USCCA Concealed Carry and Home Defense Fundamentals
Rick Sindeband, of Have Gun Will Train Colorado, has become a Certified Instructor with the United States Concealed Carry Association (USCCA). He will be offering the Concealed Carry and Home Defense Fundamentals program here in Pueblo, Colorado and surrounding areas for people that wish to obtain their concealed carry permit or interested in defending their family in their home. The program’s focus is on developing a personal and home protection plan, but concealed carry issues are the main focus. In other words, this class gives you what you need to carry a concealed handgun with confidence and safety. Above all, this course gives you the tools you need to succeed and, the training materials are some of the best in the industry.
The program textbook is written by Michael Martin whose credits include Firefighter/EMT, NRA Instructor, graduate of the International Association of Law Enforcement Firearms Master Instructors Course, and VP of Delta Media the parent company of the United States Concealed Carry Association.
USCCA Concealed Carry and Home Defense Fundamentals
Concealed Carry and Home Defense Fundamentals is a comprehensive course for anyone considering owning or carrying a firearm for self-defense. The course is a complete guide to understanding conflict-avoidance and situational awareness; home security and home defense; handgun, shotgun, and AR-15 basics; shooting fundamentals; the physiology of violent encounters; the legal aspects of using deadly force (including knowing what to do in the aftermath); and a complete guide on gear, gadgets, and ongoing training.
About The USCCA
In 2003, Tonnie Schmidt and Tim Schmidt founded Delta Defense and the United States Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) and began publishing a self-defense magazine that focused on responsible firearms ownership. This magazine grew into a national association providing self-defense education, training, and legal protection to its members.
The U.S. Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) provides self-defense education, training, and legal protection, responsible American gun owners. The USCCA is the largest and fastest-growing association whose sole focus is the responsibly armed American and is headquartered in West Bend, WI.
The USCCA has more than 300,000 members and 2 million newsletter subscribers. Delta Defense employs over 240 people in 12 states and was named to the Inc. 5000 list of America’s fastest-growing private companies in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018
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Now Offering Basic Pistol and Concealed Carry and Home Defense Fundamentals training. Sign Up Today Contact me for additional information
about these and other programs.
Concealed Carry is not a hobby but it can be a lot like other sports you are involved in. Many require practice, good equipment and usually require some form of safety. Sometimes people make mistakes in equipment purchases and have a hard time getting the right fit for them and their lifestyle. Concealed Carryis not a hobby. You are carrying a deadly weapon capable of taking someone’s life. Mistakes can be deadly. So good equipment, practice, and great safety habits are a must.
Let’s look and see how Johnny handles the equipment dilemma. Johnny starts out with a full-size handgun. He shoots it good enough to hit the target, but man that .45 ammo is sure expensive and after wearing the gun for a while he decides its not for him. Having that big heavy handgun on his waist and trying to conceal it is just too much of a hassle, so over time he tends not to wear it as much and he eventually chooses to only wear it when he thinks he might need it or leave it at home. Johnny decides he will only wear a Concealed Carry handgun when he goes to certain parts of town or when he is going somewhere where there is more risk. So on many occasions, he leaves his handgun in his car under the front seat where he can retrieve it fast if he needs it.
Concealed Carry is for Self Defense!
Then Johnny gets this great idea. He likes having the Concealed Carry handgun for protection but maybe a pocket gun would fit his situation better. So he goes to the local gun shop and trades the full-size gun for a pocket gun. He runs to the range and shoots it a few times and it kind of hurts his hand when he shoots it but he “mans up” and shoots it anyway. It seems to be harder to hit the target unlike the old gun but heck it’s easy to concealed carry and I’m most likely never going to need it anyway right? I will probably just have to point it at somebody to stop an attack. He sticks the little shooter in his pocket without a holster and he carries it most of the time. When he practices, which is rare he shoots a few shots at close range cause it hurts his hand and at 21 feet he can hit the target some of the time. Maybe he could get a laser for it and that will help him shoot the gun better.
Johnny thinks he is a safe gun handler, heck he attended the concealed carry class at the hotel and he even bought one of the CDs they had for sale. He got his permit with no problem, and he has a hunter safety card. He has everything he needs to be safe right?
Let’s look at the facts.
Concealed Carry Is Not a Hobby!
