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Just4FunLP

Lawton's Wants to Make Production Master: Please Help!

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1 hour ago, malobukov said:

Practiscore phone app shows times for individual strings. This lets you see how fast (or slow) you are shooting strong hand only and weak hand only compared to others. I was surprised how much time I was losing on weak hand only. It turned out to be much easier to shave off half a second from the weak hand only string than from the freestyle string.

 

Wow.  That’s awesome!   Which PractiScore app are you referring to, and how does it work?

Edited by Just4FunLP

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17 minutes ago, Just4FunLP said:

 

Wow.  That’s awesome!   Which PractiScore app are you referring to, and how does it work?

 

I think I see.  Is it PractiScore Competitor?  I tried that app a while back and, for some reason, it wouldn’t allow me to pull up a match, but now it’s working. I assume that if you’re looking at a match with a multi-string classifier it will show you the time on each string. 

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40 minutes ago, Just4FunLP said:

Is it PractiScore Competitor?

Yes, that's the one. It says, for example, "Times: [7.07, 6.93, 3.68]"

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It's been a while since I posted.  I don't know why anyone would want to read this stuff, but here goes...

 

I saw a video of Stoeger shooting a classifier and noticed him wiggling his fingers just before the buzzer goes off.  I assume it's a way for him to mentally check to make sure he's not tense.  This is opposite of my usual start position. Right or wrong, I want to move quickly and end the draw with hands, wrists and elbows tense, so I tend to start with tension. So as an experiment I ran a bunch of draws with hands "relaxed" at sides. This definitely seems to add speed and make the whole sequence run smooth.  

 

Next, as I mentioned previously I wanted to try switching from my 13lb hammer spring to my 11.5lb to see if it would improve my first shot speed and accuracy. 

 

Well it seems like the lighter spring and relaxed start made a difference.  To measure my progress on the draw stroke I came up with a simple test of 3 open targets at 7yds and spaced 6ft on center.  I figure it's one thing to put one thing to put a single shot in the A zone as fast as possible, but my goal is to do this and at the same time have a grip good enough to control recoil and maintain sight alignment through fast transitions.  These are the results from 7/24.  Compared to the 7/5 runs I trimmed about 0.15 off the first shot time and had a slight improvement on my splits and transitions as well.  By averaging the best 5 out of the first 10 runs of the two practice sessions, my average HF improved from 9.3 to 10.5.  That's pretty good.  The bad thing is that my grip didn't seem to be aggressive enough to control recoil, and I ended up with a few splits above the A zone including two Bs and at least one high Mike.  

 

I guess now I need to figure out how to draw fast without tensing up, but end the draw with locked hands and wrists so I can control the pistol while ripping through all the targets.  

 

As a side note, I had conquered my tendonitis about a year ago, but I did about 2 hours of dryfire the other day and now I'm back on the arm band.  This really sucks. I may have to lay off for a while.  

 

 

Range Notes 2018_07_24.jpg

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A long time ago I went through period of exploring grip techniques and found it was good to write notes after live fire so I'd be able to start at the same place next time.  It really seemed to help.  The other day I decided to do the same for the draw stroke.  For what it's worth, here's what I came up with.  And no, I"m not completely nuts.....  

 

Lawton's draw as of 8/1/2018...  Evolving

1.    During makeready position web of strong hand firmly into beaver tail, then down and back up a few times to confirm the movement.

2.    Start with shoulders, arms, and hands relaxed. I used to start with tension but have proven that starting relaxed is faster and more consistent in both live and dry fire.

3.    Large thumb metacarpal of strong hand touching screws on holster. The shape of the hand should be retained from step 1, but not tense.

4.    Weak hand relaxed at side but with the 4 fingers cocked foreword slightly.

5.    Face up and forward.

6.    Leaning very slightly forward.

7.    Feet and shoulders slightly clockwise.

8.    Shoulders slightly elevated, but relaxed.

9.    Concentrate on not moving the head and shoulders during the draw stroke. This is extremely important.

10. Again, check for relaxed arms and hands from step 2.

11. Eyes on point of target you want to hit.

12. On the beep, the strong hand comes up and the thumb never loses contact with the holster/pistol. At the same time the weak hand comes up so the pinky knuckle is touching the belly button. Still in the shape of step 4, thumb slightly forward and hand cupped a little. 4 fingers touching.

13. When the strong hand thumb detects it’s reached the top of the gun it moves in and down and the 3 fingers lock around the gun. The thumb is pointing forward but is coming down quickly.

14. When the web of the strong hand hits the beaver tail the weak hand starts to move up and forward to meet the pistol.

15. There is no delay after step 14. While bringing out the pistol very fast the thumb is pressing on the safety lever (not to disengage the safety, but for me that's the thumbs home position). This seems to help the metacarpal thumb bone sort of grip the back of the gun under the beaver tail improving stability.

