February 19-20, 2011

· RangeMaster Combative Handgun Course ­ Tom Givens

December 3-5, 2010 - Robert , LA - Posted Below

· Magpul Dynamics - Dynamic Handgun 2 / Shotgun

March 9-14, 2010 - Robert , LA

· Magpul Dynamics - Dynamic Carbine 1 and Dynamic Carbine 2



Nolatac has been hosting Magpul Dynamics for the past 2 years in the south Louisiana area. No, we were not skipping across the bayou on an airboat to change targets, so please don’t confuse us with “Swamp People” on A&E. The cadre of instructors has varied over the classes, but it always ends up being a very packed crowd with 3 or 4 instructors from the MD crew. This time we had the whole firearms team for the most part with Chris Costa, Travis Haley, Mike Olivella, and Steve Fisher. The private range we utilize was the same range used for the AOTTS DVD that recently released and has been the home to all of our hosted classes. I am sure this self -descriptive saying pops into everyone’s head after leaving here; “I’m a lead farmer…….!” (inside joke)

Hosting between 2-4 training events with Magpul Dynamics per year here has fostered a very good working relationship with the MD crew from all the way at the TOP with Jill in the office handling all of the schedules (and the instructors personalities) ALL THE WAY DOWN TO Steve Fisher…(love ya big guy!) It really has evolved into almost a family reunion when these guys come down, with a large percentage of our student body being repeat shooters who love the camaraderie as much the top-tier instruction. While there is never any problem with filling a Magpul Dynamics class, classes down here are getting even harder to catch a seat in.



Typically, like other classes, this class was bursting at the seams with 28 shooters from all walks of life: LEO’s, CEO’s, lawyers, doctors, magazine writers, students, waiters, graphic designers, and industry personnel representing some of the largest companies in the game. With 4 instructors from MD, everyone received more than their fair share of personalized attention-some probably a little more than they wanted. LOL.


Climbing the Ladder of Excellence:

Rung 1
TD1 started off with all of the customary administrative paper work being completed, and yes kids; grownups still use the excuse “the dog ate my waivers!” This led into the range safety brief and formal introduction of the MD crew, hosts, and industry representatives, basic rules of firearm safety, and concluded with our critical incident plan.



After everyone was good-to-go on the admin side, the volley of lead began. MD didn’t waste any time finding out how the class runs a gun when the proverbial fecal matter hits the rotating blades and that failure point has been reached. I mean this was a HG2 course for Christ’s sake! As students keep taking the hike from downrange to the hardcover, they would rush to top off magazines for another block of instruction, grab a sip of water or quick bit of fruit, and with the quickness be back on the line ready to go.




As there are many AARs on the classes, highlighting the drills that MD does, sec by sec, tick for tock, and of course, the DVD’s, the thing that makes this class special is the atmosphere. It is kind of hard to articulate, but the level of camaraderie and fellowship transcends the ultimate goal of learning. It is obvious that the MD crew is comfortable in their surroundings, and the students are allowed to focus on the task at hand—skill building. You kind of had to be there! They do a great job of ribbing and pushing the guys while creating an atmosphere of competition, drive, and learning.





After most shooters had already fired 600 plus rounds of their respective pistol caliber ammo during TD1, TD2 started out with the BSA (Balance of Speed and Accuracy) Drill. This being a “dynamic” class, we were looking for “combat effective” hits within the 8” green plate on the targets. As the team from Magpul Dynamics explained the whys from their own life experiences, they stressed that you’re not going to get a textbook stance, sight picture, etc. in a gunfight. You are kind of stuck with what you got while the ultimate goal is to get as close to those optimal standards as possible while taking into account time and distance of the threat.

However, through repetition, repetition, repetition, repetition, stressing the word repetition, you can mold your motor skills, such that when the body alarm response kicks into action, you’re putting combat effective rounds on your target with the ultimate goal of neutralizing the threat without sustaining injury. Don’t get me wrong, Magpul Dynamics doesn’t throw accuracy out the window just to send lead downrange; however, the core behind the BALANCE OF SPEED AND ACCURACY is just that, a balance. It is a constant compromise that is situationally dependent. This is why everyone who attends the class comes with and leaves with a different level of improvement -- but improvement for all nonetheless.



First things first, we broke out what is arguably considered the most violent and versatile weapon system since the Wild West--the shotgun, aka “Boom Stick.” Knowing that AOTTS was filming several months back at the range we utilize, we decided to mix this December class up a bit- hence the one-day shotgun refresher. The reality is that while many of us, especially law enforcement, employ a shotgun as an integral part of our job or home defense plan, we rarely give it the skills maintenance it deserves. It is kind of like the whole dating a fat chick and riding a scooter. It is practical—it just isn’t sexy.

Just like in the DVD, Magpul Dynamics really likes zeroing the systems from a seated position, and that’s exactly what we did. After zeroing, the class was all dialed in, and ready for a jammed pack day of instruction, shoulders be damned. Chris, Travis, Steve, and Mike, thoroughly covered both pump and semi-automatic shotguns in every drill, and the selection of systems represented on the line was diverse.



Concluding the course of shotgun, scenario stations were set up, 4 to be exact, utilizing barricades, walls, vehicles, and plate racks. Having the majority of the Magpul Dynamics team here, the class was able to separate into 4 separate units with each instructor manning one. It saddens me to say that because of these events, I can neither confirm nor deny that some innocent pumpkins were sacrificed in the name of realism and sheer “shits and giggle.”