First, when choosing a handgun for concealed carry the gun has to fit your hand. You will not shoot a gun well if your full hand does not fit on the grip. All fingers including the pinky should be on the grip. Many of the top guns on the market are what the industry calls compact weapons. Generally speaking, there are three size weapons in the concealed carry arena. Full size, Compact, and Sub-compact. Gun stores confuse these so forget what they are called and look at how they fit. Many of what we call the compact guns are the perfect size for concealed carry situations. Guns in this category would be like the Glock 43x or the Walther PPS M2. Many of the guns in this category are what we call single-stack handguns. You can check them out at many good gun stores and you can see why these guns are popular. Many of these guns also fire the popular 9mm Luger round and this happens to be the least expensive round to shoot and is the most readily available round in the world. The FBI the Military and many police forces are now using this round. The ballistics are great and the cost is less and it is readily available. That makes it great to shoot and to practice with.
Speaking of practice let talk about practicing with your handgun. You should practice at least once a month and your practice should be structured so you are measuring how you are doing. There are some great drills for practice that I can pass along to anyone who would like to get started. Timing yourself eventually is a must and learning to shoot more accurately and faster is always the goal. But first, you must hit the target with accuracy speed comes later. Proper draw from the holster and putting shots on target is a practiced skill. Without practice, that skill will diminish over time. Johnny doesn’t practice much because the gun does not fit his hand and it is not enjoyable to shoot. Guns with short barrels also have more recoil and are harder to control. Shooting these guns will sometimes make people flinch. Johhny needs a proper pocket holster and if this is his chosen method of carry he has to practice with it. Adding a laser to a gun you can’t shoot won’t solve the problem. You have to be able to control your gun and put shots on target before a laser is even a thought.
Along with practice comes education. Johnny got a start on his education but he really has not learned the things he really needs to know to Carry a Concealed Handgun safely and proficiently. He still needs to seek out a competent instructor and get some real education. Every Instructor has his own style and his own experiences to draw from. Find one that you can get some training from and soak up their knowledge like a sponge. Remember almost anyone can get an Instructor Certification in one discipline. That does not mean they have the experience or the skill to get you where you are going. Only 1% of all instructors are even certified to teach draw from the holster. One of the more important skills and possibly one of the most dangerous. Carrying a concealed handgun is not a hobby or a part-time job. Its a commitment to being able to protect yourself and your family when you need it. Johnny decides he will wear his handgun only when he goes to a certain part of town or when he is likely to need it. This is an education issue. Johnny needs to learn these issues from a competent instructor. Concealed Carry is not a hobby!
Safety is paramount. Johnny has a few safety problems that we can discuss. Carrying a handgun under the seat of your car is a great way to get yourself in a situation that’s big trouble. Not having the gun with you when you need it is an education problem. Leaving a handgun in your car under the seat not locked in a secure container is a bad idea. It is possible in some places for you to be charged with a crime for allowing that gun to get into the hands of a prohibited possessor or a child. Also putting the little shooter in your pocket without a proper holster is a definite safety problem. A proper holster is a necessary piece of safety equipment for carrying or transporting any handgun.
Concealed Carry Is Not A Hobby.
It's a serious endeavor. Get the equipment, training, and education you need to do it right.
In a recent Concealed Carry Expo, our industry’s finest and most talented instructors and leaders of gun organizations got together and discussed training ideas and common ground. These are some ideas that came from this event. Some of these you have heard before some may be new.
-Muscle memory is a myth. You train your mind to remember with neural pathways to the brain. muscles have no memory.
-No one class can pass gunfight information to a student. What we can pass on is mindset and awareness. How not to get into the gunfight
-How many hours a day do we spend in our vehicles. Have you trained to fight in and around vehicles? It is not easy without some education.
-We train in square ranges with flat surfaces usually in daylight. How many events happen in these perfect conditions? Especially in daylight, not darkness. Have you ever trained in darkness?
-We train for concealed carry in square ranges with flat surfaces usually in daylight. How many events happen in these perfect conditions? Especially in daylight, not darkness. Have you ever trained in darkness?
-We train for years for an event that is over in 5 seconds or less. Can you draw and put meaningful shots on a small target in a short period of time under stress?
-The Concealed Carry Permit is a permit for self-defense that means someone else is making the first move or attacking you. You are not the one acting first, anyway, you’re not supposed to be.
-We will always be attacked when we are vulnerable, in our worst moment or position. have you trained for that?
-We don’t choose the place or the time of the attack. You train for concealed carry in perfect conditions. Will your gunfight happen in those perfect conditions. Have you ever drawn your handgun from the seated position of your car or a booth in the restaurant? Criminals train to catch you off guard when you are vulnerable at your worst moment.
-You defend yourself with the fundamentals or the foundations of gun handling. Everyone wants to be advanced and have the greatest equipment and lightning draw. Do you have the fundamentals down?
-Legal owners of firearms need to be educated. the worst enemy for people who carry firearms (all of us) is to have a legal owner use it the wrong way.
