Have you ever thought how would you draw and fire from the ground? If not, you should. The first time you fire a gun while lying on your back should not be in a self-defense situation. Think about it. When you’re standing with your arms stretched out holding your handgun, you don’t have to worry about hitting any other part of your body. When you’re on the ground, who knows what might get in the way. And what if you’re lying on your gun and can’t reach it from that position?
While ground training can be conducted alone, it’s best with a partner who devises scenarios from which you determine the best course of action. It’s also best to start with an inert blue gun or a double and triple checked unloaded handgun in a concealed holster before conducting live-fire exercises. Of course, some ranges don’t allow this type of training, so you might be limited to dry practice.
Start by lying in various positions with the handgun (inert) out and ready. From here, you can determine the best way to defend yourself without putting your limbs in danger—your feet, knees and legs are most often the parts that will get in the way. If you can, always draw your legs up and fire from between the knees, with practice you can even spin while on your back to confront the attacker. Later add in drawing a gun from the holster, while conducting the same drills.
Next, have your partner stand back and provide a situation where you will be on the ground: i.e. an attacker has knocked you to your back and is coming straight at you. In this situation, draw your handgun, you might have to roll slightly to the side, while bringing up your legs up and fire from between your knees. Then conduct the same drill, but the attacker is coming from the side, or behind you. You should also include situations where you fall in odd and uncomfortable ways, using mats to keep from hurting yourself, and don’t forget about multiple attackers.
In the movies, the good guy always gets the bad guy while standing straight up, but the reality is that not every situation allows us to remain on our feet—it’s often best not to—so it is to our advantage to train from the ground.