By Martin Renshi, summer 2012
Project Old Modern Warrior – Shindenkan’s most controversial project so far, and Kimu Sensei’s grand and non compromising work, has already showed how effective it is. After all the attendees had proved Minouchi Sensei’s theory, whether the trained martial arts student can use his training and attitude, with the modern warrior’s weapon, and hereby also master this competence. This was not surprising, but what did surprise was how clearly it was proven, which you can read more about on our web page, in the many articles which describes POMW. It has been the plan all along, that the POMW courses will be held every 2-4 years, because it draws on a lot of resources, and at the same time is a TG3 course. Kimu Sensei has so far been the only ”resource”, who with his high level of martial arts competence, can reform Minouchi Sensei’s theory to the modern shooters learning without compromise, and turn it into a training course, designed so that it optimally trains Shindenkan’s students, to reach a very high level in range shooting. A level that has shown to border the Danish elite, accomplished in only 6-7 months of training, but with only 2-3 months of training next time the course is held. Hopefully with more resources, now that the Shindenkan Chief Instructors are following a unique training plan, that will educate them to POMW shooting instructors, who will be able to educate future Shindenkan’s to a likewise high level, and also help maintain the POMW project in the future. POMW Prague, was one of the high notes in this education, uniquely designed for the Chief Instructors, based on their individual level, just as in all other RRCAMP’s. Although there was a little more vacation over this camp, since all the attendees used a little of their summer vacation, to get this education. It was also the first time that most of the Chief Instructors went ’out of country’ to be educated. It was 5 days in the name of POMW, self paid and under the competent wings of Kimu Sensei, in the capitol of the Czech Republic – Prague.
A few days before the RRCampPraque where to happen, the Chief Instructors received the last information and layout of the training plan, and what to bring on the trip, which included shooting clothes (clothes that is worn repeatedly, in an inside shooting range in 30 degrees without good ventilation, can end up smelling a bit like ”man”), range bag, gun rig (belt with magazine holder and holster), fitness clothes, water bottle, safety equipment, CZ air guns, 9 mm CZ guns, etc. Here I will mention that nobody in Shindenkan keeps weapon at home, and that they are all kept in Shooting Clubs, where the Instructors go to train with the guns. The reader might ask, why the training should take place in Prague, and whether that might not be expensive. Experience show, that when you are to take a demanding training course, it is best to be away from home. Away from the ordinary ”sources of noise,” such as family, sweetheart, the neighbors barking dog, mail, etc. This is also the case for RRCamps. In Denmark we have a good an restrictive weapons law, which is good for all, but in a country like The Czech Republic it is a little easier to show up with several types of firearms, and it is also cheaper to rent ranges several days in a row. It would of course not be possible either, without Kimu Sensei’s rebate, which insures the attendees cheaper – much cheaper – hotel rooms in a really nice hotel. And since it is vacation too, then Prague is great, since it is also inexpensive to eat out. It is accessible by car, after a drive of 650 km through the old East Germany and some of the Czech Republic.
To maximize the time, Kimu Sensei had reserved ferry tickets for 07:00, Thursday morning. Which meant that you could reach Prague around 15:00, check into the hotel and have the first shooting lesson before dinner. It takes almost two hours to reach the ferry in Gedser, which meant that the 4 Chief Instructors, Søren, Kjeld, Claus and Martin, had agreed to meet at 04:30 (this is before sunrise, so they deserved the double espresso), to drive in one car and meet up with Kimu Sensei and Jens Hanshi-dai in Gedser, before the ferry departed. On the ferry we enjoyed the breakfast and coffee, brought from home, while Kimu Sensei briefed us on the plans for the RRCampPraque. He briefed from the training program already sent to us, which later turned out to fall apart. But Kimu Sensei have the great ability of adjusting to the needs of the attendees, so that everybody gets maximum benefit, according to mood, attitude and willingness to learn – in short, he meets people at the level they are at, and takes them on a journey, if they are willing.
