TOTM Jan. 2016- Shooting- Training, Tips, Tactical

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by Motomom34, Jan 1, 2016.

  1. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    Topic of the month will be a request for help but I am hoping that others will benefit also. I am taking shooting lessons which are costly and some of the stuff that I have been learning is common knowledge, many of you here have years of experience shooting, teaching and/or have been in the military.

    In my thread here- My Magazine Swapping Error | Survival Forums I spoke of my looking down when changing magazines plus my pistol was always pointed down unless I was going to fire. That is the way I was taught and this is something that I have to remind myself not to do when practicing.

    I know that movement and holding yourself smaller instead of firm and tall makes one less of a target. I am learning knees, hips and your whole torso should be moving. But I am sure there are other things that I need to do or be taught. I know when shooting bang, bang that my second shot is always lower. I know the recoil on the first and I always over-compensate when bringing back down for the second shot. It happens every time and not sure how to fix that issue.

    My Uncle went through basic training in the 60’s. He said that part of his training was they took their rifle and would “walk” a can across the lot. He never said why this was done but it was part of the training. I have thought about this and have concluded that this is an exercise with weapon familiarity, plus helps you with knowing where your shot will land. I could be way off- I am sure someone knows the real reason this was part of the training.

    Those of you that have gone through basic training probably have other tips and tactical advice that would help or “ah ha” moments you have had yourself, please share. I know some of you have been instructors and you must see basic mistakes that are so common, anything that you could share to help a semi okay shooter would be great.

    Any tips, training or tactical advice, comments for shooting with both pistols and rifles is needed. I will soon start training with a rifle and any advice would be helpful. One other thing- when reviewing this topic with a few monkeys, I mentioned my instructor was yelling, giving commands. When is it common or okay for under pressure shooting? At what point is a person ready for pressure drills?
    Kingfish, GOG, Mindgrinder and 5 others like this.
  2. DarkLight

    DarkLight Live Long and Prosper - On Hiatus Site Supporter

    @Motomom34 - My dad had me "walk the can" for the following reasons:
    • Constantly moving target. Not that it was in motion but it was never in the same place twice. I couldn't "get comfortable" in a stance and hit the same, static target over and over.
    • The target changed from shot to shot. The orientation of the can and the surface presented to you changed from shot to shot.
    • The distance to the target was constantly changing.
    There may be more to it but that's why my dad made me do it. Unfortunately I don't have any further official training and I haven't done more than "hand held, chemically powered, long distance paper punching" in probably 10 years (I don't even have a shotgun), but hopefully that helped in the one regard.

    My wife's parents moved nearby and the MIL wants me to help her become acquainted with/comfortable with a small firearm that her mother gave her a couple of years ago (no, she's not trying to get me alone and "disappear" me). I'll be taking her to the range over the next couple of weeks/month after going over some of the basics. She's also going to take an introductory class after we go over, again, the basics. Finally, she and my wife are going to take a concealed carry class and get their permits so I'll be going over all the same stuff (different firearm) with the wife this month as well.
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  3. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    Try to find a local pistol club. IDPA and USPSA clubs will give you all the training and pointers you need in practical pistol. They are as enthusiastic about getting a new shooter in their group as some of the monkeys are about getting a newbie HAM or solar convert. Our pistol club wins more matches in the South than most so we are constantly sought out by Cops for training even though they always say they drive for a living until you run into them in a State Police car.LOL. We shooters are like heroin pushers. First match you shoot at our club is range-fee free. You may have brought only a couple of magazines but bet ya, by the time you reach the firing line, you will have more than enough to complete the stage. You will get invited to social events, more matches, plinking sessions, and a whole new lot introduction to reloading, shooting tips, training opportunities, cheaper ammo, gun tuning...and everybody there conceal carries.
    Kingfish, GOG, Yard Dart and 10 others like this.
  4. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Sea has it right, find a club that does what you think you want to try. If you don't come around to liking it, try something else. The key is like minded individuals and groups. I joined the club here because trap shooting was my fave noise making pastime and the club had a slew of active clay killers. There's also a range where other things can be unlimbered. The group interest has expanded a bit, recently, we've had a couple IDPA qualifier rounds. I haven't gotten interested in that beyond watching. (All is on hold for now, the range is too damn cold for these old bones.)
    Kingfish, GOG, Mindgrinder and 3 others like this.
  5. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    We also learned to walk the can. We each were allowed to shoot until the can had to be reset within range again. We learned to just clip it, and spin it, instead of center-punching it. With the .22lr, I could shoot a whole box before I had to pass the gun on. If you missed three times, or the can had to be reset. You lost your turn and had to pass it on.
    Kingfish, alaskachick, GOG and 5 others like this.
  6. Pax Mentis

