Shooting is one of America’s favorite hobbies. It can take on many forms, including casual target practice, hunting, school trapshooting sports, advanced competitive shooting and firearm education. No matter the discipline, there is always that ‘first time’ that someone gets to handle and use a firearm. So what things should you bear in mind when you consider becoming a participant in the shooting arts?


The highest priority in the use of firearms is always safety. Whether it’s a parent introducing their child to shooting at an early age or a veteran competitor, nothing can be more vital. Understanding the proper operation and handling of a firearm is essential. Gun safety courses are available for young or adult individuals interested in a structured introduction to shooting. Learning the basic range safety rules will be at the head of any such course:

  • Always treat every firearm as though it is loaded
  • Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction
  • Always keep your finger outside the trigger guard until ready to shoot
  • Always be sure of your target, and what is in front of and behind it

Firearm selection

Picking the right firearm to learn shooting is important. The age and physical attributes of the person must be taken into consideration. Your six year old probably shouldn’t start learning by shooting a .300 WIN MAG high-powered rifle, and your grandmother probably doesn’t need to start out with a .44 Magnum either. The ability to comfortably handle a gun is key to firearm retention, control and accuracy. Factors to consider include size, recoil and whether the firearm ‘fits’ the shooter in terms of proper stance, grip and so forth.

Training is key

Having found the gun with a perfect fit and putting some lead downrange is just the beginning. As with any hobby or activity, proficiency is only attained through practice. If the reason for learning to shoot involves hunting, sports, personal defense or just recreational times at the range, you can only get better by putting in the time required to do so. There are many self-professed “gun experts” who claim their superpowers are the result of a trip to the range once every year. Not so, we say.

Metro Pawn & Gun encourages people interested in learning to shoot to visit our store. We offer a wide variety of firearms, suitable for both the novice and experienced shooter. Providing guidance in selecting the best firearm for the user, we can help create a positive, safe and rewarding experience.

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