NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

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Scott B.
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NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#1

Post by Scott B. » Mon Dec 11, 2017 12:32 am

Took the recent NRA Carry Guard, Level 1, course taught at a 'Houston Area Range.' I know a number of you have questions about it as I did.

Some quick notes

It's a solid, professionally run training program. Three days, roughly 1,200 rounds, challenging. Excellent teacher to student ratio. Class size normally of 12, we had a no-show for a total of 11 with two instructors plus a full time RSO. By far the best safety brief / casualty plan for any course I've taken.

I won't give any specific details on COF, testing, or the like per their request, but it's a well thought out three days. Go prepared to learn and you will. I picked up a couple of new things and challenged some old things. In general, I had a great time.

What you want to know as a potential student

Would I encourage others to take it? Absolutely.

Will I take Level 2 if and when it launches and it fits into my schedule and budget. Yes.

Free student tips. Know your gear. Know it works Don't forget to add ammo, plus travel expenses into your budgeting. Take seriously the caution to 'be prepared for the weather and range conditions.' You never know, it might just snow (in Houston? no way) or something worse. Mud sucks. Don't buy Winchester White Box because it sucks too. Seriously, absolute junk.

Edited to add: 3 mags are good, 4 mags are better, 20 might be stretching it. You will load often and in a hurry, buy a Maglula loader if you haven't already.

What you want to know as a potential instructor

The only way you're going to teach NRA Carry Guard is if you take the class, meet their standards, both numerically and otherwise, and meet the standards of their instructor course. It's makes perfect sense for what they're trying to build. Exclusivity has a cachet all of its own, but I repeat myself.

Is it a course I want to try to teach? No.

The format doesn't fit into my life or is it that my life doesn't fit into that format? :???: . YMMV, but I enjoy teaching in discreet blocks with different emphasis.

My conclusion, or better yet, my opinion offered to other NRA Instructors. Carry Guard is clearly the marquee NRA training program and will only grow larger. It has zero relationship to anything you previously thought of as carrying the tag "NRA Instructor" or can see through "nrainstructor.org." Get used to it.

Questions? I'll try to answer them if I can.
Last edited by Scott B. on Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Teamless
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#2

Post by Teamless » Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:15 am

Thank you for the recap, I am interested to learn more about this course.

Firstly, WOW 1,200 rounds over 3 days, that's a lot of shots downrange!

Can you give an approximate or actual cost of the course itself, not counting any travel, ammo or other costs.
I don't know if NRA structures the cost or if the various instructors set their own costs, so if you want to give a range rather than an actual cost, that would be great.

As you say "Houston area range", which means to say you do not want to say which one. Can you say generally what part of town? I live in Clear Lake area and am just curious if it is local or 2 hours away (which could mean 30 miles at some time!)

Seems you don't want to publicly state their range or names, but seems you enjoyed the course.
If you are willing to recommend them, but not publicly state the range or their names, would you PM it to me, so I could inquire to them?

I have not seen any one advertise this course yet, other than what I read on NRA before, so I am very happy to hear there is a course in the area.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#3

Post by boxermoose » Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:33 am

Quick Google search shows $850 and 1 spot available in the next TX course which is in Austin

Seems reasonable compared to the fixed ranch type courses

I won't post the link but try "NRA Carry Guard level 1 in TX"

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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#4

Post by Liberty » Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:55 am

I don't want to go off topic and off tangent, but what were the issues with Winchester White Box? I ask because @ 1200 rounds, one is going to want to use ammo that is reliable, consistant and cheap. What were the issues that they having?
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#5

Post by Scott B. » Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:01 am

You can find classes here:

https://www.nracarryguard.com/training/ ... g-classes/

I only wrote "Houston Area Range" because that's how it was listed on the web site. I wondered for two months where the class I'd paid for would be as there are multiple outdoor ranges. They emailed the exact location about 6 days before the class. This one was held at the Brazos River Sportman's Club, which I'd never heard of before. It's only 40 mins from location so it was convenient. Once things dry up down there, I'm going to look into what other pistol and carbine offerings they have.

FWIW, the range's aren't setting these classes up. It's the Carry Guard instructor corps finding a location to host their class. Right now there are only 10 Carry Guard instructors.

Texas seems to be the hot spot for classes at the moment, with 5 or 6 this first year spread around the state.

My cost was as posted, $850 for the class. Add about $180 for 2k of some really bad ammo. Fired about 400 rounds of that the weekend before tuning up for the class. Also shot about 90 rounds of carry ammo, so add that cost in.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#6

Post by Scott B. » Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:20 am

Liberty wrote:I don't want to go off topic and off tangent, but what were the issues with Winchester White Box? I ask because @ 1200 rounds, one is going to want to use ammo that is reliable, consistant and cheap. What were the issues that they having?
I found about 7 of these lovelies across the batch:

Image

I caught all but one while loading which made for a very entertaining stoppage drill. Also had two or three dud primers. Tried restriking, no joy. Additionally, powder varied from box to box with about 1/3rd having obnoxious amount of smoke.

