The International Defensive Pistol Association is the governing body of a shooting sport that simulates self-defense scenarios and real life encounters. It was founded in 1996 as a response to the desires of shooters worldwide. The organization now boasts membership of more than 11,000, including members in 19 foreign countries.

One of the unique facets of this sport is that it is geared toward the new or average shooter, yet is fun, challenging and rewarding for the experienced shooter. The founders developed the sport so that practical gear and practical guns may be used competitively. An interested person can spend a minimal amount on equipment and still be competitive. The main goal is to test the skill and ability of the individual, not equipment or gamesmanship. ?Competition only? equipment is not permitted in this sport.

The firearms are grouped into five (5) divisions:
1. Custom De1. Custom Defensive Pistol (.45ACP semi-automatics only);

2. Enhanced Service Pistol (9mm (9x19) or larger caliber semi-automatics);

3. Stock Service Pistol (9mm (9x19) or larger caliber double action, double action only, or safe action semi-automatics); 4) Enhanced Service Revolver (.38 caliber or larger double action revolvers);

4. Stock Service Revolver (.38 caliber or larger double action revolvers).

See Appendix One - Equipment for delineations in the revolver divisions.

Shooters are then classed by like-skill levels with progression from Novice (NV); to Marksman (MM); to Sharpshooter (SS); to Expert (EX); and, finally, to Master (MA). For a list of International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) gear, please visit and click on the IDPA Rule Book (holsters pg 29-35; belts/accy's pg 36-39)

If you have any further questions regarding IDPA gear criteria, please contact

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