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Heartland Training Team LLC

Professional firearms training for the novice and experienced shooter at an affordable price since 1999.
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What are the Fundamental Firearm Safety Rules?


There are a variety of rules that may be applicable to your specific environment but two of these firearm safety rules never change. They're Rules # 1 and # 2.

Firearm Safety Rule # 1, Always keep the muzzle of your firearm pointed in a safe direction. (The Golden Rule of Firearm Safety)

So what does this mean? Simply put, it means keep the muzzle pointed away from people, including yourself.

This rule sounds simple on the surface but distractions on the Firing Range or other places you might be can cause a lapse in your muzzle discipline. You must be constantly aware of your muzzle direction until it becomes a subconscious action.

Rule # 1 is considered the Golden Rule of Firearm Safety because it trumps all the others. If you get careless or distracted while handling your handgun and violate Rule # 2 (Finger off the Trigger) for instance, but you keep your muzzle pointed away from people, a Negligent Discharge will not hurt anyone.

We recommend you master the skill of muzzle control before you come to class to eliminate any potential for an unfortunate accident.

Let's cover Firearm Safety Rule # 2, Keep your Finger off the Trigger and on your Index Point Until Your Sights are On the Target and You're Ready to Shoot. At the Heartland Training Team, we've made an addition to this rule. Not only should you Keep Your Finger Off the Trigger until You're Ready to Shoot but to ensure it is so, you should keep your finger on an index point on the side of the gun.

This index point could be anything from the joint where the slide joins the frame, the depressed area on the frame of a Springfield XD, the slide lock on a Glock or any other easily identifiable index point. It should be a spot that's tactily identifiable in the dark in case you can't see the gun.

Over time, use of an index point will become a subconscious act and add another layer of safety to your gun handling.


Mastery of these two rules will ensure you'll never experience a Negligent Discharge that hurts or damages anyone else, including yourself.