If you are new to the world of shooting buying a .22 weapon is a great place to start. Even if you are not new it makes a great next purchase (as I am writing this I am planning on picking up a new one tomorrow). The reason why the .22 is so wonderful is because it is so cheap to shoot. A box of 550 .22 lr shells costs the same as a box of 50 9mm; around $15. The guns themselves are now being made in to scale versions of their larger caliber counter parts. What I mean is I just purchased a Smith & Wesson M&P .22 lr. The reason why I bought this gun is I usually shoot a Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm. The .22 is almost identical in grip, trigger pull, size, and weight. It works with my holster as well.
Now I can practice more with a gun that is almost identical in every way to the one I like to shoot the most but at a fraction of the cost. So I can work on drills more frequently and not have to worry about cost, or my wife getting mad at me for spending too much on ammo. I will use this for breaking bad habits that I have picked up, also the more frequent someone shoots the better shooter they become. I heard a professional shooter say it is better to shoot 150 rounds a day everyday than 1000 rounds at a time once a week. With owning a .22 that is now a possible. I probably won't shoot everyday, I am not a pro shooter, but since I am not making it out even once a week these days that is probably what I will start doing.
Handguns are not thr only weapon that has a .22 counter part. Most assault rifle manufacturers have been building .22 lr versions. The most popular being the AR15/22. What is cool about these is the amount of recoil you experience with a .22 is not much less than a .223 which goes in the traditional AR15, which is not much in either case, so you can get a pretty authentic assault rifle experience for a fraction of the cost.
I actually had my AR15 before these guns got popular, so what I did is add a conversion kit on my existing gun so I can swap back and forth between the rounds. I will do a post on the conversion kit later.
Another reason why the .22 is so great, especially for new shooters is it has very little recoil or "kick.". A .22 is not going to break your wrist or give you a black eye. This is a great way to build confidence handling firearms without having a savage recoil to intimidate you. It is also good to use to practice proper fundamentals before graduating to a larger caliber weapon. Many people, myself included, develop bad habits in shooting trying to anticipate or brace ourselves for the recoil of the gun. A .22 can be used to develop proper muscle memory so when you shoot a larger round with greater recoil you do it properly.
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