One of the G.O.A.T. Contemporary Gun-Fighter and Firearm Educator Louis Awerbuck


Man people often ask me who were my biggest influences are. Often times they ask:


  • “What Firearm Educators made me who I am?”

  • “Who do you admire?”


So, each day of this week for five days I will release the top 5 five modern Firearm Educators that I considered to be the G.O.A.T. (Greatest Of All Time). That's right, we’re talking way pass Magpul videos. We are talking about cognition, insight, philosophy of use and critical thinking from a Gun-Fighters perspective.


When it comes to Louis Awerbuck, many will call him a strikingly straight forward cesspool of firearm and Gun-Fighting experience, knowledge and skill. Even though he has well over 30 years of experience as a Firearm Educator, I have watched this man for over 4 years.


What I mean by this is that I have studied not only him but the logic that he expels between his students as well as his colleagues. He hails from South Africa and has served in the South African Defense Force. He was born the 27 of January in 1948 and (supposedly) died by his own hand on June 24, 2014. He is missed for sure.


From what I have gathered from him is that he is definitely eclectic. Some would say that he is out right an anomaly in the Gun Game. What is even stranger is that I have seen people negatively speak about him and his training tactics without even formally knowing him (the stupid).


Now granted he's not the most colorful speaker, but you have to ask yourself the following question:


"Am I here for some kind animated character or am I here for Gun-Fighting knowledge?"


The fact of the matter is Louis Awerbuck speaks very plainly, and drives home points very articulately about the essence of Gun-Fighting and how you can directly apply it.


For those that don't know since Louis Awerbuck is currently deceased I am unable to reach out and contact him for the context of this article. So what I have done in short, is comprised a few existing interview questions from sources that have interviewed him in an effort to re-articulate the logic of Louis Awerbuck so that hopefully you would be able to understand as I do why he is the G.O.A.T. among contemporary Gun-Fighters.


In an interview entitled "Louis Awerbuck: The Exception to the Rule" conducted by Michael Tan of USCCA (United State Conceal Carry Insurance & VODA recommended for Conceal Carry Insurance). The following questions were asked:


“Q: You’ve been teaching civilian firearms training for over thirty years. From your perspective, give us a thumbnail history of what has come and gone during that time. What have been fads? What have been advances that you have seen?”


“LA: Simplicity is gone. Fanciness has replaced the brain. Technology is trying to replace the brain; it doesn’t work. The 1911 has come back into fashion after 105 years. Too many lies, too many false resumes, which weren’t there thirty years ago. It’s sadder than it was; it’s less honest than it was—just like everything else.”


I would also tend to agree with this statement made by Louis Awerbuck because on a day to day basis I encounter people who are more into putting gadgets on their firearm then they are into putting forth time into building skill (thanks to god damn Call of Duty). I always seem to tell not only VODA Clients but Shooters in general:


"You must possess the skill, attitude and knowledge necessary in order to be not only a Gun-Fighter but as an Operator of any weapon system. For without possessing these three pillars, you are headed to either the morgue or the prison."


When it comes to technology, there is nothing wrong with adding a red dot optic on a pistol. However, don't let that be the benchmark of your skill. You must know and have a firm grasp on the fundamental basics. In short, what we are looking for here is for one to actually have "skill". And what is "skill"? It is the practicing of the fundamentals through effective and efficient means of repetition. This is what builds skill. Not the latest technological gadget.

Panteao Productions Make Ready DVD Series


When Louis Awerbuck was speaking on false resumes, I would also mention the trend of people inflating their resumes. I see it all the time, like yeah you were in the Military but that doesn't mean that you’re actually any good at anything, especially shooting and most certainly Gun-Fighting. Take myself for example, I was a 68m (Nutrition Care Specialist - they don't make that anymore).


But because I was in the Military in this capacity, it doesn't make me a Combat Engineer. Coincidentally, just because one was a Combat Engineer doesn't make him necessarily better than a Nutrition Care Specialist in terms of Gun-fighting and most of all it doesn’t necessarily mean that that PERSON has any real skill behind the weapon in terms of Gun-Fighting. To believe so contrary to the argument at hand is to demonstrate a bias in cognition.


But people will inflate and sometimes outright lie on their resumes. And the reason they do this is because they want to be accepted. They want to say that they qualify to be able to sit at the table with the rest of the instructors and or Educators. In short, what I'm attempting to convey is the fact that they have self-esteem issues and they wish to be validated by people external to themselves inside and outside of the Gun Game.


“Q: You’ve seen many students come to you over the years. What are some of the mistakes in their mindset when they come? What are some of the challenges that they have to get over in order to profit from the material?”


“LA: Primarily, in the United States, anything is for sale. So, people think they can buy knowledge. It’s not for sale. You’ve got to put your 10% in. You can’t just buy knowledge. What I try to do is to make sure that when I walk away, they know what can go wrong, as opposed to what can go right. And, a lot of people mix up shooting with fighting. They’re symbiotic. If you can’t think, you lose. If you don’t have a fighting brain, you lose. You have to have both or you lose. Or, if you’re the one in a hundred who’s the 1% lucky person, lucky you! Good luck to you. People hit a piece of cardboard, a flat piece of cardboard, and they think they’re a gunfighter—not because they’re swell-headed, that’s not what I’m intimating. They think it’s the same thing as a gunfighter; it isn’t.”


