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Best real-world shooting competition?

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  • Best real-world shooting competition?

    I was just watching an episode of American Shooter on OLN that covered the United States Practical Shooting Association's championship. With the various shooting oragnizations out there, which would you consider to be the best for real-life applications -- no race guns, no competition holsters, no ultra-long-range shots? In addition to USPSA, I'm familiar with IPSC and IDPA but know little about what kind of shooting they engage in. Any recommendations?
    Caution and worry never accomplished anything.

  • #2
    Pistol shoot

    Go to the IDPA web site. I think it is the best real world shooting club you can find.
    Got Skill??

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    • #3
      IPSC is anything but.

      Sure you could try limited, but uhh, the "holsters" are a far cry from anything youll likely carry. The full house stuff is just plain silly. Sure I have my .38 supercomp with ported barrel wider than a well use ho magwell, dot or holosight and 30 round magazine and a 1/2lb trigger pull. Not sure whats practical about that. Its fun though.

      If you want practical, Id check out IDPA.
      Im currently ignoring ghostsix, Khalid72 & wcucj

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      • #4
        http://thecurmudgeon.freeservers.com/ps/
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        Tomorrow's battle is won during today's practice. --Samurai maxim

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        • #5
          Originally posted by chinchilla
          IPSC is anything but.

          Sure you could try limited, but uhh, the "holsters" are a far cry from anything youll likely carry. The full house stuff is just plain silly. Sure I have my .38 supercomp with ported barrel wider than a well use ho magwell, dot or holosight and 30 round magazine and a 1/2lb trigger pull. Not sure whats practical about that. Its fun though.

          If you want practical, Id check out IDPA.
          Ugh I don't know where you've been for the past say four years but that's how long the USPSA/IPSC has had what's called a "production class". That's where you have to shoot a box stock gun that's not a 1911 and you have to use a carry rig with the mags carried behind the hip.

          The IDPA is fine but it is very dependant on the club your attending. Many clubs dictate exactly how you will shoot a course of fire and the stages sometimes tend to be not very challenging. Lot of tackleberries who resent cops shoot IDPA matches.

          IPSC is the same way, it depends on the club but if it's run right the shots can get very hard and no will tell you how to shoot. I shot the USPSA FOP Summer Blast this year with some Air Marshall and DC capital police firearms instructors and let me tell you these guys can shoot production like no one else.

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          • #6
            1. No competition is training.
            2. USPSA is the US branch of IPSC - so the shooting is the same.
            3. People shoot for different reasons.
            In our club, we have folks who shoot "raceguns", and folks who shoot carry guns. We have revolvers shooters, and folks shooting 'pocket rockets' (reduced size .45's) from concealment. But our club places zero emphasis on the scores - our focus is fun (with safety). You are welcome to shoot whatever you want, for whatever reason, and no one makes a negative comment - we have a shooter with a Hi Point that runs 100%!
            We are a USPSA-IPSC club.
            "A man who has nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the existing of better men than himself."
            John Stuart Mill

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            • #7
              For good training go to Chuck Taylor's ASAA or Gunsite or Bill Rogers school, I am sure there are others but these will prepare you better for an armed confrontation than games will.
              Last edited by 6233108; 08-02-2004, 11:39 AM.
              Trooperden, akman75, & azmichelle ignored

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              • #8
                Training schools are fine but what good are they without practice? Shooting matches provide a forum for constant fun and challenging practice for one to put the pure shooting skills (not combat or tactics) to work in a highly competitive enviroment.

                IPSC matches are not the exact same as USPSA matches. IPSC uses different targets now, has a much lower round count per stage, and has an entire different flavor. The level of competition sin't the same since draconian gun laws in some other countries really puts a kobosh on practice.

                IDPA, USPSA, speed steel, it's all the same; you get out what you put into it.

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                • #9
                  Jrt6 has an excellent point. You are not going to find a competition that is tactical and competitive. Even the SWAT competitions fall into the "beat the clock" mentality and tactics go out the window for a trophy.

                  So what are your choices:

                  IPSC - high round count, best gun handling skill builder
                  IDPA - less round count, teaches use of cover, somewhat
                  Shooting Schools - pro instruction, tactical oriented

                  If you really want to have courses of fire that combine both? You will need to have a group of people willing to set up elaborate stages that are "blind" to the shooter and then put something on the outcome. Money is a good incentive for most.

                  Since the latter is really unlikely to happen, I tend to shoot IPSC & IDPA for gun handling, but without getting into the bad habits they teach like...

