GPSTC 40 Hour Defensive Tactics

On August 24th, I attended a 40 hour Defensive Tactics course at the Georgia Public Safety Training Center. The topics included use of force, handcuffing, strikes and kicks, using an expandable baton, grappling / ground fighting, edged weapons, OC / Pepper spray, and physical conditioning. It was one day classroom and 4 days of practical exercises.

Peace Officers in Georgia are required to attain certification in each discipline they instruct. As a Firearms Instructor, I can train officers in any type of shooting from pistols to precision rifles. However, it does not confer the authority to do any training in combatives. To remedy that, I'm undergoing the process of becoming a Defensive Tactics Instructor.

In order to teach Defensive Tactics, students must complete the two week / 80 hour POST General Instructor course. They must then complete a 40 hour Defensive Tactics course. Upon meeting those two pre-requisites, and within a year of passing the 40 hour student level DT course, they may attend an additional 80 hour Defensive Tactics Instructor certification course. At that time, after 200 hours of formal training, the officer may teach physical combatives skills.

I'm currently on track to attain my DTI certification at the end of November. At that time, any further law enforcement training I design will include elements of physical self defense, performance of those skills while fatigued, and judgmental use of deadly force. I feel it's a more realistic training model, which is critical in a time of so much social unrest.

As part of the process, I'll have the unpleasant experience of fighting for five minutes after I've been OC/Pepper sprayed. I'm told they video that, so I'll be able to re-live (and share) that special joy whenever I wish. Sadly, I'm not a member of the 2% of the population for whom pepper spray has no effect.


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