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Az_Twister

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Hey guys. This is my first post here. Let me start by saying that as a kid Brian Enos and Rob Leatham were my heroes. I started shooting local "action pistol" (my clubs bastardized version of ipsc, at the time) when I was 13. I got to where I was pretty good. By 16 I was consistently beating every person, no matter age, that came to the matches here at my local club. Even spent a few nights running Tuesday night steel at Rio, where I of course learned I wasn't in fact the best in the world lol. Now for the reason I'm here. When I was 17 I had a bad accident during practice. I was using a custom built Caspian that was getting pretty worn out. At times the thumb safety would fall if you hit the butt hard enough while holstered. I never worried because I had excellent trigger discipline and knew my finger would get no where near the trigger until it was time to pull it. The holster I was using (as it turns out) was not made specifically for the 1911, I can't remember now what it was made for exactly. But the detent would get into the trigger guard just enough, if you hit the gun at just the right angle, to put pressure on the trigger (2.5lbs pull). You can imagine where this is going. The stars and moon aligned in just the wrong position one day while practicing and, yep, you guessed it. The gun went off in the holster. Now I know what you're thinking "yeah right, punk kid pulled the trigger before he cleared leather", which is exactly what I thought at the time until we were able to repeat the accident during testing. Dry fire of course. But the damage was already done. The bullet entered my leg mid thigh, traveling just under the skin, nicking a couple bones along the way, and stopped mid calve. After recovering I started shooting again, had to get back on the horse right? But it was never the same. I just couldn't get my head back in the game and by 19 I quit the sport all together. I still shot quite often just not at speed and definitely not in competition. Fast forward to 4 months ago (and almost 20 years later) my club restarted our local "action pistol" division and we're doing local, for fun matches again. And yes, I'm competing again! My problem is that the skittishness is still kind of there. In dry fire (which I do every evening that I'm unable to get in range time). I've pretty much gained the draw speed back that I had when I was a kid (.08-1.10 on average) but as soon as I get on the range with live ammo that time jumps to 1.5 plus, and I get extremely nervous to the point that it pretty much kills everything from draw to end of the stage. I'm not going to let it stop me this time. I am determined to get back into the game and eventually start going to actual USPSA SCSA matches. But before I do that, I want to get at least some of the confidence back that I had as a kid. I feel like I still have the ability to be fast enough to be competitive, at least enough to really enjoy it. But I need to get past the jitters. Which brings me to this post. What advice can you guys give to get beyond the........ Fear? Everything always feels fine right up until I get on the line and that's where it all goes to hell. I've had a few fairly quick stages since starting again where everything felt right. But they aren't the norm yet.  HELP ME GET MY SPEED AND FOCUS BACK! Thanks in advance for any advice (and for not laughing? LoL). And sorry for the long winded post!

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Wow.   Great story.     💯

 

Sorry for all the problems.

 

Your jitters are well deserved - not sure I'd ever get "back on the horse" - very courageous.    

 

I would think that a few things might help:

 

  *  slow it down - you're NOT going to "beat every person" for a while - lower your expectations, at the beginning

 

  *  lot of live fire practice, by yourself

 

  *  check out the equipment to make sure your equipment won't cause any future problems

 

  *  videotape yourself - examine every detail to make sure you are being safe, and analyze where you

         can pick up some speed

 

  *  have a good shooter watch you and see what he can see that you are missing.

 

Good luck with your comeback - rooting for you all the way.     :cheers:

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Get a DA/SA gun like CZ Shadow 2 or Tanfoglio Stock 2 and shoot production. I have not heard of a single case where somebody shot himself in the foot with DA on the draw.

 

Safety on before holstering, even though it's not required. It does not take any extra time to disengage the safety while you're bringing the gun up to eye level.

 

Get a holster that prevents the gun from pointing inward, towards your leg.

 

Shoot USPSA rather than Steel Challenge. On a 20 second stage the difference between 1 second draw and 1.5 second draw is not as important as on a three second Steel Challenge string.

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2 hours ago, lstange said:

 I have not heard of a single case where somebody shot himself in the foot with DA on the draw.

 

Someone here at BE reported a year or two ago, that they replaced a factory

trigger with a nice light competition trigger, a shot themselves in the leg from

the draw - don't remember all the details - anyone remember this ?

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2 minutes ago, Hi-Power Jack said:

Someone here at BE reported a year or two ago, that they replaced a factory

trigger with a nice light competition trigger, a shot themselves in the leg from

the draw - don't remember all the details - anyone remember this ?

 

A nice light DA (double action) is what 6 lbs? It's unlikely the story you're thinking of involved a DA.

 

OP, Going forward if you notice a safety issue with your gun get it looked at right away. And get the proper holster for you gun. It's probably just going to take time (live fire) to get comfortable with the idea of drawing at full speed again. It's a mental block and might be something you'll never get over. If that's the case settle for a slow draw or don't compete. If those out comes are unacceptable then you're going to have to go to the range and make yourself do it. You already know you can, so just make it happen. Take a bucket of ammo and go do draws.

