The IDPA Indoor Nationals
We’re covering the International Defensive Pistol Association's Indoor National Championships. It's personal protection practice, but with titles awarded to the best in each classification. With the match held inside the Smith and Wesson Shooting Sports Center and Academy ranges, you'll need both a firearm and a flashlight to compete.
In recent years the number of people who carry concealed has sky-rocketed. Every year more states approve carry laws and the market for carry-size semi-autos and revolvers increases. That’s why the International Defensive Pistol Association, or IDPA, created the discipline. The idea is training through competition, with concealed carry gear, and using defensive tactics.
There is no better place to experience IDPA competition than at the Smith and Wesson Shooting Sports Center. Following the concealed carry origins of the sport, these stages toss competitors into what could be real-life situations.
IDPA Executive Director, Joyce Wilson explains the challenges: “Shooting around cars, shooting from concealment, you know that’s where most of your incidents are going to happen. So, we like to use more real props and more real scenarios, like shooting around non-threat targets. You know, chances are if you’re in a home invasion you might have your kids, your spouse, around with you also.”
Real stage props include headlights shining in your face, erratic no shoot movers, entire stages in the dark, and some of the fastest charging targets anywhere.
The tactics are also real. You can’t just run-and-gun an IDPA stage. You have to shoot using cover, and not exposing yourself to threat targets. It goes well beyond just gun handling skills, accuracy, speed of the draw; it’s how you can engage each scenario, and how your mind will work. .
Then, there are the guns of the sport. IDPA has five divisions for competition, defined by the choice of carry gun.
- Stock Service Pistol – Stock Double Action / Safe Action factory pistols such as Glock, Beretta, S&W M&P, Ruger, Browning and Sig.
- Enhanced Service Pistol – for Single Action 9mm / 38 Super / 40 S&W service pistols, such as the Browning HP, EAA Witness, and 1911 pattern pistols.
- Custom Defensive Pistol – 45 Auto single stack pistols and Hi Cap models in 45 such as Para, STI, SVI and Glock 20 / 21 models.
- Stock Service Revolver – for popular service revolvers loaded with speed loaders or one round at a time.
- Enhanced Service Revolver - revolvers loaded using moon clips.
There will be a champion in each gun division with all competitors ranked according to their skill level: Novice, Marksman, Sharpshooter, Expert, and Master.
History's Guns: John Browning's 1911
In 100 years, the 1911 design has gone to war, captured criminals on the streets, and become the handgun competition choice of the world. Whether the sport is bulls-eye shooting at the Camp Perry Nationals, the Open Division of the USPSA, or Steel Speed Shooting, the 1911 is always the choice. Over the past 100 years, it’s been reproduced more than any other design in history. John Browning’s masterpiece is clearly one of history’s greatest guns.
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