Failure Is Always An Option

I hate dry-fire practice with my strong hand only and weak hand only*, because it shows just how much I suck at such things. But I do it. Not as often as I should, but I do it nevertheless. I’m ok with sucking at something for a while if I know I can get better at it with effort and practice. It’s the sucking at something and not improving that I hate (and I do that far too much for my liking).

Which is why I can’t figure out why you wouldn’t want to do a night shoot. There’s a very good chance you’ll need to defend yourself at night, so why not get good at it now, when the stakes are just 17th place in a match, not your life? Better a bruised ego now than deep penetrating trauma later.

*Go ahead. Tell me there’s no such thing as “weak hand”, just “support hand”. I dare you.

This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. I’ve actually come to enjoy weak hand only practice. I’m not good at it, so I’ve found that I learn a lot more when I practice it than when I just dryfire freestyle. Makes things more interesting.

  2. As someone who is cross-dominant (dominant right hand, dominant left eye), I learned to shoot a .22 LR pistol one-handed using the left hand aiming with the left eye. Switching to larger calibers and adopting a Weaver stance, I shot two handed with my left supporting my right hand which held the pistol, aiming with the left eye, aka “Jeff Cooper” style.

    “Weak hand only” practice? Not an issue.

    The problem I have is moving my head over enough to aim with my dominant eye and shoot with my dominant hand only.

    http://www.rightleftrightwrong.com/what.html

    https://www.usconcealedcarry.com/the-cross-dominant-shooter/

  3. Gotta tell you guys something, the pistol is going to be used in close quarters combat only most of the time. That means almost zero time to aim and no room to do so. The sights are useless on a pistol self defense use. Learn to point and hit. Learn with both hands down low around holster level. Muscle memory takes over with this kind of training. It takes work and practice and the end result is a more accurate hit quicker and more often. I have been doing this training often over the last 30 years and can get 5 inch groups around the center target fairly consistently at 20 feet and less.

    Remember center mass is where you stop the threat. A perfect shot is not required to stop a threat, several hits can do well enough. Use the sights on your rifle, that’s distance shooting. Use the sights on your pistol for the same reason. But it’s highly unlikely that your doing defense shooting at that kind of distance.

    I know this article is about competition shooting but there are those that think competition shooting equates defense use. Doesn’t quite fit.

  4. Well Tex, actually I have. I got pretty good at it with a 1911 but don’t bother much anymore, my practice time is used for other things.
    At what distance do you start to use the sights? 25 feet? 30? Do you transition from point shooting to sighted *while* firing or is it it’s own separate move? Do you carry your rifle to large stores with long aisles?
    Your statement: “The sights are useless on a pistol self defense use” is contradictory to EVERY trainer who hangs out a shingle whether they teach LEO, military, civilian or all of the above.
    The only time you SHOULDN’T use the sights is when the threat is so close you CAN’T without handing the gun to them or you are in such an awkward position you can’t possibly see the sights.
    Competition shooters use the sights. I wonder why that is? Fast, accurate hits might be of use wouldn’t it?

    If you are comfortable with sending Million Dollar Liability Pills downrange with innocents around not using the sights, by all means, what’s the worst that could happen? (besides going to prison penniless)

  5. Parts of your comment makes exactly my point.

    “Well Tex, actually I have. I got pretty good at it with a 1911 but don’t bother much anymore, my practice time is used for other things.”

    That’s too bad. Giving up any self defense practice can cost you your life.

    “Your statement: “The sights are useless on a pistol self defense use” is contradictory to EVERY trainer who hangs out a shingle whether they teach LEO, military, civilian or all of the above.”

    Actually the opposite is true. Every advanced self defense trainer I know teaches this method above all others first and foremost. Plenty of live fire classes in the DFW area, you should check them out.

    “The only time you SHOULDN’T use the sights is when the threat is so close you CAN’T without handing the gun to them or you are in such an awkward position you can’t possibly see the sights.”

    That is EXACTLY my point. Thank you. And that is almost every situation that one is going to find themselves in and that has been telegraphed in the news all the time.

    “Competition shooters use the sights. I wonder why that is? Fast, accurate hits might be of use wouldn’t it?”

    As I pointed out, competition is NOT self defense. Competition shoots are planned. No self defense situation ever is.

    Of course there is this,

    “At what distance do you start to use the sights? 25 feet? 30? Do you transition from point shooting to sighted *while* firing or is it it’s own separate move?”

    Here again, at those distances and further the chances of it being a true self defense is highly unlikely. Not impossible but unlikely. There is your million dollar liability or maybe even a murder charge.

    And this,
    “Do you carry your rifle to large stores with long aisles?”

    I have never carried any long gun anywhere except hunting. I am not one of those open carry long gun idiots.
    And the long aisles point? Again, not going to be a self defense use unless you have a madman in the store randomly shooting. At that point I use my pistol sights extremely well.

    I do continually train from advanced training from formal military personal who do hold training classes at well recognized facilities, they are not cheap but very effective. These are not competition classes but classes that are aimed at keeping you alive. No pun intended.

    Competition training is like training to drive in the Indy 500 to earn your license to drive on the street. Doesn’t fit.

  6. Here again, at those distances and further the chances of it being a true self defense is highly unlikely. Not impossible but unlikely. There is your million dollar liability or maybe even a murder charge.

    Umm…no. Lets see, that’s about ONE STEP away from the back bumper of my truck to the front bumper. I think someone that presents as a deadly threat at that distance can be articulated pretty easily by even the dimbulbs among us. If I can extend my arm(s), I’m using the sights.

    As I pointed out, competition is NOT self defense.

    And those competition skills, i.e., fast, accurate fire don’t translate AT ALL to any use of a handgun beyond said competitions?
    I’m pretty sure I’ve read someplace that someone wrote how absurd that notion is.

    Oh look! I found it!
    http://www.exurbanleague.com/misfires/?s=competition+will+get+you+killed&x=20&y=7

    Feel free to have the last word Tex.
    I’m done trying to explain that what you *think* a self defense scenario will look like may be miles from what it might actually be.

    unless you have a madman in the store randomly shooting. At that point I use my pistol sights extremely well.

    So you go against the “Every advanced self defense trainer I know teaches this method above all others first and foremost“?
    {{{eyeroll}}}

      1. Your funny!

        You’re.

        I think if you set yourself up to say “A self defense scenario will most likely be like X”, you’re going to be rudely shocked if reality varies from your plans.

        And it will. One thing competition shooting drills into you, more than anything else, is that you will fail to live up to your expectations of yourself and your ability to deliver the shot on-time and on-target.

        Everyone is the best shooter on the range when they’re the only shooter on the range.

        1. Have any of ever been in actual self defense situation? Well have you? I have. And damn near lost my life along with one of my children. It is the reason why I now take continuing self defense training, REAL TRAINING, not hotrod courses on your so called competition ranges.

          Don’t even to try to presume to tell me what a self defense situation will, can, may or should look like, I have been there and don’t ever plan on revisiting that again.

          I will take leave of this blog and leave it to you “professionals”. Spelling lords and all.

          My last word.

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