 

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5 hours ago, Hi-Power Jack said:

Wow.   Great story.     💯

 

Sorry for all the problems.

 

Your jitters are well deserved - not sure I'd ever get "back on the horse" - very courageous.    

 

I would think that a few things might help:

 

  *  slow it down - you're NOT going to "beat every person" for a while - lower your expectations, at the beginning

 

  *  lot of live fire practice, by yourself

 

  *  check out the equipment to make sure your equipment won't cause any future problems

 

  *  videotape yourself - examine every detail to make sure you are being safe, and analyze where you

         can pick up some speed

 

  *  have a good shooter watch you and see what he can see that you are missing.

 

Good luck with your comeback - rooting for you all the way.     :cheers:

Thanx Jack, and others for the advice. Rest assured the gun and holster that were involved in the accident are long gone. I was gifted a Colt in 38 super after the accident which I shot for a couple years and then gave it to my dad when I quit. He shot the gun for another 10-12 years and when the club stopped holding matches several years ago he gave it back to me. I recently purchased a new Springfield ro elite target in 9mm to replace the old girl and that's what I've been shooting at our matches. I'm going to stick with the sa for a while and when I do feel ready to start shooting real matches (no other outcome is acceptable) I plan on looking into the 2011 platform. I've already got my eye on a couple different guns, most likely in s&w 40 with plans of at least starting in limited division, maybe single stack and run the Springfield for a while if I feel ready to compete before I'm ready to pull the trigger (pun intended) on a limited gun. I've been spending a lot of time alone at the range just doing bill drills and single shot on draw practice. We have been taking video of all of our matches so I am able to watch myself there. The rig I'm using now is my old belt and mag holders with a safariland 010 holster that I found on ebay. Looking forward to upgrading/replacing my entire rig soon, although I really like my new (to me) holster. I appreciate the kind words. I definitely plan on sticking with it. Just the few matches I have shot since we started back up have really rekindled my love for the game! I'm probably gonna go watch some of the uspsa and steel challenge matches that are close by, here soon just to kinda get a feel for it. Who knows maybe I'll find myself accidentally participating! Thanx again guys. 

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Yeah, use what you've got - makes more sense than spending money before you know what you want.

 

And, you should "accidentally participate" - more fun than just watching  :) 

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1 hour ago, Racinready300ex said:

 

A nice light DA (double action) is what 6 lbs? It's unlikely the story you're thinking of involved a DA.

 

My recollection is that the gun was a plastic gun, and the new trigger was around 2 1/2 - 3 lbs,

and the gun snagged in the holster.   

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Just now, Hi-Power Jack said:

My recollection is that the gun was a plastic gun, and the new trigger was around 2 1/2 - 3 lbs,

and the gun snagged in the holster.   

That's pretty much what happened to me. I'm finding through reading different forums and articles that this is a lot more common of an accident then I had thought. 

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I understand your being skittish. Getting over it may take a little time but isn't that hard. First dry fire with your gun over and over with the hammer cocked and focus on the fact that you never fired till you were on target. Next for 2 minutes in the morning and 2 in the evening find a quiet place. Close your eyes and focus on your draw to target while saying. "I draw smoothly and safely with confidence".  It takes 21 days to reprogram our thought process but it is well worth it. I had a horrible limited nationals years back and this was how I got over my issue.

Good luck and enjoy the process!

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14 hours ago, chrisa006 said:

I understand your being skittish. Getting over it may take a little time but isn't that hard. First dry fire with your gun over and over with the hammer cocked and focus on the fact that you never fired till you were on target. Next for 2 minutes in the morning and 2 in the evening find a quiet place. Close your eyes and focus on your draw to target while saying. "I draw smoothly and safely with confidence".  It takes 21 days to reprogram our thought process but it is well worth it. I had a horrible limited nationals years back and this was how I got over my issue.

Good luck and enjoy the process!

Awesome advice! I've been dry firing like crazy and it's definitely starting to feel good. I will give the morning/evening mantra thing a try. I've got a match coming up on Sunday. We'll see how it turns out. 🤙

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One thing that hasn't been mentioned is your pre-stage routine. Visualization will help with your "skittishness". When you are the in the hole shooter, start your stage visualization process. The more precise and vivid your images the better. Be very specific with the draw, see/feel the gun come out of the holster cleanly. Finger off the trigger, thumb on safety, safety still engaged

until you are ready to place your first shot. See the first shot go exactly were you want it on the first target. If there's movement before the first shot, again be very precise in the steps before the shot. Repeat for every target and array for the entire stage. If you have already run the stage 5, 6, 10 or 15 times in your head. It will help calm the anxiety.

Pick an experienced squad if you can. Have a great time returning to the sport and good luck.

 

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