Even if you are not a new gun owner you probably know one. And, if you care about them at all send them this article right away to help them get up to speed on gun ownership and how to be safe with a gun.
All of these tips are free, but I am going to mention a course at the end called Concealed Carry Fundamentals that goes further in depth on firearm handling that is less than $40, and even a way to get that and another of our best selling courses for free.
Let's get started with the free resources:
Safely handle your firearm through dry fire practice
Chances are excellent that, right now, you won't be able to go to the gun range and practice with your gun in live fire shooting. The only real way for you to get any kind of real practice in is to learn how to dry fire your gun.
Dry firing is essentially the manipulation of your gun that includes racking the slide, practicing the fundamentals (grip, trigger, sights, etc), and pressing that trigger. Doing this for 10 minutes or so each day will help you tremendously.
It will not simulate recoil or get you used to the blast of a gun, but anything you can get right now as a new gun owner will help you down the line.
Here are some resources we put together, to help you in your dry fire practice:
Also, a word about negligent discharges from a video we put together highlighting a study we conducted regarding this topic. More than half of all unintended discharges happen in the home, so make sure your gun is unloaded whenever you're doing dry fire.
For less than $15 you can get a simple device you easily insert into the gun that ensures you won't accidentally shoot yourself or others.
How to rack your slide
Some people will not struggle with this skill at all, while others of you will. It really depends on your personal strength and if you have any physical ailments or not. My good friend Eve does a great job in this video showing how to rack the slide if you fall into the category of having weaker hands or not having the coordination to do it the way others teach:
Your gun doesn't make you invincible
This is something that we see from time to time — Gun owners getting involved in something they should likely have left to the police. I think it's because many gun owners feel as though they're invincible because they own and carry a gun. This isn't true.
In fact, it can be quite the opposite. Sometimes, when a baddie knows you have a gun it can create a different set of problems for you causing you to become a target. Check out this podcast episode talking about this very thing:
You can't bring your gun everywhere
Like it or not, there are laws that have been put out there regarding where you can and cannot take your gun. While it's your choice whether or not to follow those laws, we at least have to make you aware of them. The best resource we have about this is our Concealed Carry Tools smart phone app that highlights the laws in all states.
It's absolutely free to download and use, and will never cost anything. It's our gift to the gun community. Download it here.
Drawing from concealed
At some point you'll own a holster for your gun and will hopefully get your concealed carry permit (take an online permit class here). At that time you'll also need a gun holster that you can draw from. You can watch Riley give some pointers on drawing from concealed in this SHOP Talk video:
Maintain your firearm
There are few things that directly correlate to a successful defensive gun use. Training is one of those things, but having a gun that actually works when you need it to is something else entirely. This is one of those things that is passive in that you don't do it when you need to use the gun, but beforehand.
In the following video, my buddy Matthew goes over how to disassemble and clean a Glock. Now, if you don't have a Glock, many of the steps are the same, just that the disassembly may be different. Check it out:
Lock up your guns when not in use
Now, I'm not telling you that you need to lock up all your guns. Don't misread me. And, when I say “not in use” that doesn't mean when the gun is on your body, or similar. What it means for me, because I have little kids who have other little kids as friends who come over, I lock my guns up when they're not in use.
Some states mandate that you put your guns in a safe, while others do not. Either way, here is a selection of gun safes for all price points for anyone needing a new gun safe.
Learn as much as you can before you need your gun
Finally, we get to the point of furthering your education. There are a couple of different options. You can take your online concealed carry class here, that satisfies the requirements to get your non-resident Virginia carry permit.
Or, since most of us are isolated in our homes, we have a home defense course, called “Complete Home Defense.” Both courses are excellent.
Then again, you can get them both for free by signing up for a Guardian Nation membership and also getting all of the other benefits, as highlighted here on this page. Either way, welcome to the wonderful world of gun ownership, and we hope you're here to stay.