Tiger McKee

Shootrite Firearms Academy

Fundamentals of Movement

Moving – to create distance, get to cover, obtain a clear angle of fire or to present the threat with a moving target – is a fundamental combative skill. You should be able to move smoothly and shoot accurately, or move fast without firing, maybe while reloading, and still have stability and control of your body.

Stability is mandatory to fight effectively with firearms. Without stability you lose balance. Luckily, since we only have two legs, we are blessed with a great ability to maintain balance and control; we just need to modify our natural abilities to work with firearms.

The general rule is to keep your hips and upper body properly indexed towards the target. For a right-handed shooter the hips are bladed slightly, with the left side of the pelvis a little closer to the target than the right. The upper body is in alignment with the hips. When the hips twist the upper body tends to follow, and even though you do have some flexibility with the arms, this makes it more difficult to keep your sights on target. This is especially true with long-guns.

In order to maintain our body’s index we move with the foot that is to the direction we’re moving first. To step left I move the left foot first, then reposition the right foot, ending up in the proper stance. Stepping to the rear my right foot moves first, which keeps the hips and upper body indexed, then I reset the left foot. One step requires moving each foot. This is a shuffle type movement, and you’re always hitting your stance between each step, flowing smoothly from one step to the next.

Most ranges are smooth and sterile. Real life contains all type things to trip you up like doorjambs, curbs, holes and slippery surfaces. To avoid losing balance feel with the toes of the foot as you step to insure there is something there to place your weight on. After the toes confirm good ground shift your weight, redistributing it from one leg to the other and reset the other foot. It’s better to take two short stable steps than one long or wide one. Committing your weight shift before you have somewhere to put it will end up with you on the ground. Avoid crossing the legs and feet. This requires you shift weight prior to establishing good footing and you’ll trip over your own feet.

If you’re going to fall it’s better to go down on your terms with a certain amount of control as opposed to completely losing it. Falling is an art. Seek out instruction on how to do a controlled drop, reducing the chance of injury and insuring a quick follow up after regaining balance. Learn how to get up off the ground efficiently before you need to do it during a struggle. Your job is to develop your sense of proprioception – knowing where your body parts are in relationship to each other.

Keep in mind there are always exceptions. Your actions in a fight won’t be as pretty as on the range. In order to improvise under stress and less than ideal conditions you must truly learn the principles.Image

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April 12, 2012 - Posted by | General Training

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