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Skills Check: 5 Body-and-Head Drills

Skills Check: 5 Body-and-Head Drills

As any pistol shooter knows, it’s easier to make fast shots on large targets at close range. As the distance increases, or the targets get smaller, we have to slow down a bit. Achieving this balance of speed and accuracy, and knowing our capabilities at any given time, is the essence of defensive or combative pistolcraft. These drills are designed to work on your skills transitioning from large to precise targets, quickly.

The typical silhouette target has a large center-scoring area in the body and a smaller scoring area located in the head. Typically, the center portion is described by a circle or oval around 8 to 10 inches in diameter, and the head scoring zone is usually rectangular and about 3x5 inches. For these drills you’re going to need a couple of silhouette targets, or you can make your own targets with a couple of paper plates and 3x5 index cards on a piece of cardboard.

Try running these drills with the targets side by side, perhaps 1 yard apart, and from a distance of 5 yards. The starting position is with the pistol in the holster or, if you prefer, held in both hands in a low-ready (muzzle-depressed) position. The goal par time for each drill is 5 seconds when drawn from the holster and 4 seconds from the low-ready position.

Drill 1: The Box
Fire one round to the body of target 1, one round to the body of target 2, one round to the head of target 2 and one round to the head of target 1.
Total: Four rounds

Drill 2: Double Box
Fire two rounds to the body of target 1, two rounds to the body of target 2, one round to the head of target 2 and one round to the head of target 1.
Total: Six rounds

Drill 3: The X
Fire one round to the body of target 1, one round to the head of target 2, one round to the body of target 2 and one round to the head of target 1.
Total: Four rounds

Drill 4: Double X
Fire two rounds to the body of target 1, one round to the head of target 2, two rounds to the body of target 2 and one round to the head of target 1.
Total: Six rounds

Drill 5: Back and Forth
Fire two rounds to the body of target 1, two rounds to the body of target 2, two rounds to the head of target 1 and two rounds to the head of target 2.
Total: Eight rounds

You can vary these drills by moving closer or farther away from the targets, and I suggest you work them with your daily carry pistol. Remember to slow down slightly when moving to the head targets, concentrate on your front sight and follow-through.

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