Renting the Heckler & Koch VP9


Something big happened last week…I went to the range twice in less than four days.  Okay, so maybe it's not that big of a deal to you but it's kind of a big deal for me (you can catch up on why here).  I first went on Tuesday for my 2nd range lesson and then back again on Friday with the husband.

Friday’s visit had two main purposes.  First, to see if my comfort level would be any different going back with the husband versus an instructor and second, to test out the Heckler & Koch VP9 that I wrote about here.

Let's talk about the first part. The husband goes to the range on his own once to twice a month so for him this little visit was more for me.  I wasn’t sure if I was going to be more anxious and nervous with the husband or feel comfortable.  I'm glad to report that it's the latter. He was giving me some pointers but at the same time I felt open enough to really say how I felt regarding what I shot. I get that sometimes spouses don’t always make the best instructors, which is why I had an instructor to start but it's always nice having the support and a sort of your own personal cheerleader.

Now onto the HK VP9, if you recall in my recap of the Nation's Gun Show, I mentioned that the HK VP9 was the pistol that felt the most comfortable in my hand and one that I felt I was able to have the strongest grip on.  Luckily, the range that I'd been going to had the HK VP9 to rent so I could actually see if this really was going to be the gun for me.   I definitely was hesitant to shoot this gun at first. I kind of wanted the husband to shoot it first so he could tell me how it was but if I'm going to be comfortable shooting, I also need to be comfortable trying out a gun that I'm interested in.  Plus, he might think it shoots great while I might think the opposite.

Prior to actually shooting the gun, I ran through a few drills my instructor & I talked about.  I basically prepared myself to shoot without actually shooting. I got into position, raised the gun, and aligned my sights then reset back to starting. I did this again but this time I did run through a few dry fires. Now it was time to shoot the VP9. I loaded the mag with five rounds, got into position, and pulled the trigger.  I really wasn't sure what to expect. It seemed like the recoil was stronger than the Glock 19 but honestly I don't really remember. It also could've felt stronger just due to the little bit of apprehension I had.  I continued to shoot and that part of my trigger hand where the Glock 19 broke the skin, well the VP9 was rubbing in the same place.  Luckily, I had a Band-Aid to help protect it.  My groupings were all together but my aim was still slightly off - I'm thinking the target might have been a tad too high since both the husband and I were shooting. Overall, I liked the way the HK VP9 felt in my hands.  I had a strong hold on it and hopefully the skin rubbing issue is only because it was previously irritated by the Glock. If not, it looks like I might need to find myself some sweet leather shooting gloves.

I also shot the husbands Beretta PX4. I wanted to make sure I got in a few rounds so that I could compare it and so that if we do go back to a range where renting guns is not an option, I sort of know what to expect with his. The recoil on the PX4 definitely felt stronger to me than the VP9 & it was a little larger in my hand than I liked but it was manageable.

All in all I think it was a great range experience. I think what I need to do for myself is to set up a warm-up routine that I follow before I actually start shooting. Something similar to what I did during this visit but really nail down a plan.  On top of that, I think I also need to set goals for each range sessions. What's going to be my focus and what drills can I do to help obtain that goal.

I'm already talking to the husband about when we can get back to the range. I'm not yet comfortable going by myself - I'm pretty sure that will be the day that pigs will fly.  

I'm curious, and this is for newbies and veterans, how often do you go the range?