SIRT Pistols: 21st Century Reality Based Firearms Training

  • October 27, 2012
  • Self Defense
  • Comments Off on SIRT Pistols: 21st Century Reality Based Firearms Training

SIRT Pistols: 21st Century Reality Based Firearms Training

Want to take your firearms training up a notch? What about your reality based self-​​defense training? Well, here is the way to do it. SIRT (Shot Indicating Resetting Trigger) pistols are the ONLY readily available and affordable training devices which allow for immediate visual feedback to the user allowing for immediate self-​​correction.

Do you like to shoot? Maybe your profession requires you to shoot. Maybe you want to protect yourself in a deadly force scenario. Then you must hit what you are shooting at…simple, yet sometimes it is very elusive and difficult to do just that. So, how about shooting the best you possibly can?

Pilots have flight simulators; automobile drivers have driving simulators, golfers have golf simulators, now shooters have a shooting simulator that you can bring anywhere and use anyplace!

NextLevel Training produces and distributes SIRT pistols which display a red laser dot when trigger slack is taken up and then once the trigger is fully pressed, a red or green (depending on model) laser dot appears indicating the exact trajectory of a fired projectile. The trigger automatically resets so no slide manipulation is required. On the downside the slide does not actually move and cannot be cycled for any type of malfunction drills. That being said, the magazines do eject and are changeable so malfunction drills can be simulated.

Practice makes perfect or more correctly stated perfect practice makes perfect. Unless you are independently wealthy you cannot shoot as often as you would like to or need to maintain the very perishable kinesthetic skill of operating a firearm while successfully striking the target with the projectile every time the firearm is discharged.

In terms of neurological and psychological learning methodology, the visual cues displayed are a huge benefit for those attempting to learn or preserve the psychomotor skill of firearms shooting. The majority of people are predominantly visual learners. Police and military may tend to be secondarily kinesthetic and tactile learners. SIRT pistols, and the rifle bolt kits, offer both visual cues as well as the kinesthetic and tactile stimulation that allows incredible learning to take place.

I have been a firearms instructor since about 1995 and have been shooting since about 1977. I currently am a state certified firearms instructor and teach all three weapons platforms that police patrol operators utilize: Handguns, Shotguns, Rifles.

Finally, I have found a training aid that allows kinesthetic repetitive practice with inherent self-​​correcting capabilities; I have found and successfully utilized the SIRT pistols and rifle adapter kits.

Please do not think I am gullible and believe every tall tale that some police and military equipment providers claim. I am a trained researcher and instructor therefore, I must gain empirical first hand knowledge of the particular piece of equipment before I am convinced of its usefulness. SIRT equipment has passed that test!

Besides myself, I allowed several different and independent cohorts of testers to practice with the SIRT pistol and the rifle adapter kit. A civilian 12 year old shooter who has 8 years shooting experience and is an accomplished martial artist (my son), a police dispatcher with almost no shooting experience and absolutely no firearms training, martial arts students who have never even held a real gun, and a police firearms instructor with a great deal of experience. Each user experienced some degree of training improvement.

The only possible drawback is that batteries do not last forever. I personally did not experience a battery issue while testing and evaluating these pistols but they will not last forever. Given the cost of range time and ammunition, not to mention convenience, purchasing batteries from time to time for these SIRT pistols should not be cost prohibitive nor outweigh the benefits derived form keeping a perishable skill preserved, that being your shooting skill. We also tested the durability of these pistols. Dropping them from a normal standup shooting position caused either no damage or required the sights to be adjusted afterwards; the pistols did not break! So, just as with your real firearms, if you drop a SIRT pistol then you might have to adjust its sights but it should still fire.

Martial artists who are practicing firearm disarming techniques need visual reinforcement that they are not being shot while attempting their particular techniques; the SIRT pistols offer this and more!

From the NextLevel Training website:

Company President and Founder Mike Hughes explains…

“NLT introduced its stand alone dry fire training pistol— the SIRT™(Shot Indicating Resetting Trigger), at Shot Show 2011. Founded by GM Production Shooter and Top Shot Season 3 runner up, Mike Hughes, NLT is revolutionizing the way shooters train with its new dry fire training products. SIRT Training Pistols are replica guns that emit a laser when breaking the auto resetting trigger (no need to rack the slide).

Training is the foundation for excelling in pistol and rifle craft.  A majority of training involves gun handling.  SIRT Training Systems are designed for simplicity.  These inert training systems lower barriers to entry allowing  training to happen virtually anywhere. Low reoccurring cost and quick set-​​up make training rewarding.”




Presenting gun on target

Natural point of aim


Awkward shooting positions

Increasing overall speed and accuracy

Acceptable sight picture/​sight alignment

Scenarios (shooting live targets with safety protocol in place)

Target transitions

Driving the eyes and bringing the gun on target without over-​​traveling

Weapon transitions (rifle to pistol)

Prepping the trigger at appropriate times

Prepping when muzzle is aligned on target

Not prepping when muzzle is not pointed at something you are willing to destroy

Decelerating the body to a shooting position ready to shoot

“Many of the above skillsets can be trained with a SIRT Training Pistol in high volume while ensuring quality of movement.  Just as you cannot practice free throws on a backboard with no hoop, we need to know where the muzzle is aligned when dry firing.  The basic premise: train your skillsets nearly anywhere, and integrate these skillsets with recoil when you hit the range.”

