Shooting guns is an intimidating experience for many people. There are many safety rules to follow, and it can be difficult to get comfortable with what you’re doing.
It can be hard to get into the mindset of shooting at a gun range. If you haven’t been shooting before, it’s important to get some basic knowledge before heading out to the range.
You will be surprised at how much you learn about yourself and your shooting skills by going to the shooting range for the first time.
When I went to the shooting range for the first time, I was a little nervous. I had never shot a gun before and was not sure what to expect.
But after sitting through a safety briefing, firing off some rounds, and getting my hands on various firearms, I was hooked!
I was nervous and excited at the same time. The adrenaline rush was something else. It was exhilarating to be in a place where bullets were flying all over the place.
There are so many things you need to learn and take note of before you go. Here are some tips that I wish I had known before going to the shooting range for the first time.
Note: If you’re new to shooting at the range, it’s never a bad idea to have someone show you the ropes.
Things You Should Bring To A Shooting Range
If you are going to the gun range for the first time, there are certain things that you should have with you. However, whether you’re a novice or seasoned shooter, there are some things that you should always bring to the range.
1. A Firearm That Is In Good Working Order
When you are going to a shooting range, it is important that you bring a firearm that is in good working order. This means that the firearm should be clean and in good condition and not have any malfunctions.
This is primarily for the safety of the other shooters around you. If your gun malfunctions and shoots at an unsafe angle, there could be serious consequences.
2. A Gun Cleaning Kit
The most common reason is that it can be used to clean the firearm after using it at the range. This will prevent any dirt or debris from getting into the barrel or any other part of your gun, which could cause it to malfunction.
3. A Range Bag
If you plan on shooting at the range, it is important to bring a shooting range bag. A shooting range bag will help you keep your firearms and ammunition organized. There are many different types of shooting range bags on the market.
Some shooting range bags are designed for hunters and outdoor enthusiasts, while others are designed more for military use. Some also have a built-in holster for a handgun so that you don’t have to carry it separately.
You might have a handgun safe at home, but when you are on the range, you should keep it secured inside a holster.
4. Perhaps A Mask
You should bring a mask to the shooting range because there is a lot of gunpowder in the air. This can cause respiratory problems and allergies.
Whether you’re at the range or the shooting range, always bring a mask since we’re still in the middle of a global pandemic. Wearing a mask is always a good idea since you never know which facilities will require mask wearing.
5. Ear Protection
Ear protection is a must for shooting range. If you don’t wear earmuffs when you go shooting, you may suffer damage to your earbuds as a result of the loud sound produced by the gun.
One of the best ways to protect your ears is by wearing ear plugs. You can also wear ear muffs, but they are not as effective as ear plugs.
Ear muffs cover the entire ear and have a foam lining those seals off the sound from entering your ears. Ear plugs, on the other hand, go only into your ear canal and do not seal it off so well.
6. Eye Protection
It is important to wear eye protection when you are at the shooting range because you can be exposed to lead and other harmful chemicals if you don’t wear any protective gear.
A shooting range eye accident is the last thing you want. There is a requirement for eye protection at all shooting ranges. So, if you regularly shoot, you might want to consider eye protection. A pair of sunglasses isn’t enough to protect your eyes.
7. Shooting Targets
If you’re thinking about bringing targets to a shooting range, you should know that most ranges have targets that you can buy. You may be able to save some money by buying them yourself, but they are also available for purchase at the range.
The most common targets that people use at ranges are paper, metal, or cardboard. They are usually sold in packs of 10 or 20 at local sporting goods stores. You should bring your own targets if you want a specific size or shape that isn’t available in the gun range.
When you are at a shooting range, there are many things that can happen that may require more than one round of ammunition. You should always bring enough ammunition for your planned session, as well as additional rounds in case you need them.
It is not uncommon for shooting ranges to charge high prices for their ammunition, so it only makes sense to bring your own if you plan on going regularly. Start learning the art of reloading.
9. Someone To Show You The Ropes
It is recommended that you bring a buddy who knows how to shoot as they will be able to teach you the basics of shooting, how to use the equipment, and help you with any problems that may arise.
They will also be able to spot any mistakes and give feedback on what you are doing wrong. This is mainly because you will be able to learn from them, and they will be able to help if you have any questions.
If you don’t know anyone who can go with you, don’t worry. There are lots of people in the shooting range community that are more than happy to help newbies out!
10. Wear Proper Clothing
The shooting range is a place where people go to practice their shooting skills. It is important to wear appropriate clothing for the range. This can be anything from a pair of jeans and a t-shirt to camouflage gear.
A few tips for what to wear are:
- Wear clothes that are not too loose or tight, as this can make it difficult when holding the firearm.
- Wear clothing that has some stretch in it, as this will make it easier to move and shoot at the same time.
- Wear clothes that are comfortable and lightweight, so they don’t restrict your movements.
- Wear long pants, a long-sleeve shirt, and closed-toe shoes.
- Leave your jewelry at home.
Watching an instructional video before going to the shooting range for the first time can help you understand how to use the guns, how to load and unload them, how to wear ear protection etc.
It will also help you understand the safety rules and regulations that are followed at shooting ranges.
If you are new to shooting, it is important to take a safety course before you begin. The NRA has a great course that is available for free on their website.
If you are not sure where to find the NRA website, just google “NRA shooting course,” and it should come up.
There are many things that you can bring to a shooting range. You can bring your own firearm, ammunition, safety glasses, ear protection, and maybe a gun cleaning kit if you want.
You should also make sure to check with the shooting range beforehand to see what they allow or don’t allow people to bring in. Hopefully, now you have a good idea of what to bring to the shooting range. Keep in mind that guns are not toys, so be safe and have fun!