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Able to get some solid dry fire practice in. I am on vacation but insanely busy with work and a list of projects that need to be completed before 2017 ends. Also, the weather has been very cold. Most days we don't even break out of the teens. So no live fire practice for me until it warms up a bit. 

I worked on unloaded and loaded table starts. I realized I have never practiced this and it's something I needed to include in my practice rotation. I quickly learned I how much I really suck at this. Table starts (often on top of a barrel start) is something I have to deal with at almost every match. I averaged 2.7 seconds for unloaded start weather my hands are in surrender or at my sides with an open target set at 10 yards. A loaded table start I averaged 1.35 seconds. I realized getting a proper grip was difficult. I really need to work on this.

 

I set up a mini stage as well. This mini stage required me to draw and fire at 2 simulated 6 yard targets. I would then move backwards and to my left to engage the next position, T3 & T4 than to my final position with a T5 & T6 with no shoots. My 3 runs I started my drawing and firing 2 shots in T1 & T2 than I would move as quickly as possible keeping safety in mind. I averaged 8.68 seconds. I than ran this stage 3 more times only this time on the buzzer I would draw and start moving backwards instead of staying static and I averaged 7.60 seconds. My 3rd and final run was start position facing the wall with hands on wall (targets are to my left). On the start signal I would turn and draw engage T1 & T2 while moving backwards. My average for 3 runs is 7.71 seconds. I really enjoyed this little stage and felt like I learned a lot.   

 

Something I am dealing with is a lower back/hip injury that causes a lot of pain at times. It doesn't bother me when standing and or moving. It hurts like hell when I am sitting and attempt to stand. I have intense pain and numbness in my left leg. Weather at my desk working or driving and getting out of my car; the pain is intense. I went to my doctor and she determined something is pinching my nerve. I am going to physical therapy now. The good is I am see the same physical therapist that helped me when I tore a tricep muscle in my left arm last year. So I feel like I am in good hands. I am looking forward to 2018 season. I feel like I will be better prepared and much more competitive. 

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Today was a focus on reloads and SHO and WHO shooting. However, I started todays practice with Bill Drill. It was a good warm up and fun. I averaged 2.13 seconds for my time today. Not bad, I'm making progress and very happy about it. I can't wait to give it go in live fire. According to the local weather man it's gonna be awhile before we get any warmer temperatures. Next was 4 Aces. I ran 4 Aces 3 ways. 1st was the standard and my average time was 2.85 seconds. My next run was freestyle, reload and SHO. I averaged 3.09 seconds for that run. Next was Free style, reload and WHO. I averaged 3.99 seconds. Almost a full second slower than SHO run. Not sure what an acceptable time difference is between SHO and WHO. My goal is to be no more than a 1/2 second difference between them. My last run for the day was 4 Aces with hands in the surrender position. I averaged 2.96 seconds. This surprised me. I thought my average time would be same if not a little faster. I'll run this again in the near future. My sample size is really not big enough to say with confidence that I'm not faster. Oh well something for me to work on and drill into too determine what the real difference is for me. 

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Last couple evenings was a focus on standards for dry fire practice. I set up the classic El Presidente first. My time for a cold run was 6.17 seconds. My average for 11 runs is 6.036 seconds. I next set up CM 99-13 Quicky II. My first run time for both strings is 13.68. My average time is 13.72. I had a couple runs where my reload was just horrible. Really hurt my average. But, that's why you practice to improve and eliminate those big mistakes.

 

I felt sluggish these last two practice sessions. Even though my back and hip pain has gotten a lot better with physical therapy and I finally slept through the night without waking up (first in almost 2 1/2 months. I felt blah. I also found myself not pushing as hard at the start. I was able to get that under control and started pushing. The good I noticed was my grip. I found myself gripping the crap out the gun without much thought. I also noticed even though I felt sluggish I was still faster and my strong hand and weak hand performance was much better. My grip on weak hand was so much more consistent and times are faster it is very motivating. Now if only the weather will cooperate and give me a warm, dry day to get some live fire practice in to see where I am really at. 