    Pax Mentis Philosopher King |RIP 11-4-2017

    Ready...? Well, if one is ready for them, they don't need them. Once you can hit the stationary target consistently, it is time for "locate, acquire, fire" drills such as the can...and for potential distractions to be added. Defensive use of your gun will almost never be in a controlled best there will be time to actually consciously concentrate on your first shot.

    The only thing I would add is to learn to hit the target without using your sights...what we used to call either point fire or train fire. Firing without your weak hand support, learn to use your handgun as you would your finger pointing something out to someone. Whenever possible in a defensive situation, you will want to use your sight...but it will not be possible (or require too much time) many times. The quickest way you can put accurate fire on target is your goal.
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  7. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    Personally, I don't feel they should be introduced until the student is at least an intermediate level preferably advanced level shooter.
    That's what we did when I was instructing and I still feel it's the better course of action.

    Firearm instruction is about safety and confidence in the beginning.
    First one must understand and master the rules of safe gun handling. Then comes live fire and being able to hit the target the majority of the time. This is when a new shooter's confidence is the most fragile.
    I started my student's targets out @ 3 yrds. That sounds close, and it is, but its also very easy to hit and hitting the target is fun, and having fun makes a person want to do it more. Next was @ 7yrds, then 10, then 15yrds and finally out to 25yrds. By the time the student got to the 25yrd mark they had a much easier time adjusting to the distance than if I made them start at that distance, I think because their confidence was slowly built up. Then we start with reloads. Shoot two reload shoot two. Adding multiple targets to engage and reloads. Tossing in loud distractions too soon is detrimental to a new shooter that hasn't yet mastered the basics.

    Next comes moving targets.
    I like to use balloons to start off with. Any air movement is enough to make them a challenge to hit, but not too hard, again, if it isn't fun they won't want to do it in the beginning. Then we would graduate to movers, pop ups and start the student learning how to move and shoot. Move and shoot with reloads engaging multiple targets.

    Once these skills are mastered then you can start tossing distractions into the mix and begin running the same drills with Light/no light, strobe lights going off in a low light room, someone shouting commands, noise piped in over loudspeakers, sirens with light bars flashing,ect.
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2016
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  8. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    I would also suggest that you pick up a copy of "Armed and Female" by Paxton Quigley for some bed time reading. Good stuff.
  9. Mountainman

    Mountainman Großes Mitglied Site Supporter+++

    Once you get past the @Tully Mars basics, learn how to safely and efficiently draw your weapon, shoot and reload with different clothing on. Most people will not go to the range and practice when the weather makes it uncomfortable to be outside. Practice with an unloaded pistol and mags at home with different items you will be wearing throughout the year. Once proficient, head out to the range with your assortment of clothing for some live fire.

    People might think your nuts at first, but who really cares. Did you see that crazy person at the range the other day when it was sunny and 60 degrees shooting with a rain jacket on and then a heavy winter jacket...LOL!!!
  10. Find your local gunshop that the officers use. Ask where they practice. Once you visit that range a few times you can pick up a lot of advice from the officers. If they see you may need some advice or help they are more than willing to offer the help. I pay $5 to use the indoor range we have a few outdoor ranges close by.
    Kingfish, Mindgrinder and Motomom34 like this.
  11. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    This is exactly what I need and what I am looking for. Unsure if I want to compete but I would like a group that is willing to help and answer all my questions.

