I received many years of weapons training whilst in the military, and went on to complete several basic, to advanced level courses whilst working in the private security sector. I’ve had excellent instructors in the past with diverse backgrounds ranging from simple civvy street NRA, to active and retired SF personnel.
I was never an expert, far from it, but I believed that I retained safe working proficiency, through repetition and range days. However, in the past four years my career focus changed and I became preoccupied with studies and gaining experience in another profession.
With new qualifications and the looming potential for a return to the private security sector, I required competencies on specific weapon systems. I fully expected a loss of technique, muscle-memory and discipline, so I needed to address severe skill-fade. I specifically needed a return to military level proficiency and wanted to find a suitable SF level instructor with the patience of a saint. Tall order I know!
I knew our friend Google wasn’t one to be trusted, so I asked several trusty contacts to come up with some recommendations and nearly all directed me to STS. Upon learning the background of Mark Knowles, I knew I had the right instructor. I consulted with Mark who did some vetting whilst reviewing my requirements, a short time later he agreed to design and deliver a bespoke course.
The welcoming introduction, presentation, course location, facilities and equipment was impressive. The course timetable was well planned out and enabled Mark to assess my strengths and weaknesses. Despite expected errors, I found myself learning fast. Mark has exceptional method of instruction and spotted every flaw and mistake as I made them, this enabled Mark to iron out the creases, and he did a lot of ironing! One of the most important things I came away with was improved marksmanship and focus. Mark found subtle flaws and worked hard to ensure I maintained accurate technique despite expected fatigue. After a day of training most of us want to switch the brain off, but this is when Mark pushed me the most which resulted in a better training outcomes. I came away with everything I wanted from the course and can’t thank Mark enough. I fully intend on using STS for all future training.