The drive through Germany and later The Czech Republic, went according to plan, although with a little detour for car number one, with Jens Hansi-dai and kimu Sensei. Even though the BMW had been given loose reigns on the German autobahn, with free speed, they arrived 25 minutes later, at the hotel in Prague. Apparently the latest Garmin update, included roads which The Czech Republic had not build yet, but had reported to have completed. So that gave car number one some trouble 🙂 The check in at the hotel was taken care of by Kimu Sensei, and true to norm, he negotiated upgrades, and an extra room, so that the Instructors did not have to sleep three to a room. These upgrades meant that everybody was put on the Business floor, with access to the Executive lounge (not execute lounge, even though it was a shooting camp 🙂 ). It was a new and impressive experience for the attendees, with unlimited access to drinks, good coffee (we drank a lot), snacks and appetizers throughout the day. So all in all, a perfect platform for the next days, which included, shooting, dry training and work in front of the PC, because everybody also had to pass a DSF A pistol license test. They had already prepared for the test from home, which would hopefully open for the possibility for entry into the Formel 1 of shooting – IPSC. After check in it was time for the first lesson, which took place at the local shooting club, only 4-5 minutes walk from the hotel.
The first lesson was pure caliber 0.22 range shooting, with point and transition (changing between targets). Kimu Sensei supervised the 5 attendees as they took turns, shooting on the two ranges (15 meter), and critiqued according to POMW technique shooting handbook, which the attendees had been following in their training. The result of the training of the day, was remarkable, with all the attendees scoring between 268 and 286 points, or an average of 277 points (out of 300 possible, with 30 shots). If you take a closer look at this result, you will find that only 100 shooters in Denmark has shot 277 points, in 2012. Which brings the POMW shooters up into the Danish 1. division, where the demand in 2013 is 273 points. This is pretty good, after only 6-7 months of training, where many shooters maybe have trained 5, 10 or 15 years, to reach the same result. The transition shooting did not go as well (with Shindenkan standard :-)), but then it is good to know, where to improve, and that is what dry training is for, as planned on this camp. After 2 hours on the shooting range in 30 degree weather, and a thick fog of smoke and lead fumes, it was time for a bath, before sightseeing and dinner.
Being a vacation, there was an entire 30 minutes set aside for sightseeing, which took place between the hotel and the restaurant, where most of the more popular attractions in Prague, was passed at high speed – the opera house, the astronomical clock, Karlsbroen, etc. ”Now that is completed”, in the words of Kimu Sensei.
The dinner was enjoyed at an inexpensive but good restaurant, with a view of Karlsbroen. The first day in Prague was over, and tired after the training and the ten hour drive, it was time for bed. But not without an introduction to dry training, with a new dimension, now that it was geared towards IPSC.
The next three days was tightly planned, and all began with breakfast at 07:00, where the program of the day was briefed by Kimu Sensei, who constantly was ready to adjust and conform the lessons, so it would benefit the attendees optimally. On the daily schedule was, shooting from 10:00 till 13:00, then a quick lunch, a sandwich from KFC or snacks from the lounge. On Saturday and Sunday afternoon, the attendees were to pass the theoretical part of the IPSC DSF A License. After dinner the schedule called for, dry training, with 6 exercises. Pull from holster, change of magazine, transitions, strong hand (taking aim and one hand shooting with your favorite hand), weak hand (Aim and one hand shooting with your weak hand), change between hands and a free exercise. This exercises are part of POMW shooting technique, and shall prepare the attendees for IPSC shooting. All the exercises are trained with SIRT guns or Air guns, because they are good for this purpose. All the exercises was trained 15 minutes through three steps 20, 50 and 80-100%. In addition to dry training in the evening, the guns also had to be cleaned. All the 9 mm guns plus Kimu Sensei’s 0.22 browning, was brought with us from Denmark on a EU Weapons pass, and Czech Republic permit. It might not be necessary to clean the guns every day, but the guns was passed around, so that all got comfortable taking the guns apart, cleaning them and putting them back together.
Friday we shot 0.22 and 9 mm, and this time at a larger range, which was chosen for the rest of the days. It had better ventilation, and also the possibility of shooting at 18 meter.
