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Concealed Carry Handguns for Women in the Summer

 

In Arizona, our temperatures have already hit 100!  The hot weather of summer can make concealed carry quite a challenge. For many of you, you also have humidity to deal with! Unfortunately, for many women this results in leaving the gun at home. Our need to protect ourselves does not go down in the summer, we must find ways to carry in every season.

I wish I had the one true simple fix for you, but I don't. Here however are some things that can help you better and more comfortably conceal as the temperatures increase and your clothing decreases!!

Remember though, there are times, as an armed woman, you will have to make some adjustments and sacrifices to accomplish carrying effectively and safely all of the time. There is no perfect solution and the bottom line may be you must make some changes. The only other option is to not carry, likely not what you want.  

Go Looser and Longer

Thankfully, light, loose and whispy doesn't ever go out of style. Looser, lighter clothing is not only more comfortable, it is cooler too as it allows the air to circulate and keep things cool! Wear a long cotton shirt with your summer shorts/skirts to easily conceal your in the waist or on the belt holstered gun. Wear patterned shirts and dresses, the pattern helps to helps to minimize any "bulge".  The Betty is a great in the pants holster in any season. Its minimal design means less stuff in your pants. The Magnetic is a very popular holster for the simple reason it requires no belt or heavy waist band to secure itself to the waistband. If wearing summer dresses, the bra holsters (mentioned above) are a good bet along with  the Pistol Wear Under arm and the Ultra Under arm, both made with great breathable fabrics and are another great choice.

Betty Holster shown   betty karh in use 3cropped resized 600

Betty holster shown above

 

Go Deeper

Summer weight pants, shorts and skirts means lighter and weaker waistbands which can make on the waist or in the pants carry very difficult. Try a holster that isn't dependent on the waistband such as the Pistol Pouch which "buries" the firearm down on the pelvic area. This is a cotton holster with a thin band that is worn around your hips.  Your belly band worn low and on your hips can also be a solution, but tend to be a bit warmer because of the elastic. Both bra holsters, the Flashbang and the Marilyn are also good choices. The Pistol Wear Under Arm  and Ultra Under Arm holsters also are great "deep" choices. Keep in mind however that going deeper brings with it some challenges, mainly accessing your gun quickly and safely. Practice these draws regularly with your unloaded gun. Carrying your firearm off body should be your last choice. Carrying in a concealed carry purse introduces much greater levels of risk and provides access to your gun that no one should have. The utmost care MUST be taken when doing so.

 

pwunder arm front 3photo  pw in use 2 web

Pistol Wear Under Arm Holster shown above

Go Smaller

Although not the ideal solution, as we don't want to give up firepower if we don't have to. Carrying a smaller gun in the summer months is an option and is better than not carrying any gun at all. if you can afford a second gun, the very small and compact semi-automatics and lightweight revolvers are very easy to hide. Some are now so slim that they don't create a bulge, and who needs more of those?? You may want to research the available holsters for these models prior to purchasing to make sure the type of holster you want/need to wear is available for it. One important thing to be aware of is that the smaller, lighter guns will have quite a bit more recoil to contend with. They simply don't have the weight and size necessary to absorb it, so that means your hand an arm do!!!

 

Beretta Nano

Pico 0057

 

Perhaps you have some things that have worked for you that are not covered here. Please feel free to post them.

Stay cool ladies and stay safe!

 

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook orTwitter and visit www.thewellarmedwoman.com

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

An Honest Look At The Concealed Carry Purse

 

by Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor

The Concealed Carry Purse, people either love them or they hate them. To carry your firearm in a concealed carry purse is your decision to make and there is no right or wrong answer. What there is though, is what is recommended. You are an intelligent woman who can consider all of the information, the risks and the pro's and con's and make an intelligent decision for yourself if a concealed carry purse is right for you. Why do so many fiercely counsel against this popular mode of carry? Likely for two reasons. One, there is serious risk anytime our guns are not on our bodies and two, it limits our ability to respond as quickly as possible and those seconds could count! These are very real issues that must be considered and consciously accepted by you when making the decision to holster your gun in a concealed carry purse. I trust you will do this.