16. Once the pistol clears the holster it starts moving forward.  It’s going directly to the final position, not up then forward. This happens so fast that it becomes one fluid motion and the weak hand just has to be moving fast enough to land properly on the way up. The thumb slightly forward and hand slightly cupped from step 12 comes into play now, and the hand naturally falls into position and the hand should start clamping immediately. The sooner the better. All this happens extremely fast and is where I’m currently having the biggest problem with consistency. To achieve a more powerful higher weak hand grip It would be better for me to jam the index finger under the trigger guard, but it’s very painful if it hits too hard.

17. While extending I should be quickly clamping with my weak hand, and if it’s a close target I’m pulling through the double action trigger.

18. Stop short of full extension and grip should be tight with locked wrists and acceptable sight picture. Because the trigger pull started on step 17 it should break as soon as the sights come on target. For a DA one second first shot at 7 yards I have to trust the sights will be there. At longer distances and smaller targets I'll have to wait for a better sight picture before starting the trigger pull. I’ve heard Stoeger mention that he doesn’t start the DA pull until the gun is forward, and I assume the sights are settled. That may be why his dryfire training stresses practicing your draw without pulling the trigger. I’m still unsure....

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Draw the gun like you'd insert a key in the front door of your house. Try this while tensing up and trying to go fast. Then try it while staying loose and not thinking about it. Which is faster and more consistent?

 

I shoot a Shadow 2 and am starting to crank back on the trigger as soon as my hands come together. On a close, open target, I'm cranking back fast so that the shot will break as soon as the gun comes to full extension. As the aiming area gets smaller, I'm slowing down trigger speed so that (1) I have more time to clean up the sight picture before the shot breaks and (2) I'm better able to isolate trigger-finger motion to the second knuckle of my trigger finger without it smiling over into the rest of my hand. But I don't want the trigger to stop moving at any point in this process.

 

I see a couple references to prepping the trigger. Ain't nobody got time for prepping the trigger in USPSA. Sweep your finger straight back to fire the shot, pulling straight through the break point. Sights should line up acceptably right as the shot fires. On tight shots, there will be a pause when you come to the break point as pressure builds. But you're not prepping the trigger, lining up the sights, and pulling through when they're perfect. After you fire the first shot on a paper target, let the trigger out and immediately start sweeping your finger back to fire the second shot.

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10 hours ago, Andreas said:

Draw the gun like you'd insert a key in the front door of your house. Try this while tensing up and trying to go fast. Then try it while staying loose and not thinking about it. Which is faster and more consistent?

 

I shoot a Shadow 2 and am starting to crank back on the trigger as soon as my hands come together. On a close, open target, I'm cranking back fast so that the shot will break as soon as the gun comes to full extension. As the aiming area gets smaller, I'm slowing down trigger speed so that (1) I have more time to clean up the sight picture before the shot breaks and (2) I'm better able to isolate trigger-finger motion to the second knuckle of my trigger finger without it smiling over into the rest of my hand. But I don't want the trigger to stop moving at any point in this process.

 

I see a couple references to prepping the trigger. Ain't nobody got time for prepping the trigger in USPSA. Sweep your finger straight back to fire the shot, pulling straight through the break point. Sights should line up acceptably right as the shot fires. On tight shots, there will be a pause when you come to the break point as pressure builds. But you're not prepping the trigger, lining up the sights, and pulling through when they're perfect. After you fire the first shot on a paper target, let the trigger out ammediately start sweeping your finger back to fire the second shot.

 

Thanks for the reply Andreas...  I have tried it both ways and it seems faster and more fluid to start with the hands and arms relaxed, but the consistency is not there yet.  I'm still working through it so perhaps it will come with time.  What do you think is faster and more consistent?  

 

For me to control the gun fast enough to maintain accuracy at speed I have to be shooting with intensity, meaning my hands are placed where I want them and everything is tight, grip, wrists, and elbows. If I continue down this path, I'll have to figure out a way to learn to run the first 80% of the draw stroke without tension, and then end with the the high tension locked grip, wrists and elbows.  ...???

 

My problem is that I've done a lot of practice over the years and tried many techniques, but from what I can tell by practicing the classifiers is in order to break into master land I'm going to have to make some changes.  What I've been doing isn't going to work.  Right now I'll take a classifier and run it 20 times with maybe 1-4 master scores toward the end, and this is using pre-HHF adjustment scores.  This has taught me I need to get faster at just about everything without reducing accuracy.  I guess that's the name of the game for everyone.  I think my problem has been I tend to practice too many techniques at once.  This has been great for my performance on field courses, but not so good for classifiers.  I want to focus on perfecting one skill at a time until I've significantly increased my HF on this simple three target drill. So with this in mind, step one is to reduce my time to first shot by 10-15% while improving accuracy of that hit, and having a really great grip for the rest of the array.  When I think I have a technique that works I want to spend a great deal of time to burn it in and make it consistent before I add in the next technique. This will be followed by improving splits, transitions, and finally changing gears for distance and partials.  I think I'm looking at least 3 months before I get to mag changes.  My thinking is that I want to be sure I've selected and tested the best technique before I invest the time to and energy of burning it in.  Please let me know if you agree or disagree with my training approach.  

