If you’re a new gun owner, PDN Training Tour Instructor Jerah Hutchins has some tips to help you get started, with a focus on training.
HOW TO TRAIN
Think of your handgun training as if you’re going to university: You must start with an introductory class and build on that, not just take any course haphazardly. Here’s what Jerah recommends:
1. First, take an Introduction to Handgun course, where you will learn nomenclature, anatomy of a handgun, basics of grip, stance, sight picture, trigger pull, etc.
2. Then you can graduate to a concealed carry or license to carry class. This class will focus mostly on the laws that surround your ability to carry a firearm in your state.
3. Continue to work on drawing from the holster. If you can’t find a range that will let you do that, do dry-fire practice at home.
4. The next step is an Intuitive Defensive Shooting class. It will incorporate material from the introductory class, plus marksmanship and accuracy, and the neuroscience behind how/why the body reacts as it does when under threat.
5. Maintenance programs: What kind of shooting drills do you need to do to keep your perishable skills intact?
Jerah talks about some things a new gun owner may not have thought about:
1. Ballistics. Instructors are often asked what the best gun is for a new gun owner to buy. The answer is tied to a host of variables, but some education in ballistics goes a long way toward answering this.
2. Situational awareness. This is extremely important. Many people think they are aware of their surroundings, but a class dedicated to it will open your eyes about numerous factors you need to be aware of.
If you’re a new gun owner, Jerah recommends you find a qualified instructor in your area and have them put you on a pathway to training. The PDN site has an extensive list of Firearm and Defensive Training Programs.