What do I think about concealed carry purses? First, I must tell you that I believe my role is to provide information and resources and let you make your own decisions. My opinion is just that, my opinion and really only matters to me in making the decision for myself. What do I know? I know that awareness and practice are key. Do I carry in a concealed carry purse? Yes, sometimes I do. Why? Because there are times that if I didn't, I wouldn't have my gun with me, and that is not an option for me. (As long as it is legal) 
I know myself - I know my capabilities - and I practice. Having your gun holstered somewhere ON your middle is BEST. It is close, it is safe and it easy to get to. You really can't argue with that. On The Body is the safest and best way to carry your gun, Period! Can you carry safely in a concealed carry purse, yes you can. The proper purse, meticulous awareness, and practice drawing/shooting from one is the key. 


When choosing to carry in a concealed carry purse, here are some questions you might ask yourself in making this decision:



  • Am I forgetful?
  • Have I left my purse behind in the last 6 months, in the restroom, a restaurant or store?
  • Am I around small children regularly who might have access to my purse?
  • Am I willing to carry my purse cross-body to minimize risk of someone taking my purse?
  • Can I keep it on me and store it properly when it must be off my body?
  • Will I vow to always have my gun in a holster in a designated compartment of the purse?
  • Am I disciplined enough to practice the awkward draw and use of my gun from the concealed carry purse? (yes, you may very likely need to shoot through the purse to not loose the precious seconds)

These are just a handful of important questions to ask yourself. It is your decision, one that it is important you make honestly and thoughtfully. If you can't answer these questions with confidence, than even if you think this is the best option for you because of the convenience, it likely is not a good choice for you.



Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook orTwitter and visit www.thewellarmedwoman.com
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube
This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.



Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Going Through The Change

 

by Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor

Photo: Change of seasons by Silveryn


I suppose I could be writing about the change of seasons as we all are invigorated by the crisp weather and the changing leaves. Or, I could even be writing about THE CHANGE. You know: the change that involves hormones and hot flashes! 

No, I won’t go there; not today.  The change I am talking about is the very profound change that a woman goes through after making the decision to own a firearm, goes through the very important process of deciding which firearm is right for her and training to properly, safely and proficiently learn how to shoot it to defend herself. 

It changes us profoundly. We feel different and we move through our daily lives differently. We in fact are different. How so? We have confidence. With this new sense of confidence we start to look people in the eyes more when we are out and about. We scan the environment with new keen sense of awareness of possible risks and people out of place. We walk through parking lots, restaurants and other public places more prepared and with the confidence that given the worst possible case scenario, we know we are fully prepared to give it all we’ve got to defend ourselves. This not only changes us in the realm of self protection, it also effects every aspect of our lives and relationships.

I believe society breeds high levels of insecurity in women, socially, emotionally and physically. We seem to always be the “weaker one” or the one “not good enough”. The ability to level the playing field, or more appropriately the battle field, is extremely significant for a woman. We feel less like a victim and more like an empowered, fierce force. 


The role of self protector doesn’t come naturally for most women. We are raised to believe we are protected by others. Today, this just isn’t an option for it is not possible in this crazy world, with out crazy schedules to be protected by our men, our police or others all of the time. Women are taking on this role with courage, intelligence and passion.

So we are changed on the outside because we now carry a firearm and are equipped to defend ourselves, but we are also changed on the inside because we carry a new sense of confidence that impacts every area of our lives. 

Has it changed you? 

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook orTwitter and visit www.thewellarmedwoman.com

Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

When you've got to go.... You've got to go!

 
by Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor


The ladies' room, potty, doing your business, going to the bathroom, or even powdering your nose. Whatever you call it - we ALL have to do it! The problem is, what in the world do you do with your concealed firearm when you do? 

