Securing pistols in cars


Yet another excellent article from the Tactical Professor. Thank you, Claude!

Originally posted on tacticalprofessor:

“The 3-year-old located a handgun that was in the vehicle and discharged a round which resulted in the striking of the 1-year-old,” said Sarasota Sheriff’s Office Lt. Vince Mayer.

This morning, yet another Negative Outcome was brought to my attention. In this incident, a young boy gained unauthorized access to his mother’s pistol, which was unsecured in her car, and accidentally shot his little sister.  I use the term ‘accidentally’ because from the little boy’s perspective, it was utterly accidental. In the broader context, it was a training and doctrine failure. Fortunately, her injuries are not life threatening, but I bet they will be life changing for all involved.

Informally, a number of people in our community are starting to include an addition to the cardinal Four Rules of Safe Gunhandling. ‘Rule 5’ tends to be worded something like “In addition to the Four Rules of Safe Gunhandling, always…

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25 Ways to Make Women Feel at Home on the Range



G&A Perspectives: 25 Ways to Make Women Feel at Home On the Range

by Kyle Wintersteen   |  October 14th, 201412

Attention, ladies: We male shooters haven’t always been a welcoming bunch, but we want women to get involved in shooting and hunting and we have the stats to prove it. For instance, did you know that nearly two in five new shooters are women, and most were introduced to firearms as adults?

You see, we men take the responsibility of introducing you to firearms seriously. With a little care on our part, we know that if you try shooting, you’re probably going to like it and perhaps even develop a lifelong passion for the sport. Given these acknowledgements, here’s why females are joining the shooting ranks at a record pace, plus 25 savvy tips for helping women feel at home on the range.

Female Shooters On the Rise
The rise in female shooters among our ranks is largely a result of changing attitudes and perceptions. Shooting ranges and hunting cabins are generally no longer men’s refuges but places where women are also welcomed.

Participation by female shooters has in turn skyrocketed, fueled by their interest in hunting, personal defense and plain old fun. According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), nearly half of the participants in itsFirst Shots program for beginner shooters are female, 76 percent of whom said they were motivated by an interest in self-defense.

Thanks to programs such as First Shots as well as regular folks willing to introduce women to shooting, the female segment of the shooting community is expanding at a record pace. According to a report by the research firm Responsive Management titled “Analysis of Sport Shooting Participation in the U.S.,” 37 percent of new target shooters are female, whereas only 22 percent of established target shooters are female. That’s quite a jump, especially given the report’s finding that 20 percent of all target shooters began in the last five years. This new crop of shooters is also far younger, according to the NSSF, with an average age of 33 compared with established shooters’ average age of 43. Yet, says the NSSF, these aren’t necessarily folks who grew up in gun-owning households; 77 percent got started after their 18th birthday.

Hunting participation rates among women indicate a similar trend. According to a2009 report by the National Sporting Goods Association, the number of female hunters grew from 3,041,000 in 2008 to 3,204,000 in 2009, a 5 percent increase. Now, more than 16 percent of hunters overall are female.

Barriers to Entry
So, traditionally, why have fewer women participated in shooting, and what barriers may remain? A 1990 conference at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, “Breaking Down Barriers to Participation of Women in Angling and Hunting,” identified what I believe to be the key culprits, problems that linger to this day:

  • Poor images and stereotypes of typical gun owners, particularly as portrayed in anti-gun media stories.
  • Expensive startup costs.Many women don’t want to spend a few hundred bucks to try an activity they may not enjoy.
  • Traditionputs social pressure on women to avoid shooting and choose activities that are perceived as more feminine.

These, among other things, have without question prevented some women from joining the shooting sports. When a large portion of the media is shaming female hunters such as Melissa Bachman and Kendall Jones for legally hunting or painting gun owners, and even guns themselves, as evil, it doesn’t exactly encourage more female involvement in hunting or shooting. The high financial cost of shooting and the traditional societal pressures on women certainly don’t help either.

However, I believe there is another common factor that serves as an additional barrier to entry, and for that, I have a story.

Bad First Experiences
A friend of mine wasn’t even sure she wanted to become a hunter or shooter, but 30 years ago she did want to give it a try. “A few weeks after I turned 13, my dad was headed out the door to go pheasant hunting, so I asked to join him,” she recalled. “He said, ‘Well then, we have to see if you can shoot.’”

Her father escorted her to the backyard, handed her a lightweight, 12-gauge side-by-side with a high-brass shotshell in the chamber and — shamefully — told her, “Go ahead, shoot it.”

“The gun kicked the snot out of me, and my dad just laughed,” she said. “I went inside with tears in my eyes and never touched a gun again.”