Saturday began with 0.22 point shooting and transitions. Then we changed to 9 mm. It was here important to use the same POMW technique with 9 mm. So, focus on precision. Kimu Sensei commented and analyzed the targets for every shooter, following every run through. This way the attendees could learn how to analyze their own target, and error correct their own, and others. Thereby a direct teaching in, how to become a POMW shooting Instructor.
The shooting Sunday was only with 9 mm, but there were many great shots. Sunday was also an extra exciting day for many of the attendees, because they were to try ”strong” and ”weak” hand (one hand shooting) with a 9 mm. It is pretty hard to hold a 1.5 kg gun in your hand, and shoot two shots in a row, which is meant to hit the center of the target. It surprised all the attendees, that they actually were pretty good at hitting with both left and right hand, in spite of the recoil from the 9 mm. But Kimu Sensei’s training the first days and the dry training, had once again paid of, and all the attendees managed more or less, to shoot ’hole in hole’.
The Chief Instructors succeeded in passing the theoretical test with an average of about 98% out of 100 questions, so they were naturally proud of the result. So was Kimu Sensei. The amount of shots were perhaps not as Kimu Sensei had planned, but the quality on the other hand was high, and the results spoke for itself.
Throughout this intensive course the attendees have obtained a shooting competence in 6-7 months, that it takes ”normal” shooters many years to accomplish. This is due Kimu Sensei’s learning technique, which is a direct mirror of his lack of compromise, from martial arts. We must not forget, that Kimu Sensei showed up without any prior shooting experience, and today is shooting at the same level as the world’s elite, and some of the best IPSC shooters, without wanting to admit it himself. But we have foreign Intel sources 🙂
Sunday a dinner of celebration was planned, expecting that we had something to celebrate. So, after the last attendees had passed the theoretical test, and a little of meditation, everybody went in great haste to restaurant Bellevu, in the old part of Prague, where they served us 3 courses with red and white vine. It was a great experience, and costing about half of what it would have in Denmark. So, if you are looking for a City vacation with gourmet meals, Prague can be recommended. After dinner it went at a normal pace back to the hotel, where the group had agreed on checking out the hotel bar, and the nightclub on the top floor (9th). It was supposed to have a great view, and good drinks. But it was closed on Sunday’s, of course. So, we cleaned guns instead, till late.
Monday it was time for ”boy fun”, with fun-shooting planned. It was of course not only for fun, and the attendees were asked to feel the difference in recoil, precision, etc, on the different weapons that were to be shot before noon on Monday. In an hour the attendees, without Kimu Sensei, managed to shot with 0.40(pistol), 0.44(pistol), 357(revolver) and Magnum 44(revolver), pump gun(shot gun) with normal spread round and Magnum slugs. The first two was similar to 9mm, there after the 357 had more recoil, but the magnum 44 is hysterical, as Jens Hanshi-dai commented. Although with POMW shooting technique it was possible to get some well placed hits, in spite of the strong recoil. With the shot gun it was another matter. You don’t aim, but point to get a hit, and with a Magnum round it kicks like a horse, which was obvious later, when all the attendees were red on the chest or had bruises.
RRCamp was not yet over. There was still the drive back to little Denmark. On this drive there was another task to solve, which got started in Prague, Sunday afternoon. Shindenkan is planning to open its own shooting club SPOMW –SDKSkyt, which calls for a allot of planning and discussion. The drive was used for this. This shooting club will have the purpose of maintaining the skills for future POMW educated Shindenkan students, and thereby assure that the competence can be maintained according to POMW shooting technique handbook. It will of course be open to all, but will be divided, so everybody can train focused, according to their needs and motivation. POMW courses and RRCampPraque has made spectacular results. The statistic and training according to POMW shooting manual shows, that Shindenkan actually is capable of training a top shooter, who can shoot at a level with the Danish elite in range shooting, within 2-3 months. Dependent on of course, that the POMW shooting handbook and process is followed 100%, and with a correct attitude. How long does it take to get the purple belt? It was a group of real tired Chief Instructors who after 5 days of self paid ”vacation”, arrived back in Denmark around 01:30, with a had a hard days work ahead. But they were all in agreement, that it had been some fantastic days in Prague, where they could not only be proud of them selves, but also be proud for all of Shindenkan and POMW.