United States Practical Shooting Association

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The United States Practical Shooting Association, or USPSA, is the national governing body of one form of Practical shooting in the United States, and is the US Region of the International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC). Its over 25,000 active members,[1] and over 400 affiliated clubs, make USPSA the largest competitive pistol shooting organization in the United States and the largest Region within IPSC. USPSA publishes a member magazine called Front Sight six times a year.

Organization[edit]

The United States Practical Shooting Association (USPSA) is a 501c(3) non-profit Delaware corporation that is currently headquartered in Burlington, Washington. USPSA is organized into 8 "Areas", each of which is represented by an Area Director at the board meetings of the organization. Each Area is divided into sections. Each section is represented by a Section Coordinator who is responsible for coordinating the activities of clubs within his/her section, and managing the nationals slot distribution process.

The Board of Directors comprises the President and the 8 Area Directors. The President is elected by all of the members to a 4-year term. Each Area Director is elected by the members in that Area to a three-year term. The Board of Directors' responsibilities include: financial strategy, including budget, planning and investment strategies, membership recruitment and retention strategies, marketing strategies, strategies for the format and location of National Championship matches, strategies for the establishment and/or management of relationships with other shooting organizations, including IPSC, drafting and revising the rules that USPSA matches are conducted under, and review and ratification of National Range Officer Institute (NROI) policies and procedures. Each member of the Board has an equal voice, with the President breaking any ties.

As of 2013, the Board is:[2]

History[edit]

IPSC was formed in 1976 at a meeting in Columbia, Missouri, led by the late Jeff Cooper.[3] It was here that the sport of Practical Shooting was formally established after years of independent efforts around the country to build upon the handgun skills and training for self-defense. The early days of the sport can be traced back to the 1950s and the quick draw “leather slap” competitions that grew out of America's love affair with the TV westerns of that era.

In 1984 USPSA was incorporated as the US Region of IPSC.

Practical Shooting challenged the then accepted standards of technique, training practices and equipment. Its early pioneers developed scenario-based competitions to accurately measure the effectiveness of their own shooting techniques and equipment.[citation needed] The rapid shooting on-the-move style of Practical Shooting gave birth to the term “Run and Gun” so commonly used today to describe the sport.

For more than 30 years the sport has served as the test bed for new products and the unofficial R&D for the firearms industry. With some competitors annually shooting in excess of 100,000 rounds, no other venue offers a better in-service assessment of a firearm’s performance or the brutal gauntlet of high-level competition through which a gun must survive to be declared reliable.[citation needed]

Ranks[edit]

The USPSA ranks its shooters in classes, according to their performance on a classifier stage. The ranks are:[4]

  • Grand Master 95 to 100%
  • Master 85 to 94.9%
  • A 75 to 84.9%
  • B 60 to 74.9%
  • C 40 to 59.9%
  • D 2 to 40%

USPSA's Competitive Divisions[edit]

As the governing body of IPSC shooting in the United States, USPSA provides a wide range of competitive opportunities for shooters with regulated competition in six distinct divisions. Each division within USPSA is determined by the kind of firearm used and ranges from production guns, the “stock cars” of the sport, to fully customized open guns that are the Formula 1 cars of Practical Shooting. The following is an explanation of the six divisions within USPSA.

Production Division[edit]

Production Division[5][6] is strictly limited to the use of production handguns with actions that are double-action-only, double-action/single-action or striker-fired – mostly in the caliber of 9mm. These are the “duty guns” available from nearly every pistol maker and each of the major manufacturers offers a wide variety of models that meet USPSA Production Division requirements. Stock revolvers may also be used, including the 7- and 8-shot variants. USPSA greatly restricts the level of modifications that can be performed on a Production gun.

