The 7 yard rule [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Glock39Pirate
01-24-2010, 19:48
Anyone know why people practice a lot with the 7 yard or 21 feet target? I've been told a few reasons why and some have been legal issues where you have to prove that you were justified to shoot within 21 feet. Anyone know?

Dalton Wayne
01-24-2010, 19:51
Because most self defense shootings are at 21' or less
Regards
DW

Dandapani
01-24-2010, 19:53
Because a person with a knife within 21 feet of you can kill you if you have to draw on them. You may shoot them, but they will still stick you.

http://www.trailerparkshow.com/selfdefense3.html

Deaf Smith
01-24-2010, 21:02
Actually we practice at 7 yards alot cause it's the 'average' range, or used to be, for gunfights.

Yes the Tuller drill did find that people with 'average' reflexes are in danger at 7 yards from a knife welding assailant.

But guys, I hate that word 'average'. After all, that implies alot of them are above and below that.

Most civilian gunfights are below 7 yards, and people with very good reflexes and training might stop a knife welding assailant well inside 7 yards while those with real crappy reflexes and training might be in danger at 20 yards!

Practice at many varied ranges. Practice one, strong or weak, handed shooting. Practice low light shooting. Do all that and more and don't put too much stock in the word 'average'.

Deaf

Marky Mark
01-24-2010, 21:20
Legend has it that back in the 30's the FBI did a study of their agent involved shootings, and the average was 7 yards. Thus, that became a "standard". I suspect that distances for street officers were probably a lot closer at that time, bu that was the average for their agency. Since then, the average has gotten considerably closer. My old dept. did a review, and our average was 5.9 feet.

Sam Spade
01-24-2010, 22:45
Legend has it that back in the 30's the FBI did a study of their agent involved shootings, and the average was 7 yards.
Don't know about the 30s, but the average is 7 feet. 7 yards marks about the 95th percentile.

English
01-25-2010, 09:26
I think that the 7 yard rule comes from the Tueller principle. 25 years ago Dennis Tueller discovered that the great majority of reasonably fit people could make an attack with a knife or club from 7 yards and strike about half the time before an officer with an open carry holster could draw and shoot. That is, the attacker decided when to initiate the attack and the defender could not draw until the charge commenced.

More recent work shows that someone who is good at getting off the X can avoid the attack about half the time from 11 to 12 feet but 25 years ago it was all about draw and shoot from a fixed position.

As Tueller points out, that is not the end of the matter because even if you manage to make a hit your attacker can continue a lethal attack for some time. Since, at the time, there were cases of people absorbing 12 hits of .38Sp, blugeoning a LEO to death and running 200 yards before expiring, it was clear that 7 yards was not actually a safe distance but the converse became generally recognized. That is, shooting someone with a knife or club who was within 7 yards was justified.

English

HK Dan
01-25-2010, 10:31
Now, I had heard that the "Tueller Drill" was done at 7 yards because that's the range that Tueller shot the guy at. I don't think they did extensive testing at different ranges, I thought they ran the drill a 7 because that's what they were defending in court.

I've been wrong before, but that was my impression.
Dan

Dragoon44
01-25-2010, 11:42
The point of the Tueller Drill was to show trainee's that the average person 21' away could reach you in an average of 1.5 seconds or less.

This is contrasted with the "average" trainee's time of around 2 seconds to draw and accurately fire a shot.

This reinforces for the student that an individual armed with a knife or blunt instrument within 21' poses a deadly threat to them.

CRUEL HAND LUKE
01-25-2010, 12:42
For civilian self defense 7 yards is a LONG way.The bad guys typically do not pull out a bullhorn and tell you from across the parking lot that they are coming to rob you.... The overwhelming majority of civilian SD shootings actually take place 15 FEET (5yards) and CLOSER.

How close do you have to be to take someone's wallet or to take physical control of them to beat them or rape them? If they can do that from 7 yards then you are being mugged by Plastic Man.

So if they NEED to get close enough to rape, rob or pillage, then MAYBE 7 yards is a little unrealistic.....

Now,think about going about your daily business. If someone approaches you on the street what distance do you REALLY let them get to before you tell them to not come closer? If you are like MOST people that distance is about 2 to 3 yards.

So why are you training primarily for 7 yards?

Jedburgh
01-25-2010, 13:51
Based on the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) from the last ten years, 70% of all Law Enforcement assaults occurred inside 10 feet.

You can read more about it here:gunfighting distance (http://jedburgh-usa.com/gunfighting-distance-2/)

DOL

Gallium
01-25-2010, 19:43
Based on the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) from the last ten years, 70% of all Law Enforcement assaults occurred inside 10 feet.

You can read more about it here:gunfighting distance (http://jedburgh-usa.com/gunfighting-distance-2/)

DOL


Then there's the rule of threes.

3 rounds, 3 seconds, 3 yards.

fastbolt
01-27-2010, 14:47
By the time I had the chance to meet Dennis Tueller he had long since gotten used to being asked about his original reason for developing his thoughts which became widely known as the "21 Foot Rule" (it's not a rule). Nice guy, too. Gentleman.

