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Going to my first USPSA match

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I've been lumped into the Timmy category by default. I am a long time gun enthusiast that has taken the last half decade more serious since I began carrying concealed. Took close to 100 hours of training last year and shot right at 10,000 rounds with practice included. I don't mind eating the humble pie. I got my ass burned by a "gamer" in one of the more advanced tactical classes I took. I'm not Mil or LE, I carry a gun for my personal protection and I want to be the best I can with a pistol, so I'm taking that plunge and going to shoot my carry gun in my first match. I'm looking forward to it. I don't expect to win and I don't care much about competing at this point, but if the people who know better than me are saying I should shoot competitions... I'm going to do it.

What are some tips for the new guy so I don't get DQ'd on my first day at school? 

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I've been lumped into the Timmy category by default. I am a long time gun enthusiast that has taken the last half decade more serious since I began carrying concealed. Took close to 100 hours of training last year and shot right at 10,000 rounds with practice included. I don't mind eating the humble pie. I got my ass burned by a "gamer" in one of the more advanced tactical classes I took. I'm not Mil or LE, I carry a gun for my personal protection and I want to be the best I can with a pistol, so I'm taking that plunge and going to shoot my carry gun in my first match. I'm looking forward to it. I don't expect to win and I don't care much about competing at this point, but if the people who know better than me are saying I should shoot competitions... I'm going to do it.

What are some tips for the new guy so I don't get DQ'd on my first day at school? 
- firstly, PLEASE listen for & to all Range Officer commands (had to DQ a guy on first stage of the day because start position was being clarified and he pulled out gun to make ready without being given command. he drove 3 hours and it was awful but rules are rules)

-finger off the trigger when reloading

- do not turn the gun 180 degrees(you can keep it pointed downrange and run facing up range)

- finger off the trigger while moving UNLESS you're acquiring a target (specifically with walls that have plastic see through netting)

- no ammo at the safe table!! (you can have loaded mags on your belt but DO NOT place on safe table or in gun)

- shoot for mostly alphas and go as fast as you can while maintaining safety

have fun!!



Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk

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Read the rules a few times.

 

Bring weather appropriate clothing plus food/beverages and something to sit on.

 

Have to have ear / eye protection.

 

There are firearm and holster requirements - 

 

Tell the RO/MD that you are NEW - and then listen.

 

Find the Safe Table - unload there - but carefully - don't point your gun uprange.

 

Bring your mags (all of them) full loaded ...

 

Bring bandaids.

 

First day out - there are only three things to remember:

 

   1.  safety

   2.  safety

   3.  safety

 

Speed does NOT matter your first day out.

 

Don't let the great shooters intimidate you or entice you to emulate their speed -

that will NOT go well.

 

Have a start ritual - wait for command to load and make ready, then draw pistol, take sight

pictures, load it including the chamber, safety on, holster, then stay still until the whistle/bell

goes off.   Then, think about safety for each shot.

 

When you finish, carefully think about each step in the show clear process - don't do it

by rote ....     Remove mag, rack slide, hold slide open and show the RO and empty gun,

hammer down pointed safely down range, holster slowly so you make sure the gun is

actually IN the holster before you release it.

 

Don't touch your gun again, except at the Safe Table, with no ammo, until the RO tells

you to touch the gun again.

 

BTW, have fun, and be safe.     :) 

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There are a number of USPSA videos, on YouTube.  Some were created by USPSA and review general rules.  Probably a good idea, as some of the gun handling may be unique to USPSA and not necessarily the same as what you are used to.

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Go slow.

Listen to the RO commands.

Ignore the timer and your score.

Safety, safety, safety. Watch the 180*. Finger off trigger when moving and reloading.

 

My first few matches I didn't even look at the score tablet. I just reviewed my hits so I could see if there were patterns for how I shot in different situations, distances, arrays, etc.

 

Let them know you're new and they'll help you along and most good RO's will take their time with you as well. They did with me and it helped keep my heart rate down for sure.

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I agree with everything everyone has said, but I'll add one other thing: Make sure to do your share of pasting targets and resetting stages. Once you're done shooting a stage go ahead and re-load your magazines, then grab some pasters and help out. Your squad will appreciate it, and it's probably good juju too. 

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Ill be the guy that is less...stressful(?) I guess is the word.  Just go, have fun, dont expect to get 1st place in your very first match.  Watch and learn and be helpful.  Youll really enjoy it.

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On 3/27/2019 at 7:22 PM, fitzdawg said:

I agree with everything everyone has said, but I'll add one other thing: Make sure to do your share of pasting targets and resetting stages. Once you're done shooting a stage go ahead and re-load your magazines, then grab some pasters and help out. Your squad will appreciate it, and it's probably good juju too. 

 

Yes, pasters. Always help the squad out with resetting after each shooter. When you’re in the hole, it’s ok to start getting ready for your turn and to get your focus. And after your run, reload, reset yourself and get back with the squad resetting the stage. Everyone appreciates being a good squad mate.

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At the beginning of every season there’s usually a “new shooter orientation “ at least in my neck of the woods, that teaches you the rules and range etiquette to be safe and have fun. If that’s not an option, common sense applies and ask questions (you won’t be looked at as annoying, we all wanna be safe and have fun). There’s also a bunch of “getting started in uspsa” videos on the interwebs that have nuggets of great info for how to be a productive member in the sport. Welcome to the fun and enjoy yourself!


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I dove in as well...  Only DQ I Suffered was ammo in the safe area..  it was a brutal lesson.  Just go slow, be aware of your muzzle and listen to the R.O's.   One of the issues a lot of people have they think the R.O.'s are trying to be dicks.  This isn't the case.  They just want you to understand the rules and not get a gun in the gut. 

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These are the things I worked on before my first match:  Practice the load and make ready at home during dry and live fire (if you haven't already).  Same thing for unload and show clear.  Do some moves and and reloads being hyper-conscious of where your trigger finger is.  This last one needs to be practiced multiple times until it is ingrained in your technique.  And last, where is the 180 at all times.

Just my 2c worth.

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