I wonder: Had my friend been properly introduced to shooting, would she have developed a lifelong love of the sport? Does her father regret doing literally everything wrong, from handing his daughter a heavy-recoil firearm to providing minimal instruction to intimidating her with his attitude? Or, more likely given the era, did he intend all along to scare his daughter away from shooting?

Many men (and women) are highly accommodating of women interested in giving shooting a try, but all too many exhibit the same reckless machismo as my friend’s father. A YouTube search for “girl gun recoil” turns up countless examples of unsafe, unproductive acts of stupidity. Others have good intentions of introducing women to shooting but lack the knowledge to go about it properly.

Fortunately, all barriers to entry for female shooters, including that first introduction, can be overcome with a little care. Introduce women to shooting the right way: in a fun, safe environment that may just lead to a lifelong passion for firearms.

Women and Guns Part 4: Why It’s Important for Women to Own Guns



Women & Guns Part 4: Why It’s Important for Women to Own Guns

by G&A Staff   |  March 13th, 20150

Editor’s Note: This article is part 4 of our series about the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s (NSSF) report, “Women Gun Owners: Purchasing, Perceptions and Participation.” We invite you to read part 1 here.

Research shows that the single largest reason motivating women to buy guns is personal defense.

Part 4

We’ve explored nearly every facet of firearm ownership for women except for a very fundamental question: What are the reasons motivating women to purchase and own firearms? In G&A’s fourth and final installment of the NSSF’s report, we examine the driving factors of a woman’s interest in owning firearms.

According to the survey, the biggest motivator for a woman’s firearm purchase is personal defense. Nearly half of the women in the survey cited either self-defense (26.2%) or home defense (22%) as the “most important reason to own a gun.” Hunting was also a significant motivator for ownership at 15.3 percent, but no other factor garnered more than 10 percent of the responses.

NSSF Report: Women’s most important reasons to own a gun.

To further substantiate the claim that women primarily purchase firearms for defensive use, we can explore the “attitude” data in the report. Exactly 81.6 percent of the women surveyed agreed with the statement, “I feel more secure now that I own a gun.” Only 3 percent disagreed. Nearly 71 percent of the women responded in the affirmative to the statement, “I feel a need to own a gun for safety reasons,” and exactly half of the women agreed that they “feel more empowered” by gun ownership. As a tangible indicator of a woman’s defensive mindset, 42 percent of those surveyed possess a permit or lawful right to carry a concealed firearm and an additional 29.4 percent planned to obtain a permit in the 12 months following the survey.

NSSF Report: How women feel about owning a gun.

There is one trend, other than self-defense, that is emergent in the data: a desire to be self-reliant. Perhaps due to natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina or a nationwide movement toward survival preparedness, women are giving more thought to being able to function in an austere environment. Nearly 74 percent of women agreed with the statement that it is “necessary to know how to use a gun for survival” and 4.5 percent of women cited a desire to be self-sufficient as their primary motivator for purchasing a gun. This information may not be groundbreaking news to some, but it is interesting and suggests that women are not immune to societal trends in this area.

Most women gun owners stated they felt more secure and empowered because they owned a firearm.

Women today are buying guns for everything from collecting to competition shooting, but the primary factor influencing women to purchase a firearm is clearly their personal safety and that of their loved ones. This is perhaps the least-surprising conclusion that we’ve seen from the data and one area where the stereotype meets reality.

When we examine the NSSF’s report in its entirety, the data tells us that women are buying guns for self-defense, buying the right hardware for that purpose, and that they are seeking professional training to use them safely and effectively. As gun owners, we should all be supportive and encouraging this movement forward and avoid reinforcing age-old social stereotypes.

Women and Guns Part 3: How a Woman Does Homework


Women & Guns Part 3: How a Woman Does Homework

by G&A Staff   |  March 5th, 20150

Editor’s Note: This article is part 3 of our series about the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s (NSSF) report, “Women Gun Owners: Purchasing, Perceptions and Participation.” We invite you to read part 1 here.

Research shows women are consulting with local gun shops for purchasing information. Photo: Taurus Carry On 2015

In Parts I and II of this series exploring the NSSF’s study on Women Gun Owners, G&A established that the traditional stereotypes regarding women and firearms have proven to be largely misunderstood. So then how are women choosing a firearm to purchase? Are their decisions hasty or guided by a male’s influence as so often portrayed? The NSSF report discusses this issue.

Sixty-seven percent of women in the survey spent a few months thinking about buying a gun before they made their purchase and many considered the decision much longer.  Women are not impulsive gun buyers. Less than 5 percent of the women surveyed stated that they made the purchase without at least a few days’ reflection.