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Tonight was practice with a focus on entry/exit and shooting while moving. I set up mini stage in the basement. I incorporated drawing with hands relaxed at sides, surrender draw, turn and draw, unloaded and loaded table start. My stage consisted of 8 paper and 2 mini poppers and a simulated 15 yard plate rack. I did not incorporate all targets all the time. I varied and changed the stage to maximize what element I was emphasizing during that part of practice. I timed myself using my Shottmax II timer. It picks up my dry fire shots really good and has proven to be very beneficial since I started this journal. I need to figure out a way to put my dry fire stage plans in this journal. It would be nice to see how my stages progress thorough time. Tonight I was very happy with my overall performance. I had one bad magazine load from the unloaded table start. I was calling my shots knew when I broke the trigger weather my shot was A's or C's and D's. My grip was very firm and consistent as well. Overall I had an hour of solid practice. One thing that is helping is changing my practice. Not letting myself fall into a rut with practicing the same ole thing(s) night after night keeps things interesting and fun. Now I need the weather to cooperate so I can get some good live fire practice in. 

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Weather warmed up today and I was able to get in a quick live fire session. I worked on dots and plate rack. Because I haven't shot a live round since the indoor match I felt focusing on the fundamentals and accuracy. My best time keeping 5 shots in a 2" circle at 7 yards was 4.87 seconds. I shot a new plate rack we have. It has 6 plates 6" in diameter. My best time for clean 6 out 6 was 3.77 seconds. Although it was a short session about 35 minutes it felt really good to get outside and live fire. The weather is suppose to turn cold again so back to focus on dry firing. 

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Tonight was a focus on entry/exit and reloads. Kept it simple. Had two positions 5 yards apart to enter and exit from. I felt really good with my performance tonight. Speed between position wasn't all that impressive. My back and hip was hurting a little more than it had in the last 1 1/2 weeks so pushing speed between position was not a focus. My focus was coming into position with gun up ready to fire and exiting as soon as I break the trigger on the last shot. I did very well with this drill tonight. For my reloads I was hitting a consistent 1.30 - 1.35 seconds. My focus wasn't on speed it was on technique. I focused on keeping the gun higher. By watching some past match videos I noticed I developed a habit of dropping the gun down closer to my belt while performing a reload. By keeping the gun higher closer to face level my loads were much smoother and I only had 3 bad reloads tonight. A big step in the right direction. Tonight was a nice confidence booster in my practice. I know I'm headed in the right direction. 

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Tonight was a continuation of entry/exit and a change from reloads to plate rack. Had two positions 4 yards apart. Again focus was coming into position with gun up ready to fire and exiting as soon as I break the trigger on the last shot. Changed my stage a little. I started with hands on wall shooting to partial targets around the corner of the wall. From there I moved to my left to the next position were I had 3 targets to engage. I practiced for 15 minutes and switched and ran from left to right starting facing up range hands in the surrender position. I ran the stage for 15 minutes and then moved to the simulated 10 yard plate rack for 15 minutes. I was consistent with my draw. Gun was up and ready as I entered into position and I was able to focus on my dot as I entered the position instead of is my gun up and ready. Exiting was a little more challenging. Exploding out of position was challenging with this nagging won't go away back problem. But my back is improving albeit slowly. Happy with the whole practice session tonight. I can see and measure the progress.  

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1/14/2018

This session was all about assorted exercises from Ben Stoeger's Dryfire Reloaded. I worked on 3 exercises; Widening Transitions, Skip Rope and Slip Rope with Reloads. I started with Skip the Rope. Did worked this drill for 15 minutes and I quickly realized how important foot work is to successfully getting a good shot off while moving into a position. I focused on getting the shot off only when my dot was solidly in the A zone not moving around. I set a Par time of 1.25 seconds. This time was very challenging. I next moved to the Skip Rope with Reloads. This drill was insane for me. I struggled with performing a smooth reload. After 15 minutes I felt like I was no better than when I started. I will revisit this drill soon. Widening Transitions was my last drill for the night. It was also very fun and challenging. I started with the targets next to each other by the end I had them 3 feet apart. My Par time was 2.30 seconds and this was challenging to accomplish with good hits. I pushed it and beat the Par time but my hits would get sloppy.  I feel like transitions is one of those low hanging fruits I should get a handle on quickly if I want to improve my match performance.  

