I use my stock (plastic guide rod and Tri/Trap sights) M9 for IDPA with a Comp-Tac C-T.A.C. IWB kydex holster. M9 with Comp-Tac Kydex Belt Holster (not legal for IDPA - sticks too far out from the hip) for the USPSA Action Pistol matches.
For the IDPA-offshoot TSA matches I will be competing with my stock S9 and C-T.A.C. shooting in the SDA (Subcompact Double Action) division. That is if it fits in that division's pistol box. Our first match here is next Sunday.
This isn't news to the regulars here, but I'm a firm proponent of increasing your shooting skills with trigger time in competition. IMHO, the more "practical" the better, so I'm partial to IDPA and hopefully the new TSA will be even more "practical". The more proficient you are with your actual carry weapon in competition the more confident you will be when carrying it for SD. Well run matches will have you shooting different scenarious and sometimes from awkward positions such as inside of cars, on your back, behind cover, while moving, etc. These are things you cannot do on a static firing line or at an indoor range with lanes.
I don't think that "practical" shooting competitions are a substitute for proper defensive tactics training, but they can be where you practice those "real-world" tactics in "stressful" situations. Having your squad mates watching your every move and actual competition adds to your defensive shooting practice experience.
Bottom line is trigger time combined with changing scenarios is good, IMHO.
I'm not familiar with the new TSA matches you mentioned...what are they about?
As far as other competitions, I'm partial to USPSA mostly because of the "games" that the IDPA leadership crowd seem to play. I know...not a good reason to miss out on some competition. But I'm not ready to go spend more money on something that's "IDPA legal" when I already have a high-quality Comp-Tac holster. That's tantamount to Bill Wilson and crowd telling me that my equipment isn't "good enough" (in their opinion) for the real world. I may be missing out because of spite (and finances) but that's where I stand.
More trigger time is always good. These are all "games" and "sports" -- not Marine Corps training in the High Risk Personnel course. I think as long as we keep that in perspective, any or all of them can be fun and helpful. It's when the debate starts about one versus the other being more or less "realistic" that problems start. Why does Baskin Robbins have 31 flavors? The same reason we have USPSA, IDPA and all the others!
I'm with you, jnclement and most folks that the new rules of IDPA are draconian and a bit strange. It seems that when any organization gets big enough it devolves into politics and most people end up unhappy with one thing or another. I love shooting the matches just the same though.
The Tactical Shooting Association (TSA) is a new form of practical shooting competition, developed by a guy not too far from you in Surry, VA. They have some neat pistol divisions, and the Sub-compact Double Action division may just favor my S9 with M9 full-cap mags. Check the link I posted above, here is a quote from their home page:
What is TSA?
The Tactical Shooting Association (TSA) is a shooting sports discipline that involves the use of “Real World” fighting guns.
TSA is not to be confused with IPSC or IDPA, nor is it intended to be a replacement or substitute for either sport. TSA uses a completely different method of scoring, has more firearms divisions and fewer rules and restrictions.
Weapons used in TSA competition are “Practical/Tactical” Pistols, Rifles, Carbines, Sub-Guns, and Shotguns. Courses of fire are designed to resemble realistic, urban self-defense encounters and/or anti-terrorist type survival scenarios.
Shooters competing in TSA events are required to use handguns, holsters and related equipment that is suitable for everyday concealed carry. Long arms used must be suitable for home defense and/or counter-terrorist survival purposes.
The main goals of the Tactical Shooting Association are:
• To test the gun handling and shooting skills of the competitor
• To test the practicality of the firearms and related equipment
• To encourage the evolution of tactical shooting technique
• To encourage the evolution of related equipment
TSA RULE #1: The evolution of shooting technique and equipment shall not be infringed! The ONLY restrictions on firearms and equipment shall be that of practicality and/or concerning concealment/carry issues.
Only Performance Counts! If you are interested in testing yourself (and your equipment) against some of the best tactical shooters in the world, then TSA is the place to do it…
Foundational Principles of the TSA:
•To promote the evolution of tactical shooting technique and equipment suitable for concealed carry, home-defense and/or anti-terrorist purposes. This evolution must be allowed to continue without prejudice and with a minimum amount of restrictions.