He basically said that when he was involved in teaching an academy class many years ago that one of his cadets asked him how close was too close when it came to a knife v. handgun encounter in LE work. He said he thought that the question was a good one and he went home and tried to start writing about it. He explained how he tested different cadets of different age, physical abilities, shooting skills, etc when trying to learn how speed and reaction could affect this sort of hypothetical encounter (but which could become very real during LE work and encounters with armed suspects carrying knives). When I listened to him explain it, it sort of seems that what he wrote ended up taking on a life of its own and surprised him. ;)

As I recall, he made the comment at one point that if he were going to do the same thing all over again that he might look at it from the perspective of taking place within 30 feet, instead of 21 feet. Some of the important lessons gained from this sort of thing are often considered to be that distance from someone armed with an edged/impact weapon is a good thing, movement is a good thing to create that distance and maintain it until the threat has been safely resolved, and that armed suspects can move faster than you might be able to react and act in a manner needed to reduce the chance of you being seriously injured or killed during the encounter.

The world isn't made up of a nice level, wide open, easily navigable surface with good illumination and lacking distraction and physical obstructions, though.

Here's a link where you can listen to an interview of him about it.
http://www.policeone.com/training/videos/1698001-Dennis-Tueller-21-Foot-Rule/

coachrowsey
01-29-2010, 12:56
Because most self defense shootings are at 21' or less
Regards
DW

Exactly.

TwinFourFives
01-29-2010, 13:38
I think 5-7 yards is just about right, for home defense purposes.

I've been in several altercations on the street and in public, and in places that are not my own property. Drawing a gun would have worked against me in all of these situations, it would have gotten me killed in at least two of them.

When you draw a gun out, either the agressor flees or someone has to die. In the public arena, this kind of situation will usually blossom within arms reach of one another. Cops are using radios, and informed of situations prior to entering them. They have intel. Civilians can be random targets, no intel beforehand.


If you work at a gas station or a robbery prone store, 5 to 20 feet would probably be a choice distance for practice.


Another thing i personally have noticed, is when people are being aggressive at you from 21 feet there's usually no reason to kill them. It would be wrong. Guns are not a joke, they are not funny. I've never been in a situation where it would be worth it to take someone's life. I'd much rather just fight it out, unless someone is honestly trying to kill me i wouldn't use a gun.

BamaTrooper
01-29-2010, 22:13
I think 5-7 yards is just about right, for home defense purposes.

I've been in several altercations on the street and in public, and in places that are not my own property. Drawing a gun would have worked against me in all of these situations, it would have gotten me killed in at least two of them.

When you draw a gun out, either the agressor flees or someone has to die. In the public arena, this kind of situation will usually blossom within arms reach of one another. Cops are using radios, and informed of situations prior to entering them. They have intel. Civilians can be random targets, no intel beforehand.


If you work at a gas station or a robbery prone store, 5 to 20 feet would probably be a choice distance for practice.


Another thing i personally have noticed, is when people are being aggressive at you from 21 feet there's usually no reason to kill them. It would be wrong. Guns are not a joke, they are not funny. I've never been in a situation where it would be worth it to take someone's life. I'd much rather just fight it out, unless someone is honestly trying to kill me i wouldn't use a gun.

Do you do a lot of practicing from prone, supine and seated positions? wronghanded and laying on the gun side? In a clinch or with clothes too small to simulate a clinch? Drawing might be more important than sight picture at bad breath distance.

fredj338
01-31-2010, 01:16
Based on the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) from the last ten years, 70% of all Law Enforcement assaults occurred inside 10 feet.

You can read more about it here:gunfighting distance (http://jedburgh-usa.com/gunfighting-distance-2/)

DOL
Read that again. It's distances officers killed, not involved in a gunfight. The average gunfight distance trained for decades has been 21ft. Your fight may start closer but could easily go the length of a car in a parking lot, a bit more than 21ft. Practicing only for close range encounters is like only practicing your putting on the golf course. The game is more than contact shooting & if you carry, LE or ccw. you should practice so you can get fast hits from contact to even 50yds if need be.

swotivated
01-31-2010, 07:34
The point of the Tueller Drill was to show trainee's that the average person 21' away could reach you in an average of 1.5 seconds or less.

This is what I've heard too. The 21' "security bubble" is obviously arbitrary as no two assailants are going to be able to get to you in the same amount of time and no two shooters are going to be able to draw and engage in the same amount of time.

If you're a **** hot shooter going against a fat moron, maybe you need just 10'; if you're a useless shooter going against a trained assassin perhaps you'd want to keep a 35' bubble.

A CCW'er shooting 21 feet would require some extraordinary circumstances. This doesn't mean you should never train to it (same goes for 21 yds...you never know). I'm all about realistic training though.

Gallium
01-31-2010, 07:49
...

A CCW'er shooting 21 feet would require some extraordinary circumstances... .


I agree completely :whistling: . Those circumstances are typically -



a clear threat of deadly force against you, or a loved one or some other third party
Forcible felonious invasion against your place of business or domicile
Arson against your domicile or place of business, with human occupants
Car jacking, rape, kidnapping, etc

21ft, 21 yards, 50 yards, 2ft it really does not matter - EXCEPT if you are in such a place where evasion is required, feasible and/or practical.