Concluding TD3, a brass, and hull call was conducted, leaving the range just how we found it on TD1. Nolatac, along with its industry partners put together a nice “kit” table in which every shooter received a lottery ticket. Chris Costa played a Dirty Santa and pulled numbers. Winning students received products from Surefire, Raven Concealment Systems, Mesa Tactical, M-Pro 7, and Revision Eyewear.

Gear Included:

  • Surefire X400
  • Ar15 magazine pouches from Raven Concealment
  • Tactical Side Saddles from Mesa Tactical
  • M PRO 7’s new Soft Sided Cleaning Kits
  • Revision Eyewear Sawfly Deluxe Kits



As we always try to do at our training events, we reach out to industry partners to put the best kit in the hands of those who will appreciate and utilize it. We have found that most shooters make a purchase via word of mouth or by trial and error. However, trial and error can be expensive! This was evidence by the 12-13 new Aimpoint T-1/H-1 on Larue mounts and Raven Concealment Holsters that showed up at our Carbine 2 class after those same students ran what they previously had in Carbine 1. I know between Brannon and me, we ended up purchasing four sets ourselves. When something works, it works. Something just clicks; when they see the instructors explain why this specific piece of kit works or why it doesn’t. It also helps to see other students either succeeding or failing on the line with a specific piece of kit. I find it particularly interesting to watch the transformation in people’s rifle and load bearing gear from TD1 to TD3 as they learn the hard way what works and what does not. Then again, there are always those who fight reality—for all three days.

Having great industry partners attending the class, also allows them the instant feedback from the field from the end line user. They get to talk face-to-face with those who rely on their gear for real-life purposes. It is a win-win for all involved. With that said, each and every student got a swag bag that Nolatac put together with help from our industry partners that included the following:

Gift Certificate from Raven Concealment for 50.00
Surefire EP3 Ear Pro, Hat, and Sticker
Magpul Dynamics AOTTS, Stickers, Patches
Nolatac Patches, Carabineer, Pen
M-PRO 7 Cleaner, Lube, and brochure
Mesa Tactical literature
Revision Catalogue with 30% off NOLATAC Code
Tuf Cloth from Sentry Solutions


Of course it is, and we believe to make a true training experience fair for everyone involved, we try not to let “that guy” even make a guest appearance at our classes. Lunches were catered and delivered ready to eat daily and promptly @ 1200 hours. The menu varied but the great taste and benefits stayed the same. The additional “off-line” learning time spent jaw jacking with the instructors and other students between mouthfuls of delicious chow and the additional firing time saved by not waiting on stragglers from lunch gave the class a cohesiveness that was noticeable by TD2 and added to the learning. Something happens when people break bread together, and it is good.


Keeping with the theme of camaraderie, “off-line” time, and general southern hospitality, nightly dinners were coordinated to give everyone the opportunity to unwind and talk more shop—or not. This was also beneficial since many students were from out-of-state and didn’t want to get lost in the swamp and start hearing banjo music while trying to find chow. We couldn’t have them coming to Louisiana and eating at Chilli’s. That just ain’t right!

We visited Trey Yeun Cuisine of China, a nationally recognized Chinese food establishment, on TD1, and Cate Street Seafood Station on TD2. 28 deep each night, with the Magpul Dynamics team in tote, guys and gals, got to unwind, relax, and have a good time with fellow shooters. With full belly’s and tired eyes, everyone retreated to the hotel to straighten out gear for the next day and rest their weary souls.


“Magpul Dynamics always has a consistently excellent quality of training, however the quality of experience for the 2-3 days is very much dependent on the quality of hosting put forth by the range and those that handle the logistics. In this regard NOLATAC hosted a fantastic class. As a fellow range host I appreciate all the hard work that goes in to making the process of learning transparent, versus students fending for themselves for food and resources. Great weather, great instructors, great facilities. Thank you again for the great experience to purely be a student at one of the better venues out there.” ~ I.M. Graph Designer –Titleist
“I live in Illinois and it took me about 32 hours to make the round trip to Louisiana. I enjoyed the class so much that I immediately signed up for the classes being taught there by Magpul in May and December of next year.” ~ Anonymous Medical Personal
“I have been to a lot of training in the past I look at Magpul Dynamics as being one of the best out there. When you sign up for a MD class you can expect great training. What sets the Louisiana class apart from the others I have attended is the organization, quality, and hospitality of all those involved in making the class happen. It is something I have never experienced before in all the classes I have taken” ~ P.C. Property Manager

“Training with Magpul Dynamics is not simply training; it is a transformation. My background with pistols shotguns is relatively limited. This is my second class with Magpul Dynamics. My first class was taught by Chris. With this class, I had the pleasure of training with Travis, Mike, and Steve in addition to Chris. These gentlemen have imbued in me a sense of confidence in manipulating the weapon systems (pistol and shotgun) far beyond my expectations. Furthermore, I left the class with a platform based on sound theory and field applications such that I can form a foundation for future training and development. I am truly a satisfied student of Magpul Dynamics.” ~J. C. Teacher

Student Gear Breakdown:

Through previous classes, we find that many people are interested in the gear being run by fellow students. People will read the review and see a piece of kit in a photo and wonder what it was. Also, giving shooters the opportunity to report on what gear worked for them and what did not, allows the learning to continue long after the last round in fired and everyone is safe at home. We find it also helps those who are perhaps a little less seasoned, have first hand reports of how gear they may want to try worked in certain applications.

A complete gear breakdown and student demographics report is available at the link below. Each student that filled out the survey will receive an EXCLUSIVE class patch.



Nolatac Firearms Training    |    504.982.LIFE    |    info@nolatac.com