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Target Aquisition on the Draw


nmcferro
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I am having problems getting that first shot off after the draw, especially on a distant target or a steel plate. At the draw should I keep my eyes on the target and bring the gun into view and then switch to the front sight, or should my eyes go immediately to the sights and then move the gun to the target while eyes are on sights?

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If your natural point of aim is on the target and you've engrained that draw to be the same everytime during dry fire you should be able to draw and the sights will go right where you're looking. Take a split second to verify sight alignment while prepping the trigger and you'll get a hit everytime.

Edited by Jesse Tischauser
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I am having problems getting that first shot off after the draw, especially on a distant target or a steel plate. At the draw should I keep my eyes on the target and bring the gun into view and then switch to the front sight, or should my eyes go immediately to the sights and then move the gun to the target while eyes are on sights?

Keep your eyes on the target, dont move your head and bring the sights into view as you trigger prep. When I have trouble with this it is usually an inconsistent grip issue.

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If you haven't acquired the front sight, looking at the target won't help much.

Eyes should be focused in the near field, in front of the chest. As the pistol comes up, and you push it out, your eyes will already be focused at the distance of the sights. Acquire the sights and then move them to the target.

Your mind will remember where the target is. But, your eyes have to acquire the sights.

You can prove this by watching other shooters. When you see a shooter who focuses on the target, you'll note that he/she misses a lot of first shots -- or, at least, takes a long time to get prepared for that shot.

My teacher said that the muscles that control the lens of the eye can relax (move to long focus) faster than they can contract (move to short focus). All I know is, acquiring the sights is job one when engaging any target at any distance.

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If you haven't acquired the front sight, looking at the target won't help much.

Eyes should be focused in the near field, in front of the chest. As the pistol comes up, and you push it out, your eyes will already be focused at the distance of the sights. Acquire the sights and then move them to the target.

Your mind will remember where the target is. But, your eyes have to acquire the sights.

You can prove this by watching other shooters. When you see a shooter who focuses on the target, you'll note that he/she misses a lot of first shots -- or, at least, takes a long time to get prepared for that shot.

My teacher said that the muscles that control the lens of the eye can relax (move to long focus) faster than they can contract (move to short focus). All I know is, acquiring the sights is job one when engaging any target at any distance.

I've tried to pickup the sites as they pistol is coming up but it's moving way to fast. It isn't eye level until its on target either. Sure I can't see the gun coming up into view but I can't find and focus and adjust the site picture as the gun is going that fast.

Edited by Jesse Tischauser
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If you haven't acquired the front sight, looking at the target won't help much.

Eyes should be focused in the near field, in front of the chest. As the pistol comes up, and you push it out, your eyes will already be focused at the distance of the sights. Acquire the sights and then move them to the target.

Your mind will remember where the target is. But, your eyes have to acquire the sights.

You can prove this by watching other shooters. When you see a shooter who focuses on the target, you'll note that he/she misses a lot of first shots -- or, at least, takes a long time to get prepared for that shot.

My teacher said that the muscles that control the lens of the eye can relax (move to long focus) faster than they can contract (move to short focus). All I know is, acquiring the sights is job one when engaging any target at any distance.

I've tried to pickup the sites as they pistol is coming up but it's moving way to fast. It isn't eye level until its on target either. Sure I can't see the gun coming up into view but I can't find and focus and adjust the site picture as the gun is going that fast.

You must learn to pre-focus your eyes at that distance.

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If you haven't acquired the front sight, looking at the target won't help much.

Eyes should be focused in the near field, in front of the chest. As the pistol comes up, and you push it out, your eyes will already be focused at the distance of the sights. Acquire the sights and then move them to the target.

Your mind will remember where the target is. But, your eyes have to acquire the sights.

You can prove this by watching other shooters. When you see a shooter who focuses on the target, you'll note that he/she misses a lot of first shots -- or, at least, takes a long time to get prepared for that shot.

My teacher said that the muscles that control the lens of the eye can relax (move to long focus) faster than they can contract (move to short focus). All I know is, acquiring the sights is job one when engaging any target at any distance.

I've tried to pickup the sites as they pistol is coming up but it's moving way to fast. It isn't eye level until its on target either. Sure I can't see the gun coming up into view but I can't find and focus and adjust the site picture as the gun is going that fast.

If the gun is "coming up into view", you are not presenting it properly. I had a lot of trouble with this early on with weak side draw. I'd swing the pistol from the holster to the forward position without bringing it to the center of my body and *then* pushing it out. This made for very erratic presentation, made any AD that might occur a sure miss situation, and prevented me from acquiring the sights.

The gun, and both hands, come to the chest, at which point the sight is acquired. As the gun is pushed out, the focus remains fixed on the sights. As I said, you already know where the target is -- it didn't go anywhere while you were getting your sight picture. Push the gun to the target. When you get consistent at presenting the pistol in this (correct) way, your first shot will be faster, your misses will go away, and you'll be on target much faster in case of an AD while presenting the pistol.

As I said above, watch shooters. They easily fall into two categories -- ones who focus on the target and those who focus down, in front of their chest to acquire the sights. You can tell them apart by their hat brim at the ready position, before the buzzer. You'll quickly see that the guys who are presenting their pistols correctly, and acquiring the front sight early, are shooting faster and better than the other class of citizen.

