My Private Lesson

Today I had a private handgun lesson with Karl Rehn of KR Training.

I asked for the lesson because I know putting a set of highly-trained eyes on me can help me watch for things I’m doing but may not be aware of, and where I can improve.

The shooting part of the lesson mostly involved using the Central Texas Standards. Go check it out. On paper it may look easy, but it’s not. Karl can shoot 100% on it. Me, I’ve got work to do, but I knew that and that was the point of today. The question is, what exactly do I need to do.

I won’t bore you with all the details, but I will state a few things:

  • I’m back to “dipping” when I draw. That is, when the hand goes down onto my gun to draw it, I dip in my knees. When I pull the gun up and out of the holster, I straighten up. I’m not as pronounced, and certainly it’s good to drop my weight a bit, but the coming up needs to stop. The interesting thing is I haven’t been doing this in dry fire practice. Maybe it’s something about Karl’s range. 🙂
  • I was shooting left. I could tell from reading my front sight that I was shooting left. I could tell from feeling my cheek on my right shoulder that I’m still affected by my recently discovered (bad) habit of doing that, and thus everything was lining up for me to shoot a little left. It’s all the benchrest rifle shooting I’ve been doing lately.
  • I need to get on the trigger during the presentation.
  • Karl showed me a more advanced technique for the draw, in terms of what happens with the left hand. I like.
  • I need to get faster on the draw.
  • When I practice my draw, I need to break it down into two steps and be more “L” shaped in my movement “arc”.
  • I need to be faster on my reloads. I need to get to the magazine faster.
  • When I practice my reloads, remember to keep the pistol vertical when dropping the mag (to ensure it drops free), then cant the gun to match the natural angle created by your left hand as it brings up the new magazine.
  • Stop yanking the trigger. Time pressures got to me.

Things to practice, either in live or dry fire:

  • Burkett reloads
  • I can try reloading like Tom Givens suggests, it works out the same, really, but it just adds dropping the magazine to the Burkett reload drill
  • Moving and reloading, but finger doesn’t get on the trigger until you’re on target.
    • The maxim is to prep the trigger as the gun goes on target. This holds always (advanced technique).
  • Buy some “Blue Guns” magazines (or apparently the Beretta mags work, with a little modification) to help practicing these techniques (since they have weight to them)
  • Two-step draw, up and out
    • Clap your hands, left already canted
  • Shooting groups at 15 yards, 25 yards, 35 yards, 50 yards
  • Shoot the Central Texas Standards with no time limits/pressures. The goal? Shoot it 100% clean. If you can shoot it 100% clean, that shows you have the marksmanship abilities to shoot that stuff, so now it’s a matter of speeding it up. Start shooting at 7 yards and work the drills backwards; again, no timer. Once you get to the point that you can’t shoot the string clean, that tells you where you need to start working, focus there.
  • Shifting the gun to the weak hand (from a strong-hand draw), the draw is the same, and when the hands clap at your chest you should have your thumbs pointing skyward and you can just roll the gun from one hand to the other. A little more finger on the trigger.

Some of the above may make sense to you, some may not. It’s mostly notes for myself.

I’ve got a lot of practice ahead of me. Especially since Tom Givens is coming back to the area on October 23-24, 2010 for Combative Pistol 2. That’s an intensive course, and I better have my shit straight before I walk in there. About 9 months away, I have no excuse.

5 thoughts on “My Private Lesson

  1. Hsoi,

    Consider buying an Airsoft version of your carry gun.

    I have one for the Taurus and it has helped because I can actually pull the trigger and see where the round goes.

    I’m at the very gross — am I near the target stage — but its helped me.

  2. There’s a small error in hsoi’s post, which is that I can totally clean the standards course. During the lesson I made a comment about running “100” on the test. I got in the habit of scoring it in a shorthand method where I counted total A hits – and I can usually hit 100 A’s out of the 125 possible. My all time top score on the drill was 607 out of 625 which is around 97%. That was with an IPSC Open gun out of a race holster. Most of the time I’m happy with anything 550 or higher out of 650 using a carry gun, and making the par times for the 7 yard string are tough drawing from concealment without using an IDPA ‘gamer’ vest.

  3. Pingback: A good morning « Stuff From Hsoi

  4. Pingback: AT-6 Pistol Workout « Stuff From Hsoi

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