“Furthermore, we need a diagnostic tool when training to identify weaknesses on our own.  Most all shooters are amazed at what the muzzle really does when breaking a shot.  We want dots not dashes when breaking a shot.”

“We have a hard working team at NLT that are committed to promote and support all pistol and rifle training.  We are committed to supporting trainers and providing training tools to facilitate quality high volume training.”

From the SETCAN website in reference to the SIRT Pistols:

  • Save Money
  • Auto resetting trigger
  • Trigger take up indicator
  • Shot placement indicator
  • Six trigger adjustments
  • Made in the USA

Built tough with sturdy steel construction, the SIRT (Shot Indicating Resetting Trigger) Training Pistol looks and feels like the real thing by matching the size, weight, and center of gravity of the officer’s live fire pistol. In addition, the SIRT Training Pistol even offers a host of customizable features including magazine cartridge changes and replaceable sights.


  • Resetting Trigger Allows For Engaging Targets In A Continuous String
    An auto-​​resetting trigger is necessary to reset the internal simulated sear to represent multiple consecutive shots. Traditional dry firing requires racking the slide or cocking the hammer (to shoot in single action mode). The action between shots breaks the natural flow of engaging numerous targets in an array.
  • Trigger Prep Training
    The internal switch indicates when the trigger is “taken-​​up” and partially pressed, as prepping a trigger is imperative for maximizing accuracy and trigger control. When the trigger is taken-​​up, the green laser is on, providing a visual awareness of the muzzle movement, and further indicating when the trigger is prepped to the shooter and/​or a trainer or firearms instructor.
  • Maximize Trigger Mechanics
    When the simulated sear is “broken” the solid-​​state internal switching system activates the red, shot-​​indicating visual feedback indicating proper trigger follow-​​through and generally proper grip and trigger mechanics.
  • Take-​​Up & Shot Indicators Work For Everyone
    Whether your shooting style is target-​​focused or strict front-​​sight-​​focused, the general visual awareness of the lasers provides the requisite feedback to improve shooting mechanics without compromising your vision focal at your desired vision focal length.
  • Train Safely
  • The SIRT Training Pistol does not fire any sort of projectile, and the lasers are not harmful. However, the brightly lit red front portion protruding longitudinally forward from the grip and slide module along with the sharp razor cuts aids observers to identify that the SIRT is not a real firearm.
  • Low Impact – Shock Absorbing Magazine
    Magazine can be dropped on many types of flooring surfaces without damage.

Train Draws And Reloads
The integrated lasers allow for proper training of draws of various pistol craft skill sets. The SIRT Training Pistol comes with an adjustable weighted magazine to simulate the weight and center of gravity of 10 rounds of 124 grain 9mm ammunition, a fully loaded 15 round .40 caliber magazine with 180 grain bullets.

From the SETCAN website in reference to the AR Bolt Kit:

  • “Convert your AR-​​15 in 20 seconds”
  • “Adjustable shot indicating red laser”
  • “SIRT-​​AR Bolt works with your upper on your lower”
  • “Replaces your bolt carrier”
  • “Universal to fit all Mil Spec AR Triggers*”
  • “Enables your lower’s trigger to auto-​​reset”
  • “200 yard visibility through optics”
  • “Not rackable”
  • “Uses Lithium CR123 Batteries”
  • “Made in the USA”
  • “*Should fit most after-​​market triggers. Does not work with two stage triggers”
  • “The SIRT-​​AR Bolt, allows you to train shooting with an offset, weapons manipulation, mag changes, presentation shots, transitions from primary to secondary, and strong side to weak side.”
  • “By replacing your bolt carrier with the SIRT –AR Bolt you will be able to train with a self resetting trigger that activates a red laser fired down the barrel of your rifle using your upper, your optics, and your lower. Simply open the rear takedown pin, remove your bolt carrier, insert the SIRT-​​AR Bolt and trigger bar, close and latch the take down pin and you are ready to train with your AR-​​15!”
I am also in the process of writing a scholarly white paper report to document the results of my testing and evaluation of the SIRT pistols and rifle bolt kits so look for that in the near future.

So there you have it, the SIRT solution to firearms training. Get one and see for yourself. You will not regret it. Be safe out there and remember “If Not Me, Then Who?”

For more information see the following websites:




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John Landry

Dr. John M. Landry, of Landry & Associates — a training and consulting firm, is a retired law enforcement lieutenant (still serves as a reserve officer) and who has practiced martial arts since 1974. His studies include many systems where he has earned black belt ranking and instructor level certification. He is also a certified Law Enforcement Fit Responder Trainer and founder of Modern American Combatives.

Dr. Landry has served as a martial arts instructor since 1989, a police instructor since 1995, and is certified as an instructor in Firearms, Defensive Tactics, Chemical Weapons, Impact Weapons, Handcuffing, and Reality Based Training. His academic experience includes teaching at many accredited universities in the fields of Counter-Terrorism, Criminal Justice, Crime Scene Investigation, and Education. Dr. Landry earned a Ph.D. in Education with an emphasis on law enforcement learning and training.