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Loud noise, what loud noise, surely you had purchased the highest decibel rated ear muffs available especially for a new shooter? Taking a new shooter to a overly crowded range was a poor decision to begin with and I suspect your lessons & lectures had already scared the bejesus out of him to begin with. Teaching is an learned art and especially firearms training. Since you have now taught him a "Learned" fear I would suggest you enlist the help of a real trainer with the patience and experience to start new shooters the right way and certainly not one of these ego maniacs that will compound the damage. First time shooting should be a rewarding and fun experience, not something top be endured.
BTW: I have been a firearms instructor for over 50 years.
 

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I learned by going to a NRA course safety course when I was young . With other kids my age. Did the same for my son. A public firing range is intimidating even for Some New Adults.

Maybe wait a year or even a few years. Here is my Son's first gun. A German HW30. Super quiet, one shot. fun for adults as well as younger crowd.
Can set up targets in the back yard.



A Crossman Co2 with a TKO shroud. Toatally quiet. One shot.

 

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Took my 11 year old son shooting for the first time yesterday. The days leading up to yesterday i put him through some safety lessons and lectures about the reality of shooting a gun and not s toy.

Well at the range he was so scared he was shaking like a dog ******* peach pits to the point he was in tears. I asked him what it was he was scared of or worried about and he replied the loud noise and recoil. I tried for an hour to coax him into shooting but the deer in the headlight look just kept coming back 10 fold with tears.

All i could do was tell him i still loved him and that it was OK. He did finally help me load my magazines.

We were shooting a Ruger SR22, but there were others around shoot AR's and larger centerfire pistols.

Has anyone experienced this with a youngster and if so how did you help them overcome this? Or have i lost a shooting buddy?
I have experienced this before. We have to remember that young ears are very sensitive, so much more than we grownups, because they haven't been subjected to all the noise abuse that we have heaped upon them over the years. We have become accustomed to it, but to kids, the noise of ARs and other centerfire-type firearms is horrendously loud, and frightening - I would not be surprised if the kids subconsciously correlate the obnoxiously loud gunshot noises with recoil.

My solution? Take kids to the country where shooting is legal, or during squirrel season, and have a nice, fun little shooting session with a bagful of Mickey D's burgers and Coca-Cola. Have the youngster stand back from the firing line, and give a demonstration of the basics of marksmanship. When you fire a live round and pop a balloon that you inflated and set out for a target, the youngster will see that it is not loud and that there is minimal to no recoil. Put him or her on balloon-blowing duty and keep the balloons in a large trash bag. A sharpened 1"x1" stake, a small sledge hammer, and a stapler is all you need for range supplies. Have him or her help set up the range, as it were, and then offer a challenge to see how small a balloon he or she can hit and at how far. I like balloons because they not only offer instant gratification, but also because there is no doubt if the shooter scored a hit or not.

Eventually I stuck a Savage 99 .243 into my young son's hands, and he was afraid at first, even after becoming quite a marksman with .22 LR. He equated the size of the .243 cartridge with noise (he has sensitive ears), which he equated to recoil. Finally, when he torched off the first round, he was about to squawk about the noise and recoil, but then realized there wasn't any! And it was off to the races after that. He figured out that guns aren't nearly as loud when you're behind them as when you're beside them.

Good luck, and happy teaching.
 

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early or late

Started kids at 4 -5 years with 22. Before they were lied to by tv and other sources. They all were shooting a shotgun before 10 years old. Like climbing on a bronc as a child, I was told to do it and I did. No begging or promises, no oh you do not want too.
 

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:)Some excellent advice given here, and you prepared your son for the range trip and future shooting very well!

I have extensive experience with someone like that...ME! I have a genetic condition that makes me ultra sensitive to loud, sharp, and sudden noises. Fireworks, manufacturing facilities, Jet or large propeller planes, a shrill phone, and ...shooting! That's a terrible affliction for someone who loves guns, airplanes and shooting like I do! First question...you did provide your young man with adequate hearing protection, didn't you? My good lady wife gave me a set of good electronic ear muffs one Christmas.:) I put mine on as soon as I leave the range office...100 yards from the firing line! Even then, it may not be enough! This is not to suggest your son has a similar affliction, just how mine affects me!
One day, I was shooting my revolver, with the usual mixture of big-bore handguns being present. I finally had enough, so I switched to my .22 rifle, which I know has no blast or kick! Suddenly, I had developed one wild flinch! I decided to return another day.

I have thought about the young man's problem over the weekend, And several things come to mind. First, your young man is fighting two opposites. He wants to be with his dad, who likes things that apparently cause him extreme stress. (tears, shaking...something was very wrong, there)

Attitude: Were you upset that he didn't "enjoy" the trip as much as you thought he should, and did you show it? Actions...words. My dad loved fishing, but it was: "WE are here to fish! You WILL fish, and ENJOY it!"
Or maybe "BE a MAN!" Really, at 11?

After an hour, finally getting him to help you load your magazines sounds more like involuntary servitude than a fun experience for the kid. Maybe you need to talk the whole situation over with your wife. She may be able to give you some helpful information.

So, paraphrasing Ron Weasley; Maybe you need to rethink YOUR priorities. Been there, done that!:)

Good luck!
 

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Every one of us grew up at a different pace. Some kids grow up to be football heroes. Others play in the band. Neither, comparatively, is better. Neither is bad. It just IS.