    @ghrit had once suggested that we hang cans in the trees for BB gun practice. It is a great summer past time. We shred the can and finally when the can is hanging together buy a sliver it is fun to see who gets the shot that separates the can.

    Five dollars! Wow, I would go every week. Try paying $20 per person per hour and the kids and I share a booth when we go for a family shoot. Five dollars would be so nice. Even ladies night is $10.

    @DarkLight good for your wife & MIL wanting to get their CCW. Ditto here.
  12. It is higher when you first start going but once they get to know you they lower the prices. I also get really good discounts on firearms and ammo. Sometimes it takes getting to know the employees and owners to get in on the discounts. Myself and my two boys were lucky we live on such a small island where everyone knows eachother for the most part.
    Kingfish likes this.
  13. UncleMorgan

    UncleMorgan I like peeling bananas and (occasionally) people.

    For recoil control, have someone load a tap round (dummy round) randomly into your weapon. Then when you squeeze and get a click, you'll see exactly how much you're anticipating the recoil. Plus it gives you good training in clearing misfires.

    Here's something I do which may or may not be gospel:

    With a two-hand pistol grip, both wrists are inevitably bent several degrees.
    (You can see this easily by making prayer hands horizontally. When the finger tips point straight ahead, the wrists are bent.)

    So, as I draw from my strong-side belt holster, I pre-bend my wrist, draw, and rock the inside of my wrist while running it up my body. That tips the muzzle outward as it clears the holster, so I can't shoot down the side of my leg. Then, when the gun is fully up, I run the inside of my forearm forward against my body to bring the gun forward. This keeps the muzzle from tracking across my legs or feet, It also means the gun is pointed pretty much dead ahead as it comes up to eye level.

    And that's where it meets the support hand which does a very similar motion.

    Feeling your arms moving against your body lets you know exactly where everything is, especially the muzzle of the gun.

    The two-arm slide to shooting position keeps you in tight, and you won't shoot thru your support hand trying to get a fast grip plus a fast shot, because you always know exactly how fast each hand is extending, and how they'll meet up.

    With a little practice, the gun arrives with a good sight picture just from the movement of the arms against the body--then you just eyeball it to refine the shot. (Aim small to miss small, pick an eye, etc.)

    With a little practice, you draw smooth and clean, stay tight, and can adjust for an oblique angle of fire quite easily. The first two motions (vertical followed by horizontal) soon blend into the shortest oblique line--the hypotenuse of the root motions.

    Try the arm-slide while sitting down and you'll see the muzzle never crosses the body, while drawing with a straight
    wrist sitting down puts the muzzle track on your legs & feet, big-time.

    (I'm sure we've all seen that YouTube video where the dufus tries drawing on a close target and shoots himself down the leg.
    Whereupon he sez: "I just SHOT MYSELF! I can't believe I just SHOT MYSELF!" )
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  14. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    Ben is one of grandson's college buddies. Watch how he changes magazines. The mag change is how his father started him. Basically he began by hitting the berm, learning to swap mags fast until the mag change was muscle memory. Sounds silly until you watch him shoot.
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  15. Rural Alaskan Survivalist

    The best training technique I've witnessed for taking untrained women/men and giving them a reasonable amount of confidence in a short amount of time (30 minutes) was by a Gunnery Sergeant (USMC). He was RECON and his specialty was setting up civilian militia groups in Latin America during the 80's. Much of this preliminary training can be done at home before setting foot on the range.

    Gunny Cap took a complex set of actions and broke them down into smaller simpler steps. We were issued 1911 .45's with hip holsters. Our pistols were always in condition 3 unless the situation warranted a chambered round with a cocked hammer (condition 1). Condition 2 is a chambered round with an uncocked hammer (not recommended for a 1911). Condition 3 is a magazine in the pistol but nothing in the chamber. And last condition 4 is an unloaded pistol. I almost always carry a semi automatic pistol in condition 3.

