There are many ways in which you can practice Focused Training. I’m mean it is a simple as picking what area of shooting that you wish to focus on the most and then taking it from there. Again as I always say: “It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to operate a firearm.” It just simply does not. However, the when it comes to practicing Focused Training what I tend to make sure is that I have all the fundamentals down as much as possible. When doing so I take the time out to slow myself down (almost to an exaggerated slow pace) and self-evaluate every single thing between the gun, the ballistics and myself so that I may triangulate shooting, mechanical and cognitive pathologies to see what is going right and even more importantly what is going wrong. Moreover, I take the time out to also explore other possibilities while I’m behind the gun.
When practicing Focused Training I like to start form the ground up. I like to examine my Shooting Stance. And I do so by asking myself specific questions such as: “Is it too wide?” “Is it too narrow?” If I can find that “happy place” in regards to Shooting Stance that’s when I would purposely hold it for as long as possible. I would in short “freeze” myself in it. I would seek out to “feel” which of my muscles are constricting and relaxing. In doing so, I’m looking to create or actively seek to reinforce the muscle memory in my legs as much as possible while holding what I would consider for myself the “Perfect Shooting Stance”. This is something that is done while pressing the trigger.
Then I would work my way up to my lower torso and lower back. I will take the time out to again “feel” what would be the best way to place my Center of Gravity in conjunction with my Shooting Stance. Remember we are looking to build a house on the best foundation here! Depending on the weapon system that I’m shooting I again would take the time out to ask myself the following questions in a self-check manner. “Am I leaning too much into the weapon system?” “Or am I not leaning in far enough?” “Is my lower torso too ridged were it impedes my ability to move left or right?” Even more specifically I will ask myself: “Am I too tense before, during or even after the shot?” I remind myself that the object is to conserve energy – not recklessly expend it.
Moving further up, I examine and take mental note of my upper torso. I ask myself: “Am I too tense?” I also take the time out to examine my breathing. “Am I breathing too rapidly because I’m anticipating the shot or am I too anxious to get the shot off?” Either way this is the time I will take the time out to “remedy” that pathology (if it exist). I also take the time out to ask myself as I did with my lower torso: “Am I too ridge that I’m inflexible to rapidly moving from the front, back, right to left?”
From my upper torso I move down my arms while they are extended. In doing so I ask myself: “Am I too tense in the shoulders, biceps and triceps?” “Are my elbows locked out (hyper-extended)?” “Or are they [elbows] bent just enough so that they are not only not hyper extended but the ever so slightly bent at the elbows which serves as a sort of “buffer” or “shock absorber” in the fact that it aids in me being able to mitigate the felt recoil of the gun while firing?”
Moving out to my wrist, I ask myself: “Are they limp?” “Is the bore axis of the gun properly aligned with my forearm, wrist and total overall grip?” “Am I anticipating the shot by moving the elevation of the gun up or down as to result in a misplaced shot?” From my wrist I move to my fingers. I ask myself: “Do I have the most amount of gun in my hands so that I am able to have a positive grip on the gun?” I also ask myself: “How much trigger finger I have on the trigger?” If it is a Spinner (Revolver) I take the time out to ensure that I’m using the first joint of the Distal Phalanges (Index Finger). If I’m shooting a Semi-Automatic of any kind I make sure that the trigger rest on the center of the Distal Phalanges (Index Finger). I will also take the time out to make sure that I press the trigger in the most rearward position as possible when I decide to take the shot.
Move up again, I check my eyes! I ask myself: “Am I lining up the sights with my eyes?” Or if I’m Point Shooting which is the case most of the time – I check to see if my instincts are correct with each press of the trigger. For purposes of Point Shooting we don’t have to be “dead on” as I are looking for Combat Accuracy but we want to be generally where we initially wanted to shoot. The targets that I use are small. NEVER EVER use large targets. Generally the size of a paper plate does nicely. But if I’m looking to really narrow my scope of Focused Training I will utilize targets that are no larger than 2 – 2.5 inches in diameter at various distances. These are some of the thing I examine within myself while I’m practicing Focused Training that I also share with VODA Clients when they request them. I will stop here and recommend that you find your own path when it comes to Focused Training.
Have confidence and you will come to the realization that you got this!