Sig Sauer Academy is one of the preeminent firearms training academies in the United States.
Offering training ranging from the simplest concealed-carry class to focused military training, this facility covers it all. State-of-the-art ranges and simulators allow for the most realistic and practical training possible. Professional instructors with decades of real-life training and experience provide the excellent instruction. An open and welcoming demeanor provide a positive and worthwhile experience, leaving you wanting to return as soon as possible.
- RELATED STORY: Advanced Defensive Rifle Training at the Sig Sauer Academy
Having toured the facility, attended several courses and met with its director, I can say that the Sig Sauer Academy is an excellent facility for any kind of firearms training.
Starting at the Pro Shop, you can see (and buy) most every Sig Sauer weapon. Holsters, clothing, cleaning supplies and other accessories line the walls and floor. The Academy’s Pro Shop offers discount on most weapons and accessories for anyone taking the time to visit. Attend training and an even better school rate is available. Many pro shops offer little selection and high prices. Not so with the Sig Sauer Academy. The company makes sure you get everything you need while providing a discount for being there. Most course fees include the rental of guns, holsters or any other equipment you may need.
Sig Sauer Academy Director Adam Painchaud has extensive real-world experience, and he is also a Master-class International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) competitor. Painchaud stressed how critical real-world experience is for instructors, especially for police or military training.
All of the Academy’s instructors have long and proven backgrounds in the police, security or military worlds. It keeps things focused on the practical, not the popular. Painchaud made this clear when he said, “While a school doctrine is present, instructors are open to other ideas, so long as they are proven, safe and work.”
The instructors are charged with making you better, period. There’s no dogma here. Painchaud pointed out that while Sig Sauer provides tremendous support to the Academy, they are a standalone entity. Sig Sauer weapons are available, but all training courses welcome the use of any weapon suited to professional use. Constantly being asked if you need to bring one of the company’s guns to train, Painchaud made it clear that is not the case. The training is based around the use of all of the modern and most-used weapons on the market.
The Sig Sauer Academy is well equipped, with a number of new ranges on the horizon. The rifle deck allows for shooting with ease out to 300 yards, and even ranges out to 800-plus yards. Take a short walk or drive and you can target out to 1,000 yards on yet another range.
The facility’s “Area 51” includes a rifle range and a pair of apparatus that require you to climb and move through obstacles while shooting from unconventional positions. Barricades were present as well as other obstacles. Moving around the facility, there were several 25-yard ranges that supported the competitive world with steel, rotating and knock-down targets.
A small city consisting of a number of containers allows for serious scenario training for law enforcement and civilians alike. Called the Tactical Area, it is dedicated to realistic application. There are also research and development areas for special operators, force-on-force areas and numerous classrooms. The Sig Sauer Academy can facilitate pretty much any training necessary involving a firearm for law enforcement, the military, competitors or anyone seeking professional firearms instruction.
The Sig Sauer Academy offers a number of courses, ranging in length from a a half-day to five days. Levels start from your first day with a rifle to intense advanced training using simulators and force-on-force training. Specialty courses are available for law enforcement, the military, contractors and other professionals. As a year-round facility, there are even classes designed to teach operation in serious winter conditions. Progressive classes build on each other, and the Academy offers days and times to work around just about any shooter’s schedule.
Rifle/Carbine Orientation (Rifle 101) is one course designed around the typical AR while facilitating other carbines. An entry-level course, it guides the new owner or shooter through basic safety, operation, handling and maintenance. It provides what you need to safely handle and operate your rifle in preparation for training geared more towards application. Rifle 102 adds manipulation skills, along with basic skills preparing for the next step. These courses can be taken back to back or separate depending on your personal schedule.
Defensive Rifle is a two-day intermediate course designed to take basic operation to the next level. After a quick review of basic handling skills, the class moves into practical defensive rifle shooting. Addressing application from near to far, it also provides scenario training. Various carry methods, ready positions and shooting positions are covered. Shooting on the move and utilizing cover and concealment are added.
Having attended this class, I can honestly say that it is excellent. It really gets you prepared for more advanced training. We fired out to 100 yards and fired on the move, and we also covered transitions to secondary weapons. Time was spent in unconventional positions and working around barricades. The last day was spent working on the “twin towers,” requiring you to climb and move through the tower while shooting from various positions. Nothing in that tower is “normal,” requiring you to shoot from both sides, seldom with anything resembling comfort. It also gets your heart rate up by simulating the stress of real-life engagements. It is an intense and fruitful two days, with lots of trigger time and practical and useful drills. It was a great time!
Advanced Defensive Rifle takes your carbine skills to the next level. Building on the Defensive Rifle course, more complicated and dynamic movement is added. Operations in close quarters along with tactical live-fire movements are provided. Working in and around vehicles is the culmination of the class. Completion of this two-day course leaves you with the knowledge, skill and ability to survive and prevail in many deadly-force encounters using your carbine at any practical range.
Keeping your skills sharp requires regular training, and Sig Sauer Academy offers various courses for just that purpose. Single-day classes often focus on specific skill sets. Dynamic Performance Rifle has a strict focus on accuracy both from static positions and on the move. Getting set up, calling your shots and engaging multiple targets are covered. Rifle 101 is taught in the evening hours to teach the basics of nighttime operation. Mid Range Carbine enhances use of the carbine out to 300 yards. Cold Weather Carbine is all shooting and no classroom instruction, offering nothing but experienced instruction and the use of your rifle and equipment in cold weather conditions.
- RELATED VIDEO: Training at the Sig Sauer Academy
Unique to Sig Sauer Academy is the Skill Builder Class. A half or full day in length, it is taught with an open format for experienced trainers. The class is built upon the experience level of the attendees. Each class is molded to meet the needs of the individuals in the class, making them perfect for working on your particular needs. It allows you to get focused training on just what you need.
Sig Sauer Academy’s motto is “Where the professionals train,” and in my experience the facility lives up to that ideal nicely. Instructors are well trained, experienced and professional. Classes are well structured, practical and geared towards most any student, including the most advanced. Ranges are available to meet any practical need and are well kept, safe and properly maintained. With a curriculum that is well structured yet lacking in dogma, Sig Sauer Academy is, above all, professional. In order for training to “stick,” it needs to be well delivered and practical. The more positive the environment the better, and Sig Sauer Academy has it all. If you are looking for top training from a professional staff using a state-of-the-art facility, the Sig Sauer Academy is just the place.