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Tonight I worked on transitions and simulated plate rack. Practiced 180 transitions. I worked on using my lower body to drive the transition. By driving with my lower body I didn't drive past the target and could get into the A zone much smoother and quicker. I averaged .48 seconds for my transitions. Next I worked the simulated plate rack. This session I focused on grip and calling my shots. Overall I am happy with my progress. And dry fire is a lot of fun. I am able to push myself and make mistakes and work to correct them. Looking forward to warmer weather so I can get out and get some live fire practice in. 

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January 20, 2018

 

I Shot my first Steel Challenge match today Arnold Rifle & Pistol Club. It was lots of fun and I was able to squad with some guys I shoot USPSA with. Overall I finished 17th. Not bad considering I haven't shot a match in a while and mentally not in match mode, at first. I shot my CZ P09 Carry Optics gun in open division. My first stage I shot rather conservative. Kept telling myself not to shot the stop plate until last. I managed not to do that until the 2nd (Pendulum) and 3rd stage (Zipper) which I did twice. I learned a miss adds 3 seconds to your time. Wow, that can hurt and it did. Learned my lesson; don't shoot the stop plate until your have your hits! However, each stage I felt my mental game coming around. I could focus on the plates not my draw or am I hitting the plates, etc. By the time I hit my fourth and fifth stage I was feeling really good. 

 

Besides having fun and hanging out with my shooting buddies, there are some things I learned from the match. My dryfire work on transitions was paying off. I was using my lower body not my arms/upper body like a tank turret. I did not over "shoot" the plates when I transitioned to a target. I was able to get on the plate quickly. Now for the bad; I was horrible at calling my shots. I found myself pulling off target while breaking the trigger causing many misses and follow up shots. Not sure how much time I cost myself. For a 125 round match, I probably shot 140 rounds. Also, shooting in a competition is different from practice and when the buzzer goes off, we know you'll either preform or fall apart. Having the right mental game is just as important as any aspect of the game. Mental game is something that needs work as well and this matched helped with that. I can see myself shooting this game again. 

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January 21, 2018

 

Weather was very warm. We hit 65 degrees in the afternoon. I couldn't stand hanging around the house on such a nice day so I decided as soon as my honey do chores finished I ran to the range and did some live fire practice. I didn't have a lot of time so I set up CM 09-04 "Pucker Factor" classifier. I choose this one because I have been working on transitions and this seemed like a good one for that skill. After set up I decided to step up and shoot it with zero practice. Just like in a match sometimes the classifier is the first stage shot. I didn't do very well. Time 4.74, 32 Points for a HF of 6.7510. I had a very sloppy draw that cost me in time and points. Oh well time to move on. I shot this standard several times. I shot it near to far as I did my first attempt. And far to near. I wanted to see if there was a difference in time. Surprisingly I was faster shooting near to far. I averaged .30 seconds faster starting on the near head shot. I only shot about 150 rounds today. But it felt good to get outside and get in a live fire practice. On the positive as I was pushing myself and I managed only 1 D and 1 Mike this session. I was surprised I didn't have more. I was really pushing my time down. I wanted to get below 4 seconds. Thats tough while trying to maintain good hits. 

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January 24, 2018

 

Started the night off with El Prez. After 10 runs through EL Prez I averaged 5.5 seconds. Not good enough! So I broke it down and worked on areas I need to improve. I determined the low hanging fruit is my turn and draw and reloads. I am struggling to improve my time when I turn and draw. For comparison draw from hands relaxed at sides I can consistently draw 1.05 - 1.10 at 10 yards. Turn and draw I can manage 1.45 average. I broke this action down. I started off slowly to start refining my foot work on the turn, when I am gripping and drawing my gun. I started slow and working up speed as I felt I had each aspect of this action improved on. Next I moved to reloads worked them the same. I broke this action down into micro actions as well. I started with my gun pointed at target and began working on dropping the mag, grabbing my magazine from the belt, bring the gun into proper position for the reload and insertion of the magazine. I believe by breaking these two actions down it will help me improve speed and consistency. I also worked on drawing on distant targets; simulated 20 yard target. This drill I focused on seeing the dot at speed and trigger press. 

 

Good night of practice with keeping it simple and focused. 

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February 3, 2018

 

The weather was somewhat cooperative with temps in the mid 40's and I managed to get to the range and do some live fire. I was out of town all week so no dry fire practice this week. Friday night I re-sprung my CZ P09 with new springs from Cajun Gun Works. I added up my round count and I had just north of 10,000 rounds through the CZ after putting all of Cajun competition parts in when I started shooting CO. Live fire Saturday was more about testing the gun after the "tune up" and load testing. I changed back to 147 grain FP bullet with Alliant Sport Pistol powder. I needed to tweak the sights just a little. The 147s are more accurate than the 135 bullets.