For some obvious reasons, men have it a little easier in this department, well... most of the time. There is quite a bit of confusion and not a lot of discussion on this “interesting” topic. In a recent discussion on The Well Armed Woman Facebook page, the lack of information clearly results in less-than-safe solutions. So, what should you do? You don’t want anyone in the next stall to see your firearm, freak out and call 911 when you’re simply answering Mother Nature’s call. You don’t want it to fall on the floor and slide over to into the next stall with a mother assisting her young child and you certainly don’t want to do anything that could risk an accidental discharge. So what do you do? 

Photo: Theo Romeo UCD Advocate
The answer is quite simple. The less you do the better! Any time your remove your firearm from its holster you create risk. A well-made "in the pants" or "on the waist" holster should hold your firearm snug, even if you accidentally turn it upside down. If yours doesn’t, get a new one.  Not everyone likes a thumb break but here is a good place where they come in handy. Keep your hand on the HOLSTERED firearm as you carefully slide down your pants and keep your hand on it. Keep the top of your pants up off the floor and out of view from “neighbors”. If you’re wearing a belt, this is even more important as once you undo your belt - the weight of whole package takes on a mind of its own. 

The problems arise when you remove the firearm to get comfortable. Some of you are placing it on the toilet paper dispenser, the back of the toilet and even hanging it by the trigger guard on the hook on the door. These are no safe solutions and yes, even the most responsible and conscientious gun owners can leave and forget their firearms behind. It has happened, perhaps it has even to you. 

Many women are wearing bra holsters and belly bands. With these holsters this challenge is eliminated. For those of you that carry in your purse, as awkward as it may be, place your purse on your lap or even hang it over your body cross body style.  

If for some reason not addressed here you MUST remove the firearm from your body, keep it holstered and hold it or keep it on your lap while you’re “busy”.

All of this “work” just to do your business may seem cumbersome, uncomfortable and even a pain in the neck. The truth is, this comes with the responsibility of safe gun ownership. If you really think about it, we are very lucky to even have the right and opportunity to be a little uncomfortable this way.  So... Give thanks and go take care of business! 

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook orTwitter and visit www.thewellarmedwoman.com


Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.


Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Concealed Carry For Larger Women

 

By Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor

Women have multiple challenges carrying a firearm. Many of those challenges are due to the curves and shorter waists of the female body. Adding to the problem is finding holsters that can be worn comfortably, discreetly and safely while allowing for effective access to the firearm should the need arise. Most holsters are designed by men for a man's body and typical male clothing styles.

For larger, full-figured women the challenges are even greater. A large bust makes reaching for the firearm difficult and sometimes impossible, if crossing the body is necessary. A fuller middle also interferes with reach and accessibility. Clothing styles and options that accommodate concealed carry are limited, which only adds to the problems and frustrations. For some women, the combination of these challenges makes typical methods of concealed carry so uncomfortable and frustrating that they give up trying.

Each woman naturally will have her own set of challenges because every woman's body is unique. But the issues faced by larger women are significant and the topic is often neglected. Here, I will attempt to break down the problems as shared by hundreds of women who frequent The Well Armed Woman site, as well as advice and ideas they shared that work for them. Again - there is no single solution to the various problems larger women have, but I hope to offer two things: one - the sense that, as a larger women, you are not alone and that many women share your frustrations; and two - that through the sharing of all of these women, perhaps there is a suggestion or two that you will find helpful to carry your firearm safely and comfortably. All women need to push through and overcome their particular obstacles because if your gun is not on or with you - it can't protect you.

So, here are the most common problems:

Large Bust
Buxom women shared a few key issues pertaining to full-sized busts. The primary issue is reach. They simply can't get around their breasts to get to their gun, whether in a shoulder, cross-body, an on- or in-the-waistband holster, or even a bra holster. One might assume that a bra holster would work well, given that large breasts create sufficient "hiding space" for a gun, but a majority of larger women responded that bra holsters don't work for them, explaining that the gun "gets lost" and is extremely hard to draw. Sweat under the breasts was another key negative commonly shared.

