KR Training March 2020 Newsletter

Welcome to the KR Training March 2020 newsletter!


The page at this link is our official COVID status page. We are scaling back to smaller classes, cancelling and rescheduling some classes in March and April. Tom Givens’ classes have been rescheduled to June. We will be doing additional cleaning of the facility before/after each class. We are holding off on scheduling additional June-August events until later this spring.

If you do not already have the ammo you need for upcoming classes, it may be very hard to find (both online and at retail stores). We are likely to offer some beginner pistol and long gun courses this summer so those that are buying their first firearm(s) can get trained on safe handling and operation.

If you have friends, family or co-workers buying their first guns, encourage them to take one or both of these online courses:

These cover the classroom and lecture material in those classes, with the NRA course focusing on technical aspects of firearms and shooting fundamentals, and the LTC class teaching Texas law. Even those only choosing to be armed at home should understand Texas laws related to deadly force. Those completing the online courses can do the range part with us this summer or as part of the Basic 2 class scheduled May 2.

CLASSES (with space available)


We have put nearly 7 hours of material (14 videos) from our 2018 Preparedness Conference online for download or streaming. These videos cover a wide variety of preparedness topics.

Paul Martin Preparedness Lectures from Karl Rehn on Vimeo.

Paul Martin is renovating his preparedness communication strategy.  Moving forward, he is putting his preparedness meetings and other preparedness training activities on hiatus. He has consolidated his online content to a single website ( and his book Pivot Points.  A decision regarding the status of our annual January preparedness conference will be made this fall.

Finally, he won’t be posting news or preparedness info on Facebook moving forward. Anything in that genre will be placed on


Here are lists of the guns, holsters, belts, medical gear, pepper spray, and other items 15 instructors on the KR Training team use.


John and Karl recently updated some of the material in their Strategies and Standards for Defensive Handgun Training book, including adding a new appendix discussing red dot sights. Those that bought the e-book automatically got the update. If you bought a print copy, you can download a PDF with the updated Top 10 Drills and red dot appendix by clicking this link.


We encourage everyone to follow the KR Training business page on Facebook, because that’s where we post interesting links and articles several times a week. If you are a Facebook user and you have not been seeing our posts, please remember to look at the KR Training page once in awhile. You can also follow my personal page, where I will start posting weekly reminders to people to go check the KR Training page. It appears that the Facebook “algorithm” is now hiding updated posts from businesses and only shows paid ads and updates on personal page.

Even if you don’t want to follow us on social media, browse the posts on this blog. We’ve posted more than just the gear survey in the past 60 days.


We recently posted a slow motion video to our Instagram page showing pre-ignition push. That occurs when the shooter pulls the down gun just prior to the shot breaking. The shooter is typically not aware this is happening, because of blinking in anticipation of the shot firing.

The cure for pre-ignition push is a few minutes of dry fire each day, being careful to make sure the gun and sights don’t move as you press the trigger. Another way to cure it (or verify it’s not occurring) is to mix live and dummy rounds in your magazines when doing live fire practice.

KR Training now sells 8 round packages of 9mm dummy rounds, available for $10 at the A-Zone, or $15 shipped to you.

Click the “pay now” button below to order.


Here’s a playlist of videos recorded at recent performances, Dec 2019-March 2020, for those curious about the other half of my life as a performing musician. I look forward to returning to live performance when clubs and restaurants re-open. Here’s our trio version of the Rockin’ Pnuemonia and the Boogie Woogie Flu.

Keep up with the interesting links we share in real time. Follow KR Training on Facebook or Twitter. Subscribe to this newsletter or follow this blog (right) for more frequent posts and information. Send me an email to schedule your private weekday training session.

We look forward to training you!
Karl, Penny and the KR Training team

A testimonial from Greg Ellifritz of Active Response Training about Karl Rehn and John Daub's book, Strategies and Standards for Defensive Handgun Training.

Paul Martin Preparedness Lecture Series

In January 2018 KR Training presented two days of preparedness training, mostly taught by Paul Martin, and we recorded video for all the lectures. During this time when people are interested in preparedness, and many are stuck at home, we pulled those archival recordings off the shelf, edited in the slides, and organized the content into 14 videos available for download or streaming.

Paul T. Martin Video Preparedness Series

The topics include:

We are hosting them on Vimeo, asking for a few dollars for each video to help offset the financial cost of hosting them on that site so we could present them free of embedded ads for products and services we may or may not recommend. Here’s the trailer for the video series:

Paul Martin Preparedness Lectures from Karl Rehn on Vimeo.

