My wife shooting my Gen 4 Glock 17 for the first time.
After acquiring a number of Glocks and changing over my CCW's from my 1911's to Glock, I told my wife it was important that we go to the range so she can get familiar with the Glocks. She was never a fan of the 1911's, so she thought this was a good idea. It's also been a while since she shot for more than a few rounds, so while she wasn't overly excited about going shooting, she relented. When we got to the range, it was full of people, and she told me we could just come back later. I persisted and said, "Let's just see how long the wait for a lane is, if any." Sure enough, someone just came out when we were next up in line and we had the next lane. Lucky number 13.
Three of the four pistols we took to the range: I was wearing the fourth as my CCW today. Pictured are the Gen4 G19, Gen4 G17, and Gen3 G34.
I brought every Glock I own: a Gen 4 17, a Gen 4 19, a Gen 3 34, and the 43 I was carrying as my CCW. I laid them all out on the bench in front of us, and having already loaded all the magazines at home, I pulled out my magazine box and showed her each pistol. I showed her how to properly grip the Glock, and I pointed out the differences between what she was used to and what Glocks were like. We started with the G34. She fired a full 17 round magazine and had a decent group with only the first round being low (anticipating the recoil). She was so excited about the 34, she asked me if this was one of the pistols I had in the nightstand or in my desk in my office. I told her no, but to not make any decisions yet until she'd fired all of them. She agreed that this was a good idea.
Next up, I stepped her down in slide size to the G17. She immediately noticed that the Gen4 17 had a slimmer handle than the Gen3 G34. She liked how it felt right off, and set off to shooting. She really liked the 17 a lot. In the photo above, she's shooting the G17. Another full 17 round magazine down-range, she put this one down and told me that this was her new favorite. Once again, I told her to wait before she makes any decisions, because we still have two more pistols to shoot.
The next pistol in the lineup was the Gen4 G19. She liked the XC-1 light on it, and I showed her how to operate it with the left hand while maintaining the grip with the right hand, allowing the trigger finger to respond while illuminating with the left .She began firing a 15-round magazine through it, and after three shots proclaimed that this was definitely her favorite. I laughed. Each Glock she fired was her favorite until the next one. I let her finish the magazine, and she grouped very nicely: a fist-sized group at 7 yards. Not bad for a person who hasn't shot more than 5 rounds in possibly 5 years.
The final Glock on the bench for her to shoot was my G43. She liked the feel of it, but she was really worried about recoil. She'd fired my Grendel about 10 years ago, and that bad memory haunted her perception of sub-compact pistols. I told her the G43 wasn't bad, but it was a little snappier than the G19. She fired the first round and said, "Yeah, not too bad. Not as nice as the 19 or the 17, but not bad." She continued to fire two six-round magazines and did so quite well.
I asked her what her impressions were of each pistol after she'd fired all four. She said she liked the G19 best followed by the G17. She said she would feel very comfortable shooting any of the four, but if she had a choice, it'd be the G19 or G17 above the other two. I let her pick which one to fire more since I had a lot more filled magazines to get through, and she chose the G19. She fired a few magazines through it and was quite happy with it and her results.
She left the range feeling much more confident in her pistol shooting abilities, and I left feeling better leaving her at home with my Glocks. In the event she would ever have to use one in the home, I feel better knowing she knows how to hold it, clear it, rack it, load it, and fire it. The best part was that she left having enjoyed the experience. In the past, when shooting my 1911's, she would complain that they just didn't feel right, or were too heavy. Now, she likes my pistols of choice which means she'll be more likely to go to the range and shoot with me. While I like 1911's, mine will likely be given to my son soon. He really likes the 1911 and enjoys shooting them. They might as well go to a good home where they will be loved and shot often.