Shooters Active in Firearms Education (SAFE)

Basic Shotgun Course Description
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A shotgun is a long gun designed to be fired with two hands. It has a smooth bore (the inside of the barrel) and is designed to shoot a variety of ammunition, ranging from a solid bullet, called a slug, to multiple projectiles, called shot. Shotguns are often used in bird hunting, and in the wildly popular sports of trap or skeet.


The Basic Shotgun course can be as short as ten hours. In it students will get the NRA's The Basics of Shotgun Shooting handbook and intensive lessons in safety, gun handling, fundamentals of shotgun shooting, several practical exercises on the firing range, cleaning, storage, and a summary of shotgun sports and activities.


Course Goal

“To teach the basic knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary for the safe and proper use of a shotgun in shooting a moving target.”


  • Shotgun Knowledge and Safe Handling
  • Ammunition Knowledge and Fundamentals of Shotgun Shooting
  • Firing the First Shots (includes cleaning and storage)
  • Shotgun Shooting Skills Practical Exercise
  • Shotgun Games and Activities



The are no prerequisites for taking this course and the material is accessible to appropriately supervised mature children. Be aware that the proper fitting of a shotgun to a shooter is an important step that enhances safety, comfort and performance and, while well worth the effort, can be time-consuming.


Course Completion

For best results, the shotgun shooting skills exercise is repeated several times, with feedback from the instructor.

Students will receive feedback on the live-fire exercise and a course completion certificate upon successful completion of the lessons. There is a short written test on the lesson material at the end of the course.