•To offer the shooter an environment in which to determine, “What works and what doesn’t” in regards to tactical & defensive shooting techniques, firearms design and related equipment.
•To provide shooters with realistic courses of fire that simulate potentially life-threatening encounters in order to test, measure and improve their shooting skills.
•To offer a “Tactical-Practical” shooting sport that allows the competitors to concentrate on the development of their self-defense shooting skills.
•To judge ALL competitors equally (without prejudice). We believe that the shooter is the customer and should be treated as such.
•To offer the Shooting Industry a place to test new equipment and experiment with new ideas.
•To separate firearms by action type, size and/or weight, but not by power factor.
•To encourage a Police, Military & Civilian Marksmanship interface.
•To promote firearms safety and proper weapons handling.
And to answer my own question, I shoot the M40 in idpa. I was using a bladetech paddle, but did last match w/ my new grahm 4x i got off here as it has no light gap, unlike the paddle.
I'm new and have only been in 5 matches (still trying to get on M. Ayoob's squad as he shoots w/ our club down here). I shot my first idpa qualifier about six weeks ago and made SSP MM w/ an overall of 195 secs (would've made ss if i had all my hits on stage 3 instead of 11 misses).
My wife uses the S9 in a weekly practice session one of our local ranges runs for icore/ipsc/idpa, and was going to start going to full matches next month (now not untill after the baby).
I want to medal in MM once or twice and then go for SS by the end of the year. last week was my second match in mm and i was dead middle of th epack
while it is not defensive training, it does help one to learn to shoot as fast as possible while being accurate, as well as learning fast reloads and draws. It also i leaps and bouds ahead of standing on a line shooting as you will move and shoot and shoot from behind cover from a variety of positions.
Do not be afraid to try it, my first few matches everyone was very helpful and encouraging. Everyone expects you to suck those first few times, because we all did. Walking up to that line and having the rso hover over you while you "load and make ready" then that buzzer goes off and your trying to draw fast and remember the order of fire for the course,etc etc... is shearly nerve racking.
Hell my wifes hands were shaking for two hours after her first session (and that was only 50 rounds over 3 stages).
BUT IT"S FUN!!
tommorrow, weather permitting (we're having a bit of a storm in FL right now 8O ) i hope to shoot my first round of trap at a public day at one of the clubs about an hour north of here.
I shot my first USPSA match last weekend with my Beretta 92G (since I had such a hard time with Comp-Tac getting a holster for my M9!). I didn't completely suck (well, I did -- but I didn't come in last!) and it showed me what I need to work on. I was trying too hard for speed and the loss in accuracy killed me! In the future, I want to try my M9 and my Glock 17 and see how they do.
I'll have to look into the TSA matches --- they sound interesting! To me, more trigger time is always good!
I just checked out the TSA web site that Jeff listed. Sounds like a cross between USPSA and IDPA (not surprising, given the founder's background). He sounds like a real striaght shotoer (pun intended).
I was reading the rule book and ran across this --
AIR GUNNING: Air gunning is specifically allowed as long as the invisible gun is unloaded and your finger is off the imaginary trigger.
I think that probably sums it up -- a serious sport that doesn't take itself too seriously!
From the looks of it, this is just getting started -- not too many places holding matches yet. Surry VA is about 120 miles from me now -- but it will be a lot closer this fall when I'm down in the Tidewater area. Hopefully the match schedule will pick up and I can try one out.
I'm glad you're enjoying competition with your Steyr. I find it most satisfying when shooting such fine handguns in a manner for which they were designed. I think you'll agree that it definitely boosts your abilities with a defensive pistol over "normal" range practice.
I'd be interested in what you find in your comparison with the G17 and M9 in competition shooting. If Steyr won't come out with a competition 5" version and the aftermarket won't supply fiber-optic sights, then I may just have to break down and get an XD Tactical...