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I'm not a big fan of wasting time bringing the gun to the center of my body then pressing out either. It comes out of the holster and goes straight to the target. Plus I scoop draw.i guess I'm doing everything wrong.

Don't worry, there is still hope. If you take all the advice you read on the Internet, one day you could be a sponsored shooter and end up on tv.

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Seriously though. Back when I dry fired until I was cross eyed I worked on trying to pick up the sight before the gun was at its final position. I could obviously see the gun and sight coming up. But focusing on the front sight like I do when I am trying to make an dead nutz accurate shot with full front site focus where you see the serrations and such was never possible. I don't know if it has to do with my astigamtism, my corrective contacts. or if my eyes are just as lazy as the rest of me?

Hwo focused are your eyes on the front sight as its moving up? What is the clarity of the front sight?

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I'm not a big fan of wasting time bringing the gun to the center of my body then pressing out either. It comes out of the holster and goes straight to the target. Plus I scoop draw.i guess I'm doing everything wrong.

Don't worry, there is still hope. If you take all the advice you read on the Internet, one day you could be a sponsored shooter and end up on tv.

:D :cheers:

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If you haven't acquired the front sight, looking at the target won't help much.

Eyes should be focused in the near field, in front of the chest. As the pistol comes up, and you push it out, your eyes will already be focused at the distance of the sights. Acquire the sights and then move them to the target.

Your mind will remember where the target is. But, your eyes have to acquire the sights.

You can prove this by watching other shooters. When you see a shooter who focuses on the target, you'll note that he/she misses a lot of first shots -- or, at least, takes a long time to get prepared for that shot.

My teacher said that the muscles that control the lens of the eye can relax (move to long focus) faster than they can contract (move to short focus). All I know is, acquiring the sights is job one when engaging any target at any distance.

I've tried to pickup the sites as they pistol is coming up but it's moving way to fast. It isn't eye level until its on target either. Sure I can't see the gun coming up into view but I can't find and focus and adjust the site picture as the gun is going that fast.

You must learn to pre-focus your eyes at that distance.

You said a mouthful there. This is something I am struggling with in my dryfire drills. After I draw, it takes me a moment to bring the front sight into clarity so that I can really track it. That moment is probably a half second, which means if I'm being fully honest with myself about my draw times, it makes my .6-ish draw a 1.1-ish draw by the time I'm really ready to pull the trigger.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I am having problems getting that first shot off after the draw, especially on a distant target or a steel plate. At the draw should I keep my eyes on the target and bring the gun into view and then switch to the front sight, or should my eyes go immediately to the sights and then move the gun to the target while eyes are on sights?

You definitely do not want to do the latter.

One method:

Before the buzzer, you are focused on the target. On the buzzer, immediatley bring your focus back toward where the front sight will appear (when you are in your Index position). With some practice, you can have the front sight in clear focus right as your gun stops moving (into position).

Another method:

At "Shooter Ready," you are focused on the target. On "Stand By," bring your focus back to where the front sight is going to appear (again, when you are in your Index position). So by the buzzer, you are looking for where your front sight is going to appear.

be

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I am having problems getting that first shot off after the draw, especially on a distant target or a steel plate. At the draw should I keep my eyes on the target and bring the gun into view and then switch to the front sight, or should my eyes go immediately to the sights and then move the gun to the target while eyes are on sights?

At "Shooter Ready," you are focused on the target. On "Stand By," bring your focus back to where the front sight is going to appear (again, when you are in your Index position). So by the buzzer, you are looking for where your front sight is going to appear.

be

I think Jerry Miculek calls that using a soft focus.

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I consider Rob Leatham the greatest "instinctual" shooter on the planet with an iron-sighted pistol. Time and time again, I’ve seen him acquire and shoot targets so quickly it leaves you speechless. I questioned him on his approach. Basically, he said: Upper body (shoulders) square to the target, arms fully extended but not locked, and most importantly, once in position, the head, arms, and body move as a unit. He commented that he would not hesitate to adjust his feet while shooting if that will preserve the integrity of his Index. He also said, and I agree, "Why ‘aim’ if your position can do that for you"? This should not be taken to mean that he doesn’t aim when he needs to; it’s just that with proper technique, the gun points and shoots wherever you look. After enough practice, of course.

Brian Enos

Edited by toothguy
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  • 3 weeks later...

After you draw, bring the gun up first before pushing it out towards the target. Keep your eyes are on the target. You will see the front sight come into view and can begin to focus on the front sight and perform sight alignment/picture while continuing to extend your arms fully.

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If you haven't acquired the front sight, looking at the target won't help much.

Eyes should be focused in the near field, in front of the chest. As the pistol comes up, and you push it out, your eyes will already be focused at the distance of the sights. Acquire the sights and then move them to the target.

Your mind will remember where the target is. But, your eyes have to acquire the sights.

You can prove this by watching other shooters. When you see a shooter who focuses on the target, you'll note that he/she misses a lot of first shots -- or, at least, takes a long time to get prepared for that shot.

My teacher said that the muscles that control the lens of the eye can relax (move to long focus) faster than they can contract (move to short focus). All I know is, acquiring the sights is job one when engaging any target at any distance.

Is this the reason why some say to shoot the further targets first?

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