I'm considering becoming a CCDW instructor. Any advice?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by sherman123, Mar 18, 2014.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. sherman123

    sherman123 Member

    Dec 20, 2007
    I have been considering this recently and was curious as to any input from those who are licensed instructors. I've heard the biggest issues with it can be liability and having insurance to cover yourself. I unfortunately do not yet have any land to run classes on as I live in the suburbs so I wasn't sure if doing the shooting portion at a local range may be an option. I have been considering this or getting certified as an NRA Basic Pistol Instructor and then branching out from there. Any and all input is very much appreciated.
  2. PapaG

    PapaG Member

    Sep 12, 2010
    1. Talk to a lawyer and form an LLC
    2. Talk to your insurance carrier about liability
    3. Read over your state's requirements and filter it so you know what your ultimate liabilities are
    4. Find a range where you can instruct
    5. Get certified by more than one entity
    6. Ascertain what kind of records you will need to maintain and for how long
    7. If you go this far, figure out what you can charge for a class and then figure out what you will "take home" when it is over.
  3. km101

    km101 Member

    Oct 1, 2013
    Texas; The State Most Likely to Secede!
    PapaG's list is very good and I agree with all of it. There are a few things I would add: be sure that you have, what I call "the proper mental attitude" to instruct. Trying to teach a class with a couple of sarcastic, know-it-alls can be very frustrating and even cause you to get to the boiling point. Or a classroom full of apathetic students who really don't want to be there, they just want the license, can be almost as bad. And some people have a hard time speaking in front of a group. Make sure that you can do it.

    Be sure that you want to/can endure and overcome these attitudes before you get too involved. Not all of us are meant to be teachers.
  4. rockhopper46038

    rockhopper46038 Member

    Sep 1, 2013
    All the above is good info. Tacit or implied, but still worth pointing out is "know your stuff".
  5. BHPshooter

    BHPshooter Member

    Dec 28, 2002
    My two cents is to make sure that you actually enjoy instructing.

    Lots of guys do this thinking they're going to get rich (you're not), and don't really care about giving quality instruction or helping folks.

  6. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 27, 2002
    northern california
    A pet peeve I've always had with instructors are that they are instructors, rather than teachers.

    While you don't have to have the ability to teach to get someone through the materiel for a CCW, I think they do their students a disservice when they start getting into other areas of teaching.

    So the questions I would ask you to answer for yourself before considering this career are:
    1. How good is your teaching ability (not, instructing ability)?
    2. Are you familiar with different learning styles?
    3. Are you familiar with not only techniques, but the philosophy behind the techniques?
    4. Can you explain not only how a technique is performed, but why it is performed the way it is taught?
  7. RustyShackelford

    RustyShackelford member

    Apr 27, 2006
    I wouldn't!....

    I considered going the cadre route a few years back. I decided against it knowing all the stress, drawbacks & issues with the industry.
    If you still want to pursue the field, Id suggest you train, train, train.
    As noted, get a small business loan or save some $$$ & learn all the ins/outs of the US gun industry-tactic programs. What works, what doesn't. Don't be a snob or smuggy buggy either. :mad:
    I've seen cadre & gun class trainers I wouldn't trust with a TV remote and I've seen others who are squared away, well organized & really care about teaching proper techniques. They lead by example & are concerned about the welfare and well being of the students/shooters.
    Top instructors/programs, Id consider include; Massad Ayoob, Clint Smith, Larry Vickers, Mid-South/John Shaw, Jeff Gonzales, Duane Dieter, SIG Sauer Academy.
    I saw a new Craigslist.org post for a new firearms firm hiring a network of CCW instructors. This is a nationwide group that needs new cadre. If I can recall the company I will PM it to you. I think they pay for the licenses & certifications too but I'm not 100% sure.
  8. 1911 guy

    1911 guy Member

    May 5, 2005
    Garrettsville, Oh.
    All good advice so far. Pay special attention to the posts be PapaG and 9mmepiphany. And don't get so caught up in the "gotta fill the schedule" that you forget to make time to take as much training yourself as you can get in. You owe it to yourself to be on top of your game and you owe it to paying customers to teach them what is current and best, not what was 20 years ago.
  9. Bexar

    Bexar Member

    Jun 20, 2010
    Whatever you do don't assume everyone of your students knows even minimal firearms discipline. I've had a cocked and loaded pistol pointed at my chest three times over the years by two women and one man that either got scared while shooting or distracted by stupidity.
  10. Drail

    Drail Member

    Jan 17, 2008
    Assume that every one of your students doesn't know which end of the gun the bullets come out of. Women are EASY to teach. They realize that they don't know how it all works. They listen carefully and do exactly what you ask of them. Most guys on the other hand assume that they already know everything about shooting and any criticism you offer is just cramping their "style". Don't try to take on more than 5 or 6 students at a time without some assistance. Make sure that they are all watching and listening to you all the time. The MOST important thing they need to learn is muzzle discipline and where their trigger finger is ALL all the time. This is very hard for some people at first. I don't care at first if they cannot hit a target at all as long as they have the safety aspects down solid. Get that first.
  11. iblong

    iblong Member

    Jan 22, 2009
    The above Two posts and others are good advice.
    I just finished getting certified by the NRA and a private co.I wont name the private co.as there's a reason I Went to the NRA courses after the private co.
    Part of the private co,training was to assist in the shooting portion of the permit to carry class.
    I've been involved with competent shooters and competition shooters for so long
    I forgot that some people have 0 understanding of fire arms safety or gun handling skills.Iwas not sure I would get out alive.I had pistols pointed at my chest as people turned up range to ask me questions,I saw them drop pistols and one shoot a ceiling twice,ect.Pay attention and be ready to controll the fire arm if needed.
  12. CWL

    CWL Member

    Jan 6, 2003
    See what it is like first.

