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"Going Shooting" vs Defensive Training

Discussion in 'Strategies, Tactics, and Training' started by Kleanbore, Mar 16, 2023.



    Dec 30, 2007
    As Jeff Cooper put it, "Owning a firearm no more makes you a shooter than owning a violin makes you a musician."
    I firmly believe that defensive shooting requires good to excellent marksmanship skills, I did not learn to shoot a handgun until I practiced Bullseye with a 22, Charlie Askins was a pistol champion, as was Bill Jordan, others I'm sure. in a gunfight you can win with your shots spaced fairly widely but they still have to be on target.
    scaatylobo likes this.
  2. Tinker-S

    Tinker-S Member

    Jan 29, 2022
    Vacation in Cancun at an all-inclusive resort. No questions asked! :)
  3. Corpral_Agarn

    Corpral_Agarn Member

    Nov 14, 2012
    Northern CA (the good part)
    It's a lot easier to teach tactics and train people who can already shoot.

    To many times class time gets bogged down by having to review the basics of shooting
    2zulu1, scaatylobo and Jeff White like this.
  4. Kleanbore

    Kleanbore Moderator Staff Member

    Aug 13, 2008
    You can say that again.
  5. scaatylobo

    scaatylobo Member

    Oct 7, 2010
    Western NYS
    The inability to show what you know and own is THE biggest reason I have seen among those who will not compete or train.

    Your results may differ,I go with my decades as a trainer and a officer who had to FORCE too many to even shoot a qual.
  6. shafter

    shafter Member

    Oct 23, 2011
    I've seen it in law enforcement over and over again. The majority don't want to train. Even when the ammo is free and they are being paid overtime to be at the range they still would rather not go. The same goes for free mat time at BJJ. Hardly anyone shows up.

    It's like the saying goes. There are no victims, only volunteers.
    scaatylobo and Jeff White like this.
  7. Varminterror

    Varminterror Member

    Jul 17, 2016
    Regarding why many gun owners don’t compete: It’s a sizable portion which are demotivated by potential impact to their pride, their ego.

    I help run a reborn group on FB for beginners in PRS and NRL competition which was over 50,000 people before we got nuked by Zuckerberg and had to restart (now back to a couple thousand). I posted a poll a few months before FB closed us, asking “Why aren’t you competing?” and received a few thousand responses.

    **Pausing here to clarify: there were over 50,000 members in a PRS Competition for Beginners group, while the PRS claims only 6,000 participating shooters at any time, and only around 500 pro-series members, with about as many more as regional series members, AND independent study of match data shows there are actually only around 1500 shooters which actually shoot PRS matches at any level during each season… so only 1500-6000 out of 50,000 supposedly interested beginner competitors in our group, hence why I asked the question - “why are you not competing?”

    Among provided reasons included and added in the poll, far most common was, “I don’t know how and don’t want to embarrass myself,” with the most common sentiment, with the SECOND most common response being “I don’t have a rifle capable of the sport,” —> and I asked a few hundred of those respondents, “what is stopping you from getting a rifle?” to which a majority responded, “I wouldn’t be able to shoot it well enough if I DID.” which circled us back to the other most common response.

    Some folks did respond that they didn’t have anywhere near them to compete, and myself and others helped a couple hundred people across the country find PRS/NRL matches within reasonable driving distances (distances which all of us competing have to drive).

    Sure, there were a lot of “It’s too expensive,” and we DID connect some of those folks with NRL22 matches and Production Class options.

    But the by far majority of responses, over a thousand out of the poll of a handful more thousand, were that people knew they didn’t have the skills/knowledge, and didn’t want to take the risk of underperforming in their first outings…

    **Side note: many folks did mention they HAD tried one match, and realized how far behind their skills OR their rifle was from what was needed (what they deemed to be needed), and they didn’t come back. I heard a Modern Day Sniper podcast about a year later in which a guest host discussed data from PRS matches which showed that - on average - shooters will shoot only one PRS match, at either level, and never come back. One new shooter I spoke with after a “PRS train up day” I helped host said it this way: “when I left the house this morning, I thought I had an accurate rifle and I thought I knew how to shoot, but this afternoon, I know I was wrong.” It took a lot to get him to sign up for a match after that.
  8. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

    Aug 11, 2004
    on Puget Sound
    Yeah, officers who called in sick on range days got no respect from me. But this is why some of us gravitated towards tactical teams and instructor positions -- because we wanted to shoot as much as the department would let us. The people that sleep-walked through DTs and CTs got no respect either (one would've though with the advent of dash-cam and body-cam evidence,these folks would be embarrassed, but no). It's like the old TV show "Cops" which most of us thought of as 30 minutes of really bad handcuffing.

    I think some of us are looking at this from the perspective that somehow shooting should be viewed as special, and different from any other recreational activity. Because for the most part, most gun owners, and even gun-carriers, look at shooting purely as a recreational activity. There's a huge segment of the population that doesn't like the thought of competition.

    But all this is like any other form of recreation or sports games. Circling back to my original point, even many gun owners and self-described RKBA supporters do not really believe that their life will ever depend on their shooting skills. Even though they may know intellectually that training and/or competition would help them increase their skill level, they see no need.

    Not everyone looks for competition or ever develops a taste for any form of competition. I picked up a new tennis partner not long ago and he was surprised I wanted to play actual sets and keep score. Heck, after I played high school and a little college ball, I kept competing, playing intramural and inter-service sports in the military, and have continued playing rec league softball and flag football into my senior years. But not everyone is wired that way.
    shafter likes this.
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