Say what? Can’t hear you.
It is a good idea to use eye and ear protection anytime shooting is involved. Often, it is required – like at shooting ranges.
Although veteran shooters usually have acquired specific eye and ear protection that is customized to fit their normal shooting situations, what about new or infrequent shooters?
While at the Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trades (SHOT) Show earlier this year, I stopped by the Howard Leight booth. This company is a big name in hearing protection for all kinds of situations, not just the shooting sports – although they also are a big factor in this industry.
While discussing various products with the Howard Leight folks, my eyes fixed upon an otherwise unassuming package that contained both shooting glasses and earmuffs. Hmmm. Just the ticket for a lot of folks. It was the Howard Leight Shooting Safety Combo Kit – available at many places, including Turner’s Outdoorsman.
SHOOTING GLASSES ARE important to wear anytime a person is shooting. Here are the shooting glasses that are included in the Howard Leight kit.
• Sporty lightweight frame design with extra “ex” built into the temple
• Anti-fog lens coating
• Clear polycarbonate lens for both indoor and outdoor use
• Non-slip rubber nose bridge
• Meets ANSI Z87+ impact standards
• Adjustable headband fits sizes from youth to adult
• Convenient folding design
• Soft comfortable ear cushions
• Ultra lightweight earmuffs
• Patented Air Flow ControlTM technology
• Traditional green color
• Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) 25
What I like about the kit is that for the shooter, it is a no-brainer in that both items are designed and made to be used while shooting. They work in tandem to provide both the eye and ear protection that is needed when firearms go “bang.” There is no need for the shooter to try to figure out what’s the right thing.
I wish that such kits had been available when I first began my long shooting/hunting career back in the late 1940s. Although there were shooting glasses and ear protection for shooters back then, most folks paid no attention to them.
A lot has changed since then, and when it comes to eye and ear protection, it has changed for the better. I have been fortunate in that all I have lost is hearing (can’t hear very well and have constant ringing in my ears). But I might not have been that lucky. I could have suffered eye damage in a number of ways, as well.
EARMUFFS HELP SAVE hearing when shooting. Here are the muffs provided in the Howard Leight kit.
Safety cannot be overstated in the shooting sports. That includes safety measures that protect the shooter like shooting glasses and some form of hearing protection. Some folks routinely use just earplugs of some kind. Others combine earplugs with earmuffs. I generally use at least earmuffs. The important thing is to protect ears from the noise of the shots.
There are all kinds of eye and ear protection available. The equipment can be obtained individually or in kit form, as discussed here.
Regardless how they are obtained, I urge all shooters and hunters to use both eye and ear protection when shooting. It is the right thing to do.
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Steve Comus is a nationally recognized hunting editor with Safari Club International and a former WON Guns and Hunting Editor. His column appears every other week in WON and he can be reached at email@example.com.