There are only two primary types of firearms training: Episodic or Immersion training.
Deciding which training style will work best for you and your goals is the first step you should take before applying for a concealed carry permit. During the many state application processes, you’ll need to discuss your training, philosophy, and the approach you’ll take to hone your shooting skills.
You can choose either type, but we wanted to ask: Does one style of training produce better shooters?
Can You Learn On Your Own? Episodic Concealed Carry Training Explained
Episodic training is often self-directed.
You’ll learn from training videos, text, online shooting courses, or even online concealed carry classes. Then, once you’re on the range, you’ll apply what you’ve learned while shooting.
If you can subjectively monitor your form and critically judge your performance, episodic training may be for you.
Unfortunately, it’s often difficult to analyze your own performance.
One of the traps you fall into if you decide on episodic training without instructor supervision is failing to learn new information or forgetting to reinforce basic fundamentals.
When you learn and shoot on your own, it’s easy to “fall into a rut,” plateau, and develop difficult to overcome bad habits. This is the reason why many shooters and instructors believe immersion training is much more effective.
Does Immersion Training Really Build Better Shooters?
Immersion training has multiple benefits over self-directed or even instructor-based episodic shooting.
Normally, immersion training takes place over an entire day or multiple days and you’ll work aggressively on your skills under the supervision of an instructor who closely watches your technique and form.
Immersion training keeps you from falling into bad habits, forces you to constantly focus on proper form, and pushes you to progress faster.
Fast progress under the watchful eye of a certified instructor is one of the reasons many states require concealed carry courses before you can even file an application.
In Just 12 Hours You Can Rapidly Progress as a Shooter…
But here’s the big problem with immersion training…
When you pile all of your training into a single day or a short 2-3 day span, you’re much more likely to forget everything you’ve learned.
Immersion training is great for learning new drills, techniques, and honing in on fundamentals, but one of the most important principles of practice for any skill is that short, more frequent sessions are much more effective than long sessions spread father apart.
So, What Type of Training is Better for Concealed Carry?
In my experience, you should always start with professional instruction before moving on to shooting on your own.
Usually this means beginning with an instructor at a one day or multi-day session before moving on to practice on your own several times a week. After a period of self-directed episodic practice to reinforce what you’ve learned, you go back to an immersive session.
But Immersion Training is Expensive and Time Consuming, Is There a Better Way?
To avoid the cost of immersive in-person training, you can find NRA-certified online concealed carry courses recognized by multiple states to meet the requirements to apply for a CCW.
Several online concealed carry classrooms allow you to receive direct feedback from instructors. You can actually upload shooting sessions and get guidance on what you’re doing right and wrong.
This modern take on traditional training can be just as effective as in-person concealed carry training.
If you don’t have time for 12 hour per day immersion shooting sessions, you may want to consider working with certified shooting coaches and instructors online.