Keep Your Defensive Handgun Skills Sharp

Live the Legend |

handguns at rangeIf you own a handgun for self or home-defense, (or a shotgun or rifle for that matter), it’s extremely important to routinely take that firearm to the range and practice shooting it. Some people purchase a firearm to provide piece of mind should a threat in the form of an intruder ever visit their home, yet don’t take ample time to become proficient with it. Hopefully, you’ll never have to use one for that reason. But even if statistics are still in your favor, when you fear for the safety of your family or yourself, it’s important that using that firearm is second nature to you. Besides building the confidence you need, training with firearms is also a lot of fun, so grab that handgun and some ammo and head to the range armed with the following tips.

  • The range is the perfect place to practice repetitive shooting drills that build familiarity with your firearm as well as the necessary muscle memory needed to make shooting your handgun accurately second nature. Always train with the same handgun you will carry or use in a defensive situation.
  • Get the most performance from your handgun by utilizing training loads that are ballistically matched to the defensive loads you will use. Winchester’s new W Train & Defend or Win1911 ammunition are perfect examples. Both utilize less expensive full metal jacket loads for training and come with companion boxes of jacketed hollow point rounds for when you are carrying or simply keeping the gun ready for a potential defensive use. Win1911 is available in .45 caliber, while W Train & Defend is currently available in .380 Auto, .38 Special, .40 S&W and 9mm Luger options.
  • Invest in a little instruction. Hitting the range where there are many other shooters is a great way to get a lot of advice; unfortunately, not all of it will be good. A few sessions with an NRA-certified handgun instructor can make all the difference in how well you shoot and handle a revolver or semi-auto pistol.
  • Where able, practice shooting from cover, aiming over and from beside barricades to mimic preferred shooting positions in a home defensive situation. Attending a local 3-Gun shoot is actually a fun, great way to incorporate these skills into your training.
  • With your handgun unloaded, practice drawing it from your holster (if you carry), and dry fire it. Some experts actually suggest a 70/30 training regimen where shooters dry fire their handguns 70 percent of the time and use live ammo 30 percent. This is great training to build form and practice trigger control.
  • Practice on targets at varied distances as well, between 7 yards and 50 yards is good. When you can make the more distant shots accurately, up close shots will be a cinch.

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