Julie Golob – Introduction to Gun Handling

Due to the tremendous number of new gun owners and the sales of guns surging, we want to make this Pro Tip all about welcoming you to the wonderful world of shooting sports and safe responsible gun handling. 

Now if you’re a more experienced shooter, this is a great time to get a safety refresher and refer this tip to friends who are new shooters. 

The first thing I want to start with is how to pick up a pistol and you always want to do that with your strong hand.  In my case my right hand.  

Picking up a gun with your strong hand gives you the most control and that’s so important. You really want to avoid transferring to your support hand to manipulate the controls because that increases your chances of having a negligent discharge. 

Now let’s talk about how to safely load a pistol.




Notice my finger is straight and outside the trigger guard, that’s super important, I am going to take my magazine and insert it into the mag-well. 


Now there are couple of different ways I can approach loading ammunition into the chamber and the first is depressing the slide stop. 

Or I can also pull back on the slide. Now if I pull back on the slide I want to make sure that I let the slide move forward so that the ammunition is fully into the chamber and it doesn’t cause a malfunction, so let's give it a try. 

Now let’s talk about unloading the firearm, again my finger is straight and outside of the trigger.

I am going to depress the magazine release button either with my strong hand or my support hand. With the magazine out, my ammunition is no longer in the gun in the frame, but I still have one in the chamber, as you can see from the loaded chamber indicator.

Now I am going to pull back on the slide, make sure that round drops, I will go ahead and lock it to the rear by pulling back and pushing up on the slide stop. 

I am going to visually and manually inspect the chamber to make sure that I have no ammunition in the gun at all.



Now it’s important to remember there is no such thing as casual gun handling, you need to be aware of your muzzle direction at all times. That is the end of the gun. I like to think of it as a gigantic flashlight. Wherever I am pointing that flashlight there is a potential for something bad to happen.

So I want to make sure that I am aware of where my pistol is pointing at all times.

I also want to be aware of where my trigger finger is. In this case, if it’s a flashlight, it's like being on the switch of the flashlight.

And if I accidently bump it that could be a bad thing, so I want to make sure I keep my finger straight and outside of the trigger until I am ready to shoot. Speaking of which, practice is a very good thing. 

With these gun handling tips and straight forward safety measures, you will be able and ready to go to the range and have a great time shooting. So until next time be safe and have fun.








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