What Should I Do at the Range to Practice?
You have limited time and money. Just shooting holes in a target has limited value.
Step I Work at consistency. You want to try to replicate the good skills you have been taught until the muscle memory makes them second nature. Practicing good habits make them a part of your routine. These habits will survive a stress situation. Practice makes you safe!
Step II Once you start showing consistency, try to reduce the size of your shot group. Do not worry about time. Make the shots in a tiny area of the target. Try to go through the same holes. A tight group is allowing the gun to do its job without interference from the gun holder – you.
Step III Next try to shoot different parts of the target. One exercise I use with my students it to shoot at small targets at the corners of the main target in a specific sequence. Then we evaluate the results. I use a bull’s eye target with one main bull’s eye in the center and smaller bulls eyes at the corners. You will probably find that you will be very good at some of the side targets and consistently bad at others. If you reverse the target sweep, you will find that it is your third or fourth shot that consistently goes awry. The movement of the gun is not the problem; the problem is you looking to see what you hit as you fire. The discipline works well for the first few shots then curiosity takes over. There is plenty of time to evaluate your shots. Concentrate on the mechanics of the shot and evaluate later.
Step IV Try to go from lower target to upper target on each side of the main target. This will teach straight line movement that will transfer to concealed carry skills.
Step V Try to shoot from the low ready position. Establish your position as you were taught. Shoot two shots and return to the low ready position. Shoot two more and evaluate the four shots.
Step VI Evaluate. Occasionally go back to a simple bull’s eye target and evaluate your shot groups.
Remember: Proper practice makes you safe!
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