Columbia, Illinois

4 Tips for Your First Time at a Shooting Range April 8, 2019

Columbia, Monroe
4 Tips for Your First Time at a Shooting Range, Columbia, Illinois

Visiting a shooting range for the first time can be exciting, but there is a lot of responsibility involved. Because you are working with weapons, everyone needs to work together to keep each other safe; when you arrive, ask about the range’s expectations to ensure everyone has fun without accidents. Before you head to the range, there are a few etiquette and safety tips you should know.

What Should I Know When Visiting a Shooting Range for the First Time?

1. Review Gun Safety Basics

Along with the many other safety procedures, there are three basic rules you should be aware of when visiting a range for the first time. Always keep your gun pointed in a safe direction away from others, don’t put your finger on the trigger until you’re ready to shoot, and don’t reload until you’re ready to use the gun again. 

2. Wear the Right Gear

Safety glasses and protective eyewear are a must when shooting. You also want to consider the clothing you wear to the range carefully. While you’re free to wear T-shirts and shorts, remember that ejected spent cases can be quite hot and may burn your skin if it makes contact. Similarly, stay away from open-toed shoes or clothing that exposes too much skin.

3. Read the Rules

Shooting RangeEvery gun range has its own rules, and you want to be familiar with them before visiting. Rules ensure everyone remains safe, but they’re also in place to create a pleasant experience for all shooters. If you’re not sure how to proceed, don’t be afraid to ask questions.

4. Respond to a Cease-Fire

The range master or officer makes sure everyone remains safe and respects the rules of the range. If you hear a command of “cease-fire,” immediately stop shooting and put your gun down, and keep it pointed downrange. Step back slowly. Don’t resume firing again until the range officer has given the all clear.


The staff at Shooter’s Firearms & Indoor Range in Columbia, IL, is happy to help first-time gun owners get acclimated. Their full-service range accommodates shooters of all skill levels, and they also hold regular competitions, so you can test your mettle as you hone your skills. Along with their knowledge of firearms, they also provide information on laws and ordinances related to gun ownership, including concealed carry laws, and even offer courses on gun safety and other basics. Stop by the shooting range or call (618) 281-6393 for more information. You can also learn more about their competitions by visiting the website.

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