The simulator starts with recruits getting instructions on what to shoot while being untimed. Bit by bit the instructors up the challenge until recruits are shooting the same course as the live fire.
By having recruits use the simulator first, instructors are able to make sure that recruits are handling weapons safely and correctly before they move on to shooting live ammunition.
"Our instructors actually care," said Aviation Ordnanceman 1st Class Daniel Heinlein, a weapon's simulator instructor at RTC. "We're not here to just hurry up, get the recruits out. We actually care how they do."
Sometimes, duty may call for a watch stander to fire their weapon. Knowing how to use a gun properly can mean the difference between life and death.