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February 27th, 2021

Indoor Range Etiquette — Safe Gun Practices Indoors

Safety Video NSSF Indoor Range Etiquette

There has been a long, cold winter in many parts of the USA. So if you want to maintain your shooting skills, shooting indoors may be the only convenient option. When shooting indoors you should always be extra careful and follow all key gun safety practices and adhere to proper range “Etiquette”.

The NSSF (NSSF) offers a useful Range Safety and Etiquette video. This 8.5-minute video explains safe practices, especially at indoor ranges. In the video, the moderator list the basic rules of gun safety, before covering key range etiquette topics such as range officer commands, how to uncase your firearm on the range when you first arrive, and what to do if a firearm is accidentally dropped. There are also safety tips specific to handling both semi-automatic handguns and revolvers.

Safety Video NSSF Indoor Range Etiquette

BAD RANGE BEHAVIOR — Five Things NOT to Do at the Range

Here are the five worst behaviors we’ve seen at indoor ranges. These behaviors are both dangerous and inconsiderate. Any one of these behaviors can get you permanently banned from an indoor range.

1. Sweeping other individuals after loading a weapon behind the firing line is very bad. All your weapons should be empty until you reach your shooting station.

2. Turning the handgun sideways while trying to clear a malfunction or insert/remove a magazine. This will point the muzzle at a fellow shooter. Or, after shooting a gun, the shooter fails to clear the weapon and then places the gun somewhere near the shooting station with the muzzle in an unsafe position.

3. Reacting unpredictably when firing a high recoil handgun. We’ve seen people take a second shot by accident with the muzzle way off target.

4. Not obeying range commands — in particular continuing to shoot during called cease-fires.

5. Poorly aimed shooting that hits target frames or carriers, causing ricochets.

Double-Up on Hearing Protection When Shooting Indoors
When shooting pistols indoors we recommend quality muffs with earplugs underneath, offering double protection. When inside an enclosed range, with other shooters blasting away right next to you, you really need effective hearing protection. But you also need to hear range commands and be able to communicate with your fellow shooters. That’s why we recommend electronic muffs with plugs underneath.

Howard Leight Impact Pro Electronic Muffs NRR 30

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December 16th, 2020

Self-Defense Skills — Important Advice for Concealed Pistol Carry

Handgun pistol concealed carry Julie Golob
Main photo from NRAFamily.org.

With the civil unrest happening around the country in Democrat-run cities, more citizens are getting CCW permits and carrying self-defense pistols. With the right to carry come responsibilities of course. You should train with your pistol, and always practice gun safety. In this article, S&W pro shooter Julie Golob offers advice for concealed pistol carry.

Our friend Julie hosts a series of handgun instructional videos for Shooting USA. While Julie uses pistols mostly for competition, this U.S. Army veteran also values handguns for self-defense. In this video series, Julie first talks about important gun safety rules, then she offers training advice for persons who carry concealed handguns. The third video covers options for carry a weapon “off-body”, i.e. not in a normal holster on concealment rig on one’s person.

1. GUN SAFETY — Whether you own 1 gun or 100, gun safety must always be your main priority. Here Smith & Wesson Team Captain Julie Golob covers the basics of gun safety.

2. PRACTICE for CONCEALED CARRY — Engaging a threat from concealment could be the most important skill of your life and it takes practice to be proficient. In this video, S&W’s Julie Golob demonstrates some practice drills for concealed carry.

3. OFF-BODY CONCEALED CARRY OPTIONS — There are instances where carrying a concealed weapon on your body in a holster (or deep cover pouch) is not always practical. Here Julie explains various techniques to carrying a concealed handgun “Off Body”.

Julie Golob

Julie — pistol champion, Army veteran, wife and mother, is also an accomplished author, who has written about the shooting sports in many shooting publications, newswires, and internet blogs. Her book, Shoot: Your Guide to Shooting and Competition, serves as both an introduction to firearms for novices and a primer to help experienced shooters improve their skills.

Permalink Handguns, Shooting Skills, Tactical No Comments »
December 3rd, 2020

Shooting Indoors — Stay Safe and Follow the Rules

Gun Range Safety etiquette NRA Blog Eye Ear Protection Rules
Photos courtesy NSSF.org.

With winter here, many gun enthusiasts are switching to indoor ranges. There are important safety and behavior rules you need to follow when shooting indoors. Sometimes bad range etiquette is simply annoying. Other times poor gun-handling practices can be downright dangerous. The NRA Blog has published a useful article about range safety and “range etiquette”. While these tips were formulated with indoor ranges in mind, most of the points apply equally well to outdoor ranges. You may want to print out this article to provide to novice shooters at your local range or club.

