About KR Training
Our Austin-area CHL classes, held at a facility near the Austin airport, are 'one stop shopping'- classroom lecture, written test, shooting test, fingerprinting, passport photos, notary service and lunch served onsite - all done at one location in one session. When class is over you'll have a completed packet ready to send to DPS. All you will need to add is your payment to DPS. We offer CHL new permit and CHL renewal classes every month, taught by retired Austin Police Dept academy instructor Tom Schaefer at his private training facility (Schaefer Academy) located 30 minutes south of Bergstrom airport. Our CHL new permit classes are intended for people that already know how to shoot. If you need basic handgun shooting instruction we offer Basic Pistol 1 and Basic Pistol 2 classes at our A-Zone Range 1 hour east of Austin, and a Beginner Pistol course at our CHL facility.
Our basic, intermediate and advanced pistol courses, taught at our facility 1 hr east of Austin, are taught by a team of male and female instructors. All of our staff instructors are certified by the NRA and Texas DPS. Several team members are also TCLEOSE-certified law enforcement instructors. Our instructors are also pistol competitors active in local clubs and national-level events including the Steel Challenge and the Polite Society Tactical Conference, and they have trained with many well-known tactical, defensive and competition shooting schools and instructors. Our shooting team members compete in world level IPSC and national level USPSA competitions, world level Steel Challenge matches, and national championships such as the Sportsman's Team Challenge. We've also trained and certified hundreds of NRA instructors and taught federal and local law enforcement officers and military personnel. Several of our instructors have had articles published in gun magazines and have been featured on local TV news, the Outdoor Channel, and the BBC.
Experience & Training
We opened in 1991, before the Texas CHL program existed, and for many years we were the only school in the area offering firearms training to private citizens. When CHL passed and was signed into law, Karl, Penny and Tom were in the first CHL instructor classes DPS ran, and we started teaching CHL courses on the first day. We've trained thousands of students over the past 20 years.
Tom Schaefer, our lead CHL instructor, has over 20 years experience as a law enforcement officer working the streets of Austin, including experience confronting violent criminals and dealing with criminal trials. In addition to his CHL instructor rating, he has multiple law enforcement instructor ratings in firearms, driving, and unarmed self-defense, and undergraduate and graduate degrees in law enforcement-related fields. As an off duty police officer, Tom carried concealed every day for decades, and as a holster maker, he understands the nuances of proper holster selection and fit and how it affects concealability and draw speed.
Our primary shooting instructors (Karl and Penny) have trained with a long list of respected tactical schools (Thunder Ranch, InSights, Tactical Defense Institute, and many more), and have trained with world champion competitive shooters (Todd Jarrett, Max Michel, Ted Bonnet, Kay Clark-Miculek, Jerry Miculek, Rob Leatham, Brian Enos, and others). We compete in local, state, national and world level matches. Karl is a nationally known trainer and certified law enforcement instructor specializing in force on force training who has taught instructor-level courses in multiple states, and runs the force on force component of the Polite Society Tactical Conference each year.
Instructors and Top Handgun Shooters Train With Us
Many of the newer firearms training schools in the Austin area are run and staffed by people who got their NRA instructor training from us, and/or took advanced firearms and tactics courses with us. Most of the shooters winning local matches, and members of local law enforcement SWAT teams, have trained with us or with guest instructors we have hosted at our facility. We bring in top national level instructors to teach classes at our facility every year. Recent guests include Tom Givens from Rangemaster, "Southnarc" from Shivworks, Max Michel from the US Army Shooting Team, and Greg Hamilton from InSights Training.
Wide Range of Courses
Most other area schools only offer CHL classes because these are the most profitable and are required by the state. A few offer beginner classes modeled on our program. We offer classes to help you progress from total novice or untrained gun owner to well-prepared armed citizen and highly skilled shooter. We also offer unarmed and knife skills training relevant to the armed citizen through courses taught by guest instructors.
Facilities & Equipment
We own and operate private, dedicated training facilities so that students can learn in a comfortable environment free from interruptions, spectators and other distractions. We have a wide selection of loaner/rental guns and holsters available for students to use in our classes. In our intermediate and advanced classes, students get to use reactive steel targets, moving targets and other specialized equipment unavailable at commercial shooting ranges.
Quality Is Important to Us
In order to keep our skills sharp and our course content up to date, our instructors spend time each year in professional development: taking classes from subject matter experts, shooting competitions, and attending and/or presenting at training conferences. Our team includes male and female instructors, because there are gender-specific issues related to shooting techniques and equipment selection.
If you are just getting started, you'll be safer and shoot better if you learn the right skills and start with the right equipment. If you are a gun owner that's never had any formal training, we can help you tune up your technique so you can shoot tighter groups, get faster hits, speed up your concealment draw, and teach you advanced skills like shooting on the move and shooting in low light conditions.
We don't combine CHL new permit and renewal classes into a single "combo" course. Instructors do this out of greed and for their own convenience, not to provide a quality course for students. We believe that it is too confusing for new permit students to learn critical topics such as use of force and Texas gun laws by sitting through a "review" lecture that assumes students already know the material. Some schools run very large classes and fail to adequately supervise students on the range.
Other schools will let students with absolutely no shooting experience or skill into a CHL new permit class, and then let the student fumble through the shooting test, certifying that student as "ready to carry" when the student shoots the minimum score required to pass. If you are signing up for CHL new permit but are not comfortable and confident enough with your shooting and gunhandling to go to the range to practice by yourself, without that knowledgable spouse or friend that always helps you, we strongly recommend that you take one of our pre-CHL basic courses before the CHL class. That knowledgeable spouse or helpful friend probably won't be around to help you rack the slide or find the safety if you ever need to use your gun to defend yourself.
We want our CHL students to have the best possible chances of surviving a violent attack. That means more than just "having a gun" and making a "C-" on the CHL written and shooting tests. In the CHL test you get to start with the gun in your hand, standing still, shooting a giant stationary target in good light with generous time limits. Data on real incidents shows that the most likely scenario is that you will start with your gun holstered and concealed, have very little time, dim light, and you may face more than one attacker who will be attempting to cause you serious bodily injury or death. This is why we offer many training courses that go beyond the state-mandated CHL course, including classes that teach non-shooting (but very important self-defense) skills such as awareness, communication, tactics, unarmed defense and more. The CHL course is a first step down the path, not the destination.
Our goal is to teach students what they actually need to know to make a smart handgun selection, to shoot fast and accurate, and to make legally justifiable and tactically correct decisions about what actions to take in a life-threatening situation.