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Ladies Forum A place for our female Calgunners to discuss, share and interact without the 'excess attention' sometimes found in online forums.

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  #1  
Old 10-02-2012, 9:59 PM
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Default Need training advice from women, for women

I was approached by a friend who has been put in charge of women's shooting programs locally for the CRPA. She is aware that I am an instructor and has asked for my help in the future when she arranges courses for women.

I'm thinking of questions as they come to me, because while I have taught women how to shoot, and have followed the NRA way, it has always been in an informal setting with friends, in either a 1:1, or 1:2 ratio.

Is there any advice which you can lend to me, to help me foster a positive, supportive environment if these are sessions with larger groups? Have any of you been to any courses where certain things stood out as very good, or very bad?

These would be basics courses (handgun, rifle, shotgun depending on the class). I would like to obtain the additional certifications for "Refuse to be a victim" "Personal protection in the home" and "Personal protection outside the home", so if any of you have taken any of those courses, I would be interested in your feedback on the material as well.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 10-08-2012, 12:28 PM
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Hello Low:

I wandered in since I noticed there were many views to your OP, but no responses yet. How are you doing and have you received any feedback lately?

What has helped me when taking instruction is having an instructor who is:

1. Patient and good-humored. I may be anxious since I'm not familiar with a particular firearm (like a shotgun,) so I'll ask a lot of questions. Like many responsible people, I don't want to be the one to cause an accident since I'm new AND nervous.

2. If possible, small groups no larger than 2 people per teacher if not one-on-one. I notice that everyone learns at different speeds, so the newer person may be left behind and then becomes frustrated in trying to catch up.

3. Pay attention to students who are getting tired. It's difficult to absorb info when the lecture and/or live fire portion is too long.

That's what comes to mind for now and hope this helps

Thanks, Liz
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  #3  
Old 10-08-2012, 2:01 PM
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I apologize for the intrusion on your post (since I am a male) but have you looked into the Women on Target model provided by the NRA? I apologize for the comment if you are already involved there.
Women On Target Link
If you are amenable to my assistance I can provide you volunteers, avenues to financial assistance and other types of support.

If you want my post removed please say so and I will remove it immediately.

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Old 10-08-2012, 4:46 PM
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You know, I signed up for my handgun safety class in Lincoln. I went by the class to see where it was held and talk to the instructor. I was very nervous about the class and actually shooting a gun. Afraid of guns all my life. When I walked into the class there were about ten big burly guys in the class with a big burly guy teaching it. They were all sitting around in a very small cramped block wall room. This whole vision just made me even more uncomfortable. That weekend, I went up the the Grass Valley shooting range and was chatting with the RSO. He told me about a female NRA instructor in the area that gave classes on her property. She came highly recommended and had a shooting range on her property. I immediately cancelled my class in Lincoln and took my training in Grass Valley from Karen. Not only was the setting beautiful, but it was only me and my husband that day. We sat in her dining room, looking at a fabulous view while Karen gave very detailed and great instruction. The class was eight hours broken up with lunch on her patio. We then went to her range and fired any gun of our choice. The class and instruction was not intimidating and very very well laid out with lots of handouts that still come in handy. I took my handgun safety test which allowed me to by my first handgun.

Since that class, I have become an enthusiast. I purchased two handguns, a shotgun and an AR 15.

The classes for women need to be a bit different for a lot of us. Taking a class with other women is a big help. A class that is all men who have experience with guns is intimidating. A closed up small room with a bunch of guys is even more uncomfortable. Having never shot a handgun and being on the range with guys who were not as nervous as me was not what I wanted. For me it was one of the best days ever. I faced my fears in a very unintimitating way that turned me into a gun fan. I now go out to the range and hang out with the guys and don't feel nervous at all.
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Old 10-08-2012, 6:21 PM
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[QUOTE=pennys dad;9476994]I apologize for the intrusion on your post (since I am a male) but have you looked into the Women on Target model provided by the NRA? I apologize for the comment if you are already involved there.
Women On Target Link
If you are amenable to my assistance I can provide you volunteers, avenues to financial assistance and other types of support.

