Using Airsoft as a Training Aid
When people think of Airsoft, they undoubtedly think of some lame sport that is full of little uncontrollable kids. I can attest that the latter is true! In reality, Airsoft is a very valuable training aid that anyone with any level of skill can utilize and learn from.
In the Airsoft world, there are people just like any other in the world; there are high speed low drag people, there are some speed more drag people, there are sloths on valium and there are 3 year olds with AKs. By taking your SWAT/SRT/ERT team to the local Airsoft fields, you can refine your tactics by utilizing all these different types of people you will find on the field.
Just like in real world scenarios, you never know the skill of the person you’re going to be up against. Your job is to neutralize the threat, keep officers and bystanders safe, control chaos and hopefully bring everyone home unharmed, the subject(s) included. The local fields will provide you with all the chaos and threats you and your team can handle. The best part is everyone goes home at the end of the day.
Take your team to every game you can. The fields often have missions and scenarios for teams to complete with the large majority of the participants not having any tactical training. This lack of training will work to your advantage when you challenge yourself and your team to shoot as few people as possible and to attempt to gain compliance by voice. Most fields have buildings that are unlit and crawling with people. This is again, an excellent time to hone building entry and room clearing techniques. If you are utilizing medics, this is the perfect time to have them practice their skill. Undoubtedly, at least one of your team members will be shot by some little kid hiding in the bushes or get blown up by the grenade or claymore simulators that are often used.
Simunition and paintball are good options as well but not nearly as cost effective. A good entry level Airsoft M4 with everything you need to go hot will run around $150-$175. The bbs that are shot in excess of 400+fps will draw blood at close range and average less than 1/5th of a cent per round. You can procure 55,000 rounds for roughly $65. Reusable grenades will run around $90 with reusable CO2 powered concussion grenades running $30 for 12. Get out there and train. Have fun. Learn from your mistakes. Be better!