-Carry a big enough, easy to shoot handgun, with enough ammo capacity to give 3 criminals each a healthy serving of lead (that serving is normally more than two rounds and as many as five) you do the math. If you hit all shots is 6 or even 8 rounds enough? Not if you believe 80% of your shots will be missed. If you carry a smaller gun have you trained to get more ammo into it so you can survive the encounter.
These are just some of the ideas that came out in this recent event. I can help you get on a track to get there. Start small and work your way towards it. I have some ideas and can help you get there if you want to.
My favorite training for shooting from in and around vehicles is still available at an unbelievably low price. This is the best online training for this I have ever seen. [check out vehicle online tactics course]
Restricted Concealed Carry -There are some confusing signs in the Pueblo area that restrict your right to carry a concealed weapon. Some of the signs are on public or county properties and they are very visible. The first one that we have all seen says “The Open Carrying of Firearms Or Deadly Weapons Within This Building Is Prohibited” .This sign is straightforward. You can not carry a gun that is exposed (open carry) as the cowboys did in the old days in this building. Concealed Carry is fine but it has to be concealed. The Confusing part of this sign is when it shows up somewhere that you can’t carry at all. Look at the 10th judicial court building where they have metal detectors and sheriff officers guarding the entrance.
CCW is allowed not open carry
The next one is a little tricky and people have told me that is says something different than it actually does. “Bringing in concealed weapons that are not legally licensed and permitted, or openly displaying a weapon except by law enforcement officials is prohibited” this sign has two parts separated by a comma. The first part says you can’t bring a concealed weapon in unless it is licensed or permitted. The second part says no open carry except by law enforcement. These type of Concealed Carry restrictions or notices are common. The problem ensues when a person doesn’t read the entire sign and really dissect what the meaning or intent is from the sign.
Remember it is your responsibility as a licensed concealed carry individual to know and understand all the restricted areas that you encounter in your normal travels around town. Restrictions apply but are not limited to, the Jail, Post Office, Court, Schools, Airports, Public Transportation(Bus), Colorado State Fair Grounds. Of course, any place that has a metal detector or a sign posted with some restrictions.
ThePueblo City Ordinance 11-1-601 is very clear on the subject. It defines all the things you should not do and then tells you what you can do. This ordinance discusses knife blade lengths and stun guns. When living in the Pueblo area you should read this ordinance so that you are informed.
Bank signs vary from location to location. One of the things that always comes up is the fact that no gun signs in Colorado have no force of law. What that means is that Colorado, unlike some other states, has some very weak language in their sign law. Attorneys report that in these locations all that can happen to you if caught with a firearm is to be asked to leave. Should you refuse you may be able to be charged with trespassing. Timothy J. Priebe, Esq. an attorney in Colorado has written a paper called Should I Stay Or Should I Go where he discusses this issue. You should read and understand this document.
This sign is on one of the local banks in downtown Pueblo, Colorado it is totally bogus. This sign is the Texas Law 30-06 and these laws do not exist in Colorado. This bank just thinks most people will follow whatever sign they post or that gun owners are sheep. (This sign has been removed)
As always none of this is legal advice. Most advocate being informed and follow the law. To follow the law you must understand the difference between coffee table chat and knowledge. My class has new information in it all the time. If you are a concealed carry permit holder and you are up for renewal you would be wise to get some updated information so that you can make good decisions for you and your family.
This is a great reference book that everyone should have in their library.
I’m hearing it again from my students who are uneasy about carrying a live round in the chamber of their EDC (Every Day Carry) pistol.
First, the only way to ever change this situation is to become more comfortable with your EDC firearm. Some people find that carrying a gun with a manual safety can help. Others find that carrying their concealed carry pistol loaded at home at all times can help get them comfortable with it. Shooting your handgun more often will help tremendously and of course, we need to shoot more anyway. Over time you become more comfortable with your gun and at some point, you should be able to rationalize that your firearm cannot discharge unless your finger touches the trigger (rule #3) and of course as long as it’s in a proper holster that covers the trigger and trigger guard.
The other problem with this “Concealed Carry Without A Chambered Round ” mindset is that because you are not comfortable with your everyday carry (EDC) gun you are more likely to fumble and break safety rules during a high-pressure situation and possibly hurt yourself or someone else by accident in the process.