Paul’s book Pivot Points is currently discounted on Amazon also.

He also has free materials (the Ready Citizen Manual) online.

2020 KR Training staff gear survey part 4 – home defense, training and competition guns

By far the most common questions I answer online and in person are about what gun(s), holsters and gear to buy. Recently I sent all the assistant instructors of KR Training a gear survey form. In part 1, I listed the guns, sights and gun modifications we use. In part 2, I listed holsters, mag carriers and belts. In part 3, I listed flashlights, pepper spray and medical gear. This post lists home defense guns, training and competition-specific gear.


Mostly carry guns or larger variants of that person’s carry gun

  • Same as carry gun (8 people)
  • Kimber 5″ steel frame 1911 in .45 ACP
  • S&W M&P Shield 9mm
  • S&W M&P full size 9mm
  • Glock 19
  • Glock 34
  • P320 V-TAC
  • Springfield XDM 9mm


Rifles and shotguns

  • 16″ AR-15 .223/5.56 with Aimpoint or similar red dot (7 people)
  • Remington 870 Police Magnum SBS w/ Vang Comp 12 gauge
  • Remington 870 police 12 gauge
  • .300 BLK suppressed SBR AR-15
  • Mossberg 930 w/ Primary Arms microdot 12 gauge
  • Beretta 1301 12 gauge
  • Mossberg 500 12 gauge
  • Mossberg 590A1 12 gauge
  • Ruger PCC 9mm
  • 12 gauge shotgun (did not specify make/model)
  • Marlin lever action rifle .30-30 Win


Weapon mounted lights (pistol or long gun) and other gear specific to home defense

  • Pro Ears hearing protectors
  • Carry flashlights
  • Streamlight X300 on Glock 19
  • X-300 Ultra on pistol
  • Extra ammo/magazines
  • Fenix PD35TAC mounted on rifle and shotgun
  • Streamlight TLR-1
  • Arlo cameras


Guns used mainly for classes, practice and matches

  • STI 2011 USPSA Open Gun .38 super comp (2 people)
  • Briley Platemaster 2011 .38 super comp (2 people)
  • 1911 steel frame custom/gunsmith 5″ .45 ACP (2 people)
  • STI Trojan 1911 9mm
  • CZ Shadow & Shadow 2 9mm
  • S&W M&P Core w/ Trijicon RMR 9mm
  • S&W M&P 5″ 9mm
  • SIG P320F 9mm
  • SIG P320 X-5 w/ Romeo 1
  • Springfield XDM 5″ 9mm


Holsters used mainly for training, practice and competition.

  • Comp-Tac International w/ drop and offset (2 people)
  • Comp-Tac OWB (2 people)
  • Safariland ALS (2 people)
  • BladeTech OWB Kydex
  • Safariland
  • Comp-Tac standard OWB kydex w/ BOSS hanger


  • Safariland
  • Double Alpha
  • Black Scorpion
  • Bianchi EMT belt, modified
  • 5.11
  • TUFF velcro belt


  • Comp-Tac (3 people)
  • Ghost (2 people)
  • Safariland 71
  • Blackhawk
  • Esstack Kwyi
  • GCode
  • Fobus


Items that didn’t fit in other categories

  • ProEars hearing pro (4 people)
  • Pocket Pro I timer
  • PACT MK IV timer/chronograph
  • Coolfire kit for M&P
  • IFAK carried SOB on match/training day
  • Mayflower APC w/ Haley Strategic Multi-Mission Hanger
  • Source Tactical Hydration Carrier
  • Green Mountain Range bag
  • Revision Eyewear
  • Rudy Project Eyewear
  • Burris Scopes (long guns)
  • SIRT pistol

2020 KR Training staff gear survey part 3 – flashlights, pepper spray, medical gear

By far the most common questions I answer online and in person are about what gun(s), holsters and gear to buy. Recently I sent all the assistant instructors of KR Training a gear survey form. The lists below are the flashlights, pepper spray and medical gear we carry. In part 1, I listed the guns, sights and gun modifications we use. In part 2, I listed holsters, mag carriers and belts. Follow up posts will list home defense guns, training and competition-specific gear.


Wide variety in models, but mostly SureFire and Streamlight products.

