If you’ve ever wondered when a good time would be to introduce your child to firearms and firearm safety, you’re already on the right track. A child can be introduced to firearms as early as their maturity and listening skills allow them. The question then becomes, how should I introduce them to firearms? Here are 3 tips to consider.
1. Before letting your child handle a gun, include them in activities such as firearm maintenance, range visits, and hunting trips. This is your chance to be a great role model; you should demonstrate perfect muzzle discipline by never pointing it in an unsafe direction, verbally acknowledge the state of the gun’s chamber, and never place your finger on the gun’s trigger unless you intend to fire it.
2. Go over firearm safety rules and practices very explicitly with your child, and have them practice with a completely safe weapon that’s been unloaded, had its chamber double-checked, and has the safety on. Have them practice holding it, or shouldering it in the case of a long gun. Hold the gun with them, and while you’re controlling it, you can let them pull the trigger with you to get used to the recoil and the sound. Getting them comfortable around the firearm will help them feel less nervous and allow them to focus on proper handling.
3. Once your child demonstrates a high level of awareness and skill in safe handling, let them do more with you in a supervised state. Bring them to the range, and eventually out to the wilderness if you hunt. Calibers like .22 LR are perfect for hunting small game and for range practice, and will naturally be easier for a youngster to handle.
Fostering the right mindset and a maturity about firearms is key to preventing accidents, and sets your child up for a healthy lifelong relationship with guns and gun safety. For more tips about proper firearm introduction and handling, contact Dennis Leifheit at:
Northern Illinois Carry, LLC
405 Somonauk St.
Sycamore, IL 60178