SAPSA is the governing body of practical shooting in South Africa, founded in 1976. SAPSA administers the sport of practical shooting, sanctions level III matches and tournaments, selects the national teams, affiliates provinces, organizes training and maintains discipline and rules.
SAPSA welcomes novice shooters and equally represents shooters of all ages and abilities, specifically recognizing junior, lady, and veteran classes.
This dynamic and internationally recognized shooting sport has its origins in California in the United States in the early fifties.
The International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) was founded at the International Pistol Conference held in Columbia, Missouri, USA in May 1976. Forty people from around the world attended this conference to determine the nature and future of practical marksmanship. Jeff Cooper was elected the first IPSC president. The sport quickly spread and today is practiced in more than sixty countries (called regions) from Argentina to Zimbabwe.
The promotion of accuracy, power, and speed as three equal elements is the prime objective of practical shooting along with procedures and rules for safe gun handling. The principles of practical shooting were developed and the motto – DVC – diligentia, vis, celeritas (accuracy, power, speed) was introduced to ensure the balance between the various principles.
In practical shooting, the competitor must blend these three elements into a winning combination. Multiple targets, moving targets, targets that react when hit, penalty carrying targets, partially covered targets, obstacles, movement, competitive tactics, and, in general, any other relevant difficulties the course designer can dream up all combine to keep the competitors enthusiastic and the spectators entertained. One of the principles of IPSC states that the course of fire should be practical and diversity is to be encouraged, to keep the sport from becoming formalized or standardized.
Practical shooting emphasizes firearms safety and safe gun handling, accuracy, power, and speed. It is currently the second most popular international target shooting discipline, being exceeded in global participation only by the events administered by the Olympic shooting sports [Union International de Tir (UIT)].