About the Course

Training unfolds in two relaxed, enjoyable sessions—take one or both, depending on your needs and interests.

Part I – Classroom. In this 2-hour orientation to self-defense over sixty, you’ll learn:

  • The self-defense mindset and 4-levels of awareness that can keep you safe.
  • The principles of safe gun handling—whether or not you are a shooter—using inert, non-firing plastic “Blue Gun” trainers.
  • Ways to compensate for age- or health-related conditions in self-defense.
  • How to avoid a violent confrontation and what to do if you cannot.
  • How to deal with the aftermath of a gun-related incident.
  • Strategies to make your home a safer haven.
  • Strategies for protecting yourself in a car or RV.
  • Defense against dangerous animals, on the street or on the trail.
  • If you choose to own a handgun, how to store it safely and accessibly at home and in a vehicle.

Self-Defense for SeniorsPart II – Firing Range. Take what you learned in class onto the range for a 2-hour personalized tutorial on techniques that suit you best. In this hands-on session, you’ll learn:

  • How to safely load, unload, and “check clear” your semi-automatic pistol or revolver.
  • How to diagnose and correct common handgun malfunctions.
  • The firing stance, sight picture, and trigger technique that works best for you.
  • Special shooting techniques designed for older eyes and weaker hands.
  • How to evaluate your marksmanship and make each practice session count.


Both classroom and range portions of this training are open to any adult 55 or older who is lawfully permitted to possess a handgun. Although live-fire training is not necessary to benefit from this course, completion of Part I (classroom) instruction is necessary to participate in Part II (firing range) training. When you contact us, please note any mobility or health conditions that your instructor should know about to help you get the most from your training.

You Will Need to Bring

For Part I (Classroom) training, no firearm or ammunition is required or allowed in class; just wear comfortable, casual clothing.

For Part II (firing range) training, you are encouraged to bring the handgun with which you are most familiar and most likely to use in an emergency. Your handgun may be of any type or caliber, although common defensive calibers (9 mm or .38 Special, minimum), are recommended, along with 20 rounds of factory ammunition and ear & eye protection (prescription lenses satisfy this latter requirement). If you wear a hearing aid and do not use electronic ear protection, please wear your hearing aid under muff-style ear protectors to better follow range commands and communicate with your instructor. We recommend wearing comfortable, loose-fitting clothes, close-toed shoes, high-necked shirt or blouse that covers the shoulders, and a billed hat, such as a baseball cap, even if the firing range is indoors. These precautions help you avoid the unpleasant sting of hot brass ejected from your gun or by a neighboring pistol.

If you wish to participate in Part II range training and do not possess a handgun or range safety gear, CTWT can provide them on request for a nominal fee.

Need Health-Care or Mobility Assistance?

A companion-assistant providing health- or mobility-related services to you must be 18 years or older and be identified when you register. They may accompany you for both Parts I and II at no extra charge, and are not counted toward the attendance limit for training; but they may not handle a firearm. We will provide them with range safety equipment at no extra charge. For their own safety and the security of others, service animals are not permitted in either classroom or range portions of this course.

We Will Provide

For Part I (classroom) training: unless otherwise available at the facility: coffee, soft-drinks, light snacks, and bottled water, along with a pen and pad for taking notes. For Part II (range) training: all targets, target markers, and bottled water. Upon advanced request, a handgun, ammo, and range safety gear can be provided to shooters for a nominal fee, and safety gear to a health-care companion-assistant at no charge.

Fee for Private Class: $120 per person

Part I (Classroom) or Part II (Firing Range): $120 per person, per part, 1 to 4 individuals, excluding any health-care assistants. A $40 equipment rental fee is added for any shooter requesting CTWT-supplied handgun, ammo, and range safety gear.

Fee for Group Training: $60 per person

Part I (Classroom) or Part II (Firing Range): $60 per person, per part. A $40 equipment rental fee is added for any shooter requesting CTWT-supplied handgun, ammo, and range safety gear. While any number may register for Part I (classroom) instruction, Part II range training is limited to between 5 and 15 participants; larger groups are divided into smaller sections and range-time scheduled separately.

Contact us to Schedule Your Training

A Certificate of Completion is issued to each participant at the end of both Part I and Part II training.

Gift Certificates are available for Self-Defense for Seniors! Click here to learn more

This is not an NRA-approved course.

Circle the Wagons Training provides both NRA-approved and unique specialty instruction courses.