Wide Around The Middle
Being wide around the middle restricts the ability to reach the holstered firearm especially with bra holsters and on- or in-the-waistband holsters (whether appendix or cross body). The need to wear looser stretch pants with elastic waistbands also limits the possible options for on- or in-the-waistband holsters as they need the support of either a sturdy, wide belt or a substantial and tight waistband. Having a large middle also makes it tough to access an ankle holster. Another common frustration of larger women is that the grip of the gun digs into them in most on-the-waist forms of carry.

Short Waisted
Most women are more short waisted than men. This makes drawing from an on-the-hip holster difficult as there is not enough room to fully clear the firearm without running a fist into the underarm or breast. And the more of you there is in that shorter distance, the tougher this becomes. The distance is simply not sufficient for an effective draw. Most on-the-hip holsters ride too high which only makes things worse. When you factor in elastic or weak waistbands and it becomes almost impossible.

Here are some suggestions women made:

So, what can you do to make concealed carry more comfortable and effective for you? This depends on your climate, and any one of the above issues or a combination of them. But there are a couple of common areas of agreement among the women we polled. The majority found the belly band to be a very good option. Lying against the skin, it can be rotated to any position around the middle. Belly bands can also be worn high or low on the middle, so the user can find the location most comfortable for her and which provides the easiest access to her gun. Unfortunately, a common complaint was that in warmer weather, belly bands can be hot to wear.

An alternative suggested by very large chested women was using an inside-the-waistband holster like "The Betty", but clipping it to the top of the bra near the arm pit. So the gun lies on top corner of the breast, not under it. A simple reach through the collar of the shirt allows for easy access. 

Carrying the firearm on the waist with a loose fitting cover shirt or in the pants, off the back of the hip, more toward the small of the back was another successful position for many of the larger chested, wider middle women. The middle and the bust do not come into play which allows for smoother access. Whenever holstering on the back, however, a woman must be hyper alert to her surroundings as she may be more vulnerable to another person gaining access to it from behind.

The Remora or a similar rubberized pocket holster, which will stick firmly to clothing without the need of a clip was another popular option for in-the-waistband carry. Many women reported to me that because of the non-slip qualities of the rubber - you can place the firearm in any location and it stays put, making it ideal for stretch waistbands.
Another suggested option is a magnetic outside-the-waistband holster, which instead of a metal clip, uses a very strong magnet that locks shut over the waistband. No belt is required, the strength of the magnet providing the necessary support. Also available are paddle holsters which slide down the inside of the pants, acting as a brace to keep the holster in place when no belt is available.

For larger women who happen to be long waisted, a very positive solution is to wear low rise pants. The lowered waistband will increase the distance between the grip of the gun and the armpit. Adjusting the location to just off the hip (front or back) and adjusting the cant to a steeper angle for easier access is also effective.

For women whose middles were "in the middle", the most successful reported option was in-the-waistband, appendix-style carry. Because the firearm is carried in the fleshy front (in front of the hip bone) this was found to be a very comfortable carry position, providing good access to the waist area.
The ankle holster was suggested by many women who deal with large bust and shorter waist issues, but this option is reported as ineffective for women who are larger in the middle as noted earlier.

The last and most reluctantly suggested option for most of these women is carrying in a concealed carry purse or fanny pack. Carrying in an external bag takes an extra dose of awareness and responsibility, but for many women it can be the difference between carrying and not carrying. When this is your only option, the firearm must be in a sleeve or pocket holster with the trigger fully covered and the firearm in a separate compartment within the bag. There are just too many items in the purse that can get in the trigger guard and contribute to an accidental discharge. The bag must be on you and with you at all times. Having the firearm in a separate compartment also makes access easier and faster. No fumbling around - you know right where it is.

