Whether you’re an experienced shooter or a newcomer to the sport, your form and skills can always stand to improve. The fact is, you’ll be a better shot with regular practice. However, not all practice is equal.
Of course, you want to hit as close to the bullseye as possible, but just as important is to maintain a consistent form which is proven with good groupings. If the groupings are always the same amount away from the center of target, that can be corrected by adjusting either your stance or the sights on your weapon, but bad groupings indicate you need to work toward maintaining proper form and breathing with each shot.
In order to practice, you obviously have to have a place to shoot safely on a regular basis. The most common solution is to find a public shooting range (or a private club which will grant you membership) which is close enough to home or work. If you have land, you might be able to set up your own range. You’ll need to set up targets at different distances in order to practice at short, medium, and long range and ideally several targets at each distance to simulate variances in elevation.
At the range, you can measure the distance to the target, but in an emergency or hunting situation, you’ll have to be ready to judge the distance and aim accordingly. Shooting at the range regularly will help you become better able to judge distance by eye, but you may also want to measure distances at places you regularly spend time. You see a difference in appearance of 100 meters on a open field such as where the range is likely located compared to what 100 meters looks like in the city or in a wooded area.
Once again, groupings are a result of consistent form. With every practice shot, you need to focus on a proper stance, breathing pattern, and grip. It’s important to build muscle memory so you shoot the same in a situation of heightened adrenaline. People who served in the military are quick to explain how different it is to shoot paper targets versus targets that shoot back, and hunters describe a sense of excitement and adrenaline rush while watching game and waiting for the shot to present itself.
If all the different aspects of holding a good form to take the best shot possible seems complicated, don’t worry, it will come naturally. Just be sure to get plenty of practice and to the extent possible let someone else judge your form. Even the best and most experienced shooters are capable of developing bad habits over time, so pay attention to your groupings and make the necessary corrections as they come up and you’ll find you maintain an impressive record of great shots each time you fire the weapon.
~ Ready to Fire News