Teaching Shooting to Disabled Shooters and Appropriate Handgun Sights


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Anthony
May 3, 2005, 12:48 PM
Hello Everyone,

I have recently introduced a partially blind woman to the shooting sports and actually began formally teaching her how to shoot last week. She is completely blind in her left eye and has partial vision in her right. Earlier this year she became extremely curious about learning how to shoot when she discovered that disabled shooters and women often shoot on the same line with everyone else while competing. Since then she has taken to it like the proverbial duck to water.

Can anyone offer any specific advice or special points on teaching someone with such limitation the ins and outs of shooting?

Also, can anyone offer any advice on the various sighting systems available for rifles and pistols that you have found appropriate for shooters with limited or poor vision?

While I am very aware of the zero magnification dot sight's advantages, I am more interested in iron sights (e.g., ghost ring, AO Express sights, etc.) as she insists on learning everything.

Thank you for your time and attention.

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Justin
May 3, 2005, 12:53 PM
What is she primarily interested in, and what are you teaching her? Pistol, rifle, shotgun?

TRLaye
May 3, 2005, 01:03 PM
The NRA, http://www.nrahq.com/education/index.asp, has several shooting programs for less able people. They cover techniques, and the rationale behind those techniques in their manuals.

This rationale will help you in determining how to develop a good program for your student.

Tom
NRA Training Counselor

Preacherman
May 3, 2005, 02:31 PM
I posted this thread (http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=76203) some time ago - you may find something helpful there. However, I've not yet worked with those with vision disabilities. This is a challenge all on its own. You might want to try a laser sight, to see how far out the dot is visible to her - could be useful as a defensive tool.

Anthony
May 4, 2005, 12:22 AM
Thank you so much for the input so far. Please keep it coming!

To answer your question, Justin, she is primarily interested in handguns. As she is a beginner I have chosen to start her out on a stock Ruger 10/22 (stainless steel with synthetic stock) to lock in the basics before proceeding to the much more difficult to shoot handgun.

She also has an interest in shotguns and rifles to a lesser extant.

Overall though I think she is still finding her specific interest(s), but for now it seems to be the pistol.

So far the only serious problem she has had are establishing and holding a sight picture. Part of this is due to the fact that her good eye has "spheres of vision" which make it difficult to concentrate, part of this is due to the fatigue put on her eye from this new experience, and lastly part of it seems to be due to being a new shooter.

As establishing and holding a sight picture is something many shooters struggle with I am not overly worried about her at this point.

Does anyone have any opinions of the use of a laser sight versus a dot sight?

How about the ghost ring handgun sights versus conventional ones?

Combat-wombat
May 4, 2005, 12:40 AM
JP Enterprises makes these "doublering" sights for some guns. I dunno but they might be helpful.

http://www.jprifles.com/DoubleRingSights.html

pax
May 4, 2005, 01:31 AM
Does anyone have any opinions of the use of a laser sight versus a dot sight?
The laser is less obtrusive, in that it doesn't add any weight to the gun at all and doesn't change the gun's balance. Might matter if she has hand or arm strength issues at all.

Dot sights might be more visible in more situations. Of course, for someone with vision problems, that's a personal call she'll have to make herself. But odds are that the red dot'll work better in most normal lighting situations. On the other hand, a good laser with fresh batteries would not be hard to see except, perhaps, on the brightest days.

Laser is inherently sturdier, won't be broken or disarranged by reasonably rough handling, and can be easily holstered if that's what she wants to do.

Biggest advantage of a laser or red dot that I can think of is that either one of them would enable her to focus entirely upon the target rather than first upon the target and then upon the front sight. Not having to switch focal points frequently may be somewhat easier or less tiring for someone with vision problems.

You'll probably have to have her experiment with both types to find out what works.

pax

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