What’s changed in the new IDPA rulebook?
Right away it is clear that the rulebook has been thoroughly numbered which makes it easy to reference a rule or section. The Founding Principles and Purpose of IDPA have been strengthened to emphasize the concealed carry aspect of the sport.
Dropping a loaded or unloaded firearm is a DQ offense.
Multiple Finger violations will no longer be inconsistent match to match. The first one is a PE penalty and the second is a DQ.
There are now two types of muzzle safe points. Physical points like cones and a 180 rule. They can be used individually or together in a single stage.
Safe Areas must be provided at all IDPA matches.
Cold ranges, Cold ranges with Hot bays, and Hot ranges are now defined. Both Cold ranges and Cold ranges with Hot bays can be used at sanctioned matches.
Range commands have been improved.
- Range Is Hot – Eyes and Ears
- Load and Make Ready
- Are You Ready? (If no response, shooter is assumed ready)
- If Finished, Unload and Show Clear
- If Clear, Slide Forward or Cylinder Closed
- Pull the Trigger (Not required for revolvers)
- Range is Clear
Clubs can add extra safety rules if they do not conflict with the purpose and principles of IDPA.
The stage walk through must now include allowing every shooter to see every target from the associated shooting point.
Engaging a target has been logically defined as firing the required number of rounds (as per the CoF) at each target.
The SO must describe how cover will be called for every shooting position during the walk through.
Some reloads have been given simpler terms. The Reload with Retention and Tactical Reload have been renamed to Loaded Chamber reloads.
Cover has been defined. Cover extends back from the center of the target body down zero zone to the point of the physical barrier up range to the stage boundary.
If a shooter runs the firearm empty while shooting in the open, a reload may be initiated on the way to cover.
When behind cover, a shooter may reload while moving as long as he/she is behind contiguous cover (with certain exceptions).
Flashlight rules have been defined. No weapon mounted lights allowed except for shooters with the use of only one hand. LEOs may use their firearm with a weapon mounted light, but may not turn on the light. They have to use a hand held light too.
Roles and Responsibilities/Code of Conduct have been defined for shooters, SOs, MDs, SOIs, and ACs.
Failing chrono is no longer a DQ. It is a DNF score, and the shooter may continue to shoot the whole match for no score.
Head, body and target have been re-defined. The head is no longer part of the body. The terms have been defined with their everyday meaning.
Allowed and disallowed targets have been defined. Not much new, except things like the Texas star and plate rack are no longer allowed.
Reactive targets must be calibrated for sanctioned matches, and shooter can challenge the calibration of a target that did not react to a hit.
Mobility challenged and permanently physically disabled shooters have been defined, and procedures are defined for situations where they cannot perform a required action in a stage.
Stage boundaries have to be defined now, and air gunning, sight pictures and individual rehearsals outside of the defined stage area is no longer a penalty.
Blind stages are no longer allowed in any IDPA match.
Disappearing targets have been defined, as well as how much of a target must be visible to the shooter to not be considered a disappearing target.
Loaded chamber reloads cannot be required on the clock except in Standards stages.
The equipment rules are mostly the same, but much better explained. SSP now includes all the guns it did before plus all striker fired guns (including the Springfield XD and XDM). All the divisions except ESR now have a 43 ounce weight limit except for BUG and CCP.
A new equipment division has been defined for non-compliant handguns. This is a place for the 22LR, carry optics, 7 and 8 shot revolvers, etc. The MD decides if this division is supported in a given match.
The duty gear exemption is much more clearly defined, and duty gear may not be used in sanctioned matches.
Getting a match bump now qualifies as shooting a Classifier.
The match bump formula has been simplified.
The Classifier times for SSP have been reduced to within 2% of ESP.
A shooters minimum and maximum classification for semi-auto firearms can only differ by one level. When a shooter attains a higher classification, all other semi-auto classifications are also raised if they are more than one classification different. Same thing applies to the two revolver divisions.
One classifier score can be applied to any other division where the firearm and ammunition used meets the requirements for the other divisions. For example, an SSP classifier score can be applied to ESP.
All the measurements in the rulebook are now provided in metric units too.
An appeals process has been added for major matches. If a shooter disagrees with a decision, that shooter can appeal the decision of the MD to a small team of volunteers headed by the AC that will decide the final outcome. An appeal costs $100.
There is now a Match Administration handbook. It covers almost all aspects of running matches.
Five tiers of matches have been defined. Tier one is local club matches and tier 5 is the US Nationals, Winter Nationals or World round. Each tier has more strict requirements, and defines progressively bigger matches with more shooters.
Tier 2 matches can be specialty matches, like revolver only, or BUG only, etc.
The number of awards given out has changed to 1 in 5.
Subcategories have been better defined. One now needs to show proof to be categorized as “industry” or “press.”
The age range for Juniors and the other age groups have been clearly defined.
(Thanks to Ken Reed, Idaho, for the preceding compilation of the changes to the IDPA rulebook, effective 3/2/2015.)