    Anyways our gunnery sergeant would have about 20 of us stand in a line and count one to four slowly. Some of us had never touched a gun and others had grown up around them. We would do this over and over and he explained that all we had to do was count to four to use this tool effectively. Then without ammunition he would shout ONE and we would all place our right hand on our pistol while our left hand hovered slightly in front and above the holster. Then he'd shout TWO and we would break leather, our left hand would cup the top of the slide (thumb towards body) while the right hand pushed the pistol through the left hand chambering a round and cocking the pistol. Then he'd shout THREE and we would acquire our target with the sights. If we had time we would grip the pistol with both hands. If not then our left hand covered our heart. Then finally on FOUR we would dry fire. Dry fire drills were performed for about ten minutes then ammunition was added. He would progress the count faster and faster until a novice could pick up the pistol and center punch a man size target at 10 yards in less than a second. He also preached being smooth and not worry about speed; work on presenting the firearm as smoothly as possible. Speed will come later. Note: This can also be performed left handed if your left hand is dominant.

    At this time I was 19 and had been shooting for 15 years. I had competed in pistol and rifle matches. It was amazing how fast the city kids from back East could become relatively proficient in combat pistol craft. These drills were done over and over with something new and more complex added each week. I'm not a professional instructor but I've used this technique to quickly help women that wanted to learn how to use a gun and to teach my children.

    This training technique can be modified depending if you are carrying a revolver or semiautomatic; left or right handed; concealed or open carry. I would keep the number of steps at least three but no more than six.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2016
  16. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++ I really like that exercise you described. This is something the kids and I could do. They can yell and drill be one, two,.... and I can also teach them. It all seems to be learning fluid motion when shooting.

    One thing I notice is I always double check the safety with my kids. They always have it on and are so safety conscious but I always double check. It frustrates them. I just can't stop micro managing.
  17. Rural Alaskan Survivalist

    Safety is a good thing. We have small children at home so we remove magazines from any unattended weapon. Also lock the slide open if appropriate.

    The numbers drill (I guess this is what it is called?) simplifies the exercise; especially in stressful situations. When it is dark, raining, lack of sleep and there is a problem all you have to do is mentally count to four and your body will respond to the threat almost automatically.
  18. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    That is NOT micro managing! THAT is being SAFE. EVERY TIME someone hands me a weapon I drop the mag and check the chamber on a semi auto or open the cylinder/loading gate on a wheel gun. Pump guns I rack the slide/action check the safety. I don't even think about it. YOU are doing it CORRECTLY.:)
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  19. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart Snow Monkey Moderator

    FireArm Security, and Safety, is a Personal Responcibility... If you chose to OWN a FireArm, it is your Responcibility, for it... AlaskaChick and I raised our children in a household of FireArms... We took them shooting, as soon as they could walk, and taught them, that FireArms are a Tool, that we choose to own, and use. The ALL grew up with FireArms in their sight, for as long as they lived in our Home. Our Weapons lived, either on Pegs above the FirePlace Mantle, or in the Locked Weapons Locker. By the time each was in school, they were very familiar with the FireArms in our home and had shot, loaded, and Safed, each of them, while directly supervised by one of us. They were well aware of the consequences of the impact with a fired Projectile, as they had shot, Cans, Bottles, and Pumpkins, as well as hundreds of Paper Targets. It has been a Family Tradition, back more than Five Generations, for each child, on their 12th Birthday, to get the Gun Catalog, and choose a .22LR Rifle, for themselves. They then are REQUIRED to take the NRA Marksmanship Class, as well as the State Hunters Safety Course, and pass both. Once they had done so, they were allowed to keep their Ammunition, for their FireArm, themselves... We taught Personal Responcibility to each of them, as they were then FireArms Owners. Another Family Tradition our family has, is, that as each Young Adult, reached 21 Years of age, or got Married, which ever came first, they were presented with the Gun Catalog, again, to chose a Handgun, for themselves. Each of our Children have done that as well. We have never had any Issue, with Weapon Irresponsibility, in our Family, or even in any of our Siblings families. Never, not even once. Teaching our posterity is what GOOD Parents DO, and FireArms are no different than any other Tool, in the Household... Start young, and often, and follow thru ....
  20. Rural Alaskan Survivalist

    BT - We have a lot of things in common.
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