taking a new girl shooting


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Stauble
October 6, 2006, 10:47 PM
some time this week i will be taking a friend of mine shooting. she just turned 18 and told me that she'd like to learn to shoot and asked if i could teach her, so being the kind soul that i am i agreed. my deliema is what guns to teach her on

henry .22 lever action
ruger single six
S&W .38
yugo SKS
WASR AK-47
Mosin Nagant
.20 ga single barrel (make unknown)
12 ga 870 express

personally i kinda find the 22s to be boring after a while, but i dont want to scare her with the Mosin (wicked recoil on mine). im leaning towards the henry 22 and the .38

what do you folks think?
any input would be appreciated

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Ohen Cepel
October 6, 2006, 10:55 PM
I would stick with the .22's and revolvers. Most new shooters deal with those better.

Maybe the SKS if she wants to give it a try.

Skip the Nagant for sure! Unless you have some of the plastic training ammo for it, that's fun to shoot!

Take your time and don't rush her. So many new shooters get scared off or hurt by recoil and never give it another try.

Euclidean
October 6, 2006, 11:00 PM
Ask her. I'm taking my younger sister to the range for her first time tomorrow. She wanted to shoot handguns, so handguns she shall fire.

adobewalls
October 6, 2006, 11:01 PM
In my opinion its easiest to start with the .22 rifles. Of course the first lesosns should be all about the fundamentals:

1. Safety
2. Shouldering and gripping the Firearm
3. Sight Alignment
4. Trigger finger control
5. Reloading

Then move to the mid-calibers, the SKS for example.

After she picks up the basics, then move to the pistols, again starting with the .22's.

Also, if your range allows it, try to use targets that "react" in some way. Part of the thrill of shooting is seeing the reults of hitting your target. Clay pidgeons, cookies, even a coke can serves the purpose.

The two big things to keep in mind are safety and letting her learn at her own pace.

BIGDADDYLONGSTROKE
October 6, 2006, 11:04 PM
I think its a good idea to start her off with a .22 if she has never shot before besides .22 is cheap shooting.

Good job on getting a new friend to the gun and shooting world. besafe and be sure to teach her the 4 rules. Take care.

swan hunter
October 6, 2006, 11:11 PM
Make sure she has proper safety equipment. Women hearing is more sensitive than that of men. Shoot .22's and when she is comfortable with them, let her see you shoot center. Encourage her to try other guns but don't push the issue. Make targets easy to hit to keep her from getting discouraged.
Don't shoot those shotguns unless you are shooting light loads. Those guns can kick a big ol bruise on a girl!

Make it fun and show lots of patients!

stiletto raggio
October 6, 2006, 11:12 PM
The Henry, the Ruger, the Smith and the AK. Start with a .22 Rifle, then a .22 pistol, then AK, then the 38. I think she'll do just fine.

vynx
October 6, 2006, 11:12 PM
Ya only have 8 listed - thats about my minimum - I say bring em all - she can watch and learn too - start off small & easy recoil and maybe let her try something bigger in the middle but end it with something that puts a smile on her face so she'll want to go again.

JohnKSa
October 6, 2006, 11:14 PM
The Henry 22 and the Ruger single six.

Maybe the AK if she really likes the other two and WANTS to try something else.

Stauble
October 6, 2006, 11:19 PM
Women hearing is more sensitive than that of men.

i wasnt aware of that

thanks for the advice, please keep it comin

mustanger98
October 6, 2006, 11:21 PM
henry .22 lever action
ruger single six
S&W .38
yugo SKS
WASR AK-47
Mosin Nagant
.20 ga single barrel (make unknown)
12 ga 870 express

My opinion... start with the Henry .22 levergun and Single-six. If she likes those and does well with them, them move to the S&W .38, with light target loads... leave the mean stuff alone because too much muzzle flip might put her off early. I know my Mom don't like a sidearm with recoil, but I also know it don't bother my sister, so you'll just hafta go slow with those and see what she likes. I'd say the Yugo SKS next, but I don't know anything about the AK-47 clone in comparison to it, so if she likes either one it'll be a matter of which one fits her better... length of pull is liable to be different. Those shotguns... whether she'll like those or not will be another case of stock fit. Whether she'll jump on the Mosin Nagant or not... I think that'll depend on whether she likes the shotguns, but then stock fit and how much recoil she finds she can tolerate. But start light and work up according to what she likes. If she's uncomfortable, back it down.