'Drew

:cool:

MitchellB
01-31-2010, 08:28
Never shot a man and hope I never have to, but I have seen a small whitetailed deer run nearly 200 feet before dropping after a half dozen guys armed with .30-30s, shotguns and .30,06s began filling him full of lead. I would expect a man pumped with adrenalin would be a little tougher to bring down with a pistol.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>

Hedo1
01-31-2010, 08:29
I've trained a lot with a knife and have done force on force knife vs. gun (holster starting position). 21 ft. is adequate if you know it's coming and have a duty rig holster and draw perfectly w/o hesitation. If you are carrying concealed and I start the encounter, as opposed to moving when you draw your weapon, I've never been stopped before landing a lethal strike (neck, torso under the arm).

With training and the realization you are not going to stop the attacker by maintaining your position and using your gun only, the odds improve to about 50/50. To be successful you need to move laterally, keep your weak hand up and be prepared to counter the knife, and draw and fire your weapon from a retention position, close to the body. Don't forget the guy with the knife is amped and up and has momentum. One shot is going to do it.

Jedburgh
02-01-2010, 11:37
The average gunfight distance for decades has been 21ft. Practicing only for close range encounters is like only practicing your putting on the golf course.

What's the source for your data? I'd like to take a look at it. I haven't seen anything that indicates an "average" gunfighting distance.

I use the UCR data about Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted because it is the best national data with common definitions of occurrences. Additionally, understanding where officers are killed shows the most dangerous position that officers can find themselves. The data clearly shows that as ranges decreases, the lethality increases. There's no reason to think that it won't apply to civilians as well.

Unlike golf, you don't have to hit your fairway wood to get close to your opponent. If your opponent intends bodily harm, it's a pretty straightforward assumption that he will get close to your body.

Firing pistols from distance has a lot of merit. Slight problems in your fundamentals may be masked at 5 yards. At 25 yards, they become exaggerated. Distance shooting should definitely be part of your training regimen.

Regardless of the true meaning of the 7 yard rule, the fact is that the closer you are to your adversary, the more dangerous the encounter will be. Distance gives you both time and options.

DOL

Hedo1
02-01-2010, 13:12
What's the source for your data? I'd like to take a look at it. I haven't seen anything that indicates an "average" gunfighting distance.

I use the UCR data about Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted because it is the best national data with common definitions of occurrences. Additionally, understanding where officers are killed shows the most dangerous position that officers can find themselves. The data clearly shows that as ranges decreases, the lethality increases. There's no reason to think that it won't apply to civilians as well.

Unlike golf, you don't have to hit your fairway wood to get close to your opponent. If your opponent intends bodily harm, it's a pretty straightforward assumption that he will get close to your body.

Firing pistols from distance has a lot of merit. Slight problems in your fundamentals may be masked at 5 yards. At 25 yards, they become exaggerated. Distance shooting should definitely be part of your training regimen.

Regardless of the true meaning of the 7 yard rule, the fact is that the closer you are to your adversary, the more dangerous the encounter will be. Distance gives you both time and options.

DOL

Jedburg,

I just clicked on your site. What a great site, a wealth of great information.

Jedburgh
02-01-2010, 14:03
Thank you sir. I try to post some new info ever week or so. Let me know if there's anything specific I should include.

DOL

fredj338
02-01-2010, 14:44
Regardless of the true meaning of the 7 yard rule, the fact is that the closer you are to your adversary, the more dangerous the encounter will be. Distance gives you both time and options
This is very true, distance favors the well trained. It's why we want to create distance as soon as possible at the onset of the attack. It's also why you should practice. For those that think you are not justified in firing beyond contact distance, think about an attack in a parking lot. It may start at contact distance of 4-5ft, multiple attackers. As they attack & your defense unfolds, the attackers & you will retreat to cover as the shooting begins. You could very well be facing 1 or 2 attackers across the distance of a car, a bit more than 21ft. If you can't end that fight before they flank you, you will likely die at a contact distance. It's just not very forward thinking to train from contact to 7yds max & ignore greater distances, when skill will favor you in a shooting situation beyond that.:dunno:
Interesting reading: http://www.theppsc.org/Staff_Views/Aveni/OIS.pdf

mercop
02-02-2010, 15:04
This is what I've heard too. The 21' "security bubble" is obviously arbitrary as no two assailants are going to be able to get to you in the same amount of time and no two shooters are going to be able to draw and engage in the same amount of time.

If you're a **** hot shooter going against a fat moron, maybe you need just 10'; if you're a useless shooter going against a trained assassin perhaps you'd want to keep a 35' bubble.

A CCW'er shooting 21 feet would require some extraordinary circumstances. This doesn't mean you should never train to it (same goes for 21 yds...you never know). I'm all about realistic training though.

This has got to be the most misused piece of information out there. When do police field interview anyone at 7 yards? Just about never. The most dangerous time for an officer is when taking a subject into custody, not when they are 7 yards away.

Maximus13
02-02-2010, 15:07
Its the only way we can qualify!!!!!!!!!!LOL