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NRA Instructor Course Basic Pistol - resources to prep?

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I just signed up for the instructor class with GOAL. The area I'm in is completely under serviced, only courses for LTC applicants are 45 minute drives away so I wanted to change that. My current employer is very sympathetic to 2A and she has a large facility that I could possibly rent for classes so I think it's a smart investment to take instructor certification course. Have had my license for almost two years, comfortable handling firearms and I would like to think I'm a safe and responsible owner (aghast at the range horror stories on NES, and can definitely recognize "that guy" at the range). Any resources to take a look at and prep for as the class is several months out? I know the course descriptions mention public speaking etc, not worried at all about that stuff, but just technical resources. Input would be great!
 

Mr. Brownstone

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Be able to safely handle firearms. Yes, obvious, but most important thing. Know how to load and unload a single action revolver, double action revolver, and a semi auto pistol. Be able to put 8 of 10 shots in a six inch group at 45 feet, all ten must be on paper. Twice. Not hard at all. The rest, will be a matter of showing up with a teachable attitude.
 
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kalash

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Obviously safety is paramount. Don't be the kind of instructor that goes lax on that aspect of it, like the guy I once saw boast about always pointing guns in a safe direction, while pointing a shotgun through the window at two people unloading a van.

Also, teach facts and try to leave opinion out of it. Give your students the knowledge to make their own choices (e.g. caliber, guns, etc).
 

MisterHappy

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OP: the course (when I took it, at least) was BP, and Home Firearm Safety; knowledge of long guns is helpful, too. That said it's adaptable. One of the students when I took it was a IDPA (or similar) RSO. He had to be shown how to work an 870.


Don't think too far ahead; keep an open mind, and let Jon give you the info. He's an excellent instructor.

Note that when you teach the BP course, you need a place to shoot, as part of the curriculum.
 
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Jon is great. Practice your safe gun handling, but make sure it is the "NRA" way. Also, make sure you have your own .22 ammo for the range test. Practice shooting with a semi-auto .22 and a .22 revolver using double and single action. Again, make sure you are holding your gun properly and cocking the hammer of the revolver properly in single action (properly means the way the NRA wants you to do/teach it). When you do the practice teaching, just keep it simple.
Good luck
 
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I'll have to borrow a revolver to practice then. Had to practice with a rented 357 magnum for the boston LTC moon island test, so 22 should be easier [smile] thanks for the replies guys, more reassuring. Thought they'd make us know how to field strip EVERYTHING and all the technical intricacies.
 

kalash

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I'll have to borrow a revolver to practice then. Had to practice with a rented 357 magnum for the boston LTC moon island test, so 22 should be easier [smile] thanks for the replies guys, more reassuring. Thought they'd make us know how to field strip EVERYTHING and all the technical intricacies.
A guy in the class I took brought a Glock fotay and just enough ammo to pass the test. Basically as soon as he missed one shot he had to find another gun to use or procure more .40 ammo. He ended up borrowing a .22LR pistol to pass the course.
 

Len-2A Training

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Jon is a suburb teacher! You'll enjoy the class. Go in with a "I want to learn" attitude and you'll do fine.

If it is a combo of HFS and BP, learn how to unload a tube-fed shotgun. That's one that tripped me up when the late Darius Arbabi took each of us into a room and had us load and unload various guns. At the time I only owned a Rem 1100 skeet gun and the only way I ever unloaded that gun was by pulling the trigger until empty. [wink]
 

ScottS

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Obviously safety is paramount. Don't be the kind of instructor that goes lax on that aspect of it, like the guy I once saw boast about always pointing guns in a safe direction, while pointing a shotgun through the window at two people unloading a van.

Also, teach facts and try to leave opinion out of it. Give your students the knowledge to make their own choices (e.g. caliber, guns, etc).

Having taught flying, and flying instructors, for years, I can tell you one of the most common mistakes new instructors in any discipline make is confusing procedure with individual technique.

