One of the most common questions we get asked is,
From our firearms instructors on the EFT Team, our answer is always along the lines of “Consistent, Intentional Dry Fire.”
Just as fitness is the foundation for survival and requires consistent, intentional reps in the weight room, dry fire is the foundation upon which all shooting skills can be built. From precision rifle (PR) to pistol shooting and everything in between, dry fire, dry fire, dry fire will help you see results. Shooters like Ben Stoeger, JJ Racaza and Rob Leatham all attribute much of their success to properly applied dry fire.
Safety warning: It is important to have a dedicated dry fire area, sanitized of any live rounds!
Our biggest piece of advice for finding consistency in a dry fire routine is to find something that you do EVERY day (minus emergency call outs, traveling schedules etc.) and add your dry fire into that routine.
As a matter of habit, most of our team members' mornings start with getting the family out to school and work, some type of movement (walk, train, stretch, body work), working in a few minutes of “quiet time,” (meditation, day planning, reading, studying, etc.), We then spend anywhere from 5-10 minutes dry-firing. These objectives are not in any particular order, as it is different for everyone and dependent on personal preference, so find your groove and stick to it. This morning routine becomes exactly that... routine. It becomes a ritual that sets you up for a solid day ahead.
The focus of our dry fire time changes day-to-day and week-to-week, just as it does for fitness training, but the point is that we must take a few minutes every day to put in at least a few reps. Working it into your day, consistently, even for 5-10 minutes, is key.
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Dry fire is the work you put in throughout the week that you can confirm when you head to the live fire range. If you cheat yourself during dry fire, you will become frustrated by your lack of progress on a live fire target. Side Note: A public place is NOT the place for dry fire practice.
Intentionality is just as important as consistency for your routine.
If you went to a course or had live fire training, and noticed that your reloads were sloppy or slow – guess what? Time to run some dry fire reload drills. If you had a difficult time finding your front sight (or your dot), then slow down your draw stroke during the week, and execute flawless draws with presentation. If you can’t get a clean, consistent sight picture then you have no hope of hitting time and accuracy standards.
The intentionality of your dry fire should be purposed towards myelinating the shooting processes in a systematic and progressive schedule. Just as with technical lifting, your form has to be precise before you can add weight or intensity. Same goes for shooting: Execute flawless form with no time constraints, then build from there.
The last piece we want to emphasize is confirmation of your dry fire routine.
There are plenty of great technology tools available to help identify and diagnose your dry fire habits but the best way to confirm your work is to go and shoot live rounds down range.
Getting with an experienced coach or trainer will greatly improve the quality of time you spend at the range – but as with everything, please vet your coaches. If you follow us on social media, you're bound to see the high level trainers that we support.
Go take a look and remember:
Put in the time and effort and the results will speak for themselves.
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