As I did last year, I thought it would be a good idea to look back at 2017 to see how many classes I took, how many matches I competed in, how much money I spent on those endeavors, and how many rounds I sent downrange in classes and matches.
In 2017 I attended a total of 7 classes:
1. Active Response Training (Greg Ellifritz) “Tactical First Aid and System Collapse Medicine” (AAR)
2. Active Response Training (Greg Ellifritz) “Groundfighting” (AAR)
3. OnSight Firearms Training (Ben DeWalt) “Defensive Shotgun” (AAR)
4. Green Ops (Mike Green) “Defensive Carbine I” (AAR)
5. American Tactical Shooting Instruction (Bill Rapier) “Integrated Shooting and Combatives” (AAR)
6. Sheriff of Baghdad (John McPhee) “One-Day Pistol Video Diagnostics” (AAR)
7. FPF Training (John Murphy) “Minuteman Rifle Course” (AAR)
In addition to the above, I also attended the three-day Rangemaster Tactical Conference. I spent a total of $1805 on these 8 events. That number is low considering the number of classes. Of course, all but one of the 7 courses were one-day classes, and I attended two of the courses for free. Also, the Rangemaster Tactical Conference was only $335, an insanely good value for all that it offered.
Keep in mind, however, that the above total does not include travel expenses (which this year included airfare), hotels (4 night total), meals, or ammunition. The total number of rounds I fired in classes this year was 1,534 (pistol, carbine, and shotgun). This was more than last year, but still not a significant amount considering the number of classes. Of course, two classes required no shooting (the Medical and Groundfighting courses), and, as noted in the AAR, the Sheriff of Baghdad class did not involve much shooting.
Though I did not meet my goal of shooting in twice as many competitions as in 2016, I did manage to shoot in one more match than last year. My performance in IDPA matches in 2017 was much better than in 2016, generally finishing in the top 25% as compared with all competitors as well as those in my division. Though I had hoped to achieve an Expert classification when I shot the Classifier, I did improve a bit from 2016. I shot a total of 495 rounds in matches this year. Each match cost me $20 to enter, so I spent a total of $100 on IDPA matches this year.
The combination of classes and matches cost me $1,905 and 2029 rounds of ammunition of various types. Even if that was all 9mm (it was not), that would be about another $400 or so. This hobby/journey is not cheap. However, as I will note in a soon-to-be-published article looking back at 2017, I feel like I made a lot of strides, and so I feel like it was time, money, and ammunition well-spent.
As always, thanks for reading. If you have any questions or comments, please post them below or on our Facebook page, as we always welcome civil discourse. Happy New Year!