Recently in the local King Soopers shopping center a (local grocery store), there was a negligent discharge in the parking lot which of course management of the store denied, but I had a student in the parking lot when it happened. People who aren’t comfortable with their loaded concealed carry gun sometimes check it to see if it’s loaded. Sometimes they either load or unload the gun depending on their situation and apparently, this person did it with their finger on the trigger discharging their firearm in an unsafe manner. This gun might have been one of those small Kel-Tec Pistols or Ruger LCPs that we see all the time in class and they are hard to handle. Most people handle them improperly and sometimes put their finger on the trigger. We also see the holes in the bench tops of our local indoor range where people have racked their firearms with their finger on the trigger and discharged a round into the bench top (OOPS).
I know of another case in Colorado Springs where it happened in a movie theater. These people are so nervous with the loaded gun that they can’t remember if it’s loaded or not so they keep checking it and in this case the index finger was on the trigger and the gun went bang. This person was arrested of course and was charged with several infractions of the law.
When I put my gun on in the morning I know it is loaded. I don’t take it out in public and check it. Playing with your gun at any time in public is a bad idea. Administrative handling of your handgun should be done when you put it on and when you take it off. Administrative handling would be the manipulation of the firearm that isn’t specifically shooting. This would include weapon disassemble, holstering, chambering a round or removing a round.
Remember the FBI stats that the industry quotes for concealed carry (3-3-3). Most self-defense incidents happen within three yards (10ft) are over in three seconds or less and with less than three fired being rounds. We all understand the basic concept of the Tueller Drill where Dennis Tueller studied in 1983 that a person can travel 21 feet with the contact weapon in their hand and do it in approximately 1.5 seconds. If most self-defense incidents happen within 3 yards that’s half the time and distance. I don’t know about you but I would be willing to bet that most of you can’t draw and rack your gun in .75 seconds. That sub-one-second draw is a once-in-a-while proposition for most let alone having to rack a gun so it’s ready to fire.
Let’s remember why we carry a concealed carry weapon. We carry a concealed carry weapon to be prepared. How are you going to be prepared if most incidents happening in close quarters and are over before you could possibly rack a round into your gun. Concealed Carry Without A Chambered Round should be considered very dangerous.
Get some Training –
Get in a concealed carry class that will teach you the basics. Many people have never had exposure to handguns. Be sure that the Instructor you choose has a vast amount of experience in firearms and firearms training. Your Instructor should be a student of the industry and should be a Concealed Carry aficionado. Sometimes a Law Enforcement background or Military Service is not enough. I have had many of these individuals in my Concealed Carry classes over the years and many of them cannot unload a gun and make it safe without violating one of the rules of gun safety. You must learn the right way from the beginning otherwise you will have to break those bad habits later so that you can safely partake in the Concealed Carry lifestyle.
Learn Gun Safety –
Gun safety is paramount. Gun Safety is simple there are a short set of rules that most Concealed Carry Professionals in the industry follow. You have to learn them from someone who can show you why they matter. Just learning the rules without any reasoning behind it gives you no reference to complete the learning process. I want you to learn the Gun Safety Rules and I want you to be able to relate them the Concealed Carry process.
Laws and Regulations –
I have had many individuals in my class over the years that know the laws and regulations about guns and the carrying of them legally in the State of Colorado. Many of them are surprised about some of the information because they have it wrong. Many times what they have heard from family, friends and the coffee clutch is old information. Much of this information in class deals with GUN LAW. Gun law is the regulations we all have to deal with when we own a gun. Can a gun be in our car? Can it be loaded? Do we have to declare a gun to a Police officer in a traffic stop? Many of these are talked about by people who spread misinformation. You need to know the real scoop. Then there is the use of deadly force. Many experts around the industry like Andrew Branca have important information about the Laws of Self Defense. Andrews teachings and Books are considered the gospel when it comes to using a firearm for self-defense. I always give some significant information on this topic and how it applies to Concealed Carry.
Basic Gun Training-
Learning to handle firearms safely. This is done by being shown the proper way and then doing it in class so that you can handle your firearm safely when you leave class. Many accidents in real life happen when administratively handling your firearm. Loading and unloading, transporting to and from shooting and cleaning the firearm. No live ammunition is ever used in any classroom setting. Live ammunition is only a recipe for accidental discharges and injuries that may result. Any good training is going to give you Information for picking a good Concealed Carry Gun. Size of guns, Brands of Guns, Best actions Revolver vs Semi-Auto and the neverending caliber the argument. All of these and more are discussed in my Concealed Carry Class.
Learn to Shoot the Concealed Carry handgun you choose- learning to shoot the Concealed Carry handgun of your choice is the ultimate goal. Most of the information that I have talked about prior to this is of no use to you if you do not learn to shoot your gun. Most of my students like the way I handle the live fire training in my courses. I do not do it in large groups. You will be learning the most up to date information about shooting and shooting methods.