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    Children and Guns - What You Need to Be Teaching Your Child About Shooting

    June 10, 2014

    For many of us our first introduction to shooting sports came through our fathers, so with Father's Day coming up this weekend it's a great time to reflect back on the first time you went out shooting with your dad. Whether you want to teach your own children about shooting, are looking for a nice refresher on shooting safety and respect for guns or just want to relive that first experience shooting with Dad. Here we'll give you some tips on how to practice gun safety and teach your children respect for shooting sports; when and how you introduce your children to guns depends on you and when you see it fit as a parent, these tips are suggestions that can help make that introduction a little easier: Read More ...

    Start Small – The easiest way to get into shooting is starting with something safe and easy to use. Air guns are a very popular choice for young shooters because they are generally inexpensive, safe and easy to use and maintain. A bolt action .22 is also a great choice. If you want to keep this learning exercise as safe as possible then look into airsoft pistols and rifles, the plastic bb's will hurt less than being hit by a pellet or metal bb, and best of all you don't have to go to a range to have them practice. Ammo is relatively cheap all three styles of guns and they will all provide a good platform for learning respect for firearms. If your child is under the age of eight it's a good idea to start with either an airsoft, BB or pellet gun. Once they are a little older give them a chance to start shooting a rimfire rifle such as a bolt action .22 that will have a little more recoil.

    Go Slow – When you start teaching your child about firearms and gun safety it's very easy to give them too much information too fast. Start by explaining what all the different parts of the gun are and have them repeat back to you where the safety, trigger, barrel and other parts of the gun are. This might sound super basic, but that's what they need to get started. Try to keep a positive but serious tone, gun safety is no joke and your child should learn to respect even the safest gun. Now is also a great time to go over the NRA's three basic gun safety rules.

    1. ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.
    2. ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
    3. ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.

    After they feel comfortable with the gun and understand the serious nature of firearms then it’s time to go out to the range and let them take a few shots.

    In Practice – Whether you are out on the range, in the woods or even just your back yard you need to be as safe as possible; for the safest possible location head to the local gun range. If this is your child's first experience seeing you shoot any sort of gun be sure you're being as safe as possible. This includes wearing all the proper safety equipment; they are going to remember this experience for a long time and it will be the foundation for their respect for guns. If you aren't showing respect for their gun then they'll follow suit. The more careful you hold and speak about your gun the more respect they'll show for it. Teach them what makes a suitable target, proper setup, storage and cleaning while you're out at the range.

    Teaching your child to respect guns in all forms will help not only to teach them about gun safety but also give them a fun memory. Remember, every time you pick up a gun you'll be saying something to them about how they should be treated whether good or bad, so be a good example and always practice gun safety.


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