Video: Finer Points Of Clearing Corners

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Clearing corners is no time to lose your nerve or go charging into the unknown.

Unless you’re Grizzly Adams, living off the land and sleeping under the stars, you most likely live in some structure. In that structure, there are walls and where those walls meet or open to another room there are corners. And defensively speaking, those corners are plumb deadly. Not knowing what lies beyond them can put you in peril enough to cost you your life.

Plain and simple, this is why learning to clear or pie corners is an imperative skill and not the easiest to master. In addition to demanding the intestinal fortitude to plumb the unknown, it also requires mastery over your nerves to execute it in a slow and deliberate manner. It isn’t a 1980s cop show where you leap out and yell, Stick ’em up!

Quite the contrary, the challenge with clearing a corner is incrementally getting a view of what’s behind the blind spot while limiting how much of your body you expose. Not an easy balance to achieve and a skill that takes time and patience to execute properly (a little professional training doesn’t hurt either). Though there are some initial fundamentals you can keep in mind to better prepare yourself to become fundamentally sound at the matter.


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Much like working behind any cover or concealment, you must fight the natural urge to hug it. Too close and you do yourself a great disservice, limiting your operating space, particularly if you have your handgun fully presented. Furthermore, staying back gives you the ability to move your entire body while maintaining a proper stance. You don’t have dangle out to get a gander.

As important, you need to develop the mindset of clearing slices around the corner. This is the most difficult aspect, with high-octane adrenaline pumping through your veins, but imperative. In addition to keeping your profile to a minimum, working a slice at a time also allows you to process data more clearly. There’s always a chance there’s an innocent behind the corner your working, you want the cognition to recognize this.

Tying it all together, learning to move your handgun with your eyes. If the two work independently, you run the potential of your arms and hands freezing up if you’re taken by surprise. Operating in tandem, you’ll always be sure the moment you spot a threat you also have the means to deal with it.

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