Better decisions, better outcomes

Our Reaction Dynamics program is a two day classroom and scenario-based training program that addresses what we believe is the 2 main deficits in current law enforcement tactical instruction that has led to unnecessary shootings, ruined careers, and damaged department reputations and community relations.

videogame mentality

The first problem is that current tactical training engenders a videogame mentality. While all tactical programs incorporate shoot/don’t shoot scenarios, they also instill a mindset that in each scenario there is a threat that needs to be found. Each scenario then becomes a game that needs to be won, as opposed to an opportunity for learning. This mindset then spills over into the street. When officers enter a scene instead of assessing the information they are presented with, they immediately begin seeking out the threat that they believe is there. This can encourage tunnel vision, which leads to target fixation that threatens the safety of both the officer and the public.

military tactics

The second problem is that many law enforcement tactics were derived directly from military tactics, and allow little to no flexibility and creativity to adapt them to the law enforcement mission. These tactics have unquestionably improved officer safety, and are appropriate for SWAT and special operations units that are dealing directly with frontal assault/entry operations. But they have largely not taken into consideration the unique environment that law enforcement officers work under that the military does not. Chief among these considerations, is that in any military operation there is an acceptable civilian casualty percentage under which a mission is considered successful. In law enforcement there is no such thing as a acceptable civilian casualty. Even in the case of special operations units, many of these tactics are sub-optimal in the vast majority of their daily call-outs which are not assault/entry operations.

Reaction Dynamics training seeks to create officers that are tactical problem solvers. Since we are dealing with trained law enforcement officers, in our scenarios there are no inherently right or wrong actions to take. Instead we present officers with a scenario, a set of tools to use, and a goal which is to end each scenario without firing a shot. To this end, creativity and unconventional approaches to achieve this goal are both emphasized and encouraged throughout the class. Each scenario may have a shooting or a non-shooting solution based on the actions the officers take. At the end of each scenario we then review and critique video of each officer’s performance with the trainers and the group, and the officers will need to articulate the reasons why they took each action they did in each part of the scenario.

We believe that this creates the truest to life training possible. As we inform our students at the beginning of each training session there are no ambushes in any of our scenarios. The radio run is what it is presented to be, however, if the officers make tactical errors our experienced trainers will take advantage of them just as someone on the street would. Learning to justify their actions post incident in training as opposed to before a district attorney or review board creates confidence, and confident officers are safer officers. Training officers to justify and reflect on the consequences of their decisions before, during, and after they are made, leads to better decisions and better outcomes.

Reaction Dynamics training unlike many other types of tactical training does not seek to improve marksmanship, that is what the range is for. It is all about improving judgment. The goal of each scenario is to not shoot at all. Range time is unquestionably needed to develop and maintain skills, but it is not training for the confrontations and decisions law enforcement officers make on a daily basis.

This two-day course includes four hours of classroom and 12 hours of force on force scenario training, a portion of which is conducted in a low light environment.

In the classroom training we cover such topics as:​

Use of force with special populations specifically:

We also offer a specialized version of Reaction Dynamics specifically for special operations units. While the basic course parameters are the same, in this version the difficulty of the scenarios is raised by an order of magnitude. There is also a larger selection of equipment to use, and higher level tactical skills are emphasized such as reconnaissance, hostage extraction, and the creation of tactical plans. The end goal however remains the same, to resolve each scenario without firing a shot.

We also understand how perishable these skills are if not practiced regularly. That is why this program also includes a four hour train the trainer program for your departments tactical instructors. The main focus of this segment is to train your instructors in student assessment in their scenarios, as well as how to continually write and update their own scenarios so that your training always stays engaging and relevant.

In 2019
Officers were killed LOD
took their own lives
1 every
In 2019 police related lawsuits cost
$ 0 m
the NYPD
$ 0 m
the LAPD
$ 0 m
the Chicago PD
In June of 2020
state legislatures had introduced, amended or passed
bills and resolutions related to policing

There are over

law enforcement agencies in the United States, less than
0 %
have programs in place addressing officer mental health.

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