 

Right now I think my goal should be to consistently run the drill above with a first shot at around 1.0s and 0.2 splits on all three targets and all As.  Does this sound like a realistic goal, or should I settle for 1.1s first shot? What's your first shot at 7 yards?

 

Thanks

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2 hours ago, Just4FunLP said:

Thanks for the reply Andreas...  I have tried it both ways and it seems faster and more fluid to start with the hands and arms relaxed, but the consistency is not there yet.  I'm still working through it so perhaps it will come with time.  What do you think is faster and more consistent?  

 

For sure starting with the hands and arms relaxed. Just pick the gun up out of the holster and get it on target without wasting energy or motion. If you feel the draw rippling up your arm and into your shoulder as you get your hand on the backstrap, that's a sign that you're putting way too much energy into your draw. Start with a casual draw of 2 s or so where you can stay relaxed, then see how things change as you pick up the pace. Tension will build as you do so, and you'll reach an obvious point where consistency goes out the window. Stay below that point in matches LOL!

 

2 hours ago, Just4FunLP said:

For me to control the gun fast enough to maintain accuracy at speed I have to be shooting with intensity, meaning my hands are placed where I want them and everything is tight, grip, wrists, and elbows. If I continue down this path, I'll have to figure out a way to learn to run the first 80% of the draw stroke without tension, and then end with the the high tension locked grip, wrists and elbows.  ...???

 

You're building your grip and as you drive the gun toward the target.

 

Try holding your gun out on front of you with a loose grip, then slowly build pressure. You'll feel the tension move up your arm, past your elbow, into your shoulder, and then your chest and back. Keep the tension distal of your elbow and you should be fine.

 

2 hours ago, Just4FunLP said:

 

My problem is that I've done a lot of practice over the years and tried many techniques, but from what I can tell by practicing the classifiers is in order to break into master land I'm going to have to make some changes.  What I've been doing isn't going to work.  Right now I'll take a classifier and run it 20 times with maybe 1-4 master scores toward the end, and this is using pre-HHF adjustment scores.  This has taught me I need to get faster at just about everything without reducing accuracy.  I guess that's the name of the game for everyone.  I think my problem has been I tend to practice too many techniques at once.  This has been great for my performance on field courses, but not so good for classifiers.  I want to focus on perfecting one skill at a time until I've significantly increased my HF on this simple three target drill. So with this in mind, step one is to reduce my time to first shot by 10-15% while improving accuracy of that hit, and having a really great grip for the rest of the array.  When I think I have a technique that works I want to spend a great deal of time to burn it in and make it consistent before I add in the next technique. This will be followed by improving splits, transitions, and finally changing gears for distance and partials.  I think I'm looking at least 3 months before I get to mag changes.  My thinking is that I want to be sure I've selected and tested the best technique before I invest the time to and energy of burning it in.  Please let me know if you agree or disagree with my training approach.  

 

Disagree. This is based on wasting a lot of time and money on such an approach. More than once, because I'm a slow learner.

 

Obsessing over classifiers and getting to whatever class is the best way to ensure that it will take as long as possible. Probably even more so than not practicing. The problem is that you're building performance and outcome exceptions that will make it very difficult to stay relaxed when it's your turn to shoot. When the buzzer sounds, you want to step aside and let your subconscious mind just shoot in the present tense without thinking about the outcome.

 

I took a quick look at your recent match videos, and you're not lacking for shooting skill. It's interesting how much better you're shooting on the club match ones than the GA Championship. They're close enough in time that I don't think the improvement is entirely attributable to technical skills. I'm guessing it's more a result of you looking particularly wound up shooting the GA Championship stages?

 

All of my classifier runs for GM felt like casual affairs at the time. The buzzer went off, I dropped the hammer on a bunch of sight pictures that were good enough for Alphas and a few close Charlies, the end.

 

2 hours ago, Just4FunLP said:

 

Right now I think my goal should be to consistently run the drill above with a first shot at around 1.0s and 0.2 splits on all three targets and all As.  Does this sound like a realistic goal, or should I settle for 1.1s first shot? What's your first shot at 7 yards?

 

I'd recommend shooting a variety of drills and learning what kinds of sight pictures and trigger pulls you can get away with on various target presentations. Try doing a mix of match-pace runs where you're shooting them as if in a match and push runs where you're rounding off the edges and see how the hits turn out. Sight pictures can be shockingly bad and still result in Alphas if your grip is neutral (not torquing the gun) and you're pulling the trigger straight back. Shooting 25-yard Bill Drills is a really good way to refine your grip and trigger technique. When you're dialed in, splits in the low .30s are entirely doable. Learn what that feels like.

 

For drawing down on a single 7-yard target at a match, I'd expect my first shot to be a hair over a second. In practice, I know that I can get down under 0.90 s, but I'm not consistent at that speed and wouldn't push that hard in a match.

 

Splits of 0.20 are entirely reasonable on 7-yard targets but not particularly interesting. Almost anyone can do that. What's far more useful is pushing toward 0.25 splits on 15-yard targets and 0.30 splits on 20-yard ones. Split times at distance and on partials are one of the big differentiators between the people in contention to win a match and the pack.

 

 

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