Yes, I was and yes, I know. However, I tend to view airsoft as a really shitty alternative to simunitions. Simunitions, while costly, are a far better training aid than airsoft IMO. Perhaps there are some one this board *ahem* Phil in CS *ahem* that have done both and could offer up some additional detail without me masturbating over all my simunition training.
I've done airsoft based classes w/ a couple groups, and Sim gun training w/ Southnarc. Sim guns are 1000x better - they work just like real guns, including jamming up, failing to cycle if someone is holding the slide when it fires, getting pushed out of battery - you name it. Southnarc does have an airsoft class - the Armed Movement in Structures class I wrote up here somewhere - so there is a niche for airsoft.
The first thing to do is look at what airsoft can't do, and that is any sort of fighting within arm's reach, or over 15 feet away. You can't fight within arms reach, as gun grabs and grappling dominate at that distance, and an airsoft can't take the abuse. You can't use them at over 15 feet, because you can see the pellet coming and move out of the way.
That leaves airsoft for fights that are occurring from 5 to 15 feet where both parties agree not to close the distance and go hands on. That's pretty small niche, but they work ok in that.
Some people get really tripped out airsofts that exactly model their carry gun (I know a guy that even got a grip reduction on his KVA glock!) so they can practice dry fire and such, but I haven't really seen the point in that. I can dry fire with my existing pistol or a blue gun.
So, how to train for real fights? If you start to draw on me and you're 10 feet a way, I am going to jump on your ass rather than draw my own pistol. You can't use an airsoft to train that as it will get destroyed quickly, and you can't get Sim guns as noted. Southnarc recommends these trainers.
. He uses them in locations outside the US where he can't take his Sim guns. I bought a pair and so far they've held up to some pretty serious fights. They won't cycle if the slide is held, can be pushed out of battery if you jam it into someone, and requires manually jacking the slide to clear a jam.
They hurt like a mother fucker too, so be warned.
Don't confuse a belligerent and aggressive attitude with the strength, training, and conditioning needed to prevail in a fight. How do you know you have the Will To Win, if you don't even have the will to train?