    When wanting to start their own business, I always give the advice that you should first make sure that you really want to do it. Find some local CCW instructors and explain to them exactly what you want to do and if they'd take you on as an assistant (be prepared to work for free) in their classes so that you can learn the ropes. After helping out with their business for a while, you will better be able to decide if that's what you really want to do. Or, you should be doing this while going thru the NRA course.

    I have found that people oftentimes think they want to do something, without realizing just how tiring or unprofitable the job really is. You need to run it like a business and not a hobby.
  13. jimherb

    jimherb Member

    May 15, 2008
    South Puget Sound, WA
    Buy personal liability insurance.
  14. RustyShackelford

    RustyShackelford member

    Apr 27, 2006
    new CCW training firm hiring instructors....

    This is the national firm looking for new CCW instructors & cadre.
    Im not sure what the hiring process or qualification standards are.

    They have a Facebook page too. ;)

  15. Bobson

    Bobson Member

    Aug 9, 2011
    Kendall County, TX
    What exactly is the difference between instructing and teaching?
  16. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 27, 2002
    northern california
    An instructor will demo the techniques and repeat what he has learned in his training. He may even tell you why certain techniques should be performed in a certain way.

    A teacher understands the philosophy and goal to be attained with the technique being taught. They understand the 6 different learning styles/perception and how to modify what they teach to match that style of learning to reach the desired skill level. On the surface, it is a different communication style.

    1. The difference is between demonstrating what can be done and asking the student to do it, as opposed to ensuring that the student understands what is being taught.
    2. An instructor knows how to walk; a teacher understands 1) how it is learned, 2) that there are different ways to walk and 3) the strengths and weaknesses of the different ways.
    3. An instructor would tell you to press the trigger on a gun straight to the rear without disturbing the sight alignment. A teacher would explain how the investment in the results cause a jerked shot.

    You don't always need a teacher to learn something, but you'll have a better basis of understanding if you do and you'll be able to self-correct.

    An instructor can take you from Unconscious Incompetence, through Conscious Incompetence to Conscious Competence; a teacher can show you how to get to Unconscious Competence
  17. Plan2Live

    Plan2Live Member

    May 17, 2011
    Columbia, SC
    1. Don't quit your day job.

    2. Do it because you are passionate about it not because you think you can make money doing it.

    3. Keep taking classes from other recognized instructors, never stop learning.

    4. Grow the thickest skin you can grow.
  18. Jenrick

    Jenrick Member

    Mar 17, 2005
    Austin, TX
    Why do you want to become a CCW instructor? There a lot of answers to this one, but there are only a few that will actually allow you to have "success" at this.

    Before you go any further find a range that you can instruct at and track down exactly what you have to have to be able to teach there (how much insurance you must carry, what certifications they want, etc). You may find that this is not a commercially viable thing to do in your area, or that the rates to do so are so high you'll loose money teaching.

    I could give you a bunch of horror stories about classes and teaching CCW classes, but it's already being covered. A good thought exercise though is to pick the first 10 people you see at the grocery store and imagine how trying to teach them all the CCW material would go.

  19. BullfrogKen

    BullfrogKen Moderator Emeritus

    Jul 28, 2005
    Lewisberry, PA
    Sherman, two questions:

    Reflect upon how much training you have and ask yourself, would I pay for training from someone with the resume I have?

    Why do you want to do this?

    And you really don't need to publicly respond. Answer them for yourself.
  20. ky8

    ky8 Member

    Feb 24, 2014
    I can’t disagree with any comments.

    Might I ask in what State are you located?

    In Texas you have to be an NRA Pistol Instructor to be
    a CHL instructor. But that is just Texas.

    NRA except for a few courses is about imparting Knowledge, Skills,
    and Attitude to safely enjoy the shooting sports. It is a somewhat different
    mindset than CHL which is about personal protection and the laws of the state
    pertaining to the carrying of a deadly weapon and or a concealed weapon.

    A Texas CHL class must be taken in Texas for it to be valid.
    NRA classes can be taught anywhere as long as NRA guidelines are followed.
    These are not hurtles, they are just considerations you might want to think
    about before making your decision.

    As far as insurance goes, save yourself a lot of time and get the NRA Instructor
    insurance. It is the best I have found and really inexpensive for the coverage.
    It will also cover you for classes you give that are not NRA classes.

    If you get into firearms instruction, one of the certificates you will need is
    the Range Safety Officer (RSO) or even better the Chief Range Safety Officer (CRSO). You can Get these through the NRA.
    This will help you at whatever Range you use.

    Wish you well in your endeavors and if I can answer any questions give me a line.

    Good Luck. :)
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice