I’m a competitive person and hate losing. Just ask my wife who kicked my butt every time we played scrabble when we were dating. (I refuse to play anymore.) However, when it comes to being a more accurate shooter it’s important we “lose” often.
What I mean is, I’ll often be at the shooting range and I’ll see some shooter with the target 4 feet away, hitting the “bulls eye” every time. This shooter is happy and his buddies will be congratulating him, however, this shooter is not challenging himself and not testing his limits.
And obviously, if he never tests himself then he’ll never improve his draw, and never become a more accurate shooter overall. So, if you’d like to challenge yourself, I recommend two simple items – a timer and a 3 x 5 index card.
Since each shooter has different levels of experience…
Just be honest with yourself and set the timer where it should be. In other words, if you’re brand new and still working on your draw, don’t set the timer at 1.5 seconds if you can’t get anywhere close to that. Set the timer where you have just barely enough time to get the shot off and then reduce the time from there.
As far as the index card, put one on the head area of the target. With your timer set, draw and fire one round only at the index card. Again, going back to levels of experience, if you’re new, you may might to start this drill from a distance of 5 yards, then move to 7, then to 10, etc.
You’re going to miss…
From experience, I can tell you that if you’re really pushing yourself you’re going to miss and probably miss often. But eventually, as you work on the fundamentals, improve your draw and your trigger control, you’ll start getting a lot more hits on the 3 x 5 card. And when you start getting all your hits at 5 yards, then move the 3 x 5 card back to 7 yards, and then back to 10 and so on.
Another drill I like to do with the 3 x 5 cards it to put one card on the head of the target and another card on the body of the target. When the timer beeps I fire one round at the head and one round at the body.
Also, I’m a big believer that until you’re able to consistently hit the 3 x 5 card, you should only draw and fire one round at the card. If you draw the gun and empty your magazine and only the last 3 rounds hit the card, that doesn’t really matter. Because in a gunfight that would mean you’ve had 12 rounds go somewhere else, but more importantly, you’re probably dead.
So the next time you head to the range, bring a timer, index cards, and fire one shot and one shot only at a time. And remember, it’s okay to miss. You need to challenge yourself and miss in order to get better, so don’t compare yourself to the fellow next to you who’s hitting the “bulls eye” every time from 2 feet away.