Don't shoot those shotguns unless you are shooting light loads. Those guns can kick a big ol bruise on a girl!

Those guns can kick a big ol bruise on a guy if the loads are too hot and the stock don't fit right.

Silver Bullet
October 6, 2006, 11:37 PM
Not exactly what you're asking, but I'm going to butt in anyway.

Whenever I take someone new shooting, I give them a four-course set of instructions:

1) The four safety rules.
2) Handling instructions for the weapons we'll be shooting: some dry-firing and explanation of the action.
3) Range rules if we're going to a range: loading locations, etc.
4) The four safety rules.

knuckles
October 6, 2006, 11:39 PM
Yeah, definitely the single six. Any .22 is great to start with.

jac714
October 6, 2006, 11:39 PM
One of the moderators here, Pax has a website both of you should look at prior to taking a woman to the range the first time.

www.corneredcat.com

It will give you great information on teaching her and her great information on what to expect and do.

Good Luck

Roadwild17
October 6, 2006, 11:40 PM
Don't forget to have fun, safety first, but don't bore her to death. Did that to my GF and she never wants to shoot again.

mustanger98
October 6, 2006, 11:42 PM
Make sure she has proper safety equipment. Women hearing is more sensitive than that of men.

I'm a guy and my ears have been rung pretty badly. I hardly ever shoot with eyes and ears. It may not look macho but once you're deaf and blind, you probably won't get either back.

BTW, You forgot to include a Marlin 1894 in .357mag which also shoots .38spl's. If she likes the .22LR's and the S&W .38, she'll probably love the Marlin.

javacodeman
October 6, 2006, 11:56 PM
Make sure you have lots of fun. I don't know your situation, but she may say that she wants to learn how to shoot and still be a bit timid. I took my wife out to shoot and we stuck with the the .22. At first it freaked her out that she was using a deadly tool. But I kept shooting and asking her if she wanted to as well. Finally she started to enjoy it.

Someone mentioned targets that "react." I brought several large paper targets. As soon as a target started getting tore up (~20-30 shots) we switched. I think this helped a lot.

Point shooting haters, please stop reading now. :)

I also had her shoot without looking down the sights and her with her upper arm against her side. My reasoning? The only time she'll ever be shooting where it counts is if there is an intruder and I am not home or worse.

See http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=218259 for more details.

So to finish up, I also had her shoot the H&K .40 with 180 grain bullets once at the end. This is the gun that she would use if there were an intruder, so I wanted her to at least have shot it once.

We've been busy lately and haven't been back out (it's been two weeks), but we won't end there. We'll go out again. Soon I hope!

Hope this helps.

MachIVshooter
October 7, 2006, 12:10 AM
Of course the first lesosns should be all about the fundamentals:

1. Safety
2. Shouldering and gripping the Firearm
3. Sight Alignment
4. Trigger finger control
5. Reloading

Exactly. What you teach her is far more important than which firearms she learns on.

I'll add this: Drive home rule #2. All too many new shooters have a problem with this one. You say something to them (anything) while they're on the line, they turn to look at you and sweep you (and/or others) with the muzzle. You can scold them all day about getting their finger off the trigger, but one time pointing in an unsafe direction could be all she wrote.

That said, the Nagant and the 870 are likely going to be a bit intimidating for a new female shooter. And if you're going to fire off any rifles, make sure you have muffs; ear plugs let in enough noise to be bothersome to inexperienced shooters, and this will add to the flinch impulse. The recoil will seem less if the blast is muffled to a light "thud".

mustanger98
October 7, 2006, 12:25 AM
That said, the Nagant and the 870 are likely going to be a bit intimidating for a new female shooter. And if you're going to fire off any rifles, make sure you have muffs; ear plugs let in enough noise to be bothersome to inexperienced shooters, and this will add to the flinch impulse. The recoil will seem less if the blast is muffled to a light "thud".