While capacity is not uniform across model, caliber or manufacture, USPSA levels the playing field by limiting shooters to just 10 rounds per magazine. Regardless of the round used in Production, the division is scored as a minor power factor. Holsters and allied equipment must be “non-race-type” and be worn behind the forward most point of hip. Most shooters use a standard outside-the-waistband belted holster intended for daily wear, often made of kydex or plastic.

Revolver Division[edit]

The Revolver Division is intended for stock revolvers and shooters are restricted to only six rounds between reloads.[7] Modifications are limited and optical sights, porting and recoil compensators are prohibited. However, shooters may change grips, enlarge the cylinder release, change sights, chamfer cylinders and tune the action as they desire.

While .45 ACP is the most popular, shooters may score major using any cartridge that fires a .355 or larger bullet. Typically, competitors will use a "race" style holster in the Revolver Division.

Single Stack Division[edit]

The Single Stack 1911 Division caters to the traditional 1911 fan.[8] USPSA introduced Single Stack as a provisional division in 2006 and made it a regular division in 2008. Only single-stack model 1911-pattern pistols are allowed in this division, and they must comply with a maximum weight limit, as well as fit fully within a box of specific dimensions. The equipment rules are similar to Production Division, other than providing for 8 rounds for major calibers and 10 rounds for minor. As for holsters, Single Stack shooters must adhere to guidelines similar to the Production Division, although unlike Production, dropped and offset holsters are not allowed. All equipment must be worn behind the hips and the holster must be a practical, non-race style such as those intended for daily wear.

Limited Division[edit]

Limited Division features both wide-body, or double-stack, 1911 pistols and single-stack 1911 pistols.[9] Additionally, non-1911 pistols are also permitted. Modifications allowed to the gun include those for the Limited-10 Division, plus shooters may use high-capacity magazines so long as the magazine is does not have an overall length greater than 141.25mm for double-stack pistols and 171.25mm for single-stack pistols.

As with Limited-10, shooters must use a .400 caliber or larger bullet in order to score a major power factor.

Limited-10 Division[edit]

The Limited-10 Division features both wide-body, or double-stack, 1911 pistols and single-stack 1911 pistols.[10] Additionally, non-1911 pistols are also permitted. The name, Limited-10, is a reference to the total number of rounds (10) a competitor can load in his/her magazine. This capacity limitation eliminates any capacity advantage one model pistol would have over another. It was developed in response to the 1994 Crime Bill, which limited the capacity of newly made magazines to 10 rounds.

Competitors can make various minor modifications such as change sights, grips, slide stops, magazine releases and mainspring housings but optical sights, porting or a recoil compensator are strictly prohibited.

Calibers can be either minor (9mm, .38 Special, and down-loaded .40 S&W, for example) or major (.40S&W and larger). However, in order to score major, a Limited-10 (as well as Limited) pistol must use a .400 caliber or larger bullet.

Open Division[edit]

As its name implies, the Open Division allows for the greatest range of pistol and sight modification.[11] Pistols used in Open Division competition are the shooting equivalent to the Formula 1 race car. They are custom built with parts and features specifically designed for competition. The most notable modifications are the use of recoil compensators and red dot optical sighting systems. The overall length of the magazine is restricted to 171.25mm. While the most popular cartridge in the Open Division is one of several variants of the .38 Super, shooters may compete with a pistol chambered in any caliber that takes a .354" or larger bullet. While USPSA rules previously prohibited 9x19 from scoring major power factor in the Open Division, that rule has since been relaxed and 9mm Major has become popular in consequence.

Range Safety / Match Officials[edit]

In conjunction with IPSC, USPSA has their own dedicated range offfcials, which is run by the National Range Officers Institute (NROI). The NROI is responsible for the training and certification of the Range Officials, firearm safety, good course design and advising the membership on the application of the rules as determined by the Board of Directors.

