View Full Version : Shooting lessons

Mar. 17, 2012, 07:42 PM
I would like to become a better markswoman. I don't practice enough because of the cost of .38 special/.357 magnum ammunition, but I am thinking of adding a second handgun to the family so that I can afford more rounds. I would also love to seek some instruction to improve my technique.

Has anyone taken pistol shooting lessons? Is it effective? I would assume so, but I've never actually met a handgun instructor.

Mar. 17, 2012, 08:01 PM
9mm is the easiest. Ammo is cheap and plentiful. I wouldn't take classes unless you are interested in tactical shooting, which is where you really can learn some stuff. If you want to improve your accuracy, try building your arms up as that will help you aim and keep steady. Lots of people have poor accuracy with repetitive shooting because their gun flies all over the place after a trigger pull.

Mar. 17, 2012, 08:06 PM
I found lessons useful. I'm pretty handy with the rifle, but sucked with a pistol. It's not so much about ongoing lessons, but having someone give you pointers on stance and technique is really useful.

Mar. 17, 2012, 08:26 PM
FFS...typed out a whole long thing and lost it.

Anywho...Hi Didgey!
There, now you;ve met a firearms instructor. :D

Which weapon do you have? The .357 or the .38 S? .38 ammunition can be used in a .357 but not vice versa. Ammo is graded on circumference...the .38 and .357 size are the same but the power is not.

Neither is a decent choice for building accuracy. There's a reason both are "movie guns." It's not for accuracy, LOL!

What are you interested in:
varmint control

Lev is right in suggesting a different firearm. There are plenty of decent 9mm on the market today that are affordable and user-friendly. I'd also look into a .22. Most common used for building accuracy and for competition.

Check for local rifle clubs and/or ranges. They'll have at least one certified instructor if not more. Some will have different weapons available for your use also. The people are usually friendly and outgoing and happy to teach and work with you.

Building up from lower caliber is the way to go. The larger handguns really aren't very user friendly, most especially for all the ammunition and wear & tear your arms/wrists/hands/shoulders will take building accuracy. :winkgrin: I'm ouchy just thinking about it, LOL!

It's a fantastically fun hobby with great fun people. And women, in general, tend to have a high percentage of "natural accuracy."

Hope this helps!

Mar. 17, 2012, 08:42 PM
I have a Ruger SP101 .357 which I chose because I wanted a revolver big enough to euthanize a horse in an emergency . . . I always planned to add a 9mm semi-automatic pistol, but haven't gotten to it yet! I love shooting a friend's Walther P99.

I'm not interested in defensive shooting, hunting, or varmint control but I want to take this sport seriously and get good at it! With my mule being lame, I've got a chance to pursue another hobby for a while.

I wouldn't mind joining the IDPA and getting into competitive tactical shooting if I had the time and money, but for now I just want to be able to hit a paper target every time. I find that I consistently miss by about four inches towards the upper right quadrant of my target, and being a lefty I think that means I'm anticipating recoil. I still struggle with finding a shooting stance that feels really right. I miss wildly once in a while. I think all this would go away with consistent practice, and maybe I simply need to shoot more rounds. I'm still pretty new to this sport.

Nice to meet you, MistyBlue!

Mar. 17, 2012, 08:44 PM
If you want to improve your accuracy, try building your arms up as that will help you aim and keep steady.

Good idea. I used to enjoy weight lifting and have been wanting to get back into it to improve my upper body strength and posture . . . I'd have a good excuse, as these are complimentary hobbies!

Mar. 17, 2012, 08:44 PM
I would go with a .22. Easy to shoot, cheap ammo. I have a Smith&Wesson Walther P-22 pistol and an SW M&P LR and they are so much fun and easy. I don't know about lessons per se, but I have a mentor that helps me and brings me really cool guns to try out and see which ones work and which ones don't. Good luck and have fun! :)

Mar. 17, 2012, 08:54 PM
I have a Ruger SP101 .357 which I chose because I wanted a revolver big enough to euthanize a horse in an emergency

Always a smart idea and that will definitely accomplish that. :yes:

Becoming accurate is a combo of some good advice and hands on help and a whole lotta ammunition! :lol: Kinda like riding...a little help and a whole lotta sweaty saddle pads, LOL!

Weight lifting helps. Also add in a squeeze ball and these:
And wrist curls. Lots of wrist curls. More tricep than bicep. Shoulder, lat, chest, upper back and then core.

But mostly grip and wrist. Tai chi isn't a bad add on. Slow control is what you want, along with breathing control. Tai chi is a huge help with target accuracy. :)

With your current target issues...could be an anticipation issue but do have the sights checked.

Mar. 17, 2012, 09:13 PM
Just bought my first handgun a few weeks ago. I was looking for something small that was easy for me to carry and to conceal so I ended up with a Sig Saur P238 .380. Love it! Hubby's cousin owns a gunstore and get one in used (that was actually in like new condition) so I jumped on it. I will probably go with a 9MM for my next one.

Anyways, having someone to watch you shoot and help point out things really can help a lot but like was said earlier, it is just getting out there practicing as much as possible. I'm lucky that Hubby is an excellent marksman and helps me out. One thing he did that I would never have thought of was he had me place the target only about 2-3 meters down range. By having it closer it made it a lot easier for me to focus on the center of the target and to be able to sight in better and get the feel of how the gun handled and where I needed to have my sights positioned to hit where I wanted to hit.

MB, Matt's cousins store is right in Meriden if you ever want to go shopping. He also has really good deals on Ammo :-) http://www.deltaarsenal.com/

Mar. 17, 2012, 09:32 PM
Camp Street? I didn't know there was a gunstore over there.

Mar. 17, 2012, 11:18 PM
Yup, Camp St. He's been there probably almost 2 years now. Not a huge place but he can get you just about anything you want and also does gunsmithing there.

Mar. 17, 2012, 11:32 PM
Lessons are a good thing, but just like riding, interview instructors to find a match. You can contact the NRA to find qualified instructors in your area.

I'd suggest a .22...really cheap to shoot, fairly accurate, no kick and less noise (easier to practice when you're not concerned over kick or noise). The Walther P22s (get a later one, earlier ones had problems), the Ruger Mark I, II or III pistol, SIG mosquito (some problems reported) or a nice used pistol...it's not as if they wear out in that caliber.

Don't get a .380...expensive ammo.
9mm are good, but the ammo is still expensive. You can buy a box of 550 rounds of Federal .22 LR ammo for $19.00 at Walmart.

Have fun!