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The Purpose of Shooting

As Clint Smith of Thunder Ranch says “The purpose of shooting is hitting” We don’t shoot to make loud noises. We shoot to put bullets where we want them to go. Servicing the target as it were.

So how is hitting accomplished? By lining up the firearm with the target and causing the firearm to discharge, being careful not to disturb the target/firearm alignment.

A fabulous way to learn to do this is by “dry firing”. Dry firing is shooting the gun while it is empty.

The cool things about dry fire are:
1. Its free
2. You can do it almost anywhere.
3. You can see what you are doing because there is no noise or recoil to hide your mistakes.

Now. Do you really want to get better?
If you do, you need to spend 5 minutes several times a week dryfiring. this will do more to improve your marksmanship than anything else.

Find a room where you can be alone and where it is quiet. This next part is IMPORTANT. Before you go in that room, take all the ammo out of the gun, and make sure that you don’t have any ammo on your person.
Now you can enter the dry fire room.
Pick a wall that, if you screw up, you can live with putting a bullet into. In other words, there is nothing behind the wall that could get hurt.
find something to aim at. either something already on the wall or something that you put on the wall. It should be small. say about the size of a dime.
Double check that there is no magazine in the pistol and check that the chamber is empty.
Check again. Really. I’ll wait…..
Ok. now standing comfortably with a good two handed grip on the pistol, aim at the small target. place the middle of the first pad of your finger on the front of the trigger. make sure that you are going to pull it straight back and not apply any sideways pressure as you are pulling it back.
While you are working on keeping the sights on target start applying SMOOTH pressure to the trigger. DONT FORGET ABOUT THE SIGHTS!!! sights and trigger, sights and trigger. when you finally reach the release point and the gun goes click, where are your sights?
still lined up on the target? Or did they move? If they moved, which way did they move? why? Try it again and work on improving.
If you are shooting a pistol like a Springfield XD or a Glock you will have to “re-set” the trigger by pulling the slide back a little bit.

When you have done 20 GOOD shots, stop. aAways stop at success.
When you leave the room say out loud “the dry fire practice is over” THIS IS IMPORTANT. It sets your mind frame. most ‘accidents’ with dry fire happen afterwards, when the gun has been reloaded and the person decides to try “just one more”

If you do this every day, or every other day for a week, you will be amazed at the difference the next time you go to the range. Just think of all those bruised and deflated male egos when the guys look at your target and all the shots are in one ragged hole right in the middle of the x ring.

Have fun!

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