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Round Count

Round Count

Unfortunately, there are defensive shooting schools that take great pride in how much ammunition their students expend during a particular class. In some cases there are so many rounds going downrange each day that you just have to wonder when they make time for teaching and demonstrations.

It would do you well to remember that the purpose of any school is to teach so that others might learn. It is generally a good idea to begin each new day by reviewing lessons that have been previously presented in order to refresh the student's memory. Each new lesson is best demonstrated first and then the student is walked through it at a rather slow pace to make sure that he is getting the moves right. After he shoots the new skill a time or two, the student then needs some sort of break so that he can think about the new instruction and ask questions. Before going on to something new, the technique is then shot again, several times, to drive it home for the student.

Another important factor in this whole learning process is that we learn less when we are tired. Besides that, we have a lot better chance of making silly mistakes when we are fatigued. In any kind of shooting school, for the instructor to push the students in order to make the magic 600-round count for the day, he is just asking for mistakes—the kind of mistakes that end in a negligent discharge. A tired student doesn't learn well and he make actually be a danger to himself and others.

A defensive shooting school should not be about it how many rounds you fired, it should be about how much you actually learned. When we spend our hard-earned money for defensive classes we want to come home with new ideas and new skills. When the euphoria of attending the school wears off—and it will—we want to feel that we have actually gotten some training that will help us protect ourselves and family from violent criminal attacks. Blisters heal and go away, and we realize that it's not about round count. The important question is, “What did you learn?”

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