How many times have you heard that in order to improve your shooting you must do a lot of dry fire? Well, reality is that doing a lot of dry fire can definitely improve your shooting or it could be a curse for you.
Dry fire is not just a practice, it is a rehearsal before you go to the range and go “live” (shoot live ammunition). Think about this for a second: Imagine that you are a singer and you are going to sing the National Anthem in a stadium full of people, you will be on national TV and you need to do this performance perfectly. Now, let me ask you something: Would you practice singing the National Anthem in a different tone because you know how you will sing it at the stadium? I am pretty sure you would say NO (unless you want to fail). Basically, in order to have a great performance, you would sing and practice the song over and over again, you pay attention to every tone, every word, most likely you will imagine you are at the same stadium, hearing everyone cheering for you as you get introduce. You feel how your heart rate increases. You are living the moment.
My suggestion to you is that when you do dry fire, be more detail-oriented with your movements, your front sight, the amount of pressure each hand is applying to the firearm, how you are pressing the trigger, etc. With your UNLOADED firearm do dry fire and imagine you are shooting lives rounds. In other words, I want you to practice all the elements that are necessary for perfect shooting. When you go to the range your muscle memory will take over and you will have better results!
Gabby Franco is most widely known for being a contestant on the TV Show Top Shot Season Four and Top Shot All Stars. She has been involved in competition shooting for more than 20 years. She participated on the XXVII Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia (Sept. 2000). She has won gold and silver medals in many international shooting competitions. Today, Gabby teaches firearms classes and offers seminars around the country to civilians and Police Departments, but calls South Florida her home. In 2013 she published her first book, titled: “Troubleshooting: Mastering Your Pistol Marksmanship”. In 2014 Gabby joined the NRA News team as a Commentator and became a member of the Remington Shooting Team.
Couples Therapy with Guns by Leia Mutchler
My husband calls it “Couples Therapy with Guns.”
He is talking about the team-training class we took with BSG Security Services, where couples who carry guns in their everyday life work out a plan for a critical incident and practice training that way. To be honest, I was a bit nervous because I’ve never "trained" with my spouse before. Sure, we go to the range together, share pointers and safety observe for each other, but we have never worked as a defensive team before.
The class was intimate, with only 2 couples that day and the experience level with handguns was expected to be at least intermediate for this course. After the safety brief, the firing line started out with some barrel warmup on cardboard silhouettes then quickly dropped into the reality of team training with the 21-foot rule demonstration. I’m always surprised by the response time for the 21-foot rule; it’s a huge eye opener.
Next was up close shooting then learning to take turns shooting as a couple while keeping the other person behind you and how to communicate with one another in a defensive situation. Kent also took us through one handed shooting which was important for me because if I’m ever in a defensive situation I will more than likely have one hand holding a child. The pace was spot on and Kent took the time to slow drills down to make sure all critical learning points were covered.
One of the biggest things I learned is how important it is to know about your partners preferences for carrying & the shooting style, i.e. where they carry, what they carry & do they carry with one in the chamber? We ended the day with shooting steel, always a favorite! I learned so much working with my partner that I now have confidence in my abilities and role if we are ever put in a defensive situation.
This past October, the first NOCTOBER event occurred at Copperhead Creek, Marble Falls, Texas. NOCTOBER was a nocturnal live fire ground and air event that was hosted by For Those Who Gave All, Medal of Honor recipient Dakota Meyer’s charity. The two-day event brought vendors, law enforcement, military, and civilians together to test out the latest night vision equipment not easily accessible to the public. NOCTOBER featured an array of vendors who donated a wide supply of raffle prizes, silent auction items, ammunition, and personal demo time. Likewise, Jim Smith, Spartan Tactical CEO and former CAG member, kicked the event off each day with a briefing on “applications of technology, myths and realities.”
Copperhead Creek was an excellent location to host such a busy event. Helicopter shoots, provided by Heligunner, took place in the late afternoon before sunset and five live fire ranges were active during the night. These five stages included: a handgun range with NVG's and white light with lasers, a white light carbine bay with steel targets out to 120 yards, an IR NVG carbine bay out to 120 yards, a 500 yard long gun range with night vision and thermal targets, and a live fire bay sponsored by TNVC. Each of the five stages included 2 instructors (vendors and former military veterans) that taught attendees how to use the equipment and ran them through various drills.
The equipment that was featured was state-of-the-art, not to mention extremely fun, such as:
NOCTOBER, all types came together—young and old, Texans and travelers, teens and parents, girls and guys, veteran shooters and newbies. It was a thrill meeting new people and seeing the expression on their faces when looking through night vision for the first time (or hearing the “OOH’S” and “AHH’S” amidst rapid fire!). It’s definitely something we are looking forward to continuing in the future, so stay tuned!
Ruthie Jenkins joined the Sure Shots a couple of years ago when she moved to Austin to pursue a career in advertising. She grew up an avid hunter, but is now a firearms training junkee thanks to the skills and fundamentals she learned at practice. Now she continues to work in the ad industry and is also a partner in TRIARC Systems, a start-up firearms company based in Temple, TX. Ruthie has enjoyed the companionship of such a great group of girls--as new hunting partners and good friends.
Sure Shots at NOCTOBER
A few of SURE SHOTS were in attendance at NOCTOBER and got to try out some of the great gear provided by the sponsors.