Counter Ambush Concepts: Preparing Your Response

Unlike many traditional personal defense programs, anchored on concepts like situational awareness and pre-contact clues to help you anticipate an attack, Counter Ambush Concepts: Preparing Your Response is a highly progressive training class that helps you prepare yourself to respond to the attacks that you don’t see coming. This class teaches you to respond decisively amidst the surprise and chaos of a “Dynamic Critical Incident.”

The Counter Ambush Concept

This PDN Academy training class shows why many conventional training programs are dangerously misaligned with the concept of counter ambush defense training. The reality-based concepts presented in Counter Ambush Concepts: Preparing Your Response focuses on the concept of Readiness. It challenges you to train for the unexpected by developing skills that prepare you no matter the scenario. Your instructor for this class is PDN Executive Director Rob Pincus. Rob shows you a practical means of organizing and prioritizing your personal defense preparations, called the Skill Development Cycle. You’ll learn an innovative approach to managing your training resources called “front loading” your training in order to first develop the skills you need most, and make the most of your limited training resources. What you learn in this no-nonsense training program is the foundation of a personal defense training program that will prepare you to better tailor your techniques, your tactics, even your personal defense gear to defend yourself and those you care about.

More Than a Video Presentation

In addition to more than 125 minutes of video presentation, this class includes a 10-page printable download, detailing some of the key counter ambush concepts presented. And, to help you put these concepts into practice, you’ll receive two special bonus downloads. First is the Skill Development Planner (SDP). Use the SDP to organize your training efforts, track your progress and advance your counter ambush skills. And you’ll also receive, as a separate download, a series of 15 bonus training exercises. Each exercise is designed to help you think outside the box of traditional training models and immediately begin exploring the counter ambush concepts presented, and begin preparing your counter ambush response right away.


Class Supplement PDF
Download this extensive supplement to learn more about key Counter Ambush concepts.

Class Exercises PDF
Use this printable PDF to guide you through specific training exercises designed to help you in many situations.

Class Notes Page PDF
Use this printable notes pages to document key aspects of the class or your training.

Training Log Template
Print several copies of this PDF template to help document your training and maintain a helpful Training Log.

Video: Meet Your Instructor
Download this short video to meet your class instructor, Rob Pincus.

Session 1: Intro to Preparing Your Response

This session will help you understand what it means to prepare a comprehensive self-defense response and the training program to get you where you should be in regard to efficient application of skills and concepts. Having a thorough understanding of where you are trying to get to will help to not only set the best plan in motion, but also get the most out of your limited training resources.

Session 2: Dynamic Critical Incidents

This session defines the term “Dynamic Critical Incident” and explains why we use it to accurately describe worst case scenario defensive situations. The component concepts of Surprise, Chaos and Threat are discussed thoroughly so that you can paint an accurate picture of the situation that you should be most focused on preparing for. If you are prepared for a Dynamic Critical Incident, then it should be easier for you to deal with lower level emergencies or defensive situations.

Session 3: Plausibility: The Most Likely Event

The Plausibility Principle is one of the core elements of defensive training. Understanding what you are most likely to need to do allows you to prioritize specific skills or pieces of equipment over others. After you have covered the basics, the Plausibility Principle guides you through the next most reasonable resource expenditures.

Session 4: Preparation: Readiness vs. Anticipation

This session covers the subtle but incredibly important differences between Readiness and Anticipation. Often, when discussing self-defense preparations, people confuse the two and this session will reveal how you can avoid making this tragic mistake that leads to complacency, overconfidence and a failure to train in a context that represents a Counter Ambush approach.

Session 5: Preparing Your Plan

Before you begin training or practicing, you should have a plan so that you can make sure you are working towards your specific goal(s) at each step. This session assists you in taking everything you have learned and using it to develop a plan that is tailored to your specific needs and resources.

Session 6: Skill Development Cycle

The Skill Development Cycle is your quick reference guide to getting better at the skills you have identified as important to your self-defense. Rather than just put time in going through the motions, following a specific path, with clearly identified steps will help you get the most out of your time and know when it is time to move on to another skill set or topic. Unlike programs which stress meeting an arbitrary performance goal in isolation, the Skill Development Cycle focuses on developing skills that can be applied in the expected context of use as efficiently as possible. This means setting realistic expectations based on your individual needs and subjective potential.

Session 7: Front Loading Your Practice

The concept of Front Loading your Practice is vital to long term retention of your physical skills. Rather than spreading your practice out evenly over extended periods, this approach allows you to spend a short, intense period, developing one skill and then move your focus to another skill once a reasonable amount of competency has been developed. In this way, while continuing to revisit existing skill sets, you can develop your skill more quickly and become more well-rounded at the same time. Combining the Plausibility Principle with this approach will help you decide what order to add skills in, based on your needs.

Session 8: The Balance of Speed and Precision

The Balance of Speed and Precision is the most important concept in defensive shooting. This session defines the concept and talks about how it applies to your defensive shooting skill development and application. By understanding this concept thoroughly, you will not fall into the trap of obsessing over accuracy without regard for time or the other extreme: time in a controlled drill that ignores the variables present in real defensive situations.

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One Response to “Counter Ambush Concepts: Preparing Your Response”


    Awesome online class! Well put together! In this session Rob brings up many issues self-defense shooters encounter and face in training for real life threatening encounters! With the PDN, it offers self-defense shooters the opportunity to continue to advance their skills and knowledge in their development as a self-defense shooter. Having a membership in the PDN is well worth the membership, and over the course of a year a member can get as much training as they want at their own speed. In addition to the class I just finished a person can take advantage of download materials or purchase DVD's on topics as they see fit. Remember a good self-defense shooter is all ways learning and refining their skills, and PDN is definitely part of my ongoing training regiment. Stay Safe, and remember your "ABC's" = Always Be Carrying! Matthew Schlueter Firearms Instructor