Creative Dry Fire – Field Courses!

The last re-post of my older Practice Drills blog posts – this one is probably my favorite. I think we opened some eyes out there on this one!

I’m not one of those folks who can stand and do 10 million draws in a row. I get bored, lose focus, and start working bad habits, instead of refining technique. Its just one part of my mental temperament. Here’s one of the ways I keep things more interesting – note that I left a couple of key points out when I shot the vid, so check out the comments following it…

The biggest oversight I made was not mentioning the following: ALWAYS BE CERTAIN THAT YOUR GUN IS UNLOADED WHEN DOING DRY FIRE PRACTICE! Triple check it. Make sure there’s no live ammo in the same room(s) that you’re dry firing in.

Also, be certain that you are not going to sweep loved ones, pets, expensive heirlooms, or your beloved Star Wars paraphernalia collection while you’re running the stages. Yes, I have targets on the front door – I do make sure there’s no kids playing outside before I do something like that – and quadruple check the gun and mags yet again.

It should probably be clear that I won’t take responsibility for your safety or behavior if you use this idea, right? :)

One thing to notice is the adherence to the “No Easy Shots” principle. These types of shots always seem easier in dry fire – make ‘em nice and tight to keep you sharp.

When you set up and run these stages, only you know what the results are, and only you control the challenge presented by the stage. You don’t benefit yourself by gaming the scenario – and the only way this type of practice will help you build good practices and performances is if you diligently call your shots and know exactly where your hits are on the targets. Otherwise, you’re fooling yourself and making a negative impact on your game…

BE CREATIVE! Take every possible match challenge, and use them to create interesting courses of fire! Treat them just like match stages – set them up, and walk away from them for a little while, then come back and walk through them for 5 minutes, do your regular visualization routine, and then run the stage. I even use a timer to start, and then I smack it hard at the end to get a finish time so that I can compare after I improve on things… Then, go back and work the stage slow, cleaning up all the areas that were hinky or rough. Then run it through at speed another couple of times to cement the cleanup. Then tear it down, and do something different.

Finally, I wouldn’t be too concerned about limiting yourself to things that you’d “only see in a match”. Any challenge that stresses the skills of the game is fair game – the A-zone only targets in the video aren’t real likely, for instance. You can be flexible with the 180 within the house to allow you to lay out more complex stages (remember the warning about keeping everything safe!) Use things that aren’t targets, simulating plates and such. Use small size targets that you print out on the computer to simulate distance, if you need to. Full targets that are made partial via no-shoots or hardcover make a better simulation, but sometimes small targets are the only way.

If you set something up, shoot some video and get it on YouTube, and make a comment here. I’d love to see your ideas!!!

About the author


USPSA Grand Master, NRA Instructor, http://re-gun.com/about/

Permanent link to this article: http://re-gun.com/2011/05/creative-dry-fire-field-courses/

2 pings

  1. DR Performance says:

    As promised, the last (and favoritest) re-post from the older Practice Drill stuff! http://bit.ly/m4E0VO

  2. xre says:

    RT @drperformance: As promised, the last (and favoritest) re-post from the older Practice Drill stuff! http://bit.ly/m4E0VO

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>