There are 5 different types of Range Officials:

  1. Range Officer (RO)
  2. Chief Range Officer (CRO)
  3. Range Master (RM)
  4. Tournament Director (TD)
  5. Range Master Instructor (RMI)

National Championship Matches[edit]

Each year, USPSA holds National Championship matches for Open, Limited, Limited 10, Production, Revolver and 3-Gun (now called Multi Gun). Sometimes, all of the pistol Nationals are held at the same time, other years, they have been broken up between different ranges. The 3-Gun/Multi-Gun Nationals are always held at a separate range and date from the pistol Nationals. In order to attend one of the pistol Nationals, a competitor usually has to win a "slot", usually by placing well enough at various regional and Area Championship matches held throughout the year. Currently, anyone can participate in the 3-Gun/Multi-Gun Nationals on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Past USPSA Champions[edit]

2013 Nationals[12] Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Max Michel, Jr. Jessie Duff
Limited Nils Jonasson Jessie Duff
Limited-10 Nils Jonasson Tori Nonaka
Single Stack Rob Leatham Jessie Duff
Production Ben Stoeger Randi Rogers
Revolver Jerry Miculek Annette Aysen
Multi-Gun Open Michael Voigt Dianna Liedorff
Multi-Gun Limited Chris Sechiatano N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Nils Jonasson Katie Harris
2012 Nationals[13] Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Shane Coley Jessie Duff
Limited Blake Miguez Jessie Duff
Limited-10 Bob Vogel Randi Rogers
Single Stack Nils Jonasson Julie Golob
Production Benjamin Stoeger Randi Rogers
Revolver Jerry Miculek Annette Aysen
Multi-Gun Open Taran Butler N/A
Multi-Gun Limited Chris Sechiatano N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Daniel Horner Katie Harris
2011 Nationals[14] Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Max Michel, Jr. Rebecca Jones
Limited Shannon Smith Jessie Harrison
Limited-10 Bob Vogel Lisa Munson
Single Stack Dave Sevigny Sara Dunivin
Production Ben Stoeger Julie Golob
Revolver Jerry Miculek Julie Golob
Multi-Gun Open Michael Voigt Kay Miculek
Multi-Gun Limited Kurt Miller N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Daniel Horner Katie Harris
2010 Nationals[15] Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open KC Eusebio Rebecca Jones
Limited Nils Jonasson Jessie Abbate
Limited-10 Travis Tomasie Randi Rogers
Single Stack Rob Leatham Julie Golob
Production Dave Sevigny Randi Rogers
Revolver Jerry Miculek N/A
Multi-Gun Open Jerry Miculek Maggie Reese
Multi-Gun Limited N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Daniel Horner Tasha Hanish
2009 Nationals[16] Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Max Michel, Jr.
Limited Ted Puente Jessie Abbate
Limited-10 Dave Sevigny Randi Rogers
Single Stack Rob Leatham Lisa Munson
Production Bob Vogel Jessie Abbate
Revolver Cliff Walsh N/A
Multi-Gun Open Michael Voigt Maggie Reese
Multi-Gun Limited N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Daniel Horner Tasha Hanish
2008 Nationals[17] Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Chris Tilley Rebecca Jones
Limited Travis Tomasie Jessie Abbate
Limited-10 Dave Sevigny Jessie Abbate
Single Stack Rob Leatham Lisa Munson
Production Bob Vogel
Revolver Jerry Miculek N/A
Multi-Gun Open Jerry Miculek Kay Miculek
Multi-Gun Limited Bruce Piatt N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Taran Butler Jessie Abbate
2007 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Max Michel, Jr. Athena Lee
Limited Rob Leatham Lisa Munson
Limited-10 Rob Leatham Julie Goloski
Single Stack Rob Leatham Kippi Leatham
Production Dave Sevigny Jessie Abbate
Revolver Jerry Miculek N/A
Multi-Gun Open Jerry Miculek N/A
Multi-Gun Limited Ted Puente N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Daniel Horner Jessie Abbate
2006 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Chris Tilley Kay Miculek
Limited Dave Sevigny Lisa Munson
Limited-10 Max Michel, Jr. Julie Goloski
Single Stack Rob Leatham Julie Goloski
