet the criteria that you seem to be using: long careers in special operations (brief histories are available via the Insights site) and are excellent instructors.

If we're talking about good instructors from whom one can learn a lot, there is a far larger list: Randy Cain, Todd Green, etc. As alaskapopo pointed out, I care less about an instructors operational past than whether they can effectively transmit their knowledge. Not to say it has no bearing, but it's certainly not the only factor. In fact, I've heard both Holschen and Hamilton say they didn't learn to shoot while in SF, that really came after. They openly downplay that as being important to being a good instructor and I remember Holschen saying something like 'Just because you were in SF, doesn't mean you know how to shoot'

I have not trained with any other "big" name instructors, though I have trained elsewhere. Hamilton established InSights back in the 1990's prior to the explosion in the training industry. He knows what he's doing, as does Holschen. And while I've not *trained* with those other big names (would love to have the opportunity at some point), I am quite familiar with many of them via DVDs, writings, etc. While that is never a substitute for actually training with a person, you can get a sense for how they approach the subject, what they focus on, how they explain material, etc and I think Hamilton and Holschen equal/exceed anything I've seen.

I've posted a few AARs on here for classes I've taken with each of them which you can find and Insights has started making some instructional stuff available on YouTube lately:
Ep 1 Grip: http://youtu.be/U4XbDaUaJgo
Ep 2 Sights: http://youtu.be/Ytan8DVpK9A
Ep 3 Ready: http://youtu.be/E2Topr_yDTYh

You can judge for yourself what you think the quality of the instruction as well as find feedback from other members who have trained with some in your above list that have also trained with either of these guys.

C4IGrant
08-24-12, 10:43
I don't know if most people know this or not, so will throw it out there. Most of your instructors (that come from a Tier 1 organization) have received training from a high level competition shooter(s). The good instructors incorporate the valuable nuggets and delete the bad stuff.

So if you are training with a former Tier 1 guy, you are more than likely benefiting from the best of both worlds.



C4

kelly neal
08-24-12, 10:58
I'll check Bennie Cooley (http://www.benniecooley.com/aboutus.html) out. I like his background.



Indeed. To that I add how well they can readily diagnose. It may seem obvious to some and a given but to me it's a crucial element.

I have taken classes from many of those mentioned as "Tier 1". While they all have their strengths, I learned more in my Bennie Cooley class than any other.

And don't forget Mike Voigt, I have heard more than one Tier 1 instructor say "I did not know how to shoot a rifle until Mike Voigt came to North Carolina."

ranger_sxt
08-24-12, 11:12
It seems to me that people are getting much too wrapped around the axle regarding the background of instructors, and not just here. While background can be important, the content of the class, the skill-level of the student, and the ability of the instructor to relay information should be the critical view that we look at, not what the instructor has done in the past.

There are approximately 100 shooters that I am able to evaluate the skills of: he's really good; he's a solid shooter; he's not that good, but keeps improving; he's a liability on a square range. Of those 100 shooters, I can only think of about 10 or so that would actually benefit from instruction from a former member of a Tier 1 unit. The remaining 90, myself included, would most likely spend their money better at a class that reinforces the basics, which can be taught by any number of qualified people...

RyanB
08-24-12, 12:34
You're better off learning the basics from Robbie Leatham than Bob from the pistol shop. It's never too soon to train with a master.

orionz06
08-24-12, 12:45
I was gonna post about Tier 1 last night but I took the opportunity to dry-fire instead.

I think in the long run this shit is thought about way too much. I will speak in absolutes briefly. You either want to train or you don't.

/Absolutes

Everything else seems to me to be just ways out of actually taking the class. Technically speaking much of the training I have had has not been from a tier 1 instructor. All of it has been from someone who has been instructed, instructed with, or instructed tier 1 groups of one form or another.

To quote Super Dave: "Let's just go shoot bro"

markm
08-24-12, 13:04
Damn, somebody needs to make a chart.

That idiot is banned.... otherwise I'm sure we'd have one. :rolleyes:

Tier 1 is a moving target.... It's only Tier 1 when it's impressive to others on internut gun forums.

theblackknight
08-24-12, 20:28
And that prevents you from explaining your point how?

I'm sure making claims with zero evidence would fly like a pig.

No need as the usual suspects piped up or instantly sent me pms asking what I meant lol. It was like my one little precautionary post was like a tier 1 worshipper batman signal.


Gotham needs a hero.
sent from my gun using my sights

NCPatrolAR
08-24-12, 20:59
I'm sure making claims with zero evidence would fly like a pig.

No need as the usual suspects piped up or instantly sent me pms asking what I meant lol. It was like my one little precautionary post was like a tier 1 worshipper batman signal.


Gotham needs a hero.
sent from my gun using my sights


The very type of "answer" I was expecting.

theblackknight
08-24-12, 23:23
Did anybody see my post on M4C thread immediately preceding the one about XXX quoting XXXXXXXX remark and basically saying HE can post anything anywhere and gets the most XXXXXXXXX chorus of all. ? Anybody see that? It's ****ing gone. No way. I hit submit and saw it.



Somebody over there is more liberal with total post deletion than any other forum I'm aware of.


There was a thread there about the Panteo videos. XXXXXXX pointed out that the owner of Panteo was convicted of swindling Ernie Langdon, TPOG, and some other doods out of some money. XXXXXX wasn't trying to stir shit, he just wanted everyone to know this stuff before supporting the guy. XXXXXXX's post was deleted and he got a PM telling him to stop.

Did I really have to do that?

NCPatrolAR
08-25-12, 07:51
Did I really have to do that?

Dude, you didnt "do" anything. Instead of playing childish games, which you're doing in spades, state you actual point.

Treehopr
08-25-12, 09:40
You're better off learning the basics from Robbie Leatham than Bob from the pistol shop. It's never too soon to train with a master.

I'll disagree with this statement. Not every high-level shooter can teach the basics.

Not directed at Mr. Leatham as I've never trained with him but I've been in classes and seen students who were too overwhelmed by what the instructor was putting out to keep up.

In some instances, students left after the 1st day and never came back.

After factoring the expense in time and money, training with a local instructor is not a bad way to start.

Conversely, I have seen high level instructors who may not have been great with beginner students do really well with experienced shooters.

Red State Tactical
08-25-12, 10:13
I'll disagree with this statement. Not every high-level shooter can teach the basics.

Not directed at Mr. Leatham as I've never trained with him but I've been in classes and seen students who were too overwhelmed by what the instructor was putting out to keep up.

In some instances, students left after the 1st day and never came back.

After factoring the expense in time and money, training with a local instructor is not a bad way to start.

Conversely, I have seen high level instructors who may not have been great with beginner students do really well with experienced shooters.

Rob is a better teacher than he is a shooter. That's saying a lot.

mtdawg169
08-25-12, 11:39
Rob is a better teacher than he is a shooter. That's saying a lot.

Understatement of the year!

Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 2

theblackknight
08-25-12, 12:29
My point is that M4c is rather heavy handed with the no trace moderation, and it goes past posts not within the rules, are a waste of bandwidth OR are removed at the request of the owner.

Iraqgunz
08-26-12, 02:51
Seriously? Since the other posts seem to have flown over your head, I'll make this one real easy.

Quit talking in circles, say exactly whay you mean or make your point. If you can't do that then you know where the sign out button is located.


My point is that M4c is rather heavy handed with the no trace moderation, and it goes past posts not within the rules, are a waste of bandwidth OR are removed at the request of the owner.

mick610
08-26-12, 08:51
I think he did.......

NCPatrolAR
08-26-12, 10:13
This one has ran its course