The worst my ears ever got rung was with a 2" .38spl. This one 4" .22 revolver I shoot is about as bad, beleive it or not. And I shoot .243Winchester too.

Davo
October 7, 2006, 12:32 AM
My .22's have always been popular with the ladies. ;)
Its not just the lack of recoil, its the noise.
P.S.-she may be interested in you too, its happened to me.

cuervo
October 7, 2006, 12:53 AM
I'd say take the .22s, but also take the Yugo.

Once she becomes comfortable shooting .22s, she may want to try something more powerful. This would also be one to say at the end of the day "pull the trigger as fast as you 10 times and have some fun."

pax
October 7, 2006, 01:09 AM
Info about taking a new shooter to the range: http://www.corneredcat.com/Newbie/Newbie.htm

pax

pete f
October 7, 2006, 02:58 AM
If possible go to Mickey D's or somewhere before you go and discuss the fact that you are going to have fun, but you will not tolerate any horseplay.
tell her about the 4 rules, and then tell her that when you get there and she is shooting, IF you tap her on the head she is to freeze, not move at all, that you have either seen something unsafe or you need to do something and you want her to just freeze so you can make the adjustment or whatever in complete safety. People seem to want to turn the gun as they turn their head, obviously not safe.


I was taught to manage shooters that way when I was helping kids pass the practical aspect of Hunters Safety. Creating a single non verbal command that is unmistakable is very easy. Just finger taps on the back of the head.

Prince Yamato
October 7, 2006, 03:06 AM
I say do the AK first, then move down from there. AKs are fine to shoot as a first gun. I think starting with .22s is nonsense. It also gives a false sense of lethality. .22s don't seem lethal because they barely make a poof when you shoot them, yet most accidents happen with .22s because people perceive them to be less lethal.

The first gun I ever let a girl shoot was my Steyr Mannlicher 8x56 Mauser (~.330). It kicks like a SOB. But she loved it. Then we moved DOWN to the AK-47.

rangerruck
October 7, 2006, 03:52 AM
id skipe the mosin and other heavies, go with one action type of each, then ask her which she likes the best. Def take the AK.

Black Majik
October 7, 2006, 05:38 AM
Great advices so far!

There are three goals for her first time. 1) Safety 2) Make sure she has fun! (thats the point right? ) 3) Make sure she wants to come back again! My procedure is usually the same each time I take out a new female shooter. Firstly, you'll want to have her double up on hearing protection, meaning plugs and earmuffs. People flinch due to recoil AND the noise.

Discuss the 4 rules over lunch or something. Somewhere BEFORE arriving to the range. Make sure she understands the concept of the 4 rules.

Casually explain to her a few "range rules." These are range rules I tell my new shooters for my protection and everyone elses.

1) If she is firing and you need to tell her something, have her lean her head towards your voice and have her keep the muzzle downrange.
2) Watch her finger placement. Yes, it is part of the 4 rules, but it is critical she pays attention to her finger placement. I have them place their finger on the frame
3) Understand the action of the firearm before shooting. Cant just give her the gun and tell her how to shoot.
4) If she has a question, or is finished, unload magazine first, chamber 2nd, then show me clear
5) Never bring the firearm off the bench

Of course, you don't want to overwhelm her with all these rules. She's eager to shoot, and you're eager to teach her. But don't be afraid to be firm and serious.

I believe for her first time don't have her shoot the Mosin Nagant and 870. The 870 will turn her off on shooting, I guarantee it. She ain't a recoil junky yet. Find out from her first range trip how she responds to recoil. Everyone is different, some love it and others stick with anything 9mm and under. This is your opportunity to find out.

For myself, I usually stick to autoloaders, and limit the range session to .22's, 9mm, and .45. I start them on .22s for basic fundamentals such as stance, sight picture, and grip (make sure she doesn't teacup the grip). Watch her thumb, some new shooters will place their thumb BEHIND the slide. OUCH!

