Tiger McKee

Shootrite Firearms Academy

Dry Practice

To perform the tasks required in typical fight – movement, communication, using cover, and shooting accurately – most of your actions must be executed using the subconscious mind. Your weapon malfunctions. The conscious mind says, “malfunction,” then the subconscious handles clearing the malfunction. The only way to reach this level of performance is with repetition, and the best way to get these repetitions is with dry-practice.

‘Dry-fire’ practice is performed with your actual firearm, using dummy ammo or ‘snap-caps’ instead of live ammunition. It isn’t exciting but this is the best way to learn fundamental skills. During dry-fire practice all safety rules apply, and make sure the muzzle is always pointing in a safe direction.

An alternative to using actual weapons are dummy plastic guns. With these ‘red’ or ‘blue’ guns you can practice a variety of skills without the worries of using a real weapon, so you can practice almost anywhere. Treat dummy weapons just like real ones, so you don’t develop bad habits that could lead to trouble when using a live weapon. You can even ‘dry-practice’ without any weapon at all. Just pretending you’re holding a weapon and practice your tactical movement, clearing corners and working doorways.

Mental imagery practice, or ‘brain-practice’ is another valuable tool. The part of our mind that stores memories can’t distinguish between events we realistically imagine and events that have actually occurred. Vividly imagining a sequence of actions is stored in the brain, just as if we had actually done them. This is a valuable learning technique for anything that combines both mental and physical skills.

Learning is a never-ending process. With motivation and creativity you can practice every day. Remember, when it comes to life or death confrontations, you can never be too prepared.

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September 19, 2010 - Posted by | General Training

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