Monday, January 9, 2012

Time Off From Shooting

An unfortunate confluence of a busy schedule and inclimate weather has conspired to restrict my range time for the past few weeks. Sadly, the situation doesn't appear to have much chance for improvement in the near future. I can't predict the weather, but I do see my schedule. I was lamenting recently about the possible detriment to my already limited skills. Coincidently just this morning Todd over at posted about this very subject.
For many people, the holidays are a time to take a break from shooting. Whether it’s family obligations, weather, or just plain old burn out after a long season of dedicated practice, it can actually be good to step away from the gun for a little bit. 
What is often overlooked is the beneficial side to taking a break. Sometimes over the course of a year’s training we build bad habits: training habits, technique habits, performance habits. Walking away from the gun for a few weeks can reset the mind and allow you to come back along a better path. Too often, shooters try to force their way through burn out periods and at best it’s just a waste of time and ammo. At worst, they’re building up a lot of bad reps that will require that much more effort and practice to repair.

Looking at the bright side, maybe the break will be a good thing. I had been trying to get into a better habit of dry fire practice while my range time was reduced. That seemed like it was having a positive effect, at least until my recent Black Creek Steel match. Reading Todd's article makes me wonder if I was burning out, or at the very least starting to reenforce bad habits. I will admit that while I immensely enjoy shooting, a few of my recent range trips were influenced by "I must do this or I will get stale."

I think I'll continue working my way through Mike Seeklander's "Your Competition Handgun Training Program" that I received for Christmas and develop a better regimen for training, while at the same time keeping it fun. Going back and reviewing the basics seems like a good idea too.

My time away from the range is not by choice, but maybe there will be some good to come from it.


  1. I know what you mean about taking a break... I took a month off from the range when I hit a slump on my groupings. The next time I went back, I was clearing out bulls-eyes left and right!

  2. Glad to hear it! Still, I'm anxious to get back on the range.


Comments on posts over 21 days old are held for moderation.