 

I managed to live fire El Prez. Frankly my performance was pitiful. My times just couldn't break below 6 seconds. My turn to draw averaged 1.65 seconds and my reloads were 1.95 average. Also, my hits were horrible with an average score of 48 points. I next moved to the plate rack. I averaged 4.20 seconds with my best 3.89 going 6 out 6. I finished out the day with strong and weak hand shooting. I used the same El Prez target set up at 10 yards. Strong hand I managed a 1.3 draw and .38 transitions. Out of 12 runs I had only 3 C's. I was quit happy with this. Weak hand I managed 1.9 average draw .48 transitions. I was happy with my performance as well. I ran weak hand drill 20 times as I need more practice with my weak hand shooting. I managed 60% A's and 40% C's. This coming week I will need to continue working on my reloads. I am getting frustrated that I just can't seem to make good progress with my reloads.  

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2.4.2018

 

Dry fire tonight was a focus on reloads, reloads and reloads. I pulled my head out and took a video of my practice. I have gotten away from videoing and the value of them. I used my return air duct for a barricade. This works very well and is very similar to width of the barricades used at my local range. I put up 4 half sized targets to simulate a 12 yard shot. My goal was to perform this drill 4 seconds or faster. I managed a 4.2 second average. Overall this practice felt really good. Certainly better than my live fire the day before. 

 

 

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2.5.2018

 

Tonight I started on Triple reloads. I averaged 7.96 for this drill. I'm along way from 5.0 second goal. Overall my reloads were pretty smooth. My trigger finger was getting tried pulling the double action trigger 18 times towards the end grueling even though my double action is only 7.5 pounds. But is was a good drill for me to run. Second I worked on transitions. Specifically 90 degree transitions. My focus was using my lower body to transition my body; not be a tank turret. I worked from right to left and vice versa. Right to left i averaged .48 and left to right I averaged .47 seconds. Last I worked on strong hand & weak hand. I used my 3 targets at 10 yards I had set up for El Prez practice. Strong hand draw is getting faster and consistent. I am averaging 1.25 second draw. My weak hand is progressing as well. I averaged 1.70 seconds. Whats even better and for me more exciting is I am finding my dot more consistent and faster. For my weak hand I need to work on transitioning the gun from my right hand to the left. I'm still not smooth and need to continue to refine this movement. 

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2.7.2018

 

Dry fire tonight was a short 40 minute workout. I set up a mini stage to change things up and add some movement back into my practice. I have laid off movement drills because of my back issues. Fortunately I'm seeing a great Physical Therapist and my back has made great progress! I used my "air duct barricade" as my starting position. I had 2 simulated 12 yard targets to draw on first and then move to my left 5 yards into my next position and engage 2 additional 5 yard targets. I reversed this drill starting on the left side using the wall for a turn and draw engage 2 targets move to my right and engage the 2 simulated 12 yard targets. I sucked! My grip was inconsistent and I Need to work on exiting and entry into position. Exiting was slow, no burst of speed. It was like shooting my last shot...then move. Entry was no better. I would arrive at the position and the gun was not up and ready to fire. I will start easing these kind of drills back into my routine. Next I went back to my air duct barricade. I did the same drill I did on Sunday, February 4. I studied my video and realized I was not very aggressive. I was in my comfort zone. Tonight I was going to be aggressive and I was. I broke the 4 second goal time and only had 2 missed reloads. The bad; I discovered my mag pouch was moving. For my carry optic rig I use Black Scorpion Mag pouches. As I aggressively grab my magazine the pouch/magazine would tilt to the rear. I tightened the bolt as tight as I could possibly get it. It did no good. I replaced that pouch with another and it still moved. I concluded its either a design flaw or I am just coming down on it too hard (maybe both). I think it's to late to make a change and learn a new set up so I will look at doing something to secure the pouch. At first I didn't think it was causing any problems, just more of an annoyance. I started to pay attention and discovered at times as my left hand aggressively came in contact with the magazine and as it moved it was also altering my grip on the mag. I don't like making excuses for poor performance based on equipment but, in this case its something that's real and I will need to address. Either in technique or find a fix to secure the mag pouch. 

