Gun

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The gun control effort has taken on new life largely because of a recent attack in a Florida bar. The arguments, as always are the same. A few years ago, novelist Stephen King wrote a kindle book–Guns. Mr. King strongly favors gun control. I do not. In 2013, I wrote a kindle response to Guns. An unedited draft was published for a short period to check reviews and then pulled for editing; the Practics manuscript diverted my attention and the following essay wasn’t released. The American Gun Fight draft is posted below and while it specifically addresses King’s book, it is a general response to popular gun control.

I wish everyone a pleasant Fourth of July.

American Gun Fight

Being technically and legally competent to use a firearm for home defense is good. Having immediate access to your weapon at any hour is also good. Having a small piece of wire pushed through the bottom of your foot, causing you to yelp and limp is bad.  Continue reading

Obviously, I would rather everyone read my books and attended my training. On the other hand, that’s really not practical, and frankly, it wouldn’t be the best advice for all shooters. Aside from my self-serving interests, finding a good instructor is not a given.  Too many local instructors, the kind that pin index cards to the local range bulletin board, shouldn’t be teaching. An NRA instructor certificate does not of itself qualify an individual to train others.  Big name schools fall into another problem–the glorification of self. Shooting a gun is not a religion and some guy’s beloved technique is only orthodoxy when broad success has made it so.  Fortunately, there are some great local instructors and some wonderful big name schools.  It is the perspective student’s job to research and discriminate. Continue reading

Welcome to Practics. This blog focuses on matters relating to defensive use of firearms and the surrounding social issues. For my Amazon readers, this is something of a change. The marksmanship blog is still active at www.perfectpistolshot.com but will be replaced on my Amazon author’s page with www.practicsusa.com. I’ve enjoyed all the correspondence from Perfect Pistol Shot readers over the last couple of years and your emails are always welcome.

Practics is a system of firearm defense that has some unique characteristics: Continue reading

There’s always a concern about how police will behave when meeting an armed citizen, particularly at a shooting or crime scene. I can empathize with both sides. Having been the police, I didn’t like anything that would delay or threaten me. On the other hand, as a private citizen, I can’t stand being treated like a felon because the police don’t know me.

Here’s a few things you can do to get along with the police: Continue reading

My new book will released in Spring 2015. The book is called Practics Holistic Handgun and is based on my Practics system for defensive firearm use. This first book is the meat of a 128 hour course covering everything from the use of deadly force to firing en motion. It is currently being edited and looks like it will be at least 350 pages which is a big book, particularly for a shooting book. Formats will be Kindle and paperback, both available through Amazon.  Interested readers can go to my Amazon author page and click the button under my picture which will cause a notice to be sent when the new book is released. Of course, I’ll post updates here and there is a supporting web site: www.practicsusa.com 

Its my intention to follow Practics Holistic Handgun with at least two more Practics books. Live training is a real possibility, too.

Its been a pleasure over the last three years, getting to know some of The Perfect Pistol Shot readers. The fact that Practics is a reality is due in no small measure to those readers who supported the first book with blog discussions and strong reviews. Thank you.

Happy Thanksgiving.
AHL

Recoil should never be a problem with traditional service caliber handguns. Disruption in shooting due to muzzle rise or rearward body movement under recoil is the result of a marksmanship error. If the shooter’s shoulders are slightly forward of the hips and if the arms are held naturally (not hyper-extended) there will be very little muzzle rise. If, however, the shoulders are even slightly behind the hips, the muzzle will have an exaggerated rise. The proper position of the shoulders can be accomplished by a slight slumping of the shoulders. In a normal standing position the hands hang to the sides. When the shoulders slump, the arms move forward transferring the hands from the outside of the legs to the front of the thighs. That slight repositioning will end all extraneous recoil. Your rapid fire speed will double. Double. Rearward movement due to recoil is also the result of either a slight rearward lean or a straight-up posture. The slight rearward lean will knock you back a step and the straight posture will rock you back onto your heels. Bring the shoulders forward of the hips and you’ll be rock-steady. Try it. For more information on the effect of body positioning on shooting read The Perfect Pistol Shot.

The new book is moving toward an early 2015 release. A holistic handgun system including everything from the draw to shooting in total darkness is the subject. More information will be available next month.

