Practical pistol shooting is lauded by many as the ultimate in preparing for self-defense, while dismissed by others as potentially getting you killed in the streets. Regardless, the simulated stress of performing in front of others while on the clock with challenging target presentations is not something most folks get exposure to on a square range. Those who have access to proper pistol bays can’t be bothered to lug out all the props. I’ve been a match director for an International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) match for about a year now. While it’s clearly a game at its core, it still tests fundamentals in a way that self-directed practice doesn’t. Each week we have 25-35 shooters of varying levels of experience and skill, so conservatively I get to watch 75,000 rounds (plus my own training regimen) poke holes down range. The experience has been invaluable, and taught me a lot about competition shooting, shooting in general, and people . . .