Skip to main content

Hot Shots-Aaron Roberts

Hot Shots-Aaron Roberts

People who actually work hard and succeed in what they do rarely think there is anything special about themselves.

People who actually work hard and succeed in what they do rarely think there is anything special about themselves. Aaron Roberts, now in his third season as co-host of "Handguns TV" on Sportsman Channel, didn't really think an article about him would be very interesting.

"Everybody's heard people talk about their backgrounds," he says, "and mine's no different than anybody else's."


Coming from somebody who has been a U.S. Army Ranger, a Texas State Trooper and a head tactics instructor for Blackwater, that's a very interesting statement.


Roberts grew up in Texas, and hunting and guns were a part of his youth. When he got out of high school he joined the Army. Half his time was spent in the 75th Ranger Regiment, the other half as part of a long-range surveillance team with the 10th Mountain Division.

"We worked in small, five- to six-man teams," he explains. "Our role was to go forward of friendly troops and do surveillance and reconnaissance."




When he got out of the military, he went back to college in Texas with the idea of completing his degree but had a really hard time sitting in classes, "listening to a bunch of 18-year-olds. I got to the point where I really needed to start doing something." That "something" was becoming a Texas State Trooper.

Recommended


"Between getting out of the military and going back to work for the state, I started shooting competition," Roberts says. "I shot a little bit in the military but didn't have time or money to really go after it too much."

The experience wasn't what he expected, given his level of experience with handguns.

"When I first decided to go to a match, for about a week I was thinking these people do not understand what whirlwind is about to roll into there and start smashing them," he says. "But, like a lot of people have experienced, you show up and it doesn't quite work out that way.

"You realize that the best shooters in the world are not in the military, and they're not in law enforcement: They're civilians. It's because civilians care, and they're spending their own money. I didn't finish last at that first match, but I didn't finish first, either. And people typically take that one of two ways: One, 'Oh, well, you know, that's BS, it's not real,' or two, 'That's an eye opener, maybe I need to practice.' " Roberts practiced.

"I started shooting and fell in with some good folks, and in a fairly rapid amount of time I was winning regional and state championships, going to the national matches and finishing in the top 10 overall." Roberts prefers the simplicity of IDPA to the gamesmanship of USPSA competition.

A short time later he was offered a job at Blackwater. At first he turned them down, but they came back four months later with an offer for him to work as a full-time firearms and tactics instructor. He thought, "Well, that has a cool title, but it can't be as cool as the title sounds." One trip to the Blackwater facility and he took the job.

This was in 2005. "When I got there the curriculum was good, but old and stagnant," he says. "When 9-11 happened, guys had been teaching the same stuff for years and years and years. Then the market opened and that money flooded in, and people said 'Hey, we've got to come up with some newer stuff; we've got to win the contracts.'

"I go there and started outshooting everybody, and so they started implementing stuff that I was doing. I founded the Blackwater Shooting Team and was the captain of that. By the time I left in 2009 I was one of the lead staff firearms and tactics instructors."

His association with firearms trainer Larry Vickers led to a co-hosting role on the show "Tactical Impact" and from there came on board with "Handguns TV," now in its third season. These days, Roberts is living in the Houston area and operating RP Rifles--building high-end custom bolt guns for the hunting, tactical and competition crowd--and also operates his own firearms training company, Tactical Shooting Solutions.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Recent Videos

Federal's new.30 Super Carry pistol cartridge offers the equivalent of 9mm Luger performance with recoil and muzzle blast comparable with 9mm. Here's a first look.
Handguns

First Look: Federal .30 Super Carry Pistol Cartridge

Scott Rupp and Richard Nance correct some common shooting advice.
Learn

Bad Shooting Advice

Rich Nance shows us a drill that helps with target transition and accuracy.
Learn

Skills Drills - 3 Second Headshot

It is important to train in various shooting positions. Rich shows us some kneeling positions here.
Learn

Shooting from Kneeling

Scott Rupp highlights the Taurus GX4.
Handguns

Taurus GX4

Richard Nance shows off this easy to carry flashlight from Streamlight.
Gear

Streamlight Wedge

In early 2021, Taurus introduced the GX4, its entry into the micro-compact concealed carry pistol market. Now the company has added red-dot sight capability with the new T.O.R.O. (Taurus Optic Ready Option) version.
Handguns

First Look: Taurus GX4 T.O.R.O. Optics-Ready Micro-Compact 9mm Pistol

Widely known for their duty retention holsters, Safariland is bringing the security and safety of their LE products to the civilian world with the 575 GLS holster.
Gear

Safariland Holsters

Smith & Wesson has expanded their M&P Shield Plus pistol line to include a 3.1-inch optics-ready slide option. Scott Rupp, editor of Handguns, is with Matt Spafford, of Smith & Wesson, to check out this "sweet spot" optics-ready concealed-carry pistol.
Concealed Carry

Smith & Wesson M&P Shield Plus Pistol Series Expanded with Optics-Ready Versions

Handguns Magazine Covers Print and Tablet Versions

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

Buy Digital Single Issues

Magazine App Logo

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Handguns App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Handguns stories delivered right to your inbox.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Handguns subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Enjoying What You're Reading?

Get a Full Year
of Guns & Ammo
& Digital Access.

Offer only for new subscribers.

Subscribe Now