Give her one round to start out, and let her get comfortable with the recoil. Once you feel she can progress, give her a few more rounds per magazine. (This is a good time to teach her proper terminology, j/k!).

Most will get tired of the .22 in short order, so move them up to either 9mm or .38 spl. Let them shoot that awhile, then ask if they would like to try something bigger. Don't go past .45 ACP, but really its your judgement call. Remember, don't have them experience high recoiling firearms yet, see how they respond. In my experience most women find the .45 ACP intimidating their first times out. But they do enjoy it. The recoil is more of a push, and you can explain the recoil characteristics. If they're scared to shoot it, don't push them.

Give words of encouragement. Tell her how she's doing, and how she can improve. Teach her the concepts of trigger slack, and how to prep the trigger, and break the shot. Have her dry fire a few times after she's been shooting. Tell her the concept of flinching and how she can try to over come it. Make sure her shots count. Her confidence level will go higher when she sees she's doing well. So it is your responsibility to teach her well!

If you're unsure of how to go about taking her out, I've written a few range reports on here you can read and see how you would like to approach this.

Grace's first time
http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=179079

Lynne's first time
http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=141050

Kristal's first time
http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=173181

Debbie's first time
http://thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=196964


Hope those help to give you ideas for her range session. Remeber to make sure she has fun. This isn't class, its an activity.

Happy shooting!

possum
October 7, 2006, 05:47 AM
henry .22 lever action
ruger single six
S&W .38
yugo SKS
WASR AK-47
Mosin Nagant
.20 ga single barrel (make unknown)
12 ga 870 express

I normally like to bring people into the world of shooting slow and easy. i don't start them off with anything that is gonna make them nervous, so your mosin is out of the question, there are some men out there that can't take that. sad huh? :what: i know but it is true. you let her shoot that a few times and i can almost guarantee that she will flich even when she is shooting the smaller caliber, less recoil having guns. i would take the .22's let her start with those. everyone needs to learn the basics, and it will be alot easier for her to do that if her mind isn't on the next time she gets the crap kicked out of her, then when she is ready to move on i would let her, to the .38 and the sks maybe, and leave it at that for the first time to the range, if she handles that then by all means, use the shotguns, and work your way up. the last thing you want them to do is get scared and all flinchy, then they shoot horrible, and they get all mad because they can't hit what they are aimming at and they have no confidence and they never want to shoot again.Just a big mess and alot of drama and you don't want to be the reason they never want to shoot again right? :)

Barbara
October 7, 2006, 08:07 AM
And if you're going to fire off any rifles, make sure you have muffs; ear plugs let in enough noise to be bothersome to

Don't make that assumptions. Many plugs offer more protection than many muffs. And some people just flat out don't like muffs.

Also don't assume she won't want to shoot anything bigger than a .22. Start her out with one, but have some things that make some noise available if she wants to try them out.

tegemu
October 7, 2006, 09:57 AM
I was going to refer her to PAX's website, www.corneredcat.com , but I see that PAX has already chimed up. I will add though, that I am convinced that she, (PAX) is one of the most knowledgeable people I have ever read on the subject of women and guns. Her site is a delight for men too.

Stauble
October 7, 2006, 09:04 PM
thanks for all the great advice guys.
PAX, that website was very helpful too

we are goin to go wendsday in the afternoon. if all goes well then we may have a new memeber to THR:neener:

thanks again

possum
October 7, 2006, 09:27 PM
PAX, just came across your site for the first time, thanks, that is a great tool, for new commers to shooting as well as the veterans alike.great site lots of good info, i really like the gun words glossery, that is a definete must have for the new folks! thanks again!

rustymaggot
October 7, 2006, 09:32 PM
chicks dig the sks. the 38 would be good to take as well as the ruger 22.

it all depends on the girl. i know girls smaller than me that like the recoil of a mosin and vice versa, i know guys bigger than me and they cant take the mosin.

take a bunch of em with you and start her out small and work up to stuff.

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