Should have just shot the reman I usually practice with. I've never found a malformed round in the many thousands of rounds shot (7k+ of that brand) and maybe one dud primer.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#7

Post by Jago668 » Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:33 am

I've only shot 200 rounds of Winchester white box. In those 200 rounds I had 3 duds, and 2 with the bullets seated too deep in the case. For me that was a bit too high of a failure rate to bother buying more.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#8

Post by Bitter Clinger » Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:42 am

l won't give any specific details on COF, testing, or the like per their request, but it's a well thought out three days...
Is there some "non-specific" info you could share? Sorry but otherwise I do not find this to be a useful posting.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#9

Post by Scott B. » Mon Dec 11, 2017 10:57 am

Bitter Clinger wrote:
l won't give any specific details on COF, testing, or the like per their request, but it's a well thought out three days...
Is there some "non-specific" info you could share? Sorry but otherwise I do not find this to be a useful posting.
Let me try to make it "useful" for you and others then, as I did invite questions.

Non-specifically, you'll shoot from distances anywhere from 2 yards to 12. You'll cover the standard ready positions including drawing from holster and from concealment. There is some primary hand shooting, shooting from retention, and kneeling. Failure drills and malfunctions. There is very limited shooting and movement. It's a well thought out 'how to save your life' class.

Where Carry Guard is unique is the pacing and intensity, with accuracy required. They'll work you pretty good and that comes directly from the instructors' background and POV. Twenty-four to twenty-five hours of training, only about 4 of which are in a 'classroom' setting. Actually, I think the only reason we were inside for 4 hours is because it had snowed.

In comparison, the Handgun 3 class I'm going to help teach this Saturday is more technically challenging, but it's easy pacing, only 4 hours long, and costs a fraction.

I like taking different kinds of training classes with different instructors. You can always learn something new, or a different way of approaching something you think you know. If you don't, you run the risk of closing yourself off from knowledge.

One note I'll add. People are interested in these courses. Out of 11 students, aside from the far reaches of Texas, we had a 4 from Oregon, Tennessee, and Indiana.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#10

Post by twomillenium » Mon Dec 11, 2017 11:17 am

Is this an NRA program or just an NRA endorsed program? I did not find any program like this on the NRA website.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#11

Post by Scott B. » Mon Dec 11, 2017 12:49 pm

Have you opened a Rifleman magazine in the last year or so? :mrgreen:

It's NRA's big new insurance / training / quasi-lifestyle brand.

https://www.nracarryguard.com/

The insurance is thru Locktite Infinity. I'm not sure what action NRA receives from the program. Same group that offers firearms instructor's liability coverage and firearms business insurance.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#12

Post by twomillenium » Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:43 pm

Scott B. wrote:Have you opened a Rifleman magazine in the last year or so? :mrgreen:

It's NRA's big new insurance / training / quasi-lifestyle brand.

https://www.nracarryguard.com/

The insurance is thru Locktite Infinity. I'm not sure what action NRA receives from the program. Same group that offers firearms instructor's liability coverage and firearms business insurance.
Thanks, there are a lot of advertisers in the NRA magazines. I am not saying that it is not a good course and I do question the fact that they request that specific training not be discussed with others, as this is not usual for other credible training programs. However, your endorsement of the experience you had does soften the negative vibe of such request.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#13

Post by Scott B. » Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:09 pm

twomillenium wrote:
Scott B. wrote:Have you opened a Rifleman magazine in the last year or so? :mrgreen:

It's NRA's big new insurance / training / quasi-lifestyle brand.

https://www.nracarryguard.com/

The insurance is thru Locktite Infinity. I'm not sure what action NRA receives from the program. Same group that offers firearms instructor's liability coverage and firearms business insurance.
Thanks, there are a lot of advertisers in the NRA magazines. I am not saying that it is not a good course and I do question the fact that they request that specific training not be discussed with others, as this is not usual for other credible training programs. However, your endorsement of the experience you had does soften the negative vibe of such request.
They just don't want a blow by blow of their courses of fire or the test format out there. That's not uncommon at all with...well I hate this term...'higher end' training. It's also still a new product that they're tweaking as they run more classes.

From my vantage point, they're on the right track for what they're offering.
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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#14

Post by Charles L. Cotton » Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:40 pm

Just as Scott honored the request not to disclose the Level I course in detail, I too cannot provide detailed information about Carry Guard training, instructors, etc. I can say this much. The Carry Guard training is an NRA course currently taught by people with special experience and skills. (I can't say more, but their credentials have been widely advertised.) Other instructors will be certified, but it will not be through the current TC structure, nor will anyone and everyone have the required underlying experience and skill set. Currently, any NRA instructor can become certified to teach almost any NRA course. (Advanced Pistol is different.) This will not be the case with Carry Guard.

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Re: NRA Carry Guard - Level 1 Training

#15

Post by Liberty » Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:52 pm

Scott B. wrote:
They just don't want a blow by blow of their courses of fire or the test format out there. That's not uncommon at all with...well I hate this term...'higher end' training. It's also still a new product that they're tweaking as they run more classes.

From my vantage point, they're on the right track for what they're offering.
There's a test?
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