How To Develop Good Shooting Skills

Good Shooting Skills are developed over time. Like any activity, it does not come all at once. With some effort, you can become a great gun handler and shooter. Many of these steps can be done in your own home. Let’s look at some of the steps to success and how you can get started to be the shooter you would like to be.

Let see how to develop good shooting skills-

Safety- The Four Gun Safety Rules are not optional, they apply to everything we do when we handle a handgun. Good Shooting Skills means you know these and know the number of the rule ( there are only four). Sometimes when reading an article an author will say “remember rule #3” you need to know what that means. See the safety rules here for a reminder.

Reading vs. Doing– There is a big difference between reading about skill development and practicing it. Like many sports, you must do the activity to really learn it. Many times to get good you need a coach that can help you along the way. Grip, Sight Alignment, Sight Picture, and Trigger Manipulation, are all skills you should know and be practicing with every session you do. Drawing from the holster is a skill that you should learn from an instructor, not a video or a book. Someone that knows the proper way should guide you in the fine points of presentation from the holster. Remember you are building good shooting skills so that you will do the same thing every time you handle your handgun.

Dry Fire Training-you should develop a dry fire training routine. It should cover skills that you would like to improve on. Many of the drills can be done in dry fire sessions with a little imagination. Contact me for some dry fire info that you can use.

Drills & Skill Building- Mike Seeklander and Claude Werner both have great books on developing your skills (see at the end of this article). Many of the drills they use are great for these sessions. Good shooting skills are developed over time not overnight. Micro drills are a great path to How to develop Good Shooting Skills. A Micro drill is taking one aspect that you would like to work on and breaking it down into a small drill. One example would be picking up a gun properly from a table or shooting bench. You know finger on the frame of the handgun (instead of the trigger). Picking up an empty magazine and an unloaded gun from the bench and loading it is another Micro drill you can work on. Any skill that you have can be broken down into a micro drill. Like Drawing for concealment, pulling back your shirt and gripping your pistol when it is in the holster. These are all Micro drills.

good shooting skillsLive Fire- Good Shooting Skills requires going to the range and drilling and checking your progress. It is important to have a plan and keep a written log. You do not know where you are going if you don’t know where you have been. You should plan a warm-up drill, a practice drill, and a qualification at the end. It’s a good idea to start looking at acquiring a shot timer. Shot timers put pressure on you to perform in a certain specified time. Overcoming pressure is one skill all concealed carry holders need.



How often to Shoot-You should try to shoot twice a month if possible. Good Shooting Skills don’t come in your sleep. Most top Instructors state that you should dry fire twice as much as you shoot.

How much to Shoot- Most peoples performance diminishes between 50- 100 rounds. I see in sessions with students all the time that they are done at 50 rounds. Don’t continue to practice when things are getting worse you will just practice bad habits. Go back to the fundamentals and try to build the skill you a failing on. Dry firing is one of the ways you can correct problems like trigger control and pulling shots off the target. I can have a good session in 50 rounds if I plan it and it doesn’t take very long at the range.

Qualification Shooting-Qualification and Proficiency Courses are designed as a means of tracking your skill development. These sessions will prove that you are getting better and gaining those Good Shooting Skills.

With all these ideas about how to to get and keep good shooting skills, you should be able to start and pick one idea and make yourself a better gun handler than you have ever been.

Claude Werner

Mike Seeklander

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