  • SureFire Stiletto (4 people)
  • Streamlight Microstream USB (4 people)
  • Streamlight Protac-2L-x
  • Surefire 6P variants (3 people)
  • SureFire Backup
  • Surefire “Sidekick” Streamlight Nano
  • Fenix PD-35 TAC
  • Four Sevens / Prometheus Quark QT2L Tactical
  • Ultrafire


Everyone that responded carries a tourniquet, some carry additional gear on them, everyone had additional gear in their vehicle.

  • SOFTT-W in pocket (8 people)
  • SOFTT-W in ankle pouch or purse/bag (4 people)
  • SOFTT-W in PHLster flatpack in pocket (3 people)
  • CAT in rear pocket or ankle (5 people)
  • TacMed Solutions ankle wrap
  • Dark Angel med kit
  • Safer Faster Defense SFD Responder ankle rig
  • Immediate Casualty Care Min-E-Med Flat
  • Raven Concealment Pocket Shield
  • Chest seal, quik clot bandage


Some reported multiple products, carried at different times depending on clothing or situation.

  • Sabre Red MK-6 (6 people)
  • None (5 people)
  • POM (4 people)
  • First Defense MK4
  • Kimber Pepper Blaster
  • ASP Palm Defender

2020 KR Training staff gear survey part 2 – holsters, mag carriers and ammo

By far the most common questions I answer online and in person are about what gun(s), holsters and gear to buy. Recently I sent all the assistant instructors of KR Training a gear survey form. The lists below are the holsters, mag carriers and ammunition we carry. In part 1, I listed the guns, sights and gun modifications we use. Follow up posts will list home defense guns (pistols and long guns), medical gear and more.


What ammo do we carry? Some people listed more than one (for primary and secondary guns)

  • Speer Gold Dot, 124 gr JHP, 9mm+P (7 people)
  • Federal HST 147 gr JHP 9mm (5 people)
  • Speer Gold Dot 147 gr JHP, 9mm
  • Speer Gold Dot, 115 gr JHP, 9mm
  • SIG V-Crown 9mm
  • Speer Gold Dot 135 gr +P .38 spl (short barrel load)
  • Federal Hydro-Shok (no bullet weight given)


Lots of variety in belt holsters, with the DeSantis Nemesis the universal choice for a pocket holster.

  • Keepers Concealment “Errand” (3 people)
  • Raven “Morrigan” (3 people)
  • PHLster “Classic” (2 people)
  • Keepers Concealment “Keeper”
  • Concealment Express IWB
  • Comp-Tac CTAC w/ Discrete Carry Concepts belt clips
  • Comp-Tac MTAC (hybrid)
  • Tenicor AIWB
  • Safariland OWB (open carry)
  • Dark Star Gear “Orion” w/ Dark Wing and DSG’s metal clip
  • Dark Star Gear “Hitchhiker” w/ Dark Wing and DSG metal clip
  • Vedder
  • JM Custom Kydex AIWB w/ wing claw
  • Black Point Tactical
  • Raven “Phantom” OWB
  • Comp-Tac “Warrior”
  • FIST Kydex
  • Desantis Nemesis Pocket holster for secondary gun (4 people)

HOLSTERS (Recommended but not currently used)

  • Blade-Tech
  • Dene Adams
  • Dale Fricke
  • Red Hill Tactical
  • Smart Carry


Most carry a spare mag, a few do not. Three reported carrying two spare mags, all others carried only one spare.

  • Comp-Tac OWB (4 people)
  • Comp-Tac IWB (2 people)
  • Black Point Tactical (2 people)
  • On Your 6 IWB double mag pouch
  • JM Custom Kydex high ride
  • Safariland 71
  • PHLster
  • Esstac Kywi
  • Smart Carry
  • Speed Strip in pocket (for revolver)
  • “None”


  • Blade-Tech NEXbelt EDC (3 people)
  • 5.11 Gunfighter belt (3 people)
  • Wilderness Tactical instructor belt (2 people)
  • Dickies men’s leather belt
  • Wilderness Tactical Frequent Flyer belt
  • Gould and Goodrich 1″ black leather
  • EDC Foundation
  • Ciguera Emmisary Belt
  • Blue Alpha
  • Filson 1.5″ bridle leather double belt
  • “varies with outfit”

2020 KR Training staff gear survey part 1 – carry guns

By far the most common questions I answer online and in person are about what gun(s), holsters and gear to buy. Recently I sent all the assistant instructors of KR Training a gear survey form. The lists below are the guns, sights and modifications we use. Follow up posts will list holsters, ammo, medical gear and other items.


