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Thread: How accurate and consistent is "instinctive shooting"?

  1. #1
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    How accurate and consistent is "instinctive shooting"?

    Last week at the range I tried doing some two handed point shooting: two hands on the gun, come up from low ready on a target 15 ft away, and try to shoot the center of mass as quickly as possible without conscientiously aiming (ie eyes focused on target, only peripheral awareness of the front sight). It was indeed very fast, it seemed accurate enough, but I was able to adjust my grip perfectly ahead of time, had my body rotated at just the right angle to face the target mounted directly in front of me at my own body height, and even then I had a few flyers that either hit low on the target or far off center line.

    So, taking that to the real world. If you ever need to use your gun, it will be because somebody is threatening your life the the life of your loved one. You're going to be scared, your hands might be sweaty and shaky, you're grabbing the gun from its holster without having 30 seconds to work your grip in just right, you and your target both might be moving, you might be at some physically awkward relative disposition.... Can you ever practice enough to make instinctive shooting consistent and dependable in the real world?

    I'm asking this question not because I'm trying to make a choice between practicing instinctive shooting or carefully aimed shooting, but rather because I strongly suspect that in a self defense situation the only kind of shooting I will manage to do will be instinctive.
    Last edited by citanon; 18 Jan 15, at 23:51.

  2. #2
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    It's muscle memory. Like all muscle memory, you have to keep at it or you lose it.

    But I would suggest that you try tactical compeition shoot. You get points for shooting bad guys and people laugh at you when you shoot friendlies.
    Last edited by Officer of Engineers; 19 Jan 15, at 00:22.
    Chimo

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    I'm slowly working up to it. I shot a lot during college but then dialed back later in grad school when the options were feeding myself or feeding the gun. Since getting my Walther I've put almost a thousand rounds through, just trying to get used to handling it. I'm planning to work in holster use as I find time for it this year and then when I'm convinced I'm not going to shoot my own foot or somebody else's I will start participating in some competitions.

    We're fortunate to have a good outdoor range within reasonable driving distance, but I unfortunately don't have a lot of free time. Still, I'm really enjoying the monthly outing.

    BTW, IPSC or IDPA? What's the difference?
    Last edited by citanon; 19 Jan 15, at 00:40.

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    Senior Contributor surfgun's Avatar
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    Point shooting is one of the most diminish keying skill sets. That is one of the reasons that most must remain within 7 yards. The muscle memory, the weapon type ( the Glock, Luger, Tokarev, P38 , Sig Sauer, Beretta, 1911 flat back strap, curved back strap) all have different points of impact. Not to mention your J frame or .380's will also differ in point of impact, shows that most point shooting is left to those that shoot one pistol, unless one is up and close and personal with said bad guy.
    Last edited by surfgun; 19 Jan 15, at 00:45.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by citanon View Post
    BTW, IPSC or IDPA? What's the difference?
    IPSC is a lot more fun. All the mags you can carry and blast away to your heart's content. IDPA is more restrictive in the amount of ammo you can carry so you have to conserve ammo.

    That being said, both just gives you confidence that you can handle yourself but neither actually gives you the skills you actually need. You're looking for the bad guy, not that the bad guy jumps out of nowhere.
    Chimo

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    Senior Contributor Mihais's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by citanon View Post

    I'm asking this question not because I'm trying to make a choice between practicing instinctive shooting or carefully aimed shooting, but rather because I strongly suspect that in a self defense situation the only kind of shooting I will manage to do will be instinctive.
    If you can point with your finger,you can point with your pistol as well.Different guns shoot somewhat different,but at the ranges you do instinctive shooting, it doesn't matter.I did it with a Glock,with an HK USP or with an AK.The bullet goes into the target and in real life or death situation you'll fire as fast as possible,so many bullets will hit the bastard.That will put some hurt in him.
    What you need to do cheaply is muscle memory as the Col said.You can try using the much despised tool that is airsoft.And you don't need a range.A room will suffice.
    What you also need to practice is hand to hand.Because at 5m,you with your gun and him with a knife,you die.
    Those who know don't speak
    He said to them, "But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. Luke 22:36

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    Field mechanik Senior Contributor omon's Avatar
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    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!" B. Franklin

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