Don't PUSH or you may lose him. Take him to the woods when you are bush hogging or preparing food plots. Let him help load feeders. Take him hunting with you. Let him sleep on stand until you are about to shoot something and then wake him up.

Let him shoot if he asks - even if it is potentially your biggest to date - and perhaps he misses. NO BIG DEAL. Another will take its place some day. If he connects, think about THOSE memories.

Back him up. Hold him to keep him from falling. It is the "little things" we take for granted that add up in his world.

Danglanzsr - WELCOME to the Forums!

At 55-years young (years ago), I sat at the public range, minding my own business. The a-hat that arrived late unloaded and shot a 300 Win Mag with muzzle brake at the station next to me. It removed paint from the sheet metal roofing. The pressure wave hit me in the side of the head one time. I immediately packed and left, target still down range. I didn't have to take that and had better things to do with my time.
 

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Discussion Starter #47 (Edited)
:)Some excellent advice given here, and you prepared your son for the range trip and future shooting very well!

I have extensive experience with someone like that...ME! I have a genetic condition that makes me ultra sensitive to loud, sharp, and sudden noises. Fireworks, manufacturing facilities, Jet or large propeller planes, a shrill phone, and ...shooting! That's a terrible affliction for someone who loves guns, airplanes and shooting like I do! First question...you did provide your young man with adequate hearing protection, didn't you? My good lady wife gave me a set of good electronic ear muffs one Christmas.:) I put mine on as soon as I leave the range office...100 yards from the firing line! Even then, it may not be enough! This is not to suggest your son has a similar affliction, just how mine affects me!
One day, I was shooting my revolver, with the usual mixture of big-bore handguns being present. I finally had enough, so I switched to my .22 rifle, which I know has no blast or kick! Suddenly, I had developed one wild flinch! I decided to return another day.

I have thought about the young man's problem over the weekend, And several things come to mind. First, your young man is fighting two opposites. He wants to be with his dad, who likes things that apparently cause him extreme stress. (tears, shaking...something was very wrong, there)

Attitude: Were you upset that he didn't "enjoy" the trip as much as you thought he should, and did you show it? Actions...words. My dad loved fishing, but it was: "WE are here to fish! You WILL fish, and ENJOY it!"
Or maybe "BE a MAN!" Really, at 11?

After an hour, finally getting him to help you load your magazines sounds more like involuntary servitude than a fun experience for the kid. Maybe you need to talk the whole situation over with your wife. She may be able to give you some helpful information.

So, paraphrasing Ron Weasley; Maybe you need to rethink YOUR priorities. Been there, done that!:)

Good luck!
There has been some excellent advice given, that's for sure. Yes he had adequate hearing protection, good muffs with foam ear plugs. Not sure how to respond to your "were you upset he didn't etc etc" comment, i never once showed displeasure with him and i did not make any comment in my posting that alluded to that. Getting him to help load the mags was just a "come on bud come help me if you want" type comment to him. I also never said man up to him but something totally 180 degrees in the opposite direction by telling him "it's ok" ...
 

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There has been some excellent advice given, that's for sure. Yes he had adequate hearing protection, good muffs with foam ear plugs. Not sure how to respond to your "were you upset he didn't etc etc" comment, i never once showed displeasure with him and i did make any comment in my posting that alluded to that. Getting him to help load the mags was just a "come on bud come help me if you want" type comment to him. I also never said man up to him but something totally 180 degrees in the opposite direction by telling him "it's ok" ...
Good man!:thumbsup:
 

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:)Some excellent advice given here, and you prepared your son for the range trip and future shooting very well!

I have extensive experience with someone like that...ME! I have a genetic condition that makes me ultra sensitive to loud, sharp, and sudden noises. Fireworks, manufacturing facilities, Jet or large propeller planes, a shrill phone, and ...shooting! That's a terrible affliction for someone who loves guns, airplanes and shooting like I do! First question...you did provide your young man with adequate hearing protection, didn't you? My good lady wife gave me a set of good electronic ear muffs one Christmas.:) I put mine on as soon as I leave the range office...100 yards from the firing line! Even then, it may not be enough! This is not to suggest your son has a similar affliction, just how mine affects me!
One day, I was shooting my revolver, with the usual mixture of big-bore handguns being present. I finally had enough, so I switched to my .22 rifle, which I know has no blast or kick! Suddenly, I had developed one wild flinch! I decided to return another day.

I have thought about the young man's problem over the weekend, And several things come to mind. First, your young man is fighting two opposites. He wants to be with his dad, who likes things that apparently cause him extreme stress. (tears, shaking...something was very wrong, there)

Attitude: Were you upset that he didn't "enjoy" the trip as much as you thought he should, and did you show it? Actions...words. My dad loved fishing, but it was: "WE are here to fish! You WILL fish, and ENJOY it!"
Or maybe "BE a MAN!" Really, at 11?

After an hour, finally getting him to help you load your magazines sounds more like involuntary servitude than a fun experience for the kid. Maybe you need to talk the whole situation over with your wife. She may be able to give you some helpful information.

So, paraphrasing Ron Weasley; Maybe you need to rethink YOUR priorities. Been there, done that!:)

Good luck!
You sure made a bunch of assumptions here. And on what basis??
 

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You sure made a bunch of assumptions here. And on what basis??
I may have not expressed myself as well as I had hoped. I was trying to obtain information, not be accusatory or assuming, and perhaps I did cross a line. If so, apologies!

I have personally experienced some of the situations I inquired about, where an attitude adjustment was definitely necessary.
 
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