As I scrolled through pictures posted by friends and family from Christmas, I came to an interesting realization. There are several different types of “gun people” that exist. I’ll try and describe several of the types and you can decide which group you fit into. You may fit into several of these groups, if so decide if this fits your ultimate goal as a firearms owner.
First you have “the collector.” This is the guy that owns dozens (possible hundreds) of guns. He probably is a carry permit holder and is a staunch 2nd Amendment supporter. Unfortunately, this guy rarely (often times never) seeks out any training. Because of his vast knowledge of firearms… he doesn’t feel the need to go and seek out any kind of training. He might go to the range (or to a friend’s property) and shoot a few times a year or try out a new gun purchase, but that is all. All his friends think he’s good to go in a critical situation, but in all reality this guy is a huge liability. He hasn’t prepared himself, mentally or physically, for a situation in which he would need to use one of his collector’s items to protect himself.
Next you have “the hunter.” This guy is the ultimate outdoorsman. He hunts and fishes all year long. His wife can tell what month it is by what camo he wears and the fresh game they have for dinner. There are mounts on every wall and multiple rifles/shotguns in the safe. The hunter will also have a high probability of having a handgun carry permit, but he too rarely practices with the pistol he carries on his hip. He shoots all the time, there’s no need to go anywhere to get training on how to shoot a gun! (Is my sarcasm thick enough?) He too is believed to be the go to person during a critical life saving situation. The hunter has prepared himself to execute with a firearm in the woods, but has he practiced putting his pistol into use to save his family?
Thirdly we have “the competitor.” This guy has a carry permit and practically lives at the shooting range. He cuts the X out of the target every time he goes to practice. There are probably all sorts of guns in his safe, similar to that of the “the gun collector.” He travels to compete in different types of shooting disciplines like IDPA, IPSC or USPSA. All his friends strive to shoot as fast and accurate as he does. But has he prepared mentally to put that gun into use against a real person that shoots back? Has he thought about how different tactics are required in a real life gun battle, as opposed to gaming it in a competition? How much time has he spent working with a trained professional learning how to take his skills and apply them to a life saving situation?
Somewhere sprinkled in the world of gun owners we find “the hobbyist.” This person may own one gun or several guns. They probably practice shooting once or twice a month. There is also a good chance they have a carry permit as well. He tries hard and means well, but his/her efforts are misguided. Unfortunately with targets being designed the way they are… he is constantly trying to shoot smaller groups. Getting all the shots in the X-ring or as close as he can is the goal. He never takes into account that in a critical situation – he won’t have all the time in the world. He won’t be able to get a perfect stance or a perfect sight picture. There has been no desire to find the balance between speed and precision. One without the other is all in vain when it comes to preparing to protect your own life or the lives of your loved ones.
Lastly, there is another type of gun owner, “the defensive shooter.” This person can be any of the other types of gun owners. The greatest factors differentiating this category are “mindset and training.” The defensive shooter has the proper mindset to respond in a critical situation. Notice I said “respond” not “react.” Anyone can react during a life saving situation, but have you prepared yourself to respond? Do you know what you would do? Have you planned what to do with your family? The defensive shooter also seeks out additional training. He may not learn anything new and life changing during this training, but he tests himself under stress to reinforce the skills that he has developed. Being a student of the gun is the ultimate goal for the defensive shooter. He wants to know that he is as prepared as he can be when everything goes wrong around him.
Which type of gun owner are you? There are others too. Are you the person that bought a gun to keep in your nightstand so you can feel safer at home? Do you carry a gun in your purse, just in case… but you’ve not been to the range in 2 years? People, don’t fool yourselves. Don’t let your pride or your ego or possibly even your fearfulness get in the way of being able to protect yourself. It’s often times said that shooting a gun is like riding a bike, once you learn you never forget. I’ve not ridden a bike in several years; I certainly wouldn’t want to risk my life according to my bike riding abilities. Why would you risk your life to your gun handling skills?
If you are unsatisfied with the type of gun owner you are… make a change in 2014. If you got a gun for Christmas, make the decision now to prepare yourself in 2014 to be able to protect yourself in a critical situation. Hopefully One Shot can assist you with you training needs. If not, let us know and we will do everything we can to support you or point you in the right direction for quality training. We are currently setting our own personal training schedules now for 2014 involving travel to several defensive shooting schools in our region. Contact us if you are interested in more information.