What distance do you set your target at (handgun)?

A double tap or MT is not a failure to stop drill. It is an initial response to the threat.

Again, this isnt’ about what’s technically legal or defensible it’s about risk mitigation and trying to keep people from even being arrested or charged and much of that is dependent on the leanings of your local DA.

In most of Rural Texas where you shot the perp isn’t going to matter if you can establish you had a lawful use of deadly force. If you’re in Austin, Dallas, San Antonio, or Houston however it may weigh heavily in those decisions. In most jurisdictions in the US it will weigh heavily as well.

A failure to stop drill is for actions you take when nothing else stops the threat.

Many states too still have ridiculously restrictive statutes as well and if it can even be argued you had options other than a head shot available to stop the threat things can go very badly for you.

It takes a very exceptional case for a self defender to not be able to stop the threat with three to five shots in the high center chest. Humans just aren’t generally very bullet resistant.

States like CA have clear statutory requirements limiting the lawful use of deadly force to no more force than was necessary to prevent harm.

We best protect our students by drilling that into them because in every jurisdiction it will protect you.

If you can show that it was absolutely necessary, you’re probably in good shape but it may not prevent you from either being charged or convicted depending on the mindset and politics of the prosecutor and the jurors.


I’ll be interested to hear what your local DA and/or Sheriff has to say about that, @BrophE. If it’s your qualifier, then the state (or county depending on who is requiring this) is demanding you train to take a head shot. They should then allow that for a self-defense incident. “Should.” And when legalese and politics are involved “shoulds” are kinda scary.

Love that! A variety of training will help you defend yourself as best you possibly can.


25 yards is 75 feet.

Yep, that is what I call “fat finger syndrome”, my fingers and brain were not functioning in conjuction with each other. Due to the size of my fingers, this poses a serious problem to a lot of folks. But, I’m game for trying the 75 feet, lol​:grin::thinking::grin::muscle::+1:


Well, I guess my training works a little different. I enjoy shooting steel challenge, so I usually work on drawing and engaging the first one I’m going to shot. I go slow and build up to full speed. I rotate out the stages so I practice them all equally. So my distance is 30-140 feet. If I’m doing defensive only I shoot the LEO qualification which is 3,5,7,10,15,and 25 yards ( for score). If I’ve havent done the NRA Basic Pistol qualifications in a while I’ll do them. That’s 10,15,20,45 ft. Then every so often I’ll break out the IHMSA pistol and do all the stages out to 200 meters.


Is this printed on a regular sheet of copier paper?

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@Jason2 yes all printed in 8x11 - most of them will give you the distances.

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revised Jan 2019. It’s fired on a QIT silhouette, and scored 2 points per hit.

  • 3 yards Draw all in 6 seconds

    • Fire 3 rds strong hand only
    • Switch hands and fire 3 rds support hand only
  • 5 yards Draw and fire 3 rds in 3 seconds

    • From the Ready, fire 3 rds in 2 seconds
    • From the Ready, fire 6 rds in 4 seconds
  • 7 yards Draw and fire 5 rds in 5 seconds

    • From the Ready, fire 4 rounds, conduct an empty gun reload, and fire 4 more rds, all in 8 seconds
    • From the Ready, fire 5 rounds in 4 seconds
  • 15 yards Draw and fire 3 rds in 6 seconds

    • From the Ready, fire 3 rds in 5 seconds

25 yards Draw all in 20 seconds

Fire 4 rds from Standing

Drop to a Kneeling Position and fire 4 more rds from Kneeling

50 rounds total 100 points possible 90 or above is a pass for instructors.


Ultimately changes from 3-15 yards mainly focus on 3-7 yards. Here is a range nearby me that has those. I have been there a few times but never had been to their firing range.

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I place mine 1 to 21’ as a rule. Any further than that I think I would be using a long gun. That made me think of Sgt York for some reason. With his 1911 he started with the furthest out worked his way in. But I dont imagine that even applies to situations that can arise today.

A lot would depend on the size of the pistol, the caliber of the round, the size of the target, the lighting conditions, whether it’s an indoor or outdoor range, how familiar and proficient I am with the weapon I’m using that day, what my training goals for the session are, what scenarios I’m imagining, along with a number of other considerations.

I just go a little further than whatever the other lanes are doing. I’m that guy.

For me I place my targets:

arms reach up to 7 yards-point shooting
3, 5, and 7 yards-Grouping and trigger reset
10 yards-25 yards-More grouping and slow fire
25-50 yards-Because I can :+1: :metal:


3 - 7.5 yards (shortest range allowance is 3 yards), because most fighting issues occur at bad breath distances.


21-7-3 Reason is those are the distance that local CCW class does his qualifying shoot. Before I send anyone off to the class. I make sure they do well at these distances. Which to me I can orient and hit them with eyes closed. But I know this not the case with new shooters more than likely. Not only do I get them to shoot but have them comfortable with mag changes ,holstering and an presenting in an easy enviroment. I call it learning at slow speed.
Need to add to this statement. The reason I also prefer these distances is I consider these the threat zone. Of course I do at times practice outside of this to test myself

I save this for future use. Adds a couple firing points.

Next time I see our Sheriff out ,I will ask him about their SOP.

3, 5, 7 and sometimes 10 yards. In my humble opinion, anything beyond that is leaning into the marksmanship end of the spectrum. Your mileage may vary.

I practice and teach Defensive Accuracy.


In your line of business you have to teach these courses to FBI, Police, SWAT, Military, and etc. I post that
qualifications chart not to impress, but maybe make a challenge to others that train hard in personal
defense or to those that computation is their work.

I have 5 small years and Defensive Shooting and it is a great challenge to me and I am a civilian that
chooses a little more than marksman skills. I have seen a firearms instructor that is a Mother, takes care of her mom and dad at home, shoots computations, First Aide Instructor, and teaches it all to anyone that needs training. She also is very good at shelf defense and teaches that as well. That young lady is
5’ 2" tall and at 130 lbs. in weight, she also has children too.

You train in what is needed, even with a baseball bat. Your are apart of the team and I am glade that you train others, they need you.

For personal training, it’s from 3-25 with the vast majority occurring between 3-7. Always from concealment and a timed and scored standard of some sort, whether a qual I run through or a drill.

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