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2.8.2018

Worked on Reloads and entry and exit. For reloads I went with 4 Aces drill. I felt really good with my reloads this night. They were smoother and quicker. I am still working the bugs out of my mag pouches and technique. I worked on the mag pouch Friday night trying to secure and prevent movement. I have not been able to come up with a permanent solution yet. For my entry and exit I used the same mini stage I set up on Thursday the 7th. I broke the entering and exiting the positions into micro drills with a focus on exploding out of position and entering into positions fast and ready to shoot. The majority of my time was spent practicing these micro drills for entry and exit. I felt this was a productive night of practice.

 

2.10.2018

Tonight I set up El Strong & Weak Pres. I felt this would be a good drill to work on reloads and weak and strong hand techniques. What stuck out to me running this drill is my time difference between string 1 and string 2. String 1 free style to strong hand I averaged 6.53 seconds. String 2 free style to weak hand I averaged 7.52. I was amazed at the improvements. My reloads were smooth and I was able to get the gun into my weak hand fast and find the dot quickly. Dry fire is effective training for sure.

 

Next I modified my mini stage adding a 3 yard open target to practice shooting while moving. I  focused on shooting the 3 yard open target at speed. I didn't want to slow down to shoot I wanted to practice at a higher speed. This made me focus on stage/target awareness. I did not want to shoot the target as I was passing by. I learned this will force me to slow down. I focused on engaging the target as soon as it was in view. I used my Shotmaxx timer and paid close attention to the time running this drill so I was not getting into a comfort zone and pushed myself to be faster. This proved to be a challenge at increased speeds. However, I was able to accomplish this and it felt really good. Now I need to get a decent day of weather and work on this live fire. Tonight I worked on my mag pouch position up by tilting the front mag pouch forward maybe 5 degrees. I was surprised how this helped my reloads. I have been very aggressive grabbing my magazine during reloads trying to push my speed. This caused the mag pouch to move tilting to the rear and would allow my hand grabbing the mag to be out of position turning into a poor grip on the mag and a poor reload. Tonight I was grabbing the mag consistently and my reloads were smoother and I had a bonus with the mag pouch was not moving! I will keep the mag pouch tilted forward and see if this is indeed helping or not. I need more than one session like tonight before I will call it a success. Tonight felt really solid and productive.     

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2.12.2018 & 2.13.2018

 

My dry fire drills for both days were the same. I set up a mini stage (see diagram) that would require a hard lean on the left with open targets on the right set at 7 yards. I also had a simulated 10 yard on the left side as well. The wall is 10 feet in length from right to left. I set up shooting boundaries that required me not to go beyond the wall on the right and left side. I was not able to set up a hard lean on the right side because of the furnace, duct work and hot water tank are in the way. Not a big deal to me. I ran this drill by alternating my start position on each end. My primary focus was entering and exiting quickly out of these positions. When starting on the left side the hard lean proved to be challenging. Exiting and entering that position ready to shoot was not something I easily performed. Getting out of that position quickly from that hard lean was tough. I need to work on this drill. Hard leans are something I run into a lot at the local ranges I shoot at. From the right side the single target proved the challenge. It provided a benefit I was not thinking about when I set the stage up. A wide transition shot. For this position I practiced engaging the 2 target array first than the single target and vice a versa. I was trying to determine the most efficient way to engage these targets. Right now it seems to be a wash no matter what order I shoot them in. My times were not consistent enough to determine the best way.

 

I also practiced El Strong & Weak Pres. I like practicing this classifier. It accomplishes a couple drills into one. Reloads and strong and weak hand shooting. Both my reloads and SHO & WHO are becoming more natural. I am very happy with my progress concerning reloads and SHO & WHO. I also very happy with my first mag pouch. Tilting the mag pouch slightly to the front seems to have made a difference. It hasn't moved and I'm gripping the mag consistently and I believe this is contributing to my improvements of my reloads. I am getting very excited. My first match of 2018 is Saturday at Sparta. 