This is why I never have been in favor of Conceal Carry Licenses and Permits. Because people often think once they have a Conceal Carry License or Permit they have all they need or they know all what they need to know in the realm of SD (Self-Defense). And most of the time when I see this error in logic I tend to see people who put the gun on the shelf and often times cease practicing and training altogether. In lame men's terms, like Louis Awerbuck says:


"You simply cannot buy knowledge".


Like Louis Awerbuck, I can't help but to wear a frown on my face when I see:


"People hit a piece of cardboard, a flat piece of cardboard, and they think they’re a gunfighter—not because they’re swell-headed, that’s not what I’m intimating. They think it’s the same thing as a gunfighter".

Panteao Productions Make Ready DVD Series


With that being said, people for whatever reason will tend to only focus on the "hits" on a target like this jerk did to a VODA Client on Facebook. And in doing so, they either forget or are simply ignorant to understand and actually interpret the correlation between what the shots recorded mean and how they will impact the body of a subject. Simply put: there is a difference between and Sport-Shooter and a Gun-Fighter.

 The hate is real LOL!


The Honorable Louis Awerbuck has contributed a lot to the Gun Game and not only should he be respected he should be canonized. Louis Awerbuck started and trained many people under Yavapai Firearms Academy, Ltd.. I have to admit that it is painful to know the Yavapai Firearms Academy is no longer in operation. If Louis Awerbuck was alive today he would have been 68 years old.


In an interview with author Robert Boatman entitled "Louis Awerbuck: Interview With a Madman", that conversation when something like this according to the author:


“Q: I just read your book, Tactical Reality (Paladin Press 1999), and you talk a lot about that. I especially liked your chapters dealing with heart and mind. That’s a pretty deep subject.”


“A: It’s real deep for a young kid. But none of this is new. This stuff is 5,000 years old. It’s the same mindset as the Samurai, the Ninja, Genghis Kahn, the Romans, the Greeks, the Spanish, you can just keep on going back through the ages. It was always the same thing.”


“Q: Why do some people not get it?”


“A: Some of the people who don’t get it are highly professional, skilled people -– like a commercial pilot, a neurosurgeon, somebody who cannot afford to make the slightest slip in his normal occupation, so he overthinks every single thing when he’s firing a weapon. They’ll “what if” things to death. Other people who don’t get it are not really fighting-oriented. From what I’ve seen, I think it’s a societal thing. Let’s face it, in North America you can pretty much buy anything you want. So people tend to think that if you pay a certain amount of money to be taught how to do something with a firearm, the net result at the end of the day is that you will be able to do it. It’s like paying to have your brakes fixed, or paying for an appendectomy. They’re paying for a service and they expect it to be done. They don’t figure they need any ability themselves or that they’re going to have to put some of themselves into it.”


The works of Louis Awerbuck consist of the following:


  • "Plowshares Into Swords" - A compilation of articles from Louis’ “Tactics and Training” column in S.W.A.T. Magazine from June 2004 through May 2013 - published 2013. Kindle version and print version. ePub version available from Smashwords .

  • "Analysis of the Survival Mindset" - available on DVD.

  • "More Tactical Reality" - published 2004

  • "Safe at Home" (video) - published 2001

  • "Only Hits Count" (video) - published 2001

  • "Tactical Reality" (a compilation of 10 years of Louis' "Tactics and Training" column from SWAT Magazine plus several from the "Combat Weaponcraft" column of Soldier of Fortune Magazine) - published 1999.

  • "The Combat Shotgun" (video) - published 1997.

  • "Hit or Myth" (ideas for practical range training) - initially published 1990. Revised edition published 2007.

  • "The Defensive Shotgun" - published 1989.


VODA Inc. would also like to give a special thanks to the Panteao Productions Make Ready DVD Series. For the complete video featured here at VODA Logic; please feel free to visit Panteao Productions online to purchase the "MAKE READY WITH LOUIS AWERBUCK: ANALYSIS OF THE SURVIVAL MINDSET" at:



Lastly I'm going to leave you with the words of Louis Awerbuck from his publication entitled "Plowshares Into Swords". Let it be known Louis Awerbuck is one of the G.O.A.T..



“So you practice vehicular defense drills on the training range, sagely nodding your head as your omniscient instructor – who has never been ambushed as a lone citizen in a vehicle – dazzles you with techniques on how to unbuckle a seatbelt with one hand, and simultaneously return fire with a concealed pistol with your other hand. All this is carried out in the blink of an eye while you’re lowering the vehicle’s side window with your third hand and signing a contract with Cirque de Soleil with your left foot.”


“With all these odds stacked against you in a fight, Gunfighting Rule Number One is: – Don’t, if you can possibly avoid it. Rule Number Two: – Don’t Monday Morning Quarterback some poor unfortunate who ran out of luck and placed second. You weren’t there, you don’t know what transpired, and you’re not as good as you think you are.”











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