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The High Compressed Ready Position

by Chris Woods

Posted July 24, 2013

Let us briefly talk about the high compressed ready position as taught in the Combat Focus Shooting program here at Phoenix Firearms Training.  First, understand we want to be as consistent and efficient with all our weapons handling whenever possible.  The high compressed ready position helps us achieve this. 

The more consistent we are performing physical skills in the same place and same way the more efficient we become.  Efficiency defined as taking less time, energy or effort to achieve a goal.  The high compressed ready achieves this goal.  If you held the firearm in one position for reloading, a different position for malfunction clearing, and yet another position for retention, you more than likely would not be consistent and as efficient as you could or should be.

Defensive firearms training is training for the worst case scenario, the dynamic critical incident, the “ambush”, or threat you had absolutely no idea and zero anticipation was going to happen.

Benefits of the high compressed ready include the following.

  • Reload – both administratively and when recognizing slide lock during a dynamic critical incident
  • We can drive the gun straight out toward the threat and shoot if needed
  • Assess our environment
  • Clear malfunctions
  • Consistent with presentation from the holster
  • Safe for retention (protect it from being taken away or getting knocked out of your hands)
  • The gun can also be fired from the HCR
  • Oriented in front of us (keeps gun generally in front of our field of vision)
  • Works well with what the body does naturally in a fight or flight situation

The short video below will provide a visual of what the high compressed ready looks like along with a few examples pertaining to the weapons handling described above.



Incorporate the high compressed ready position into your defensive firearms training whenever possible. The fall training season here in Arizona is fast approaching.  Get registered for a course today!


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