If you want my post removed please say so and I will remove it immediately.

--
Warmest Regards

Jacob Rascon
(aka) Pennys Dad
CALGUNS C3 Director (So Cal)


Jacob, you are always welcome. We LIKE having real men (as opposed to little boys) around.

I have looked into the Women on Target Programs and expect to do one soon.

Please jump in any time here. You have great credentials and can add a lot.
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WHAT I HAVE LEARNED SO FAR, MOSTLY THE HARD WAY
• Do only safe sex. Never have sex with someone crazier than you are.
• Don't marry or move in together before you're both at least 25.
• Don't have children until you're married five years or at least age 30.
• Put 10% of your salary into savings every month no matter how broke you are.
• Don't ever screw around with the IRS.
• Keep a handgun on your bedside table.
• Don't smart-mouth judges, or cops who stop you on the road.
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Old 10-08-2012, 6:44 PM
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I think Savannah really hit the nail on the head.

Not everyone can provide that small a class in such an intimate setting, but to make it as 'home like' as possible would really be best. If I were doing it, I'd bring cookies. Really.

Personally, I'm turned off by "excessive tacticalness". It doesn't impress me in the slightest degree. And it certainly doesn't strike me as professional. I think most women will agree at some level.

Think about setting the stage. Don't use windowless rooms, keep the black leather to a minimum. No hats, no dark glasses. Open and friendly is the word of the day. Plan for more women than men in the room, even if you have to invite your girlfriend to sit in. A woman assistant in the room would be great, if the instructor isn't one.

No one has to preach safety to a mother or a grandmother. Teach it to the hilt, by all means, but know that every woman in the room is thinking about toddlers busy fingers the whole time.
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WHAT I HAVE LEARNED SO FAR, MOSTLY THE HARD WAY
• Do only safe sex. Never have sex with someone crazier than you are.
• Don't marry or move in together before you're both at least 25.
• Don't have children until you're married five years or at least age 30.
• Put 10% of your salary into savings every month no matter how broke you are.
• Don't ever screw around with the IRS.
• Keep a handgun on your bedside table.
• Don't smart-mouth judges, or cops who stop you on the road.
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  #7  
Old 10-08-2012, 7:03 PM
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I appreciate all of the feedback and advice so far, it is all very welcome.
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Old 10-08-2012, 8:06 PM
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know where the restrooms are and point them out.
yeah, i know....not gun related.
but the first thing i always want to know when i go anywhere is "where is the bathroom?"
hopefully, easily accessible, clean, etc.
bottled water for those that may have not come prepared.
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Old 10-09-2012, 9:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by savannah View Post
You know, I signed up for my handgun safety class in Lincoln. I went by the class to see where it was held and talk to the instructor. I was very nervous about the class and actually shooting a gun. Afraid of guns all my life. When I walked into the class there were about ten big burly guys in the class with a big burly guy teaching it. They were all sitting around in a very small cramped block wall room. This whole vision just made me even more uncomfortable. That weekend, I went up the the Grass Valley shooting range and was chatting with the RSO. He told me about a female NRA instructor in the area that gave classes on her property. She came highly recommended and had a shooting range on her property. I immediately cancelled my class in Lincoln and took my training in Grass Valley from Karen. Not only was the setting beautiful, but it was only me and my husband that day. We sat in her dining room, looking at a fabulous view while Karen gave very detailed and great instruction. The class was eight hours broken up with lunch on her patio. We then went to her range and fired any gun of our choice. The class and instruction was not intimidating and very very well laid out with lots of handouts that still come in handy. I took my handgun safety test which allowed me to by my first handgun.

Since that class, I have become an enthusiast. I purchased two handguns, a shotgun and an AR 15.

The classes for women need to be a bit different for a lot of us. Taking a class with other women is a big help. A class that is all men who have experience with guns is intimidating. A closed up small room with a bunch of guys is even more uncomfortable. Having never shot a handgun and being on the range with guys who were not as nervous as me was not what I wanted. For me it was one of the best days ever. I faced my fears in a very unintimitating way that turned me into a gun fan. I now go out to the range and hang out with the guys and don't feel nervous at all.
Congrats on the accomplishment
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  #10  
Old 10-18-2012, 9:50 PM
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The Women On Target Event/Program is sooo much fun! I went to one in Orange County and cant speak any higher of it.

