Howdy everyone, this is my first post on here and I was looking for some insight. Are any of you firearms instructors or know of anyone who is one as a career? I did some serious thinking about where my life is heading last night and I was trying to think of something I could honestly do the rest of my life and love going to work everyday. My father instilled a great respect and love for firearms at a very young age and I'd like to continue that passion. So what careers involve firearms, and specifically what is the exact route to becoming a firearms instructor as a career?
What does the future of private ownership in your area look like? If it looks like it may become more liberal regarding gun ownership, there may be something in the market for volume in beginner classes (this is a revolver, this is an auto, this is how you clean them) and basic marksmanship.
What you're going to run into is a numbers game. There's a glut of people capable of instructing, and not that big a market. Most people won't train unless they're compelled to in some way. And, it's difficult to upsell. What I mean by that is, in Florida, you don't need a permit to own, so few people get formally trained in basic maintenance or safety. You do need a permit to carry, but are only required to be trained in basic safety. You don't even need range time to carry concealed here. So, everyone and their brother offers 4 hour "certification" courses, with half that time taken up with application instruction. If that's all that's required, how the hell is anyone going to make money with a true concealed carry course?
The real money might just come from being an instructor-trainer. That is, you teach the coaches. The problem then is, as Sean asked a bit more politely, "Who the fuck are you?" Have you competed? Won any matches? Trained anyone who won any matches? You are also too young and inexperienced to be a tactical instructor. We've had a decade and a half of warfare, and all those gunfighters are coming home with all that experience. There isn't much market there either.
Something you might consider, if you're mechanically minded and good with your hands, gunsmithing. If you're really good and artistic, custom gunsmithing. But, just being a regular gunsmith could probably put food on the table. And, you could fill the time with instructing on the side. I know Glock has an armorers course. You could set yourself up for years fixing those damned things.
Well put and I don't have much of anything to add to this. Glock has a few different levels of armorers course and a Glock Instructor course. In my mind these would add to your professional credentials, but not enough to make it a full-time job. Gunsmithing would probably be your best bet, but again you have to look at where you are and judge the market.
I'm probably echoing everybody else, but in my experience, unless you're working someplace like Gunsight, or the FBI Academy, civilian firearms instruction is usually a "collateral duty". It's something that's part of the job, but definitely not the whole job, nor even most of the job.
What about owning and operating an indoor range? If there's a city near you, or you live in a city, there might not be a place for people to shoot. Once you get the building, insurance, etc there wouldn't be much overhead, and you could sell memberships. Half the members would never show up. You could collect spent shell casings either reload them or pay someone to do it for you.
Also, you could consider being a contract killer, or "Hit Man"
That requires a certain, moral plasticity.
So does selling wedding cakes
I see what you did there....
Second suggest aside, John Muir makes my point exactly. He suggests owning and operating an indoor range...which would make firearms instruction part of the job, but not the whole job.
I hadn't ever considered a range. We have a few around here but they are all outdoor ranges that can only be used for about 5 months at a time. Upstate New York has some brutal winters and an inside range might just be what people would go for. Maybe a .22 range and a pistol range?
You can be an instructor and gunsmith as well. You will make twice or maybe three times the amount of money and you will know how to fix your own guns.
I get the impression that firearms instructors are a dime a dozen in the US but they're not all that common in Canada. Up here a good way to make a career out of it is to be a "use of force" instructor for a government agency or a police / military organization. They're common in police / military but they're a fairly new phenomenon for many government agencies (like customs & immigration) who only recently started carrying firearms.