50-ROUND REG­I­MEN

YOUR TIME IS PRE­CIOUS. MAKE THE MOST OF IT WITH THIS 10-STEP EF­FI­CIENT HAND­GUN PRAC­TICE SES­SION

Concealed Carry Hand Guns - - TABLE OF CONTENTS - STORY AND PHO­TOS BY CCH STAFF LEAD PHOTO BY FER­NANDO GRE­GORY/DREAM­STIME.COM

Your time is pre­cious. Make the most of it with this 10-step ef­fi­cient hand­gun prac­tice ses­sion. By CCH Staff

There are only 24 hours in a day and, yes, we’d all prac­tice our hand­gun skills more of­ten if we only had the time, right? While there’s no sub­sti­tute for ded­i­cated train­ing from qual­i­fied in­struc­tors, if you’re will­ing to de­vote a half hour a week to dry fir­ing and one 50-round box of ammo a month in live fire drills, you will be much bet­ter equipped to han­dle a deadly con­fronta­tion.

You can tai­lor your prac­tice rou­tine to suit your needs and skill level, but here’s one 10-step train­ing ses­sion sugges­tion to get you started.

BE­GIN EMPTY

There are sev­eral ben­e­fits to reg­u­lar dry fir­ing prac­tice. It’s quiet, you can do it in the pri­vacy of your own home, and it costs noth­ing but a few min­utes of your time.

01 DRAW AND AIM. Use the clothes and hol­ster you’d nor­mally wear when car­ry­ing con­cealed. With an empty gun (ob­vi­ously), pick a point on a wall—hang a tar­get if you like—quickly draw and get those sights up and on tar­get. Re­peat, re­peat, re­peat.

02 DRY-FIRE PRAC­TICE. Quickly draw and get the sights aligned on the tar­get as in the first drill. Now, how­ever, you’re go­ing to squeeze the trig­ger. Don’t hurry the trig­ger pull at first. Get it right. Build the speed over time. Dry-fire prac­tice is where a laser re­ally comes in handy as a train­ing aid. If you’re pulling your gun off tar­get as you go through your trig­ger pull, it will be very ap­par­ent with the move­ment of that laser dot.

03 MOVE TO COVER. Now you’re go­ing to draw, aim and dry-fire as in the pre­vi­ous drill, but this time you are go­ing to move to cover as you draw. A chair, ta­ble, door jamb, most any­thing can serve to sim­u­late cover. This will get you in the habit of not stand­ing still when your big mo­ment of truth ar­rives.

LIVE-FIRE DRILLS

Ide­ally you should prac­tice more of­ten, but bud­get­ing the time and money to fire 50 rounds of ammo once a month isn’t ex­ces­sive.

04 DRAW AND FIRE SIN­GLES. (15 rounds.) Start­ing from a hol­stered po­si­tion, draw and fire one round two-handed. Do this five times. Now draw and fire one shot with your dom­i­nant hand only. Do this five times. Now, start­ing from the low ready po­si­tion, fire one shot with your sup­port hand only. Do this five times. Wait, what’s the dis­tance for this drill? Any­where from 5 to 15 yards is fine. As you build your pro­fi­ciency on this one, ex­tend the range a bit to keep it chal­leng­ing. But aren’t most shoot­ings at closer range? Yes, but if you can get good a 15, you’ll be su­per at 5.

“DRY-FIRE PRAC­TICE IS WHERE A LASER RE­ALLY COMES IN HANDY AS A TRAIN­ING AID.”

This is a warm-up drill, but if it’s too easy, start with a vary­ing amount of ammo—two, three, five rounds—in your gun and mag­a­zines to in­cor­po­rate some speed reloads.

05 TRAN­SI­TION WITH RELOADS. (12 rounds.) Set two tar­gets 5 yards apart. Load with four rounds. Draw and fire one round at one tar­get, two at the other and one more back at the first. Per­form a speed reload, scan and hol­ster. Re­peat this two more times.

06 TAC­TI­CAL RELOADS. (6 rounds.) This isn’t prac­ticed of­ten enough. You don’t want to shoot un­til empty dur­ing a fight if you can help it. Load your gun and two spare mag­a­zines with three rounds each. Draw, fire two shots, per­form a tac­ti­cal reload, fire two more, per­form an­other tac­ti­cal reload and fire two more rounds. Move to sim­u­lated cover dur­ing the tac reload if pos­si­ble.

07 STOP­PAGES DRILL. (10 rounds.) Load two mag­a­zines with five rounds each, but place an empty cas­ing in there some­where (not first or last). It’s more of a sur­prise if you get some­one else to load the mags for you. Draw and fire un­til empty, clear­ing the stop­page when it oc­curs. Do this twice.

08 FLASH­LIGHT TECH­NIQUE. (5 rounds.) Try var­i­ous flash­light tech­niques and choose the one most com­fort­able for you. Start at the low ready, quickly raise the gun to get on tar­get and fire all five rounds. Try to keep the gun and flash­light beam aligned. If you can’t do this in low light, do it any­way. You need to know how things change when you’re hold­ing a flash­light in one hand.

09 FIN­ISH AT 15. (2 rounds.) End with con­fi­dence. No mat­ter what dis­tance you chose for the pre­vi­ous drills, set a tar­get at 15 yards. Us­ing slow, aimed fire take two head shots.

10 DRY-FIRE AGAIN. Be­fore you pack up your gear, dry-fire your gun slowly, me­thod­i­cally five more times to re­in­force your mus­cle mem­ory on proper tech­nique.

MAKE IT HARDER

Has this been too easy for you? Chal­lenge your­self by adding time con­straints, the num­ber of tar­gets, dif­fer­ent shoot­ing po­si­tions, move­ment, more stop­pages and by in­creas­ing dis­tances.

PROB­LEM AR­EAS

If there’s a par­tic­u­lar tech­nique that needs work, vary the drills to con­cen­trate more on those fun­da­men­tals. Add or delete drills as you like, but shoot with pur­pose. Now get down (to the range) and give me 50. CC

Right: A tac­ti­cal reload is an im­por­tant skill that few prac­tice.

xLx­exft: When­ever pos­si­ble, in­cor­po­rate the use of cover in your train­ing rou­tine.

Reg­u­lar prac­tice with your con­cealed carry hand­gun doesn’t have to in­volve a great ex­pen­di­ture of time and money.

Flash­light tech­niques should be in­cluded in your reg­u­lar train­ing ses­sions.

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