The preferred (larger) carry gun. Some people had two different “primary” carry guns in their responses.

  • Glock 19, 9mm (4 people)
  • Glock 48 9mm (4 people)
  • S&W M&P 9mm 1.0 4.25″or 2.0 compact (3 people)
  • S&W M&P Shield 9mm (2 people)
  • CZ P01 9mm
  • SIG 320 X Carry 9mm
  • STI Staccato P DUO 2011 9mm
  • Glock 17, 9mm
  • Springfield XD 1.0 4″ 9mm
  • Springfield XD mod 2 9mm


Smaller guns, carried in non-permissive environments and/or as backup guns with the primary. Some did not list a secondary gun model.

  • S&W M&P Shield 9mm (3 people)
  • S&W airweight j-frame .38 sp (3 people)
  • Glock 43 9mm (2 people)
  • Sig P365 9mm (2 people)
  • SIG 938 9mm
  • Glock 48
  • Glock 26


  • Dawson Precision “Charger” solid black rear, narrow fiber optic front (6 people)
  • XS F8 night sights (2 people)
  • S&W M&P Shield factory (2 people)
  • 10-8 Performance (solid black)
  • Dawson “Charger” solid black rear, Trijicon HD tritium front
  • Factory rear, Dawson Precision fiber optic front
  • Ameriglo ProGlo tritium set, orange front
  • SIG factory night sights


Some of us are now carrying red dot sights or lasers on our carry guns

  • Trijicon RMR (3)
  • Holosun 507C (2)
  • Deltapoint (1)
  • Crimson Trace LaserGuard, green (1)


  • Polishing of factory trigger parts (8 people)
  • Apex trigger parts (5 people)
  • Ghost Glock connector (2 people)
  • KKM barrel (for M&P)
  • Silencerco threaded barrel/Taylor Freelance sight block (M&P Shield)
  • Grip texturing / Dawson or Talon grip tape (6 people)

Book Review – Into the Kill Zone (David Klinger, 2004)

Into the Kill Zone cover photo

Professor David Klinger, currently teaching at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, served as a patrol officer in the Los Angeles and Redmond, Washington police departments, later earning degrees in sociology, justice and history. During his time in uniform he shot a knife-wielding criminal that was attaching his partner. His 2004 book “Into the Kill Zone: A Cop’s Eye View of Deadly Force” compiles excerpts from interviews with law enforcement deadly force incident survivors with commentary and observations about the ways using deadly force can affect an officer’s life.

Into the Kill Zone back cover crop
Into the Kill Zone back cover cropped

The book is divided up into five sections: Choosing the Badge and Gun, Basic Training, Holding Fire, Pulling the Trigger, and When the Smoke Clears. Choosing the Badge and Gun discusses the decision to become a police officer and accepting the responsibility to use deadly force, if needed, as part of that job. Basic Training covers the ways officers are trained, particularly with regard to survival mindset.

Holding Fire is the most interesting chapter, because it details situations where officers could have shot, but chose not to – in cases where not shooting was appropriate, and some in which it could be argued that firing was the best solution. The “draw but don’t shoot” problem is one that’s far more common, both for law enforcement and armed citizens, and sometimes gets forgotten in discussion of the more exciting details of incidents where shots are fired.

The Pulling the Trigger section focuses on what officers were thinking and experiencing during the incident itself: the decision to fire, reaction to being shot at (and/or shot and hit), and what they perceived as the shooting was happening. As with the other sections, the focus is more on officer interviews and individual stories and less on lists and data, as would be expected from a sociologist & historian. When the Smoke Clears explores the aftermath, from a personal perspective.

Overall Into the Kill Zone is a well organized, interesting read. For students of defensive shooting, most of the content will confirm what they’ve been taught in classes about mindset and psychology of individual armed combat. The book is available in Kindle and print editions from Amazon and other sources. While I wouldn’t list it as “essential” reading on this topic, (Deadly Force Encounters by Artwohl and Christensen and In the Gravest Extreme by Ayoob would be my top two), it’s certainly worth reading by any law enforcement officer or armed citizen interested in the personal side of the topics it covers.

The video below is a brief interview with Klinger on local television.

KR Training COVID Status

As of 4/1/2020, all training (group and private lesson) training at the A-Zone facility in Lee County is shut down until April 30.

