Jarrett Arthur, self-defense instructor.

 I met Jarrett Arthur a few months ago when I took one of her classes here in Los Angeles. She introduced me firearm retention training, a concept I had not been taught in my prior coaching. I had a fantastic time learning from Jarrett and I asked her if she wouldnʼt mind sharing some of her insight with us here. This information, as Jarrett mentions, is designed for civilians. Jarrett recommends finding an instructor in your area (some suggestions below) to get you on a solid training path. Until then, check out these techniques:


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If you own a firearm chances are that youʼve thought about the possibility of being in a fight for control of that weapon. That is one of the most disconcerting scenarios you can describe to a gun owner.

  • Your concealed firearm is in your purse or bag. Walking to your car you suddenly feel your bag being ripped off of your shoulder by a purse-snatcher you never heard coming.
  • Youʼve been attacked and are in a hand to hand fight for your life. Youʼre being choked and hit and desperately trying to defend yourself with both hands, while you wait for an opportunity to reach for your weapon. Your attacker has seen
    your firearm, or felt it, and before you know whatʼs happening heʼs reaching for it.
  • A verbal altercation has quickly turned violent and you realize you will need rely on your weapon to get away safely. You know you need to create space, but in the flux of the encounter, and with adrenaline surging, you begin to draw your
    weapon. Your attacker sees the movement and reaches for your gun just as you grip it to draw.
  • Youʼre home alone and in your bedroom. You hear a window break in the living room and the sound of someone entering. You grab your firearm from under your bed and as quietly as you can you begin moving towards the living room. Youʼve
    practiced house clearing once or twice and try to remember what your instructor told you. Your heart is beating so loudly you can hardly think and your legs feel like jelly. You peek around the corner of the doorway knowing you are about to
    get tested for the first time. All of a sudden unknown hands are grabbing your weapon and yanking it away from you.

All of these scenarios represent realistic possibilities, and they all fall under the category of weapon retention. The topic of weapon retention is a huge one, and includes the entire spectrum of considerations. If you think about a timeline of a fight, from pre-fight
to post-fight, youʼve got a list of techniques you should learn and train on that runs the gamut from what kind of weapon you should carry, to where you carry your weapon, to how you conceal or store your weapon, to verbalizations in order to deescalate a
potential altercation, to keeping your weapon safe before youʼve drawn, to drawing your weapon, to keeping your weapon safe while drawing, to keeping your weapon safe once itʼs drawn, and finally to maintaining control during the fight and immediately afterwards.

These first two videos in my weapon retention series will only cover weapon retention strategies once youʼve drawn your weapon

Jarrett doing a little shotgun training.

and someone grabs it wanting to take it from you. In an ideal world, everything goes right and you correctly and successfully clear
your home, or correctly and successfully draw your weapon under appropriate circumstances and maintain control until the threat is nullified. For civilians especially, those who are usually unaccustomed to operating under adrenaline in high stress situations, and who more than likely do not train consistently on these practices, there is the distinct possibility that they will end up in a fight for control of their weapon. These videos are intended for the everyday civilian who has not had a high level of training on these techniques. The goal of this video series is not to make you an expert on weapon retention. Moreover, for you to get the wake-up call needed to begin training effectively for the worst case scenario.

Please seek the help of a professional before embarking on a training program. Always use a training weapon, NEVER a live weapon (not even one with barrel inserts). I do not address any legalities of these situations, and itʼs up to you to make sure you fully understand the gun laws governing your place of residence.

I hope you enjoy the videos. Please contact me at JarrettArthur.com or Natalie at GirlsGuidetoGuns.com with questions, or requests for specific techniques.

Be safe and be well…

Jarrett Arthur


NOTE: Firearm Retention has been the topic of discussion in a few gun circles recently. I spoke with former Top Shot contestant and Gun Nuts Media guru, Caleb Giddings and he recommends the following for shooters interested in serious training in self-defense and weapons retention:


“Extreme Close Quarters Concepts” is the standard that other CQB courses are measured by.  He trains all over the country, so chances are your will be able to find a course near you.

InSights Training Center in Bellevue, WA

Here’s their course list: http://insightstraining.com/catalog.asp  Caleb recommends everything in the “Combatives” section, (Unarmed Self Defense, Defensive Folding Knife, etc) without reservation.