Practice is essential when wearing any new holster or when changing the position of one you already use. The utmost care must be taken to make sure you are not "covering" yourself at any time during holstering and un-holstering. Practice with your UNLOADED gun (checking 3 times) to get comfortable and effective with the new holster and location.

Our ability to carry a concealed firearm is a powerful equalizer for women when assaulted. For many large women, running away or running for cover may not be a realistic option. She must be able to access her gun quickly, safely and with the skill necessary to defend herself. That requires at least three things: The gun must be with her, it must be holstered in a manner and location that SHE can manage and she must be well-trained and prepared to draw and use it effectively.

A sincere thanks to all the women who bravely shared their stories, challenges and photos with The Well Armed Woman. Hearing about your struggles and sharing what works for you will no doubt help others.


Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook orTwitter and visit www.thewellarmedwoman.com

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitterYouTube.

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not represent those of Beretta.
   

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

The Truth

 


By Carrie Lightfoot - Guest contributor

A recent post on The Well Armed Woman Facebook page on “Why we carry a firearm” created quite a stir and evoked an awesome amount of passion. One word kept smacking me in the face. That word was TRUTH. What frustrates the law abiding, good American citizen is the avoidance and mistreatment of what is the truth in the typical anti-gun conversation.  

Not all of the words below are mine, but I will write them in the first person as my reasons for carrying a firearm are the truth for me personally. Therefore no one can argue with me as what is true for me, is mine alone. However, I do not own these truths, they are not new and I know that for millions of firearm owners these truths are what lies at the heart of their choice to arm themselves. 





“Truth is tough.  It will not break, like a bubble, at a touch, nay, you may kick it all about all day like a football, and it will be round and full at evening.”  
~Oliver Wendell Holmes







Who can argue with the truth? If we align ourselves and can clearly communicate what is true then it perhaps becomes more difficult for those that simply want to argue. To effectively explain our choices, we must arm ourselves with articulate words of truth and then, simply stand on them.  
I don’t carry a gun because I want to shoot people, I carry a gun because I refuse to be a victim. 

I don’t carry a gun because I hate the government, I carry a gun because I realize the limitations of government to protect me. I carry for emergency self defense when there are no better options left.

I don’t carry a gun because I am paranoid, I carry a gun because, sadly, there are very real threats all around me.

I don’t carry a gun because I am an evil person, I carry a gun because I’ve lived long enough to see the evil in this world and to accept that I am prey to those who are evil.

I don’t carry a gun to compensate for anything, I carry a gun to equalize the battlefield. My physical size and strength can’t even come close to that of an attacker.

I don’t carry a gun because I am angry, I carry a gun so I don’t ever have to hate myself for not being prepared and protecting myself or those I love.

I don’t carry a gun because I love it, I carry a gun because I love life and the people who make it meaningful to me.

I don’t carry a gun to scare people, I carry because I am trained to do so, safely.
I carry my gun, because it is my right to do so... responsibly. 


“If one tells the truth, one is sure sooner or later to be found out” Oscar Wilde

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook orTwitter and visit www.thewellarmedwoman.com

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitterYouTube.

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not represent those of Beretta.
 

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Impressions From A Gun Show Virgin

 

by Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor

Here are some simple impressions and a few questions from a gun show virgin:






There are not too many women at gun shows.... Yet!

I didn’t get strange looks for walking around with a gun on my hip.

I did get curious looks for being a woman cruising the aisles.

It is oddly comfortable and comforting being surrounded by guns, ammo and gun loving people!