It was 2 student to 1 instructor and a class of about 50 women. I found that to be very helpful to have such instruction time and shooting time. The class started with a gun safety overview which was good. Most of the women at my class had never shot before. Most were just there because their significant others signed them up. But let me tell you NOT ONE person walked out without a huge smile.

Everyone shoots at a different pace and at different comfort levels so i hope your students understand that. I was a little more experienced than my partner so they helped me improve on what I was doing and they helped her more with the basics and operation of shooting. Catering and understanding various personalities, skill level, and comfort level is a big key I think.
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Old 10-23-2012, 9:45 PM
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I had no problem with the men in the class I took. We were all friendly to each other. I saw someone post, they were nervous to shoot for the first time. In Texas, they except you to already know how to shoot. It is not to teach you to shoot. It is to get you a concealed license. We separated into two group and took turns shooting our fifty rounds.....the rest was just classroom session mostly about the law and the responsibility of having a concealed weapon. So I am not much help here since we all started out equal on the shooting part....the rest is just listening and taking a written test......pretty much an average day.
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Old 10-24-2012, 6:48 AM
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Another guy here, sorry. When my wife Sharon became interested in acquiring a handgun we followed the advice from this forum, to wit, a couple hours of private instruction by someone other than husband/Significant Other, go at her own speed, and let her shoot lots of types of guns. Another plus was that she invited her close friend Karen to join her. She progressed sufficiently to take the Cal Handgun Safety test (though that certainly is not difficult) and then chose (to my dismay since I am an XD guy) a Glock 19.

One aspect I did notice she has problems with is hand strength to rack the slide. It is not that she is not mechanically able, as she can take apart her bicycle and put it together to change tires, but there was uncertainty in the technique. You might want to take that as a point to practice. Racking the slide has to be done with authority and I observe many beginners are too gentle or shy in their attempts. Make sure they understand that they won't break anything by being aggressive with the slide (but of course always keep them safe).
Another related issue is loading magazines. Some women have trouble putting the rounds into the magazine, especially as it gets close to capacity. (Heck, I have problems getting the last couple of 45s in my magazines.) Spend some time on technique, and introduce them to loaders. Many semi autos-come with adequate one piece loaders that work ok, and of course there are the UpLula loaders too. I like my XD one piece loader because it is simple and I have enough strength to push it down, but my wife prefers the UpLula because it offers a bit more leverage.

If possible, shoot at something other than paper targets for at least a part of the time. Steel targets provide great visual and aural feedback, but use big ones that are easy to hit to start.

And as others have said, approach this more like a cooking class than military training. I have seen women at Front Sight literally sobbing when the storm trooper dressed instructors start barking criticism at someone with little or no experience. That is a situation where there are 2-3 instructors for 40 plus people so every mistake becomes an example to others. Low instructor to student ratio, and a patient supportive style rather than a boot camp drill sergeant works a lot better.

Good luck in your endeavor.
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Old 10-24-2012, 8:07 AM
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there is definitely a technique to racking the slide that makes it easier for women.
check youtube.com for examples.
rather than relying on hand strength, utilize arm motion.
makes it lots easier.
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Gun Control:
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Old 10-24-2012, 9:01 AM
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When I first started shooting this year, I learned on our Mark III(HATE the Nazi gun!) and then my husband's XD 40's(sub and full) and I could not easily rack the slide and engage the slide lock. I can do both very easily with those and with my two 9mm. I don't actually think about it anymore so I can't really say what how I do it, I just do it. Sorry, I am not much help.
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Old 10-24-2012, 9:28 AM
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I asked my wife. My wife said it was better when the course started slow and basic, and all basics were addresed first. Like holster and mag setup, manipulation of the weapon. Once everyone was caught up and fears were addressed then the class instruction could proceed without anyone feeling left behind. A nurturing environment, not a competitive or bootcamp style.
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