What to Bring and Location of Matches

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  • Narco

    0-60 in 5.11
    Rating - 100%
    71   0   0
    Jun 6, 2007
    New Orleans
    www.lagator.org said:
    What's Practical Shooting?

    There are a number of different practical shooting sports, each with its own set of rules and method of scoring. Some fall under national or international organizing bodies such as USPSA (which is the U.S. arm of IPSC), IDPA, and ICORE. In all cases, practical shooting requires a combination of speed and accuracy - with each discipline placing its own emphasis on the balance between the two. In a match, competitors shoot several courses of fire (or stages) in which well-defined targets and barriers are set up within a specified area. Competitors are timed and scored for each stage and these two quantities are used to determine the relative performance of each shooter.

    National and international organizations usually have a method of classifying or rating shooters based on their performance on specific stages (known in USPSA as classifiers). Classifications are used to both monitor the shooter's performance over time, as well as to group shooters of similar skill levels together for competition purposes - e.g. at a match, awards may be given to top shooters in each class. In addition to classification, competitors are also grouped into divisions according to the equipment used. The specific divisions and the equipment allowed in each may be different for each practical shooting discipline. Basic equipment, common to most practical shooting sports, are discussed below.

    The above information is meant to give the new shooter a quick glimpse into practical shooting. The best way to really learn "what is practical shooting" is to watch or shoot one of the regular matches at a local club (see links above). There you will find many helpful, friendly shooters who are quite eager to "show you the ropes" and guide you through your first match. Come out and join the fun!

    Equipment Needed

    Equipment requirements vary depending upon the practical shooting discipline. In most cases there is a minimum caliber requirement (e.g. 9mm, .38 special) as well as division-specific requirements such as the type of sights (e.g. iron vs. electronic sights), the action (e.g. single vs. double action), the type of holster and ammunition placement, etc. In USPSA, there is a division for just about any safe combination of equipment provided it meets the minimum caliber requirements.

    Basic equipment for most practical shooting disciplines includes:

    *pistol or revolver of suitable caliber
    *belt (e.g. CR Speed two-piece velcro belt)
    *suitable holster
    *4 - 6 magazines or moon clips
    *4 - 6 magazine pouches or moon clip holders
    *safety glasses (not everyday sunglasses)
    *hearing protection (ear plugs or ear muffs)

    Before purchasing even basic equipment, it would be beneficial to seek advice from experienced shooters at a local match. As mentioned above, there you will find many helpful, friendly shooters who are quite eager to offer advice and answer questions regarding equipment.


    The primary concern in any practical shooting discipline is safety. For this reason, USPSA matches strictly adhere to a well-formulated body of rules (USPSA Rulebook) designed to ensure the safety of competitors and spectators, alike. For example, matches are conducted under conditions of what is called a "cold range" - meaning competitors are not allowed to handle their firearms or ammunition except (separately) in specified areas, and all firearms must remain unloaded except during a course of fire while under the supervision of a USPSA certified Range Officer (RO). Further, the RO is charged with the task of ensuring that the competitor closely follows all safety rules during the course of fire - if the RO observes a safety rule violation during the course, the competitor will be stopped and may be disqualified from completing the match.

    These are but a few examples of the safety measures encompassed by USPSA rules. A complete understanding/appreciation would (at a minimum) require careful analysis of the entire USPSA rulebook. Suffice it to say for our purposes here, that USPSA shooting is firmly based in strict attention to safety and has enjoyed a remarkable safety record as a result.

    This was taken straight from the LA GATOR. I suggest that you visit a local retailer and purchase an inexpensive holster (Fobus or Serpa) and 2 double mag pouches (Fobus or Serpa/Blackhawk, Uncle Mikes is another brand also). These will run you about 40-60 for all. Locally you can find them at Louisiana Reloading Supply, Jim's and Baton Rouge Police Supply, for other areas of the state, Belsco, 10-8 Tactical, and a few others, You can also order online via many retailers.

    Ammo, inexpensive plinking ammo is recommended, I personally shoot CCI Blazer in 9mm and I purchase this by the case since I do not reload at this time. If you shoot brass and have no intention on reloading, a good measure is to advise your group that they can have your brass, guys will love you long time.

    Bring H2O, sunscreen, a towel and a bag. Don't act like you know it all, listen to the older guys, and have fun. Shooting these matches will bring out you and your weapons failures, it happens to the best of them, do not let it discourage you. This will only help you in the long run, and maybe one day save your life.

    Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office Range EAPS

    Tangipahoa Sheriff's Office Range TPS

    Southern Shooting Center CAS/LSS

    Precision Pistol Range MONDAY NIGHTS


    Range fees vary, Precision is 10+1 total of 11.00 (1.00 is to contribute for pasties/targets)

    What is expected of you:

    Open Mind
    Safety First Mindset
    Contribution to policing brass, painting steel, and applying pasties on targets between rounds.

    Stage count varies on Monday and Wednesday depending on the number of participants. Usually 4-6.

    I'll add more later as I collect and find better information.

    Mods please sticky.


    Bayou Photo Shooter
    Rating - 100%
    18   0   0
    Dec 21, 2007
    Baton Rouge
    Just wanted to point out it is also ok to just show up and hang out. The precision matches aren't really a competition. Its just good practice to get used to the format, buzzer and the safety rules. Most people don't even look at the scores at the end.
    It is also much cheaper and more entertaining than going up there and blasting for 2 hours alone.


    Premium Member
    Rating - 100%
    4   0   0
    Jun 3, 2007
    Metairie, LA
    Question: I saw the post about the poplarville match for this weekend (35 shotgun shells!). What do ya'll use for mag carriers and shotgun shell carriers and how many of each?


    Well-Known Member
    Rating - 100%
    34   0   0
    Oct 1, 2006
    Some folks use a side saddle, Choate and others make a 4-6 shell holder that clips to the belt and some folks use an arm band. And or combo's of all the above. Plus you always have your pockets if things go really bad.

    And then there are the speedloaders, which will put you in open division.

    The link below will show you an example of the shell caddy/holder. There are several other makers on the market, but they are all basically the same.
    Last edited:


    Premium Member
    Rating - 100%
    4   0   0
    Jun 3, 2007
    Metairie, LA
    I know what they are, I was just trying to figure out how many of each I would need... For the above match I'd have to sling a pair of shell carriers over each shoulder like Pancho Villa!


    New Member
    Rating - 0%
    0   0   0
    Jan 2, 2011
    I am a student at Tulane University. I recently got into IDPA shooting while I was home in Texas for winter break and was wondering if there was maybe a gun/pistol club I could get into near New Orleans that focuses on IDPA matches. Any help would be greatly appreciated.


    Rating - 100%
    36   0   0
    May 12, 2008
    port vincent louisiana
    The only idpa that i am aware of is in Tangi on the first Sat. Keep in mind this is not a sanctioned club but the intent is there, just a few less reg's.

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