What Are Your Personal Gun Goals?
With all of the information, training, and gadgets available to the shooting community these days, it is important for gun enthusiasts to think about what their personal goals are in the world of shooting sports. Even if two people own the same shotgun, their needs, desires, and training may be very different if one person is a hunter and the other is only interested in self-defense.
Generally, interest in firearms can be broken into 5 categories:
By examining which category you best fit into, you can determine where to focus in both equipment selection and training.
Many first-time firearm buyers are pushed to purchase an ill-suited gun
First-timers can end up with a particular gun because it is the favorite of the person making the recommendation, not because it is the right gun for the purchaser’s individual needs.
A personal story from a recent gun show showcases this common situation.
A friend of mine wanted to buy her first handgun. An acquaintance of ours took her to a table of handguns and pointed out a small semi-automatic pistol, ‘just right’ for a small girl. My friend ended up ignoring this advice and purchased a full sized .357 magnum revolver.
She was interested in cowboy action and collecting, not in carrying a pistol day-to-day. Luckily, she knew what her interests were and did not rely solely on the outside advice.
It is all too easy for someone unversed in the world of guns to fall into the trap of negligent advice.
Knowing Your Goals Helps Achieve Them
Hunters need to invest time in training, but training that is completely different from a 3-gun competitor. They will both need the fundamental skills to operate their shotgun and/or rifle, and they will both need to exhibit perfectly timed control of their weapon platform, but the similarities essentially end there.
The hunter will need to spend his time in the field, learning the behavior of his prey and the lay of the land. The competitor will need to put in countless hours of repetitive weapon manipulation to achieve the smoothness of action that will win his sport.
Problems can arise when, for instance, a hunter is exposed to the world of competition rifles and does not realize that these high-speed platforms aren’t equivalent to the hunting field.
You are an individual with unique needs and desires.
Ensure that what you are currently focused on will help you achieve your long-term goals in the shooting world. Buy the training you need and the equipment that suits those needs. And always reevaluate if you are making the right moves for you.
Shoot straight and stay safe.
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