John-Scoutten-Shooting-USAThe popularity of 3-gun competition is exploding, and that means newcomers are jumping on this train in droves.  These newcomers are coming from all walks of life from retired military to your everyday backyard plinker.  Regardless of what your background is, everyone has to start somewhere, which is why we have decided to do this post on getting started in 3-gun competition.

The first 3 rules of 3-gun completion are simple and easy to remember: 1) safety 2) safety and 3) safety.  If you have been following 3 gun competition related content on social media, you might think that respect is earned by way of being covered from head to toe in sponsorships, however you would be severely mistaken.  Respect in the community is earned by way of practicing sound gun safety, and a lack of such will get you ostracized almost immediately.  The competitors with a thousand sponsorship logos littered across their clothing and gear likely didn’t start out looking like that; they likely started making due with the gear they already had on hand and working their way up from the bottom.  The surest way to win the respect of those and the rest of the competitors and match personnel is to put safety first, always.

Speaking of gear, here is another suggestion previously mentioned and coming from prior experience: start out by making due with the gear you already have.  If you try to walk into this sport with the latest gear for your first match you better be ready to take out a second mortgage, it can be wildly expensive with that mentality.  And the truth is you don’t need all of that gear right out of the gate.  Compete in two or three matches before you make any significant investments in this sport.  Why? Well, first off you want to be sure this is a sport you are going to stick with for a while before you invest, but also, as a beginner its hard to know exactly what gear you need to better yourself without the appropriate experience.

If you are interested in 3-gun competition, chances are you really want to get to the part where you are actually shooting.  Curb the temptation and prepare for your first match as much as possible.  Go to the 3-Gun Nation website and become familiar with the rules for these matches.  Memorize the standard safety rules; first impressions last and you don’t want to be remembered as the guy that broke the 180 rule on your first match.  Utilize online resources like YouTube and forums; there are tons of videos with great information on 3-gun competitions for beginners.  You could even look for videos at the particular range where your first event will be held to get a feel for the layout of the range and stages.  Finally, consider going out as a spectator for a match or two to familiarize yourself with the procedures of these competitions and meet some people within the community.  If you participate in the setup and takedown of the match, chances are the participants will be more than happy to give you tips and better prepare you for your first match.