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What is considered "long range" for a handgun?

Discussion in 'GATE Self-Defense Forum' started by Tommato, Aug 27, 2011.

  1. Tommato


    Dec 4, 2010
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    Lafayette, Colorado

    Just wanted to know what YOU consider long range for a handgun, relative mostly to law enforcement and other comments you have made about less long range handgun training for cops in recent years. Is that simply anything over 7 yards, or something else?

  2. Mas Ayoob

    Mas Ayoob KoolAidAntidote Moderator

    Nov 6, 2005
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    It IS a subjective question, isn't it?

    For perspective, when I started teaching cops in '72, the standard course was the 60-shot PPC, now known as "Match Five" in NRA Police competition. 24 of those shots were from 50 yards, 12 from 7 yards, and the rest from 25. (In the original FBI version, 6 of those shots were from 60 yards instead of 50).

    Today, we have police departments that qualify at no farther than 15 yards, though most have at least a few shots from the 25 yard line. It's a rare department that will include 50 yard shooting in the qualification anymore.

    Training, of course, should be from muzzle contact to the longer lines. The week before last, I taught a 40 hour course geared for armed citizens that ran from 4 to 15 yards live fire. Last week, in the second level course I taught, the handgun work went to 50. In a third level course, I include an hour or so that shows the student how to keep their shots on a man-size target at 100 yards with a carry handgun.

    Call me old fashioned, but while we emphasize the closer distances where the good guys are most likely to be in deadly danger, I still think longer distance capability is a valuable part of overall defensive handgun shooting skill.