Example: the procedure is to rack the slide to chamber a round. Techniques include "hand-over" and "slingshot," among others. Teaching your way as the only way is a fast-track to alienating students and causing frustration. That doesn't mean you shouldn't share your techniques with the student; sharing your knowledge and experience is how they learn. But make sure they know there are many ways to skin a cat, and this is one way.

Also, if it's a fact, state that. If it's an opinion/your experience, state that.

And, don't be afraid to say "I don't know" if you don't. Students have an amazing gift for smelling bullshit.
 
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Make sure you have all of the NRA gun handling skills down pat, for each type of firearm, including unloading and decocking. You will be tested on this early on and do not want to fail.
 

Len-2A Training

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Make sure you have all of the NRA gun handling skills down pat, for each type of firearm, including unloading and decocking. You will be tested on this early on and do not want to fail.

Since Darius passed away who works with Jon teaching these courses?

--------

HFS requires knowledge of how to unload and make safe all sorts of guns. The shooting test is strictly for BP and is handguns at 45'.
 

Navy Moose

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If you're former military or a LEO and have a habit of referring to firearms as the W word. Be sure to bringing lots of small bills. I think I was the champion of wearing the W necklace.
 
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Will we have to show proficiency with shotguns?

We had to know/demonstrate how to unload and make safe a Mossberg 500 as well as AR15, semi-auto pistol and a revolver. I did not have to do the single action only revolver. The only shooting tests were with pistols.

- - - Updated - - -

Since Darius passed away who works with Jon teaching these courses?.

In the course I took in Nov. '14, it was only Jon. There were 8 of us in the class.
 

spt_1955

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Am I the only one who also teaches an overview of MA and Federal Firearms laws as well as the LTC licensing process, what to expect and how to proceed?
 
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I've just hung up my teaching credentials after 12 years. The new NRA course, complete with powerpoint presentation, along with added indemnity requirements and increased liability requirements all began to make this "hobby" into more of a business. So, it was fun but I never made it a business. Rather I decided to become and instructor so that I would be able to share my expertise with friends and neighbors. In addition, I made it my mission to offer soldiers, especially ones who had been deployed, totally free classes. Here in CT they don't care that you've been in the military and have been in a firefight. When you get home you have to take the basic safety course so I made sure any soldier who asked would be given a seat.

I don't know what the GOAL course is like but we are not lawyers and therefore we don't have the ability to really discuss the legal interpretations of the law. That doesn't mean that you can't have a discussion about certain issues toward the end of the class. I always made it a point to discuss my decision to carry a handgun and what I did to prepare for that decision. It was always a solemn discussion, too. After going through the entire class and shooting for the first time (most people) they begin to realize just how important safey is and what they see on TV is 100% fake.

Allow me to make just a couple more observations especially about the live fire experience.

1) The NRA course requires live fire. I ALWAYS start with a .22 because the majority of students have never fired any handgun. You'd be a fool to put a .45 into a lady's hand without scaring the crap out of her. So, .22 it is and a revolver is best because it'll be the more reliable but a Ruger or some other semi-auto works. work up through the calibers while they are comfortable but never jump from .22 to .45 or even .40. Try a .380acp and also a 38 special revolver. Both calibers are easy to control.

2) Always begin the shooting at only 21'. Make up a special target stand if you must and have it set aside for you where you will be shooting or bring it with you. Why 21' ?, well, you know why technically but to boost the confidence of a new shooter it's easy to them to see the holes they make at 21' and there is some accomplishment pride there. I've never had a complaint. It also teaches the student that accuracy with a handgun isn't all that easy after all and practice makes perfect. Compliment them on every hit on the paper regardless.

3) NEVER MAKE a student shoot a larger caliber if they don't want to. You can try to ask them multiple ways but don't force it. Ladies tend to be a bit more reluctant to shoot bigger calibers. The line I use on them is, "I would NEVER make you do anything that would harm you but this is an opportunity to try this caliber under the best circumstances.". I also ask for just one round, maybe. About 75% of the time after that one round they will do the mag. The rest of the time they don't want to continue and I say that's fine. EVERY single female student I had left the range with a smile on their face from the experience and quite often I'd get a note thanking me for the time I took.

