Challenge Your Shooting Skills With New Drills

by
posted on September 18, 2020
sheriff-jim-5-28-15.jpg (31)

There is no question that most of our defensive practice ought to involve working on the basics. A smooth presentation, quick sight alignment, and an accurate first shot, will go a long way towards protecting your hide. 

However, too often we use practice sessions for an ego trip. We tend to practice certain things that we are already good at. Often, it is done to impress our shooting buddies. Other times we do it to impress ourselves—kind of a feel-good sort of thing. That is the time for us to try some new and different drills that challenge our ability just a bit.

One of my favorites comes from Richard Mann. He suggests that you draw a 5-inch circle on the target. And, from 5 yards, you draw and shoot five shots into that circle in 5 seconds. It is a fine test of speed and accuracy—and you’d sure better see that front sight with each and every shot.

Another colleague of mine, Ed Head, writes his regular Skills Check column in Shooting Illustrated. You’ll find plenty of challenging drills offered by Ed. Another good source for challenging drills is the Handgun Combatives website, hosted by Dave Spaulding. Frankly, when you start seeking out challenging shooting drills, you’ll find plenty to keep you interested.

One of my favorite drills is actually a slow-fire drill that I borrowed from the good folks at Gunsite Academy. You use a Sharpie to draw a quarter-size dot on your target. Then, from 5 yards, you fire as many shots as you need in order to completely obliterate the dot. I use it after I have spent some time working on my speed shooting. Usually, when I’m trying to go fast, my accuracy suffers. This little drill makes me calm down and get back to good sight alignment and trigger press.

Working on challenging drills can tell you a lot about what you need in order to improve your skills. It can also tell you things, good and bad, about your chosen defensive handgun—do you need better stocks, better sights, or a different gun?

I would suggest starting out a shooting session by working on the basics. Then end the session by running through a new and challenging drill a few times. 

We would be interested in hearing about your favorite, challenging drills. What are they?

Latest

shotgun
shotgun

Why A Shotgun Is Best for Home Defense (And All Sorts Of Other Things)

Have you lost that lovin’ feelin’ for your scattergun? Here’s why it should be a go-to choice for home defense.

KelTec Sub2000 Carbine Selected for School Resource Deputies

KelTec's Sub2000 carbine has been selected for school resource deputies in Brevard County, Florida.

First Look: Smith & Wesson Model 350 Revolver

Smith & Wesson brings the 350 Legend cartridge to its X-frame revolver line.

Smith & Wesson CEO Issues Strong Statement in the Face of 2nd Amendment Attacks

The CEO of Smith & Wesson issued a strong statement recently in the face of attacks on the 2nd Amendment.

First Look: Brownells MPO LPVO Riflescope

Brownells is now shipping their new LPVO (Low Powered Variable Optic) scope, the 1-6X magnification MPO scope.

2022 New Optics Guide

Optics are an increasingly vital part of more and more firearms, from traditional rifles to MSRs to shotguns and even ultracompact, concealed-carry handguns. With few exceptions, however, nearly every optic is made overseas, and every manufacturer uses at least one or two components of foreign origin. 

Interests



Get the best of Shooting Illustrated delivered to your inbox.