After the The Perfect Pistol Shot was published there was some reader interest in a defensive handgun book. I have just finished the manuscript and it’s currently with the editor. This is a large book, about 300-350 pages. Instead of a collection of techniques, the book offers a a full handgun self-defense system. The book will be available in trade paperback and Kindle. Spring 2015. In the meantime, I’ll periodically update the book’s progress here. Thanks for the interest; readers certainly influence my writing projects.

Winter is coming. Stored weapons need to be cleaned, oiled, and properly stored. Avoid humidity as much as possible.

I’ve noticed many firearm bloggers sharing targets and discussing accuracy. Slow-fire at seven yards with a service weapon should produce one ragged bullet hole. Unfortunately, that’s not what passes for decent shooting today. Shooters who accept an 8″ circle as a good measure of a group are endangering those around them. At 25 yards, you’re bullets will be all over God’s creation. Let’s be clear. Measuring groups by the distance of the furthest round to the center-most round may produce a “four-inch group” that is actually an eight inch group. Your full-sized handgun is probably capable of a five-shot group within a three inch circle at 25 yards. Work toward the mechanical accuracy of your firearm. Marksmanship takes effort, just like learning to drive a car. Most people don’t drive particularly well at the extremes, such as bad weather or high-speed. Likewise, most shooters can’t shoot when the target is smaller than an Elvis poster and farther away than the length of a Hyundai sedan. You CAN become a marksman if you will endeavor to study marksmanship and train instead of plink. It does you little good to take advice from other shooters who are unable to shoot accurately. Marksmanship is the basis for all shooting. Your enjoyment of your handgun will rise exponentially if you will invest the time, discipline, and effort to become a marksman. You can do it!

Very few shooters have mastery over the trigger press process. Even fewer realize it. Most shooters actually abandon the trigger halfway through the press. In The Perfect Pistol Shot, I describe this desire to short-cut the process as being an attempt to release the shot without disturbing the sights. Of course, the opposite happens because failing to control the trigger all the way to release will not shorten the trigger process but simply speed it up. The trigger is going to travel all the way to the point of free-fall whether the shooter controls it or not. Here’s a simple live-fire drill to help you. Continue reading

The two following tips, properly applied, will immediately improve your handgun accuracy. A full explanation with additional tips and drills can be found in the book, The Perfect Pistol Shot.

1. Aim at a point which appears smaller than your front sight tip. In all my training classes, live-fire marksmanship instruction  is conducted with crosses drawn on the backside of targets. The center of the cross is your aiming point. The arms of the cross may be extended for better viewing at greater distances and the thickness of the lines may be enlarged through the use of a bigger marker, but the crucible remains your exact aiming point. Think about it. Your driving benefits from your ability to look down the road and make steering corrections. Shooting is the same. You handgun was designed to shoot 25 yard groups no bigger than the bottom of your coffee mug. You will never realize that mechanical potential while aiming at a 12″ bulls-eye or  24″ silhouette.  If you unknowingly fire to the right side of a giant bulls-eye on the first shot and slightly toward the top on the second shot, you will get a false reading when examining your target; you may have fired perfect shots but failed to anchor them to the same place and therefore fired a six inch spread. You can’t shoot at pie plates, soda cans, and bleach bottles while expecting to learn anything from the experience.2. Focus fanatically on the front sight tip. If you can’t identify your used handgun from among a pile of the same make and model by examining the front sight tip, you aren’t properly focusing on the front sight during firing. Every scratch, dent and ding should be impressed into your memory. The eye must tell the hand to make adjustments within hundredths of an inch. How can the eye do that with a casual glance. The front sight is on the end of the barrel. Wherever the end of the barrel is pointed at the instant the round leaves the weapon is where the bullet is going to travel. That’s a scientific fact. Another scientific fact is this: control the front sight and you will control bullet placement. Every shooters says he knows about sight alignment and sight picture, but in my experience most shooters only know the purpose of the sights, not how to use them.Master the above two skills and you’ll be within the top ten percent of the world’s handgun shooters.

 

 

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The Author
Al
Albert League is a former Marine and law enforcement firearm instructor who consults on a variety of security topics.