Production Rob Leatham Julie Goloski
Revolver Jerry Miculek N/A
Multi-Gun Open Michael Voigt N/A
Multi-Gun Limited Ted Puente N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Taran Butler Cheryl Current
2005 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Max Michel, Jr. Doni Spencer
Limited Rob Leatham Kay Miculek
Limited-10 Dave Sevigny Julie Goloski
Production Dave Sevigny Julie Goloski
Revolver Jerry Miculek N/A
Multi-Gun Open Jerry Miculek Kay Miculek
Multi-Gun Limited Kelly Neal N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Taran Butler Denise Pearman
2004 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Max Michel, Jr. Kay Miculek
Limited Rob Leatham Carina Randolph
Limited-10 Steve Broom Julie Huseby
Production Dave Sevigny Julie Goloski
Revolver Jerry Miculek N/A
Multi-Gun Open Michael Voigt Kay Miculek
Multi-Gun Limited Bennie Cooley N/A
Multi-Gun Tactical Taran Butler N/A
2003 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Todd Jarrett Kay Miculek
Limited Rob Leatham Lisa Munson
Limited-10 Todd Jarrett Lisa Munson
Production Dave Sevigny Angi Kelley
Revolver Jerry Miculek N/A
3-Gun Open Jerry Miculek Nancy Huspek
3-Gun Limited Taran Butler N/A
2002 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Todd Jarrett Lisa Munson
Limited Rob Leatham Renee Tyson
Limited-10 Rob Leatham Lisa Munson
Production Todd Jarrett Angi Kelley
Revolver Jerry Miculek N/A
3-Gun Open Michael Voigt Debora Cheek
3-Gun Limited Bennie Cooley Vicki Carlton
2001 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Jerry Barnhart Kay Miculek
Limited Rob Leatham Lisa Munson
Limited-10 Tom Campbell N/A
Production Dave Sevigny N/A
3-Gun Open Michael Voigt Kay Miculek
3-Gun Limited Bennie Cooley Cheryl Current
2000 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Todd Jarrett Kay Miculek
Limited Rob Leatham Lisa Munson
Limited-10 Ron Avery N/A
Production Ernest Langdon N/A
1999 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Jerry Barnhart Julie Goloski
Limited Jerry Barnhart Julie Goloski
Limited-10 Jerry Miculek Kay Miculek
1998 Nationals Men's Champion Women's Champion
Open Todd Jarrett Kim Stroud
Limited Rob Leatham Sharon Zaffiro
Limited-10 Jerry Miculek Kay Miculek

USPSA Area States[edit]

The USPSA is divided into of eight areas, each area having several member states.

Area 1) Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming
Area 2) Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, and New Mexico
Area 3) Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, and South Dakota
Area 4) Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas
Area 5) Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, and West Virginia
Area 6) Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee
Area 7) Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont
Area 8) District of Columbia, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Virginia

USPSA Purchases Steel Challenge[edit]

In December 2007, USPSA purchased the Steel Challenge and the Steel Challenge Shooting Association (SCSA) from owners and creators Mike Dalton and Mike Fichman.[18]

The match design of Dalton and Fichman called for simple stages, or courses of fire, made up of just five steel plates. The steel plates are of differing sizes and placed at various distances and angles to create a variety of challenges. The shooter assumes his or her position in the shooting box and, upon the beep of the timer, draw their pistol and shoots each plate with the fifth being a stop plate synchronized to the timer. Each shooter shoots the stage five times with the slowest time dropped. The score is the combined time of the best four runs and that time added to the combined times of the other stages for a final match score.

In 2007, more than 220 shooters competed for over $390,000 in cash and prizes. The match was held every year in Piru, California until 2012 when it was moved to Frostproof, Florida.

Related[edit]

Arranging USPSA matches[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]