I have no difficulty believing the recent Gallop Poll that said 47% of homes in the US have a firearm. They were all at the show!
You can wear ANYTHING you want to a gun show and I mean anything.  
Fully grown adult males actually will pin handwritten signs on scraps of paper on themselves! 
What are all those little parts filling the tiny bins on so many tables?
Gun lovers are really nice and patient people.
The people watching doesn’t get any better.
There are many “interesting characters” at gun shows.  
Bring a cart with wheels - everything is VERY heavy.
Buy your ammunition on your way out!
Going to a gun show is like going to the humane society. There are so many guns that need good homes. You MUST leave with one.
You see the wildest T-shirts for sale and on the visitors.
I didn’t expect to see machetes and Gothic swords - but they were fascinating.
The collector firearms are amazing.
The military historic paraphernalia is sobering.
I want one of those huge rounds in my home. I don’t know what they are - but they are really big, very heavy and very cool!
I like the sound of stun guns.
Nothing beats a hot dog, a Coke and a stadium full of firearms.

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook orTwitter and visit www.thewellarmedwoman.com
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube
This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

First Lady of Duck Hunting

 
by Adam Brassfield - Pro Staff Contributor

Painted nails, pretty earrings, gorgeous lips and an itchy trigger finger. She is a knock out in a dress and a sharp shooter from the blind. Her Beretta Xtreme is her instrument and killin' greenheads is her passion. Yes, she is absolutely amazing!

For so many years it was never a thought. I mean: the one where you could see a female, day in and day out, in the duck blind. With all the nasty weather and mud, the thought of ever seeing a woman showing me up was a long shot. Then I met Natasha and my whole world changed. Seriously, when you think of a lady duck hunting you think of a backwoods, tobacco spitting woman whom you may or may not mistake for Clay Aiken. But I have to be the first to tell you: I was floored.

The first time she went duck hunting with me I thought it was a nice way to "give back" and something real good to look at, other than the other three mildly disgusting gentlemen that work with me. She shot a wood duck and a few others and looked as though she belonged out there, but I wanted to put her to the test so, the next week in our duck boat, we three guys let her come again...big mistake! She out-shot all of us and she is an incredible professional of the sport. What? I did not know if I should ask her to marry me or throw her out of the boat. I did both.

Watching this beautiful lady shoot greenheads out of the sky, give commands for the dog to retrieve them then load her Beretta without even asking, did nothing short of making me want to have kids all over again! The other two guys are ugly enough to burn a wet mule, so I knew I had a chance. She has changed our company and she has changed this industry.

Natasha is living proof that women have a place in the gun and hunting world. Not only are they coming but they have already arrived. Have I mentioned she shoots a Beretta? I have died and gone to duck hunting Heaven.

Adam Brassfield is a guest contributor for the Beretta Blog. He can be reached on Facebook.
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube.
This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not represent those of Beretta.

Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

Eat Your Vegetables

 

by Carrie Lightfoot - Guest Contributor


“I don't want any vegetables, thank you. I paid for the cow to eat them for me.” Doug Coupland 




 

"Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon."  Doug Larson




I have noticed something very interesting. I post a photo on Facebook of a cat wielding a machine gun or a Mae West quote about being a bad girl and within hours - over 500 shares, even more LIKEs and tons of great comments. I post a photo of an attractive woman brandishing a firearm and BINGO thousands of shares and likes and hundreds of comments. (Yes, there are tons of MALE Well Armed Women fans.)  I post a link to a phenomenal article loaded with potentially life saving tips and/or spot on marksmanship tips and..... Maybe 10 shares, 100 likes and only 5-10 comments. 
So what is that? 

That is human nature. We love something quick, fun and satisfying but don’t really like to take the time to take care of our “firearm health”. There are a few areas in our lives, where this probably really doesn’t matter much. Then there are the few that really do matter, like our health, our relationships, our careers and yes, our skills as an armed personal defense shooter. But of course as Booker T. Washington said “Nothing ever comes to one, that is worth having, except as a result of hard work.” 