4) Stand right next to your student on their weak side and have your hand on the middle of their back as if you were supporting them a bit. Once they get into the proper firing stance, you want to stand on their weak side because if they are distracted,they could swivel at their hips and put the muzzle on everyone to their left (in a r/h shooter) really easily. You are there to prevent that. They can't swing to the right easily, however. The students get so proud of themselves that they forget that they have to keep that muzzle down range at all times. Try it. Pretend you have your pistol in your right hand and swivel to the left. Voila.......sweep the rest of the range.

I LOVED teaching this class. I always had a bag of goodies (bits and pieces of ammo I'd collected so that they could handle them. I have everything from .22 bullets to 50 caliber and virtually everything in between. The are some Civil war bits in that pile, too. It's just to let them handle different components. I also actually burn the powder in one bullet I pull down. Why? Because they are under the impression with is like black powder and we know it's not. The fact that it burns so slowly and there's no smoke always impresses students.

Lastly, if you want to test your communication skills, here are two tests:
1) find someone who doesn't know guns and ask them if you can explain to them the difference between "single action", "double action" and traditional double action is in a firearm. If you can do that, you'll be able to do pretty much everything! Trust me. We always spent time on that!
2) Explain to your students the difference between a "clip" and a "magazine". The way I did that was to use the analogy of Boats and Ships. The difference? Ships carry boats. Think of a cruise liner, they carry life BOATS. And a submarine is a BOAT because it doesn't carry anything. Clips carry rounds to the magazine in the rifle/pistol. Think of "Stripper clips" used in an SKS or old Mauser. Magazines, otoh, actually hold and feed the round into the chamber. You're welcome!

Good luck! We need more good teacher to promote the hobby. I've done my bit.

Rome



]
 

dcmdon

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I'll have to borrow a revolver to practice then. Had to practice with a rented 357 magnum for the boston LTC moon island test, so 22 should be easier [smile] thanks for the replies guys, more reassuring. Thought they'd make us know how to field strip EVERYTHING and all the technical intricacies.

You should own a couple of revolvers if you are going to teach anyway. You might as well get them now.

My suggestion is that you get a 5 or 6 inch .22 single action revolver and a 4" double action .357 magnum revolver. (Not that you will be shooting .357s in it. But light .38s are nothing out of a solid full underlug .357)

My suggestions for guns are

.22
if you want to do it right a Ruger Single Six or Single Ten.
If you don't have much money, these work well for about $150 I have one and the students love it.
http://lipseys.com/itemdetail.aspx?itemno=HERR22B4

For .357, I'd suggest a S&W 686, a used S&W 66, or a Ruger GP100 for a bit less money.

For .22 semi-autos I use a Ruger 22/45 with a red dot and a silencer, Browning buckmark, and a Glock 17 with a .22 kit. You could get by with any one of these.

Stick with .22s for most of the class. Most new shooters start to push or flinch within 1 mag of centerifire. They do not learn anything shooting centerfire other than what recoil feels like and the fact that they don't really know much. .22 is the way to teach marksmanship.

For semi-auto I use Glock 34 and 26 to demonstrate how size changes recoil and stress that they should get a range gun (which can also function for home defense) before they get a carry gun.

I will do the same thing with revolvers if time permits. 6" 686 vs an aluminum framed (11 ounce) J frame. We shoot light target loads. Typically they do great with the 686 and can't hit the broad side of a barn with the J frame. My point here is to impress upon them that the smaller a gun gets the harder it is to shoot. That they need to resist the urge to buy the smallest, most powerful gun they can find.

Lately, I've been letting them shoot a few rounds from my Glock 42 with a +2 round grip extension. Everyone does well with this.