 

5a83aedf34b90_DryFireStage1.jpg.331b3aebd5479a90207c152a5306c2d9.jpg

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2.15.2018

 

Tonight I started my practice with slow controlled draws. I wanted to focus on grip and bringing the gun up to my eye or where I am looking. I didn't want to search for my dot I wanted the dot to show up where I am looking. I than used my return air duct for barricade training with a focus on transitions from side to side and reloads. I next worked on table starts; both loaded and unloaded. I haven't practiced table starts much and it showed. I spent time on technique over speed. I feel speed will come and I get my technique "perfected". The good from tonight was my reloads. They seem to be getting smoother, consistent and quicker each practice. The bad; I was not focusing on the dot. I found myself breaking the trigger when the dot was not in the A zone. I had to step back and refocus and get better shots. 

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Tonight was a short dry fire session. I needed to load up ammo for my match tomorrow. I thought I had enough, but I was wrong. Oh well knocked out 400 rounds in about an hour so not to big of a deal, but did cut into my practice time. 

 

Because it was a short 30 minute session I decided to work on the mini stage and return air duct barricade with reloads and strong & weak hand shooting. I am looking forward to the match tomorrow. I felt like my dry fire practice went really well this week and I am looking forward to seeing how this translate into match performance. 

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2.17.2018

Shot my first USPSA match at Sparta, IL. Felt really good to shoot a match even with the crappy weather. It was cold and snowing, ground was muddy as an old cow pastor. But it was a great match and I'm glad I shot it. I won my division, YA! However, it was an ugly win. As you can see I had way too many C's. I had 6 D's only one was not on the classifier. My accuracy just sucked. I have not live fired much in the last couple months because of weather and it really showed. Stage 1 required a mandatory reload when transitioning from side to side and I messed it up. I did not get the gun tilted enough to see the magwell and just missed it. That mistake probably cost me 1 second. On Stage 2, the Alpha Charley hose fest. I pulled a real bonehead mistake. I forgot to load my magazines after stage 1. That bonehead move cost me a good 2-3 seconds, maybe more. I also threw my first D rushing my last shot on that stage. Stage 3, classifier was a disaster. I couldn't shoot a group worth a darn. Most of my A's (4) were from my strong hand string. The WHO string I managed to get off 5 shots in the required 6.3 second par time. That lined up with the times from my dry fire. I average 6.5 seconds from a draw for my weak hand in Dry Fire. Stage 4 was my first stage of the match and I was the first shooter. Overall not a bad stage outside the C feast. The muddy conditions made it tricky not to slide around. Stage 5 was a solid stage. I ended up going a little slower on this stage than I wanted too. The ground conditions demanded you watch you're footing as you navigated the corners.  Still more C's than I'd care for but I will work hoard to correct that. Stage 6 was an interesting stage with the use of hard barricade targets. The good is the targets were fairly close. The furthest was maybe 12-14 yards. This stage also had a fairly challenging swinger. This stage I had a stage malfunction. The steel popper was leaning to far forward because of the mud and did not activate the swinger. Throughout the match my lack of accuracy plagued me. I couldn't figure out what was going on. My dot would be on the A zone but I would shoot a C. Not all was bad though. My dry fire work on transitions, movement drills, entry exit and SHO & WHO paid dividends. I could tell I made improvements in these areas from last year. It feels really good knowing the many hours of Dry Fire practice is working. I will need to put a plan together to work on helping my accuracy issues.     

 

 

Stage

#

%

Stg. Points

Points

HF

Time

Div

A

B

C

D

M

NPM

NS

1 - Stage 1

2

98.09

49.0453

46

5.3426

8.61

Carry Optics

8

0

2

0

0

0

0

2 - Stage 2

3

91.10

109.3191

94

7.1266

13.19

Carry Optics

12

0

11

1

0

0

0

3 - Six In Six C

1

100.00

57.0000

62

57.0000

0.00

Carry Optics

6

0

9

5

0

4

0

4 - Stage 4

1

100.00

140.0000

120

5.6049

21.41

Carry Optics

18

0

10

0

0

0

0

5 - Stage 5

1

100.00

160.0000

150

5.4308

27.62

Carry Optics

27

1

4

0

0

0

0

6 - Stage 6

1

100.00

105.0000

97

6.7082

14.46

Carry Optics

17

0

4

0

0

0

0

 

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2.18.2018

 

