> TEOTWAWKI Blog: Review: Travis Haley - Adaptive Carbine



Review: Travis Haley - Adaptive Carbine

I have limited budget to dedicate to firearms training (and when I say limited, I mean it), so instructional DVDs have played an important part of my skills development. The Magpul Dynamics "Art of" videos have been hugely instructional to me and helped to increase my carbine skills far beyond what they would be otherwise.

Travis Haley was one-half of the instructor line-up for Magpul Dynamics. He recently left Magpul (on good terms) to start a new firm, Haley Strategic, allowing him to do consulting, design work and training with a wider client base.

Adaptive Carbine is Haley's first post-Magpul training video, and his first solo effort. I linked the trailer the other day, here. What can I say, it looked too good to pass up.

Unlike the Magpul Dynamics series, Adaptive Carbine is not filmed during a course -- it's a direct, one-on-one with Haley. This allows Haley to spend more time and detail on getting across his personal shooting philosophies and explain more in depth many of the mechanics and nuances behind what he does. It's an exceptional opportunity to get focused instruction from one of the best in the business.

Haley has looked at factors that can increase and decrease survivability rates in combat, and has found that one factor stands out when it comes to decreasing survivability: failure to adapt. Rigidity, dogma and denial aren't your allies. The video's title--Adaptive Carbine--comes from the importance of adaptability in all areas of combat--from weapons manipulation techniques to technology. Preppers and survivalists will relate well to this message -- survival is all about being able to adapt to ever-changing circumstances.

The training content throughout the video is excellent. If you've watched the Art Of carbine series, there is some content overlap. However, due to the one-on-one nature of the video, Haley is able to explain the same techniques with more detail than what was covered in the Art Of videos. I've watched both of the Carbine DVD sets probably five or six times each, and there was new, value-add material throughout. Overall, it's an excellent and thorough introduction to running the AR-15 carbine.

Haley covers off on basic weapons manipulation--reloading, zeroing, malfunctions, and some basic positions, movement and exploding off the line of attack ("getting off the x" as it's known in other circles). His teaching style is an excellent combination of intensity, motivation, realism and education. Good stuff.

One of my favorite segments is Haley's analysis of various ranges for zeroing in your irons and optics. I haven't seen anything else as clear or demonstrative about the different characteristics and groupings you can expect at various zeroes. I will probably be adjusting the zero on my personal carbine after watching this.
Another standout is the ending sequence, where Haley puts himself through a combination memory game and shooting course. He runs the course with full-force intensity, and then walks you through the after-action report afterwards, including his mistakes and the "breaking points" that he reaches. It serves to demonstrate a non-traditional approach to training vs. the standard flat range. More importantly, it shows that failures in training are always an option -- even for pros like Travis Haley. It's in the real world, when life is on the line, that failure is not an option. And that's why we train.

The video has good production values -- not quite up to the standards set by the Magpul Dynamics videos, but professional and excellent none-the-less. It was produced by a relatively new company, Panteao Productions, who look to be building a pretty awesome library of firearms training videos. One great thing - Panteao offers an online subscription that allows you to watch their library on a Netflix-style basis. I had some hiccups during the registration process and the customer service guys were a great help. A one month subscription is $17.95, which is a steal for the access to the library.

Thumbs up from me, all around.