Skills Check: One- and Two-Shot Drills

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posted on October 15, 2018
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High speed, low drag is nothing more than basics applied to a problem. What that means to me is if I want to hit, I need to look at the sights, control the trigger and follow through, regardless of the circumstances. It’s all about applying basic skills to make a shot or solve a problem. Pretty simple, but not as easy as it sounds. I’ve found I still need to talk myself into making shots: “Front sight, presssssss, front sight.”

Breaking it down, what I’m saying is my shooting stance and grip on the pistol should be sufficient to get me roughly on target. After that I need to obtain a sight picture, placing the sights on the target where I want to hit, align the sights correctly, focus on the front sight, press and hold the trigger then follow through by refocusing on the front sight. That’s actually quite a lot to do for every single shot, and it gets more difficult to do when I add drawing from the holster or firing multiple shots.

Here are a couple of drills that will take about a box of pistol ammo and help you practice making every shot a good hit. You’ll need your pistol, 49 rounds of ammunition and a silhouette target with a head and center scoring area. You can easily make a practice target using an 8- or 10-inch paper plate for the center and a 3x5 card for the head shot.

Drill 1
From the holster, draw and fire a single shot into the head scoring zone of your target. Reholster slowly and carefully. Repeat 25 times.

Drill 2
Draw and fire two shots into the center scoring area of your target. Reholster slowly and carefully. Repeat 12 times.

Did I fail to mention a time limit or distance from the target? I did, and that’s because I think you should work slowly, take your time and make sure you are applying the fundamentals to get good hits. If going slow is too easy, then try speeding things up, but always slow back down if going too fast produces poor results. While I like to shoot this drill at 7 yards, you can work it from closer or farther away, but I have to emphasize the importance of getting good hits. Rushing or blowing shots doesn’t provide the positive feedback you need to improve, so I think it’s best to slow down and get closer before speeding up or moving back.

While you can run these drills with any pistol, it’s a good idea to give them a try with your concealed-carry sidearm. Do you keep a carbine as a home-defense firearm? Get to the range and try these drills from 15 or 25 yards, starting from a muzzle-depressed, low-ready position.

Practice makes perfect, and perfect practice is where learning takes place. Give these drills a try and work on making every shot a perfect shot. It’s all about the basics.

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