                  Shoot (2) and move on
                  Mix it up yourself, there is no rule against it. Shoot 2-5 rounds randomly, or keep shooting until you have a nice group of 2 in the a-zone.

                  No real penalty for shooting "no-shoots"
                  Keep track of your "no-shoot" hits, and pay up with push-ups or something for each one.

                  Shooting to a clock
                  Remove your mind from the clock game. It only adds to improper tactics, because you MUST perform them this way to stay competetive. Don't take all day, but don't fall into the "shortcut game" just to rank higher that afternoon.

                  Not using cover
                  IDPA is better at this, but a lot of people do not use cover like they would if someone was shooting back at them, you should if you plan to "practice like you will fight, and fight like you practice." Most IPSC courses around my parts have little if any cover, so use it when you can. I believe there will be times in a fight when you will "take it to them" and IPSC's shooting on the move (you must force yourself to do this, the course designer really is limited in this) is a good practice for this. Don't forget to stay engaged on the target until you get 2 or more good a-zone hits, even on swingers.

                  If the club will let you, use dummy rounds in your mags to practice TRB drills. I add one in different spots in the 5 mags I carry and then mix them up. You will forget wheer they are, and the drill is better because of the stage "pressure" even though you are not thinking of the clock. You really never forget it, just don't let it rule you.

                  Anyone have any other suggestions on how to make IPSC/IDPA more tactical within it's rules?
                  www.concealedcarry.info -- FREE Image Hosting
                  www.martialwarrior.com , www.roguephoto.com , www.talkchristian.com

                  Tomorrow's battle is won during today's practice. --Samurai maxim

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                  • #10
                    Sure, the obvious:
                    Shoot your carry gun, ammo, and holster,
                    You decide how many rounds to neutralize a target
                    Design stages yourself - then get others thinking in the "tactical" mode.(You might even spin off a group that wants the same things you do.)
                    Once you know what the targets and start position are, DO NOT walk through the stage with your squad.
                    And of course, do not be a fair weather shooter - shoot when you don't feel good, when it rains, etc. Try staying up all night, and then shooting a match, like an encounter at the end of shift. Or do some PT just before a stage, to raise your heart rate.
                    "A man who has nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the existing of better men than himself."
                    John Stuart Mill

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                    • #11
                      I agree with the cover comment. In the IDPA there is no box at the barricade so one can get away with really sticking their body out to shoot. Granted in IPSC the box at the barricade forces one to use cover in a not so tactical way but on the other hand it forces one to use a shooting position that is awkward and unusual which in and of itself is good practice.

                      I've found the only real test of cover skills is paintball. Every target you engage requires you to use cover differently and one really has to adjust their position behind cover constantly due to the changing positions of those shooting back. In the IDPA you can expose 50% of your body when using cover, try that in paintball and you'll last about 20 seconds a game.

                      A PT raised HR really dosen't have much effect on fine motor skills; stress induced increased HR(from competition or fear for one's life) is what really screws up the fine motor skills.

                      Competition is not really practice since you only get one rep a stage. Competition is more of a personal demonstration of the effectiveness of one's practice. I a 300 round practice session at the club I help run the local USPSA match at and that's where I really work on my skills. Sometimes a club will let you reshoot stages after a match if you help tear down.
                      Last edited by JRT6; 08-05-2004, 11:41 AM.

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                      • #12
                        Competition will not raise your heart rate like a life and death encounter, the best competitors will experience a raise in heart rate similar to exercising, maybe 130-150 bpm. Studies have revealed that in combat or in a shooting the heart rate will blast to 160+ quickly in many trained military and police officers, check Lt. Col. Dave Grossman's book "On Killing".

                        Simunition training will also teach cover versus concealment, in Sims training and in paintball you will see people hide behind an object that only provides concealment. Concealment when being shot at by a handgun or rifle can get you killed, you will revert to how you are trained and how you play paintball or how you train in simunition scenarios.

                        Do a set of ten or fifteen 20 yd. all out sprints without stopping and go fire your weapon, you'll see how you are changed by that little bit of PT.
                        Trooperden, akman75, & azmichelle ignored

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                        • #13
                          In biathlons, where they cross country ski and shoot at fifty cent size targets at 50yds, the particpants shoot in a 80%+ HR and do just fine. Exercise induced stress does effect shooting but not to the near extent of stress or competition. I didn't say that competition effected shooting as much as the fight or flight stress.

                          Grossman is a fraud, a flip flopper, and just plain liar.

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