Victoria is active in competition shooting, and she is an active member of A Girl & A Gun Women’s Shooting League. Victoria is passionate about teaching others to be confident and competent with firearms. As well as being a manager at Shady Oaks Gun Range, Victoria is a Texas License to Carry Instructor, NRA Range Safety Officer, NRA Certified Instructor for Basic Pistol, and an IDPA Safety Officer.
Victoria’s advice for beginners:
- You absolutely must know and follow the four gun safety rules.
- It’s best to learn the basics of how to shoot before purchasing a firearm. After you have some experience and familiarity, you’ll have a better understanding of what you like and how to find a firearm that fits your hand.
- My most successful beginner students have followed the crawl-walk-run advice:
- Crawl: Small Caliber – It’s generally easier to start with .22LR and mastering that before moving on to a higher caliber. While this isn’t the best choice for self-defense, it will establish good fundamental habits, develop confidence/competence, and is more affordable.
- Walk: Full-Size Gun – The next step would be to practice with a full-size (9mm) gun. When you have an explosion going off in your handgun, weight and size are your FRIEND when learning how to manage recoil. Start at 3 yards and master the bullseye. Move on to 7 yards and repeat, gradually adding distance.
- Run: Compact Gun – Those cute little pocket pistols are designed to save your life and be easy to carry/conceal. The trade-off is that they are generally not fun to shoot. The “snappy” recoil can be a challenge. It’s also difficult to be accurate, especially at distance, because the shorter barrel amplifies shooting errors.
- In the long run (pun intended), you’ll do better by working up to it slowly so that you’ll be able to self-diagnose your shooting mistakes.
- Wanna up your game even more? Pick up a revolver. Same philosophy. Start with a full size…work your way up to a compact. (Those little snubby revolvers can be a beast for a novice.) Practicing with a revolver will greatly improve your skills with a semi-auto pistol.
- If License to Carry is your goal, the course of fire requires 20 rounds at 3 yards, 20 rounds at 7 yards, and 10 rounds at 15 yards. You can shoot the LTC qualification with .22LR!!!
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