tHE PERFECT PISTOL SHOT BLOG
If marksmanship (the ability to hit one's intended target through a series of deliberate actions under various and often adverse conditions) required a blood sacrifice, or an epic adventure, or simply agreeing with every half-wit who ever stumbled through a handgun instructors course, I would have had an easier time of it. The unfortunate truth is, hitting your mark requires only a mastery of some fundamental principles and some disciplined exercise to marry experience to knowledge. That's it. Anyone could do it, and there is the rub. Marksmanship is too easy to be accepted and requires too much effort to apply. So, students buy news guns, read articles about special operations, and listen to old wives' tales about shooting. The truth remains that after a couple hundred years, very little has changed in terms of marksmanship principles. Today's SWAT member knows no more than did Wyatt Earp, when he said, "Fast is fine but accuracy is everything." There has arisen an entire industry which produces books and videos to overcomplicate marksmanship. I wrote two gun books, the first on marksmanship and the second on defensive use of a handgun. I firmly believe that defensive pistolcraft is still being discovered but marksmanship is as well known as are skills such as typing and throwing a ball. That's why I didn't write a part two to what turned out to be a very successful marksmanship book. There's isn't more to say. Like dieting, we know what to do (if we're honest) and yet the diet industry is always fat with the next new thing. Why? Because nobody wants to do the hard work.
After the The Perfect Pistol Shot had been out for a few years, I read a review in which the critic did not try the instruction in the book but was certain that if anyone did, their shooting would worsen. Common sense is uncommon when it comes to the endeavor of hitting the mark. Students are searching for answers but only if the answers confirm the very bad habits that are presently failing them.
I appreciate the concerns over my hiatus from this blog but the truth is, there's not much more to say. Still, let's go over a couple tired themes for old time's sake:
1. You are a right-hander shooting between seven and eight o'clock because you over-grip your handgun. A southpaw is doing it between four and five o'clock. I don't give a red rat's patoot what picture you saw, what article you read--you're over-gripping. Firearms are not outside of the physical laws which govern the universe. Reason it out for yourself. If an object requires forty ounces of pressure to hold it in the hand, and you apply one hundred and twenty ounces of pressure, where does the difference go? Movement, of course. If you apply force to any object beyond what is necessary to hold that object or rest yourself, either you or the object must move to dissipate the extra energy. Energy is movement. If man pushes building with all his strength, man will shake and vibrate but building will not move because building is bigger than man. What then happens when man squeezes handgun with all his might? Handgun moves off target. It really is that simple, friend. Honestly.
2. You don't know where you are going to hit and you often are surprised by good and bad shots because you do not fanatically watch the front sight tip. The eye can only focus to one depth at a time. If you hold your hand in front of the screen and focus on your hand, this text will become blurry. Read the text and your hand will become blurry. So obviously, you cannot focus on both sights at the same time, nor can you focus on one sight and the target at the same time. Impossible. So we focus with fanaticism on the front sight tip because wherever the front sight goes, the barrel goes, and so goes the bullet.
I encourage you to read The Perfect Pistol Shot if you are struggling with accuracy. If you read the Amazon reviews, you'll find many shooters who read the book and enjoyed immediate improvement at the next range session.
Enough of the old.
Since my former publisher, Paladin Press, went out of business, The Perfect Pistol Shot has not been available to stores by the normal distribution routes. That will change shortly, though I expect it will take a while for the book to funnel back down to the gun shops and sporting good stores. In the meantime, both paperback and kindle are available on amazon.com.
For defensive shooters or those interested in more advanced shooting, Practics is available in both formats. It is a much larger book based on a multi-week training course with all training exercises and even some instruction in making necessary training aids. I will caution against novice shooters using Practics, and warn all hands that it is a big book, at least as far as shooting books go. It is not similar to The Perfect Pistol Shot in terms of reading commitment. It's a genuinely tough study, covering defensive tactics, legal considerations, strategic planning, etc. I am grateful for the positive response and reader suggestions were certainly a part of Practics.
I wish all a Merry Thanksgiving, and as always, good shooting.
Albert League is a former Marine Corps and law enforcement firearm instructor who consults on a variety of security topics. He is the founder of the Practics firearms defense system and author of the Practics book series.(www.practicsusa.com)