How to Practice Shooting - Part 2
Now that you've been practicing that focus on your front sight as you squeeze that trigger over and over, let's move it up a level.
The Target - "Aim Small, Miss Small"
When you can rapidly manipulate the trigger and keep the sights aligned, it’s on to the target practice.
- Use either a vertical 3”x5” card or a square post it.
- Either one should be a contrasting color from the wall.
- The idea is to have a small, defined surface area. "Aim small, miss small" as the saying goes.
.Now practice your front sight focus with trigger manipulation. You will see your sights - and therefore your muzzle - slipping from side to side or up and down within that colored space. Compared to the first dry fire drill you did against a blank wall, you can now better track any movement and learn to still your control accordingly.
The third level of skill to add is to add holster draws.
No, we're not practicing to be cowboys. Whether you are using an Inside the Waistband Holster (IWB) or Outside the Waistband Holster (OWB), you're practicing from a fresh start. You're learning to get into your stance, get your hands placed correctly around your particular firearm, and focusing on your sights from an otherwise neutral position. In short, you are building your muscle memory into fluid movements so that no matter where you start, you know how to finish.
Remember your goal in your dry fire practice is to see how rapidly you can acquire the sights and press the trigger with a good sight picture.
The Reloads - Building in Fluency
Finally, we add in reloads, where you simulate releasing your magazine from your gun and reloading another before "firing."
Do I anticipate you getting into a firefight where you have to shoot your way through multiple magazines? No, and I sure hope it never happens to you. The reloads add variation to your drill. First you added a small square of color as a target, then you added holster draws, and now you're adding reloads. These drills have you practice taking your focus off, then on your sight picture.
You would use dummy, weighted magazines for this, which are easy to acquire as a package online. Even Amazon sells dummy magazines. They're weighted to simulate a magazine filled with ammo. Remember: You are NOT using live ammo in dry fire practice.
All this is to ensure the sights are in the right spot and the gun is stabilized at the moment you fire and until the bullet is beyond the barrel. In the end, it’s simply about the sights and trigger. That is how accurate fire is delivered. Everything else just facilitates it.
Again, you can do all this with a SIRT pistol which immediately tells you where your shot landed.
You can practice each drill in succession, or the ones you feel are more challenging. It's a great way to add variety to your dry fire. Let me know how it goes!