This is where the Broccoli comes in. 
It really is like eating vegetables. We know they are good for us, very good for us. We don’t even question it and yet some of us still avoid them like the plague. So What can we do to get over the barrier of “if it is good for me, than no thank you”? What can we do to make these “vegetables” taste better besides wrap them in bacon? 
We know that regarding one’s physical health, if they have an illness or are diagnosed with a serious medical issue, they will make the dietary and lifestyle changes necessary. They WILL begin to eat their vegetables. The fear becomes the motivator. 
Now, none of us should have to, or needs to go through the trauma of a close call or an attempted attack to create the fear to get us to change our ways, should we? Of course not.  It takes the mental commitment and belief that we each could REALLY be in this type of horrifying situation to create the fear that will cause us to change our ways and do the reading, training and practicing necessary.
So the moral of the story is: enjoy the simple things and the things that make you laugh, but also invest in your firearm health. Read, train, practice and grow in your knowledge of what just might keep you alive if the horrific and unexpected happens. Oh and yes, eat your vegetables, too!

Carrie Lightfoot is owner of The Well Armed Woman and quest contributor for the Beretta Blog. Join the dynamic group of women shooters on Facebook or Twitter or on her website.
Make sure you follow Beretta on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube
This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.


Make sure you follow Beretta on FacebookTwitter or YouTube

 

This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

The Beginner’s Sporting Clays Guide: Training for A State Shoot

 
By Beretta Fleur - Guest Contributor


I’ve been shooting clays for 2 years, and have been an NSCA member for a little over a year. I’ve always shot tournaments, many of them recreational shoots lasting a couple of hours. If I’m tired after eight stations and my score is twenty points shy of a win, it’s nothing a beer and a burger won’t fix. But with spring comes the end of the hunting season and the beginning of state shoot season.

Beretta Fleur and her SV10 Prevail
This is the first year where I am comfortable enough with shooting competitively to participate in the state shoot, and I started training a month ago. If you’re a beginning shooter, here are five ways you can gear up for a big tournament.


1. Get Registered.  For California, you need at least 300 NSCA-registered targets to compete at state level.  If you’re not an NSCA member, get registered as soon as possible so you can compete.  If you can’t compete this year, register now so you can next year. For me, it’s also a matter of pride: I want to show that I’m serious about competition shooting, even if I’m sometimes the worst score on the board. Everyone starts somewhere.

2. Shoot The Right Gun. Find and practice with a gun that you don’t have to fight with to break clays. I shot 20 gauge for several months before moving to a Beretta 391, which is a great gun, but too high for me. Finally, my husband found a beautiful vintage Beretta 687 12 gauge similar to this one, which is perfect for me.

3. Shoot ‘Till It Hurts. Out in the elements, laden with gear, walking and shooting through ten or more stations four days in a row can be brutal. You have to build stamina. If you don’t already, start shooting tournaments. A couple times a month, shoot two days in a row to get used to the strength and focus needed. This will also help you figure out what causes you to lag (hunger, sun, distraction, fatigue) and develop a system to perform well. For me, it’s sunscreen, iced tea, preemptive Advil, and a snack.

4. Improve Your Focus. Most seasoned shooters will tell you that focus is 90% of breaking clays targets, and they’re right. The competitive, crowded atmosphere at a big shoot is highly distracting. Ask your instructor, buddies, or mentors on how they stay focused. I just watched “Timed to Win” with Anthony Matarese Jr., which has great points on focus.

5. Practice The Course. Every clays range is different. This year, my state shoot will be hosted by a range who sets targets very differently than how my usual range sets them, and my score there is ten points lower. If you can, shoot regularly at the host range in your state. If you can’t get to the host range a few months prior, many state shoots have practice rounds a day or two before the tournament.


Beretta Fleur lives in Los Angeles. She writes, models, and shoots sporting clays. Her book, Hosting With Style: Beretta Fleur's Guide to Parties and Homemaking will be available Fall 2012. She can be reached at BerettaFleur.com.

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This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent those of Beretta.

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This post and its contents are the views and opinions of the author only, and do not necessarily represent Beretta.

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