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Firing a Shot recap—-
I get into prone position (actually ANY POSTION will work I just like the prone). I chamber a round and remove my safety. I relax. I intentionally think to myself, “Relax my forearm, my hands, my shoulders, my back, my diaphragm.” When I am relaxed, I go through the Nine Steps to Firing the Shot.
Sight Alignment I make sure my front sight is in the correct place relative to my rear sight. I am conscious of my turkey neck and cheek weld, making sure they are in my consistent spot. I again relax.
Sight Picture. I bring my sights onto my target. I do this by moving my hips. This is a general direction move, we will fine tune later. I now place the tip of my trigger finger on the trigger. Respiratory Pause. Here I become conscious of my breathing. I breathe in and watch my sights dip below the target. I breathe out and watch my sights rise back underneath my target (since I am using a 6 o’clock hold).
During Respiratory Pause, I check my Natural Point of Aim. I close my eyes. I relax my muscles. I breathe in, breathe out. I open my eyes. I ask myself, “Where is my front sight?” 99% of the time it is not on target. This time it is high and to the left. My support elbow is planted. It will not move during my shifting. I shift my hips a tiny bit left. This brings my front sight a little to the right towards the target. I shift my hips a little forward. This brings my front sight down a little, more towards the target.
I close my eyes. I relax my muscles. I breathe in, I breathe out. I open my eyes. I ask myself, “where is my front target?” This time I am “on” horizontally. However, my front sight is covering the target. I am aiming too high. I shift my hips a bit forward. I repeat the process.
Close my eyes, Relax my muscles, Breathe In, Breathe Out, Open My Eyes. I am right on target with my proper sight picture.
At this point, you Focus your Eye on the Front Sight. Since your Natural Point of Aim is on target, all you have to do is remain in position and relaxed and you will remain on target. There is no more need to focus on the target. You focus your eye on the front sight, making the target blurry and the front sight black and crisp.
Once your eye is focused on the front sight, You Focus my Mind on Keeping the Front Sight on Target. This is where mind controls matter. If you will a good shot, it will come. You say to yourself, while keeping your front sight visually in focus, “front sight on target, front sight on target, front sight on target.” Over and over again. You clearing your mind and focusing it on the task.
While you are repeating, “front sight on target” to yourself, you Squeeze the Trigger. Once your mind has decided to squeeze the trigger, it should not continue to think about the act of squeezing. While you are squeezing you continue to say, “front sight on target, front sight on target, front sight on. .”
BANG! You have just fired the shot. It surprised you. Good. you want to be surprised by the shot. If you are surprised it is because your mind is focused on keeping the front sight on target. Your mind will not have mental space to consider recoil, therefore making you buck or flinch in anticipation of recoil.
Follow Through. After the shot is fired, I hold the trigger back. Recoil moves my barrel around. Since I have a well-built position and my sling is snug and in use, my sights settle back on target. My body settles back into its Natural Point of Aim.
During this time, I Call the Shot. This means I keep my eyes open during the shot, taking a mental snapshot of where my front sight was when the shot went off. My front sight was on target at the time of the bang so I will call the shot “good.” If, say, I took a mental snapshot of the front sight off, target when the shot went off, I would call it “bad.” If I called the shot but it did not hit the target, it is still a good shot. I would use the miss as a learning opportunity to make the next shot successful. No shot should be wasted.
Finally, it is time for Trigger Reset. After the shot went “BANG,” I held the trigger back. Since it went bang I rode the recoil (follow through) and called the shot. Now I slowly guide the trigger forward until I feel it click. This click is the sear resetting. Do not remove your finger from the trigger at all while you are firing shots. This is what makes good trigger control which makes good accuracy.