I’m very glad to see that so many were out for practice day. The MEU-SOC course is demanding of both marksmanship and concentration. It also provides the rare, if not always realistic opportunity to practice hitting at 50 and 25 yards. What did I notice?
· Holstering! Several individuals use their weak hand to help reholster their pistol. In doing so, they also sweep that hand with the muzzle. Not a good idea if one wishes to use one’s weak hand for anything other than holding a cigar! Speedy reholstering is not required.
· The presentation. For the individuals who adopt the Weaver stance or any variation thereof, one’s hands should come together close to the body, just after the pistol has been rocked to level. The pistol can then be fired, effectively retained, or thrust out to the ‘look’ position. Should one not close or even meet one’s hands until the gun is at eye level – a very common practice – significant stability and therefore time will be lost on one’s first shot. Close one’s two-handed grip (‘Smack’) at the close retention position and then build isometric tension as the gun is thrust forward.
· At 50 (Yards, not years.) it behooves one to learn the rollover prone position. It offers both a steady arm/shoulder/head platform and lifts the abdomen clear of the ground so breathing will not disturb sight alignment. We did not practice, nor did I critique body alignment at 50, but it is essential for accuracy at distance. More later!
· Dry practice. Quality dry practice. Do it. A thorough dry practice ritual will allow one to vastly improve gunhandling skills without firing a single shot. All those awkward manipulations of pistol, magazines, presentation and sight alignment do not require ammunition to perfect. I can recommend the technique tapes from Gunsite and Thunder Ranch. There are probably others. But! Practice correctly and smoothly or you will ‘groove in’ bad form. Remember that you will do under stress what you do in training!