Then I stress that they have not really learned enough to carry effectively. I go into all the things that we have not covered. Holster selection, concealment, draw from a holster, shooting and moving, reloading on the move, dealing with malfunctions, use of cover, etc.

Don

p.s. I do this for enjoyment. So my classes are all private or small private groups. We get a lot of time to shoot. So we have time to go over all of these guns.
 
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dcmdon

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Cabinetman - holy crap. I just read your post one up from mine. I'm still teaching it the old way. When will this get forced upon me. My credentials are up for renewal this spring.

Also, great tips. I learned something.

Which leads me to one other tip for the OP. Always accept an invitation to co-teach with another instructor. If you can find the time. You will always learn something.

Don
 

ScottS

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May 15th.

And, to top everything off, the Basic Pistol Packet, which was supposedly going to be available for a while longer in the transition period now shows "DISCONTINUED - NO LONGER AVAILABLE."

Good luck finding packets to run an "old style" course between now and 15 May.

Maybe I should put out a WTB ad on CraigsList for some extra packets...
 

scouter-rick

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And, to top everything off, the Basic Pistol Packet, which was supposedly going to be available for a while longer in the transition period now shows "DISCONTINUED - NO LONGER AVAILABLE."

Good luck finding packets to run an "old style" course between now and 15 May.

Maybe I should put out a WTB ad on CraigsList for some extra packets...

Those instructors who bought these in hundreds (Many hundreds) to corner the market and prevent others from teaching the course are the biggest issue here. Unless they plan to not report their training to NRA they will not be able to use all the packets they have hoarded after May 15th and NRA is already gearing up to buy them back so they can be used to deliver to the blended learning students.

-R
 
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I did not know that there were guys hoarding the kits. There are so many students out there right now, I could hold a class once a week if I wanted but, as Don said, I did this for fun and to help others around me be able to enjoy the hobby. It's been very successful. Don, your suggestion of working with another, more experienced instructor is really a good one. You've got to be pretty darned confident in your abilities to teach others about the safe handling of firearms and also to introduce newbies to their first shots. The experience can be great and will encourage them to pursue their permit and buy firearms or it'll scare the crap out of 'em. Always remember, however, that YOU are the expert in the room and they will listen to you intently so be confident and also, at the same time, be CORRECT. If you find you don't know something backwards and forwards investigate it and fix it. Use EACH class as it's own training course for you. Trust me, you'll find a lot that you may "know" but can't explain so you'll be reading up on it. Encourage questions.....ANY questions at ANY time.

Another poster also made an excellent point. A handgun is NOT a weapon. It's a handgun. It can become a weapon if you use it as such but so can a sharp stick or a hammer or brick. Refer to a handgun always as the "gun", "pistol", "revolver", "firearm", etc.

Gee, I could go on and on as I'm sure so many other fellas could about their experiences. I guess I'll just say that you should also be generous. Have coffee and donut holes available all morning. I also provided lunch but kept it simple: nice coldcuts, rolls, condiments and drinks. Make you own sandwich. Or you could just all go to Subway or something like that with you, the instructor, buying lunch. If you are charging for the class you can build that into the fee structure. Students will very much appreciate it, trust me.

Rome
 

sa1911

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I just signed up for the instructor class with GOAL. The area I'm in is completely under serviced, only courses for LTC applicants are 45 minute drives away so I wanted to change that. My current employer is very sympathetic to 2A and she has a large facility that I could possibly rent for classes so I think it's a smart investment to take instructor certification course. Have had my license for almost two years, comfortable handling firearms and I would like to think I'm a safe and responsible owner (aghast at the range horror stories on NES, and can definitely recognize "that guy" at the range). Any resources to take a look at and prep for as the class is several months out? I know the course descriptions mention public speaking etc, not worried at all about that stuff, but just technical resources. Input would be great!

I'll be taking the GOAL course this month as well. Thanks for all the info guys! I'm trying to prepare as best as I can beforehand and there's a lot of helpful tips on here. I really enjoy teaching new shooters. Good luck, anon2424!
 
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