Another newbie with questions
I have only recently considered getting involved in pistol competitions and I was hoping I could get advice on where to start. I also would like to get my 13 year old daughter into competitions with me. It seems there aren't a lot of places that allow "juniors" to compete. I was considering joining GSSF because we would be able to enter the competitions together. The problem is that there are only a few matches that are close to us. We are currently living in NE Ohio and any information anyone provides would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.
IDPA has an age limit of 12. USPSA has no age limit. Both of those sports require more equipment and gun handling skills than GSSF, but matches are more common.
You could also check local ranges for bowling pin matches and the like.
Thank you gothcopter. I will look into those as well.
Originally Posted by gothcopter
Personally I, sure as Hell, wouldn't attempt to learn safe gun-handling or shooting skills from the GSSF. (Are you joking!) I don't have any recent experience with USPSA matches; but I can tell you that the gun-safety and gun-handling courses offered to new participants at local IDPA events are very thorough and well worth the time. (So are their regularly scheduled range practice sessions.)
I'm not too concerned about learning safe gun-handling skills as I've been shooting for several years. I definitely don't want to be in the vicinity of shooters that don't practice safe gun-handling though! My daughter and I try to get to the range at least once a week depending on finances! Lol. Thanks for the tip Glock Doctor I'll have to check into those as well.
Working out of the holster always involves geater risk than simply holding a pistol in your hand(s). So does the increased movement and speed that occurs (often progressively) as a competitive, 'move 'n shoot' pistol match continues.
This sort of pistol shooting is as close to real world experience as you're going to find. Here, you can never get enough safety training or handling experience. Many IDPA matches run a live-fire orientation course BEFORE the regularly scheduled match begins. These courses are designed to help beginners to get started, 'the right way'. Know what? I usually participate in these orientation courses in order to, 'warm up' at my own speed, and make sure that everything's working properly (including me)!
For myself and anyone else I've ever trained to use a pistol, Cooper's Four Rules Of Firearm Safety haven't been simply memorized. Cooper's Four Rules have been instilled into our, 'hearts 'n minds' until they become habitual reflex actions! If a pistolero needs to think about one of Cooper's Four Rules, then, he hasn't really learned it. In order to work properly The Four Rules must become strong personal habits - NOT academic guidelines for, 'good shooters' to follow.
A nationally famous gunsmith once asked me to hand him my pistol. Without thinking I turned sideways, drew the pistol, dropped the magazine, and racked the slide before locking it back to look inside. When I turned around, again, to face him with a visibly empty pistol in my hand, he was smiling at me. He said, 'Thank you, Ace!' 'I do this work all day long; and it never ceases to amaze me how many people will deliberately (or otherwise) hand me a fully loaded pistol.' He went on to say that being handed a loaded pistol was a really dangerous part of his job that he disliked having to go through as often as he did.
The famous gunsmith? Austin Behlert! What did Austin mean? He meant that he always had to focus on the condition of the gun BEFORE he began to focus on the problem, itself.
Not sure how far your willing to drive... but in SE MI we have the DSC Detroit Sportsman's Congress that run IDPA matches every month. Practice sessions on weekdays. Might be worth checking out since your in NE Ohio.
Great range with skeet, trap, cowboy shooting (simulated town), indoor & outdoor pistol range and a 50/100/200 yard rifle range.
Thanks for all of the insight. It looks as though IDPA is the way to go. I appreciate all of the responses.
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