International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA)

You may hear about IPSC, but how about IDPA?  IDPA carried out another shooting sport similar to IPSC’s match(IPSC) but there are some differences in nature.  Talking about IPSC, it involves the use of pistol to engage a series of targets in fastest time and highest accuracy.  Pistol used can be mounted with optics in Open Matches, be ported in Modified Class Matches and be normal carry gun for Limited Matches.  In IDPA’s match (IDPA), the format is similar to IPSC except:

  •  Practical is THE word to emphasis in IDPA, all matches scenario are simulation of real live threatening situation
  •  Accuracy is main objective, leaving time factor second
  •  IDPA use practical and conceal hosters which are wore daily, not open or competition only hosters used in IPSC
  •  Only daily carry gun can be used in IDPA, and there are limitation on gun modification
  •  Shooter is to be covered when shooting targets (only when told) or while reloading
  •  Tactical reload and speed reload are used
  • To be more detailed, IDPA is more “realistic” compared with IPSC, you need to use normal carry gun, daily wore holster to shoot real life simulated scenarios.  There will not be “all targets waiting for you to shoot” situation in IDPA as sometimes you need to take cover before engaging targets.  There are two types of reloading method.  Tactical reload means leaving no ammunition on the ground after reloading.  Shooters need to pouched his ejected magazine after reloading.  The purpose is to top up the shooters’ ammo before engaging next series of targets.  Speed reload is the other type.  Empty magazine can be left after reload, which is the same as IPSC reloads.  These two types of reload is not selective but will be detailed in course of fire.
    Guns used in IDPA are limited as well.  There are altogether 4 division of pistol classifications.  Their details are as follows:

    Popular "stock" Double Action/Safe Action factory service pistols such as the Glock, Beretta, S&W, Ruger, Browning and SIG.

    Popular Single Action 9mm/.38/.40 service pistols such as the Browning HP, CZ-75, EAA Witness and 1911A1 pattern pistols.

    "Practical" custom 1911 style 10mm/.45 single stack pistols or various hi-capacity pistols such as the Para-Ordnance, STI/SVI and Glock 20/21 are in this division. There are many out-of-the-box 1911 style pistols that can be used in this division with little or no custom work.

    Common proven service revolvers such as the Smith & Wesson Model 66, 686 or Ruger GP-100 are in this division.

    Limitation on gun modifications includes:


  • No compensator, ported and heavy barrel (bull barrel)
  • No optics sight and modification on sight other than factory fitted sight
  • No Add on weights
  • No Extended dust covers
  • No Sights of other than notch and post configuration (e.g. ghost ring)
  • No extended oversize magazine release buttons

  • Trigger works but safety is to be maintained
  • Change of sights to another notch and post type
  • Change of grips (no weighted grips)
  • Internal accuracy work to include replacement of barrel with one of factory configuration.
  • Internal reliability work
  • Extended thumb and grip safeties
  • Change of hammer and other trigger action parts to enhance trigger pull
  • Beveled magazine well and add-on well extensions
  • The purpose of all these regulations is to promote carry gun only concepts.  If the gun is not suitable for daily carry, it cannot be used in competition.  In fact, most shooters in US IDPA uses their carry gun to compete, which is the ultimate concept of IDPA.

    Shooting under cover is essential in IDPA

    Scoring system of IDPA is different too.  It has two system of scoring system, Vicker’s count and PAR time.  Vicker’s count first record the time of shooter needed to finish the course (raw time), then add penalty seconds for accuracy lose to make up the total time.  Shooters with least time will be the winner.  For example, assumed a course with 3 targets.  Shooter can gain 15 points (3 targets X 5 points) maximum.  If he can only gain 9 points out of 15, the lose of accuracy (6 points) will be multiply by 0.5 second to make up 3 seconds.  Adding that to the raw time will be the final time.
    Standard exercises are often scored on a PAR time basis and final score will be in points rather than time. Since it is not suitable for "Scenario" stages, people interested can visit IDPA site to gain more information.

    Although there are many new rules, bear in mind that IDPA is a different competition. IDPA is another competition for shooters who prefer practical way of target shooting.  IDPA is at its initial stage in Hong Kong and Top Gun Shooting Association is having trials on BBIDPA (IDPA using air-soft gun).  Anyone who is interested can contact DEN Trinity through e-mail and we welcome any new comers who want to join this exciting new sport.

    Drawing from concealment
    Offical website of IDPA
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