Due to updated direction from the Texas governor’s office and Lee County Emergency Management, all classes in April have been rescheduled to May or June. All students in those courses will be moved to May or June sessions, and all will be contacted via email over the next 48 hours.

As May approaches we will continue to monitor county and state guidance to determine if we can hold May classes or have to make additional schedule changes.

See updates at and

Paul Martin has published more general advice on preparedness here.

Feel free to contact us with any questions regarding this issue or upcoming courses.

The Dinkheller Movie

The video of officer Kyle Dinkheller being killed during a traffic stop became a widely used training film. The independent video producer behind the “Officer Involved” documentary has produced a documentary specifically about the Dinkheller incident. I recently ordered a copy and watched it.

The film is very personal, with interviews with Dinkheller’s family and co-workers. Particular attention was given to an incident that occurred prior to the fatal traffic stop, in which Dinkheller was (allegedly) forced to write and hand-deliver an apology letter to a big donor to his sheriff’s campaign, because Dinkheller pulled over (and chewed out) the donor for failing to get out of the way of multiple emergency vehicles heading to a high priority call with lights and sirens. Some of Dinkheller’s co-workers believe that his hesitation to escalate during the traffic stop was influenced by that disciplinary action, which does not appear in his permanent record.

The film includes minimal information about Dinkheller’s killer, and minimal analysis of the incident itself from a tactics or marksmanship perspective. Recommended only for those interested in learning more personal information about the officer and how the aftermath affected his family, friends and co-workers.

It appears that at the current time, the film is not available on streaming services, only as a DVD that can be purchased from the official website.

FPF Training Advanced Concealed Carry class AAR

KR Training assistant instructor Levi Nathan contributed this review of the recent FPF Training Concealed Carry Advanced Skills and Tactics course.

“We do not react to a situation, we respond appropriately.”
That was the phrase that burned itself into my memory as John Murphy of FPF Training said it with a loud and booming voice while discussing the topic when to use force. You *must* think and be able to articulate why you took the actions you did during the course of a fight. And his class was all about that. 

(John Murphy spent a long weekend at KR Training, attending our Force on Force Instructor course on Friday, and assisting with the Defensive Pistol Skills 2 course, running the shoot house, and serving as a roleplayer in the AT-2 Force on Force scenario course on Saturday before teaching his course on Sunday.)

We gathered at the A-Zone Range owned by Karl Rehn of KR Training in Manheim TX. Mr. Murphy did a quick role call and we got started.

First item of the day was watching a few short videos and having a class discussion afterwards. We then transitioned into a Stop The Bleed course, OC (pepper spray) skills and Mr. Murphy’s take on Managing Unknown Contacts (MUC first coined by Craig Douglas of Shivworks).

We had a short break for lunch and then we headed to the range. The range portion was extremely informational. All the videos we had watched, MUC skills and discussions about accuracy under stress came together. Shooting drills were often very short, extremely fast paced, timed and some data or metric was being collected. My personal favorite part was when we got to draw, fire 2 shots at a 4 inch group at 3 yards. Using a timer, you were told exactly what your draw to first shot, your split time and then final shot was and if needed, critique on your drawing or shooting technique. I was pleased to learn how to control split times down to the quarter second, it wasn’t easy, but I learned how.

It all came together seamlessly. I doubt anyone questioned why we were shooting small groups at fast paces under stress, because that’s how most gun fights for armed citizens go. Another key point is Mr. Murphy knew when to tell spicy jokes and when to be completely serious. 

An unexpected but welcome training technique was, at random times (when guns were in holsters and no one was on the firing line), he would start yelling “RIGHT LEG TOURNIQUET! RIGHT LEG TOURNIQUET!” until everyone clued in and put a TQ on their leg. It was timed. Not everyone completed the task successfully but it was homework. 

Overall I highly recommend this course to anyone who is thinking of getting training. If you are competent at drawing from concealment and can hit a 5 inch group at 5 yards in 5 seconds, then take this course. It will be an overview of all the street skills you need for EDC and it will help you find what you are good at, if you can articulate your actions and what you can improve upon.  

10/10 will train with John again.

(KR Training will be hosting FPF Training again in 2021, details to be announced later this year. FPF Training is hosting KR Training’s Advanced Handgun course June 13, 2020. FPF Training hosts their own classes and traveling trainers at their Culpepper, VA facility and teaches many road courses at locations all over the US. Visit their site for more information.