Self-defense is one of the primary reasons that people become gun owners—and with good reason. Gun ownership is an effective way to protect yourself and your family from harm, but it's no secret that owning a gun can cost a pretty penny. After buying their guns, many shooters are left wondering how they can effectively train to protect themselves without breaking the bank.
Read on for a few tricks and tips to help you save money while training for self-defense.
Try Firing Dry
The beauty of dry firing is that it doesn't require anything other than your gun. With your preferred pistol in hand and a few drills on your mind, you can get some high quality practice with your everyday carry or your home defense pistol without ever spending a cent. The best part? Because dry fire practice is free, you can practice a little bit every day—which is sure to improve the shooting skills and muscle memory you'll need to keep yourself safe in a defensive gun use scenario.
Looking for a little guidance on how to get started? Check out our Shooting Techniques Page.
Practice Your Draw
Regardless of whether you belong to a range that allows you to draw from your holster or not, it's important to practice the ins and outs of drawing your gun if you plan to concealed carry. If your range does allow you to draw from the hip, you're in luck, because this is the ideal way to practice. Take the time to step through a few shooting drills where you are realistically drawing from concealment and then placing shots down range. If your range doesn't allow you to draw from the hip, we recommend finding a new range. In the meantime, you can add draw practice to your dry fire routine. It doesn't cost you anything to practice your draw, but it will add real benefits in a self-defense situation.
For more concealed carry advice and holster tips and tricks, check out our Concealed Carrying a 1911 Page.
Plan Your Purpose
If you're a seasoned shooter who has logged a considerable number of hours at the range, then you know just how easy it is to blow through a ton of ammunition without batting an eye. This practice is fun for those who can afford it, but it is not as helpful nor as cost effective as a more structured shooting session would be. Before you even get to the range, it's important to take the time to consider exactly what you're trying to improve in that day's session. Once you've decided that, put together a few drills that will help you hone those skills. Then, carefully and methodically step through each drill, getting the maximum benefit out of each round you fire. At the end of the session, you'll find that you went through less ammunition while simultaneously receiving a greater benefit than you would have from a day of free firing.
Remember to Recycle
One of the often underestimated costs associated with self-defense training is the cost of your targets. In front of the right shooter, even the best cardboard and paper targets can be shredded in relatively short order. You can get more bang for your buck by simply packing a roll of duct tape in your range bag before you return to the range. Then, once you've put a considerable number of holes into a target, you can patch it up with duct tape and send it back down range. Repeat the process until your target is sufficiently destroyed to justify replacing it.
You shouldn't have to break the bank to properly prepare to protect yourself and your family from danger. By practicing a few of these budget-friendly training techniques, you can be ready for a defensive gun use situation while keeping your eyes on your bottom line.