8 Tips for Gun Range Etiquette

Story by Kyle Jillson for NRABlog
Here are eight tips on range etiquette to keep yourself and others safe while enjoying your day [at the range]. Special thanks to NRA Headquarters Range General Manager Michael Johns who assisted with this article.

1. Follow the Three Fundamental Rules for Safe Gun Handling
ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.
ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.

This Video Covers Basic Gun Range Safety Rules and Etiquette

2. Bring Safety Gear (Eye and Ear Protection)
Eye and Ear protection are MANDATORY for proper safety and health, no matter if “required” by range rules or not. It is the shooter’s responsibility to ensure proper protection is secured and used prior to entering/using any range. Hearing loss can be instantaneous and permanent in some cases. Eyesight can be ruined in an instant with a catastrophic firearm failure.

Gun Range Safety etiquette NRA Blog Eye Ear Protection Rules

3. Carry a Gun Bag or Case
Common courtesy and general good behavior dictates that you bring all firearms to a range unloaded and cased and/or covered. No range staff appreciates a stranger walking into a range with a “naked” firearm whose loaded/unloaded condition is not known. You can buy a long gun sock or pistol case for less than $10.

4. Know Your Range’s Rules
Review and understand any and all “range specific” rules/requirements/expectations set forth by your range. What’s the range’s maximum rate of fire? Are you allowed to collect your brass? Are you required to take a test before you can shoot? Don’t be afraid to ask the staff questions or tell them it’s your first time. They’re there to help.

5. Follow ALL Range Officer instructions
ROs are the first and final authority on any range and their decisions are generally final. Arguing/debating with a Range Officer is both in poor taste and may just get you thrown out depending on circumstances.

6. Don’t Bother Others or Touch Their Guns
Respect other shooters’ privacy unless a safety issue arises. Do NOT engage other shooters to correct a perceived safety violation unless absolutely necessary – inform the RO instead. Shooters have the right and responsibility to call for a cease fire should a SERIOUS safety event occur. Handling/touching another shooter’s firearm without their permission is a major breech of protocol. Offering unsolicited “training” or other instructional suggestions to other shooters is also impolite.

7. Know What To Do During a Cease Fire
IMMEDIATELY set down your firearm, pointed downrange, and STEP AWAY from the shooting booth (or bench). The Range Officer(s) on duty will give instructions from that point and/or secure all firearms prior to going downrange if needed. ROs do not want shooters trying to “secure/unload” their firearms in a cease fire situation, possibly in a stressful event; they want the shooters separated from their guns instantly so that they can then control the situation as they see fit.

8. Clean Up After Yourself
Remember to take down your old targets, police your shooting booth, throw away your trash, and return any equipment/chairs, etc. Other people use the range too; no one wants to walk up to a dirty lane.

This NSSF Video Covers Basic Gun Range Safety Rules:

BAD RANGE BEHAVIOR — Five Things NOT to Do at the Range

Here are the five worst behaviors we’ve seen at indoor ranges. These behaviors are both dangerous and inconsiderate. Any one of these behaviors can get you permanently banned from an indoor range.

1. Sweeping other individuals after loading a weapon behind the firing line is very bad. All your weapons should be empty until you reach your shooting station.

2. Turning the handgun sideways while trying to clear a malfunction or insert/remove a magazine. This will point the muzzle at a fellow shooter. Or, after shooting a gun, the shooter fails to clear the weapon and then places the gun somewhere near the shooting station with the muzzle in an unsafe position.

3. Reacting unpredictably when firing a high recoil handgun. We’ve seen people take a second shot by accident with the muzzle way off target.

4. Not obeying range commands — in particular continuing to shoot during called cease-fires.

5. Poorly aimed shooting that hits target frames or carriers, causing ricochets.

Double-Up on Hearing Protection When Shooting Indoors
When shooting pistols indoors we recommend quality muffs with earplugs underneath, offering double protection. When inside an enclosed range, with other shooters blasting away right next to you, you really need effective hearing protection. But you also need to hear range commands and be able to communicate with your fellow shooters. That’s why we recommend electronic muffs with plugs underneath.

Howard Leight Impact Pro Electronic Muffs NRR 30

For pistol shooting indoors, we like the latest Howard Leight Impact Pro Muffs. These offer an impressive 30 dB Noise Reduction Rating (NRR). In addition, these muffs are pretty comfortable and offer Headphone Functionality so you can connect to your smartphone, MP3 player, or other audio device. These muffs are a good value. They are currently offered for $62.55 on Amazon.com.

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