PRO TIPS with USAMU - El Presidente

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SGT Travis Tomasie – The El Pres


The El Presidente is one of the greatest combat skill tests ever created. As a scenario driven exercise, you assume the role as bodyguard of the President, when you’re suddenly assaulted by three armed assailants. 



At the start signal, you turn, then draw, and engage each target with two rounds, perform a reload, and re-engage each target with two more rounds. On today’s Pro Tip, I’m going to share with you some of my secrets for surviving this scenario.




Lets start with the draw first. The first step to the draw is rotating your head and eyes to the target, you want to spin on your holster side, as this is the shortest path to getting your pistol aimed at the target. Make sure you assume a good stable shooting position as it’s very easy to get your legs crossed on the turn. Practice the turning draw several times in dry fire to get comfortable with your footwork before you use live ammo. 




Once you’ve mastered the turning draw, it’s time to shoot these targets. The quickest and most accurate way to engage them is through the use of a technique known as the controlled pair. To execute a controlled pair, align the sights on center mass and fire the shots. The pistol will lift in recoil and soon return to where it started. As soon as it’s recovered, fire your next shot. It’s important that you wait until the sights have returned to the center of the target. As your ability to manage recoil progresses, you can speed up your controlled pair. 





Now that we learned how to fire a controlled pair, it’s time to move on to transitioning to the next target. The way we want to do this is we leave the front sight after the second shot on the first target, look to the center of the next target, and bring the front sight to our eyes. It’s important during this transition that you are aggressive and drive the pistol to your next target. Once there, you will align the sights, and fire another controlled pair. Do this slowly at first. You’ll develop speed with practice. 





Once you’ve fire your sixth shot, its time to make a mandatory reload. Activate your magazine catch, while simultaneously drawing a fresh magazine. You want to visually gain an acquisition on the mag well, and insert the new magazine, roll the pistol out to the target, execute another controlled pair. Practice your reload until it becomes muscle memory. A good fast reload will help you out in all forms of shooting sports.



The El Pres, it’s a great way to practice a variety of skills, your draw, your reload, your transitions. Practice these all individually and see how fast you can save the El Presidente. That was a 3.93. Practice these techniques, and see if you can be as fast as me. 

Until next time, Stay Army Strong.




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