Firearm Training for Women

From my own personal experience, have formed a set of guidelines to use when teaching someone, a woman, how to shoot.

1.Don’t pressure her. This isn’t boot camp. You will find that pressure procedures are counterproductive. Trying to pressure your female student to do something she doesn’t feel comfortable doing is only going to make sure she never accepts it.

2.Make sure to have the right safety gear. Having eye and ear protection available and explaining their use will help get rid of any fears. Also, before the weapons are introduced, go over some basic firearm safety rules:
a. Handguns are loaded, even if they are disassembled.
b. Don’t ever point your gun at anything you aren’t ready to shoot.
c. Your handgun stays on safe until you are ready to fire.
d. Your finger is straight and off the trigger until you are ready to fire.

3.Begin with a simple, small caliber gun. Explain and show the basic principles of the firearm you select. For teaching long guns to a woman, I recommend a .22 semi auto or a single shot break action firearm. If I am teaching a woman to shoot a pistol, I prefer a .22 or a .38. Make sure that if you begin with a magazine fed firearm, you keep a supply of loaded magazines ready.

4.Do not use humanoid targets. If the shooting range is outdoors, and we are using long guns, I like stale cookies. They break in a gratifying way and are biodegradable. For pistols, a regular target turned around with a paper plate stapled to the center gives a large non-threatening target.

5.Last but not least, teach slowly. Answer any questions with simple answers without going into a long lecture. The point of the first few sessions is to remove fears and let your female student become familiarized with weapons and shooting.

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