NSSF Report: Women’s consideration time before purchasing

During the time that women contemplated a gun purchase, they were doing homework … to a greater extent than male counterparts. Of the women polled, 96 percent sought information from at least one source before purchasing a firearm. The most popular information was gained through a woman’s family. At least half of all female gun buyers consulted a firearm manufacturer’s website and/or discussed the information with friends. Half of the women conferred with personnel across a gun counter before making their final decision, and just over a third consulted online discussion forums. Only 25 percent of the women scanned print magazines or periodicals before making their purchase. By the numbers, it’s also clear that most of the women surveyed considered multiple sources before making a choice.

NSSF Report: Where women do their homework

After the NSSF’s careful research, women primarily headed to local gun shops to make their purchase with 58 percent choosing small local businesses. Almost all of the remaining customers bought from big box stores such as Bass Pro ShopsCabela’s orWalmart. Less than 13 percent of women polled bought guns at a gun show and less than 1 percent purchased a firearm from a pawnshop.

NSSF Report: Where women purchase guns

It became clear to G&A from the data in this report that women are highly informed buyers when it comes to making a firearm purchase. Women are spending a great deal of time considering their purchase and are actively seeking out multiple information sources before joining the gun-owning fraternity.

Women and Guns Part 2: Types of Guns


Women & Guns Part 2: Types of Guns

by G&A Staff   |  February 27th, 20150

Editor’s Note: This article is part 2 of our series about the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s (NSSF) report, “Women Gun Owners: Purchasing, Perceptions and Participation.” We invite you to read part 1 here.

NSSF research shows women aren’t always shopping for pink guns, as depicted by this Taurus Model 85revolver.

Last week we explored the raw demographics surrounding women and guns. G&A discovered that many of the long-held stereotypes didn’t fit. In this segment, let’s explore the specific types of firearms that women purchase or own to consider whether the manufacturers are giving women what they really want, or rather what they think women want.

So what type of firearm is a lady more likely to own: Perhaps a revolver? In fact, 56 percent of the women polled own a semiautomatic handgun, making it the most popular type of firearm for women. Shotguns are a close second with 49.5 percent ownership. It’s worth noting that if a woman only owns one firearm, it’s more likely a shotgun (37.7%), with semiauto handguns coming in a very close second. Interestingly, a fifth of the women polled own a Modern Sporting Rifle such as an AR-15 with ¾ of those belonging to women who own but a single firearm. That cliché revolver? Only 36 percent of the respondent women actually owned one.

We have all seen the marketplace respond to female gun purchasers in recent years by offering guns and accessories in various feminine colors and patterns. Are pink and leopard print guns really motivating women buyers? NSSF explored that very question. When women were asked what factors motivated their purchase of a specific firearm (the respondents could choose more than one factor), 93 percent of women indicated that they chose products based on what was best-suited for their particular use. Ninety-two percent of women stated that they chose a specific firearm because it fit their body or hand. Price and value were significant drivers with “best value” being a factor for 74 percent of women purchasers.

So how many ladies made their decision based on a firearm’s feminine look and feel? Only 19 percent. Even fewer, less than 10 percent, chose a firearm based on a feminine color and fewer still were impressed by firearms adorned with leopard spots and flowers. This trend was consistent across both age and geography with younger women and women in the Northeast only slightly more interested in pink guns than women in older age groups.

Get ready for this: Nearly 25 percent of women chose a firearm for its “military look and feel.”

The traditional stereotypes regarding women and firearms have proven to be largely misunderstood. Women are buying guns that best fit their needs and bodies, not those that fit in the traditionalist’s view of what a woman should have.

Think pink? Think again.

Women and Guns by the Numbers



Women & Guns by the Numbers

by G&A Staff   |  February 10th, 20150

NSSF research shows more women than ever are buying guns and using them regularly. Photo by Sean Utley

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF)recently released a comprehensive report on women and firearms. The report, “Women Gun Owners: Purchasing, Perceptions and Participation,” represents a survey of more than 1,000 women, which explores nearly every aspect of gun ownership.

G&A Staff will analyze the report, which was released on January 21, 2015, in a forthcoming series to examine several topics surrounding women and gun ownership.

Fifty percent of the respondents, some 500 women gun owners, reside in the southern part of the United States. The swath of big cities, sprawling suburbs, and small towns from Texas and Oklahoma, east across Kentucky and Virginia, and all points south are home to as many gun owning women as the rest of the nation combined. Nationwide, 42.8 percent of women gun owners live in rural areas, while suburban women comprise 39.1 percent. Women in urban areas comprise only 18 percent of the gun owning population, which may be related to the strict gun laws and overall cultural forces of this country’s urban centers. Adult women of all age groups own firearms, but over half of the women gun owners surveyed were between the ages of 25 and 44 years old.

NSSF Figure: Geographic distribution of participants.

Though we hear a great deal about the number of women who have recently acquired their first firearm, the bulk of those surveyed, 42.1 percent, have owned a gun for at least 10 years. Nearly a third of the women surveyed, though, are part of the female gun surge of the past few years, that’s over 32 percent of respondents who bought their first gun since 2010.

