Gunsite Academy in Paulden, AZ, may be the best training academy for civilian shooters in America today. It is most widely recognized as a result of the work of Lt. Col. Jeff Cooper who developed many modern pistol techniques. Now Gunsite Academy has teamed up with Crimson Trace, best known for their comprehensive line of grip/weapon mounted lasers/lights for pistols and revolvers, to bring the modern technique a bit more modern.

The use of laser sights on personal-defense handguns has dramatically increased over the years with the expansion of concealed carry and the improvements in laser units, making them both smaller and more affordable. Crimson Trace has been a leader in this field and their grip mounted lasers feature instant on activation when you grip them while remaining small and unobtrusive an allowing the use of standard holsters. They have both red and green lasers available to suit every need.

Unfortunately standard defensive handgun techniques have not been fully developed to integrate the use of lasers into the training. Not until now that is. Gunsite’s 250 Defensive Pistol course is the definitive handgun course offered and constitutes five full days of intensive instruction and shooting. The course is designed to accommodate students at any skill level and everyone from beginner to expert will have an eye opening and rewarding experience.

I attended a Beta version of this course combining the 250 class with the use of Crimson Trace lasers and lights. What we learned was that as always one should remain drive the front sight toward the target but at distances within 7 yards in daylight conditions the red dot laser can be easily spotted and makes for much faster and more accurate shooting. Past that distance I found it best to use my sights. During low light and night time shooting the laser is much more visible and easily acquired, while the sights are not.

The use of lasers at night was especially helpful when firing from non-standard positions, from behind a barricade or in the prone. The 250 class in itself is incredibly comprehensive with movement drills, pivots and turns, distance shooting, different positions and a shoot/don’t shoot house. By integrating the Crimson Trace laser units with the training students are exposed to the advantages of their use and how best to deploy their lasers.

Courses will be offered in 2014 for anyone interested in self-defense with a laser unit installed. To learn more about these and other courses call 928-636-4565 or visit To learn more about the complete line of red and green lasers and tactical gun mounted lights from Crimson Trace please visit or call 800-442–2406.

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Gunsite Academy in Paulden, AZ, may be the best training academy for civilian shooters…