HGR 040 - Training with Handguns

Hello and welcome to Handgun Radio! I’m your host Ryan Michad from the wilds of central maine, and this is your home for all the news, information and discussion in the handgunning world.

This week, myself and guest Steve, the Marketing Director and Law Enforcement specialist for the Firearms Radio Network discuss some of the various things you might encounter while training with handguns, along with some different methods of training.

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Week in Review:


  • Did some more videos this weekend with the Sig-Sauer 516 & 716, as well as a video showing the difference between suppressed and unsuppressed using a Ruger SR-22. Go check it out!
  • Doing a video range test with the Glock 42 and XDs 4.0 at the end of April so I should be able to come back with some impressions of them for you all!
  • Also have an interview upcoming with Paul Carlson of the Safety Solutions Academy to discuss his work in the training world. He has also had quite a bit of experience with the Remington R51 and I would like to hear some of the impressions of it from someone who has fired it fairly extensively.


  • Took a friend and his wife shooting for the first time.  Started with a safety briefing and moved to the range from there.  Wife had never touched a gun, friend had fired some once before with me a few months ago.  They ended up purchasing a home defense gun, Sig P226.  I think he has the handgun bug now, he’s already talking about buying more, possibly an M&P.

Main Topic: Training With Handguns

Due to his experiences in Law Enforcement, Steve has had the opportunity to take many training classes relating to the proper and effective use of handguns in his daily duties as well as in his off-duty hours. I’d just like to discuss some of the trainings that Steve has taken part in, along with some do’s and don’ts pertaining to handgun training. The most important thing I feel is that the training is beneficial, and that the inherent risk associated with the training is minimized to the absolute lowest degree.

Trainings Attended:

  • Multiple beginner, intermediate, and a few advanced classes
  • Currently required to train at least once per quarter, often times I actually train more and also in my off time
  • Basic firearms handling, multiple targets, moving and shooting, close quarters shooting, target identification and quick decision making

Special Equipment Needed?:

  • One thing to note in particular is the importance of balancing “Hardware” and “Software”. Oftentimes, we are so fixated on having the latest gun or the latest newest piece of gear that we neglect to train in the fundamentals to use that piece of gear in the most efficient way possible.
  • Ammunition is definitely hard to come by in larger quantities, with many retailers restricting the amount of ammunition any one person can buy at a time. If you are a proficient reloader, that can be one way of getting the needed ammo, but components for reloading can also be scarce.

Considerations When attending training (Stuff you needed you never thought to bring):

  • Wear clothing that will be appropriate to the training you are attending. Loose clothing, without a proper belt will be a huge hinderance to a good training experience.
  • Bring the equipment you actually use or plan to use to your training.  Its a great place to test your equipment and see what you really like versus what marketing or hype has lead you to buy.
  • Bring all the food, water, snacks you could possibly want; nothing makes a range day worse than being hungry or having a hunger headache.
  • Bring appropriate bug juice or sunscreen.
  • ALWAYS bring extra ammo.

Miscellaneous Tips & Advice:

  • Ego has no place in training
  • Must come to training open minded to learn new things.  Even if you thing the instructor is crazy trying to get you to try something, at least give it a try, you might like it and it may or may not work for you.
  • Don’t be afraid to call out unsafe actions if necessary
  • Train for firearms failure drills


  • Dont forget to shop Brownells using our affiliate link, www.handgunradio.com/brownells
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  • Listen to all the great shows on the Firearms Radio Network! Gun Guy Radio!
  • Be sure to visit the Firearms Insider for review and SHOT Show 2014 coverage!

Until Next Week, have fun and SAFE SHOOTING!!!