NSSF Report: When women purchased their last gun.

Of those new gun owners, the majorities are between the ages of 18 and 34 so there is evidence of an emergent female gun culture among young women in the U.S. Though 65 percent of women gun owners reported a spouse or significant other as a fellow gun owner, nearly 30 percent were the only gun owners in their households.

Though stereotypes suggest that women gun owners are likely to own but a single firearm, the data suggests otherwise. In fact, 42 percent of the women surveyed own three or more guns with 6.5 percent reportedly owning 10 or more firearms. Just over 30 percent of the respondents did report ownership of a single firearm, but 55 percent of the overall group surveyed plan to purchase another firearm during the next year so that single gun may very well become part of a small collection.

NSSF Report: Women's intention to purchase a gun.

So are all of these guns going into the sock drawer until a bad guy breaks down the door? Apparently not. More than 800 of the women surveyed used their guns in the previous year and nearly 60 percent intend to maintain that level of shooting activity in the next 12 months. Interestingly, 38 percent of the women intend to shoot even more next year, compared to only 3.5 percent who plan to shoot less.

Based on the data, it appears that many long-held stereotypes regarding women and gun ownership are wrong. More women are buying guns, many are buying more than one, and it appears as if they are shooting them with some regularity.

To continue reading: click here for “Women & Guns Part 2: Types of Guns”

NSSF research shows women aren't always shopping for pink guns, as depicted by this NSSF report covers this issue in detail. Taurus Model 85 revolver.


Women & Guns Part 2: Types of Guns

What types of firearms are women shopping for?…

  • Women shooting
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  • safety_gear
  • 1155404274_1395171101_df45cade18927841ffc06dce526fab325b58666b
  • Internet-Gun-Sell_WEB

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Threat management interview on Ballistic Radio


It’s always a good idea to have more tools in your toolbox. Pepper spray and training on how to use it is an option we should all consider.

Originally posted on tacticalprofessor:

John Johnston of Ballistic Radio and I spoke on the air last weekend about Threat Management.

Threat Management is a topic that is woefully under-represented in most people’s skill set. Going to the range occasionally only helps develop the shooting skills. In contrast, how much time do folks spend on the skills that lead to ‘non-shooting?’ A short list would include, but is not limited to:

STOP! Don’t come any closer!

Making the shoot/no shoot decision,
decision shooting
And adversary identification
Target ID

Learning and practicing those skills can help us keep a situation under control before shooting and hopefully prevent a shooting at all.

Here’s the permalink to the interview.

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Women’s Progressive Handgun – 4 weeks, 2 hours per week


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If an all day class does not fit your schedule, this may be the class for you.

This class is divided into 4, 2 hour lessons.  Class meets the same day every week for 4 weeks.

If you are a graduate of our Basic Handgun Class, or have taken a similiar class in the past, this is the next step in your training.

Week 1
  • Discussion on mindset and legalities.
  • Equipment selection: holsters, belts, magazine carriers
  • Review of the shooting fundamentals.
  • How to safely draw and shoot from the holster, including concealment.
  • Utilizing your gun’s trigger reset.
Week 2
  • One handed shooting, strong and support hand.
  • Introduction to moving while shooting, forward and back.
  • How to clear common malfunctions.
  • Reloading drills.
Week 3
  • Drills to incorporate previously learned skills.
  • Shooting from cover.
  • Multiple target engagement.
  • Moving off the center line while shooting.
  • Shooting from different positions.
Week 4
  • Close quarters engagement.
  • Introduction to low light shooting.
  • Putting it all together in a scenario based drill.
Required equipment:
  • Reliable Semi-auto handgun 
  • 3 magazines for your handgun
  • Pants with belt loops and 1.5″ sturdy belt
  • Sturdy, belt holster for your gun
  • Single or double magazine holder
  • Comfortable shoes, no open toes
  • No low cut shirts (brass is hot!)
  • 300 rounds of ammunition in your caliber

Prerequisite: Basic Handgun Fundamentals or instructor permission.

Pregnant and nursing women are not allowed to attend classes due to possible health risks.

Class location: Federal Way Discount Gunsand Indoor Range 

For information contact: Janice 253-217-3188 or

 Firearms Training Classes cannot be returned for refund. A minimum of 10 days notice prior to the start date of your scheduled class is required to request a reschedule.  You must call 253-217-3188 to reschedule.  Range personnel are unable to reschedule classes.  All schedules subject to change.

  • May 15- June 5, 2015 6:00pm-8:00pm

  • July 10 – July 31, 2015 6:00pm-8:00pm

  • August 7 – August 28, 2015 6:00pm-8:00pm


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