Mastering Follow-Through and Your Grip

There’s more to hitting a target than just pulling a trigger.

posted on December 5, 2022
aiming a firearm

For us, drill practice is when we isolate an individual part of a skill and focus intently on improving or mastering it. The goal with good drill practice is to maximize overall improvement while minimizing overall effort or time, talent and treasure. In our classes, there is ample opportunity for students to self-reflect on their performance. A common student observation is that they can see improvement when a highly intense focus is consistently applied. So, our formula for success is simple: Success equals consistency over time. 

Mastering follow-through is a goal for anyone serious about their shooting skills. First, you must pursue a logical sequence. When the gun discharges, return the gun to the target, reacquire the sights and reset the trigger. Second, you must enact this logical sequence every time. Naturally, students have a hyper focus on the logical sequence—sometimes at the cost of other developed skills—in this case, their grip. This drill is designed specifically to challenge students to stay focused on both essential skills. 

Start scaled and work to prescribed or how the drill should be conducted. The drill has three segments: time, distance and target size. When it comes to time, you will start with a 1-second cadence. Perform the drill to at least an 80-percent hit ratio before progressing to the more challenging cadences of a half second and finally a quarter second. Distance should start at the 3-yard line, progress to the 5-yard line and finally, the 7-yard line. Last is the target size. Start with an 8-inch target, progress to a 6-inch and finish with a 4-inch target. You will need three magazines; one loaded with five rounds, one loaded with 10 rounds and one loaded with 15 rounds. 

Here’s the drill:
The task will be to fire a high-volume round count while applying follow-through with a strong grip, consistently applied. The condition will start from the ready position at the 3-yard line, using an 8-inch target. The standard will be a 1-second split for each shot fired while maintaining an 80-percent or better hit ratio. 

• Load the magazine with five rounds and return to the ready position.

• On your signal, present the gun to the target, confirm your sights are acceptable for the accuracy standard and begin firing using a 1-second cadence.

• When you’ve emptied the magazine, reload with the 10-round magazine and repeat the drill.

• When you’ve emptied the second magazine, reload with the 15-round magazine and repeat to complete the drill. 

Be mindful of your grip. Look at your splits to determine consistency. Tally your score by counting only clean hits. If the round broke a line on the target, count it as a miss. To achieve an 80 percent or better, you would need to score at least 24 hits. When you have successfully completed the drill at 80 percent or better, increase the degree of difficulty by extending the distance or reducing the time. Save reducing the target size for last.


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