The weather was nice today. It hit the mid fifties and felt warmer than that after shooting in the snow the day before. After my less than satisfactory performance yesterday with my shooting I wanted to focus on my accuracy and figure out what was going on. I started with an open target at 10 yards and fired a Bill Drill. My group resembled a shotgun pattern with buck shot. I began breaking down my shooting looking for issues. I quickly realized my grip was a problem. I have been so focused on developing an instinctive crushing grip with my weak hand I neglected my strong hand and didn't see that my strong hand grip was, well, wimpy at best. I worked on fixing that glaring issue and an amazing thing happened. My groups shrank; a lot. Not where I would like them but hey any improvement is good. I backed to 15 yards and repeated the Bill Drill and I ended up at 25 yards running Bill Drill. I realized I have slacked working on a proper grip and with a lack of live fire practices because of the crappy cold weather we've been having my accuracy has suffered. I also worked on strong hand and weak hand shooting and hit the plate rack for a change of pace. A very good friend and one of the most accurate pistol shooters I know suggested I practice the Dot Drill in both dry and live fire practice. I will incorporate this into my next dry fire practice. 

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2.22.2018

 

Made it back from Kentucky tonight in time to get in a short 30 minute dry fire session. I was very stiff from my trip but after 5-10 minutes I began to loosen up. Tonight I kept it very simple. I started on the Dot drill with a focus on my grip and keeping the Dot in the circle. Next I moved to 4 Aces. I set a Par time of 2.4 seconds. I struggled to meet that time. My reloads were less than stellar tonight. I was struggling with a consistent grip on the magazine. I was putting the gun in the correct position for me, but couldn't consistently grip the magazine properly. I also worked on turn and draw and loaded and unloaded table starts. Although I was tired and muscles were very stiff from traveling this week it felt really good to get a practice in.

 

Each practice no matter how good or bad the session may feel I go away from them feeling I accomplished something and I am moving towards my goal. 

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2.24.2018

 

Practice today consisted of Dot drill working on trigger control, grip and focusing on the dot. Par time was set at 5 seconds and I could easily beat that time. Next practice I will drop the par time down to 4 seconds. Also, my next live fire I will plan to shoot the dot drill and see how I do. I worked on El Prez with a par time of 5.5 seconds. I am struggling to beat this time and can only do it occasionally. I worked on my strong and weak hand shooting.

 

I am happy with my progress on reloads and my strong and weak hand practice. My reloads have become more consistent and quicker. Strong hand is averaging only .5-.6 seconds slower than freestyle in practice. Weak hand shooting is progressing nicely as well. When I switch the gun to my weak hand I am picking up the dot much easier. My trigger control for weak hand is improving as well. Of course all this will need to be verified in live fire and I am hoping tomorrow's weather will cooperate and I can get to live fire practice. 

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2.25.2018

 

Today the weather was very nice and an almost perfect day to head outside and practice. That's what I did. My friend Chuck was back in the country from an overseas business trip and was wanting to practice as well. That made the day even better. Chuck is a great shooter and teacher as well. 

 

We set up a mini stage to work on many skills. We started with hands on wall with a turn and step to engage two targets. This stage also had wall to navigate and perform a reload while running back to engage to engage a plate rack at 10 yards through a port. We broke this stage down into it's elements working on each one. Next we changed the stage up a bit. Adding a smaller port to engage three targets from. We had the same hands on wall with a turn/step to engage as our start position. From there you would move up and engaged the three targets through the port. This was something I really struggled with. I need to work on moving into a position with a port engaging an open target while moving. My foot work really needs help with this and is something I can dry fire practice in my basement.  Next we rearranged the stage to work on entering and exiting positions with long shots and partial targets and transitions both close and wide. I can say with total confidence dry fire practicing the DOT drill paid dividends! I was shooting more A's than C's and the long distance bill drill was paying off on longer targets as well. We also set up the classic El Prez. My first run was in line with my dry fire practice times; 6.3 seconds average time. I had a total of 80 points. We broke down our shooting including videoing our turn and draw to refine it. We left El Prez set up and worked on our strong and weak hand shooting to finish out the day. 

 

This was an incredibly fun day. It was a very productive practice session giving me a boost of confidence in my dry fire practice as I saw it paying dividends in all the areas I have been practicing. However, I also went away with several things to work on. The hands on wall with a turn, step to engage targets, port shooting, foot work entering and exiting positions and my reloads; both standing and moving. 

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