What Do You Work On At The Gun Range?
So your friends suggest going to the gun range to cook off a few rounds and relieve some stress. It is great fun, but what are you really doing with the time and money you are spending? Are you improving your skills, or detracting from them?
Its great to go have some friendly competition on the range, but have you ever taken the time to really understand why your shots are going where they are? Do you shoot with a purpose of improving your skills each time? Chances are, you’re just wasting ammo, and that is easy to do.
Think about it, you have a box of ammo, a target and an hour worth or lane time. You unpack your gear, load up a magazine and Bap, Bap, Bap, time to reload. Then you spend a few seconds analyzing your target to see if you hit where you wanted to. Satisfied that you look like you know what you’re doing, you insert a fresh mag and have another try. Twenty five minutes into your hour, you are out of ammo and feeling pretty good about the target you shot.
That target wasn’t shooting back, the target wasn’t moving (in most cases) and that target wasn’t trying to rob you or commit a mass shooting. So why are you content to blast a few rounds without giving yourself a goal to achieve? I get it, some people don’t want to improve anything, they simply want to shoot because its fun. I agree, it is fun, but I don’t want to waste my time or my ammo. Ammo isn’t free and sometimes its downright hard to get.
Here are some suggestions I encourage you think about next time you feel like going to the range. BTW, if its been more than a month or two, you NEED to go practice.
Shooting is a perishable skill, that’s why law enforcement and security personnel have to re-qualify annually. Although that isn’t nearly often enough in my book. Here are five things I recommend to help you improve your shooting and make your trip to the range count:
- Set a goal – Think of something you want to improve upon before you start shooting such as accuracy or trigger control. Let each magazine you shoot be intentional and concentrate on that one thing you wanted to improve on. Don’t worry about the rest.
- Get back to basics. Focus your first magazine on grip only, is it the best and most comfortable way for you to be accurate? Next focus on trigger control, then stance and so on. If each magazine has a purpose, you will find yourself concentrating on being good at one thing at a time rather than all at once which can be overwhelming.
- Be open minded – There’s more than one way of doing almost everything. If someone gives you a tip to try, be open minded about other ways of doing things. You may be surprised by how one simple adjustment could drastically improve your shot placement.
- Forget instant gratification – We all want it, and we want it now. We all want to analyze every hole in the target, one shot at a time. You cannot accurately evaluate your shooting by looking at one shot. You must evaluate a group. Concentrate on each magazine full of rounds and then start looking at the pattern on target. Otherwise, you will look at your target in between every shot and you won’t improve. Patience pays off.
- Don’t waste ammo – Most indoor ranges won’t allow you to do some of the things you need to be training if you carry regularly for self defense. How do you train something you aren’t allowed to practice at the range? Easy, you do it with dummy ammo and training equipment. There are plenty of exercises and drills you can do that don’t require live ammo. Place a tube of lip balm or a coin on top of your slide, dry fire it until the item stays put every time. This will help you with trigger control. Snap caps can help you practice clearing jams and a laser can help you see how your sight alignment stacks up. A blue gun and a holster can help you practice your draw which most ranges do not allow.
If you just want someone else to help you with improving or evaluating your skills, I can help. I usually evaluate the student’s skills and give them a few things to work on in their own time at the range. I’ll be happy to help you too. Visit She-banghandguntraining.com to set up your private training.