In any survival situation, firearms should be a consideration. While they may not actually be needed, there’s a strong chance that they will increase your chances of surviving. Basically, there are two ways that you might end up using a firearm; hunting for food and defending yourself from attack.
While just about anyone can pick up a firearm and shoot, that doesn’t mean that they can shoot it accurately. Shooting a gun accurately requires time and practice, especially for a pistol. Even so, many people think that having a gun is enough and never bother to practice.
Having firearms and not practicing with them is a sure recipe for disaster. If you ever have to use it against an attacker, all you will do is increase your chances of being killed. An armed attacker who sees that you are armed is going to either run or kill you quickly before you have a chance to kill them. If you haven’t become proficient in aiming and firing off a shot quickly, there’s a very good chance that they will beat you to the draw and shoot you before you can get your finger to the trigger.
While it takes time and effort to learn how to shoot accurately, pretty much anyone can learn to do it. Like most skills, it takes time invested to learn. Practice now so that if you ever need to use your firearm, you’ll be ready.
- Basic Target Shooting. The first thing to learn is how to shoot accurately. This means going to the shooting range and burning up some ammo. You want to be able to shoot accurately enough that you can hit a human target at up to about 10 yards with a pistol. Since your shooting ability will be degraded when you have to do it for real, that basically means being able to get your shots into a six-inch circle. Don’t stick to only shooting at one distance; vary your distance from three yards all the way out to 20—that’s a bit far for a pistol, but if you can do it, you’re that much better off.
- Long-Range Shooting. If you are going to use your guns to hunt for food, you’ll want to be able to shoot at long distances. Practice with a rifle at 100 to 300 yards. You will have to learn how much the bullet drops over that distance so that you can still shoot accurately. Don’t just practice with a scope either; use iron sights too. In the event your scope gets damaged, you’ll have to shoot without it.
- Tactical Shooting. Tactical shooting consists of shooting at targets that are arranged like an actual self-defense situation. Many ranges offer tactical shooting events. They are different enough from target shooting that even an expert target shooter will hardly hit a target the first few times.
- Shooting While Moving. If you can move while you shoot, then you are much less likely to get hit. This is extremely hard and requires a lot of practice. However, in a real self-defense situation you want to be moving so that you are harder to hit. You may also have an adversary who is moving, that you will need to be able to hit. So you want to practice shooting at moving targets as well.
- Shooting at Multiple Targets. Self-defense situations are seldom against only one attacker. Criminals are cowards and will usually work in teams to increase their odds. You can’t count on just shooting one while ignoring the others. Rather, you have to be ready to engage them all. Knowing how to move from target to target is important, as well as determining which target you should engage first.
- Shooting in Low Light. Most attacks happen in low light. It is much harder to see the gun sights in these situations. Practice acquiring the target even when there is little light to use, and practice using a tactical light as well so that you can hold the light and gun at the same time but still shoot accurately.
- Drawing and Loading Drills. Most ranges won’t allow you to practice drawing and firing unless you do it when nobody else is there. However, you can practice this at home with an unloaded gun. You should also practice reloading and getting back into action as quickly as possible. While most shooting situations only require three shots, you can never be sure. Shaving a few seconds off your reload time can mean the difference between life and death.
The Bottom Line
While owning a gun is a constitutionally guaranteed right in the U.S., it is also a responsibility. If you are going to use guns to defend yourself, then you need to be ready to use them well. The worst thing that could happen is that you shoot some innocent bystander accidentally because you haven’t practiced enough. Criminals do this all the time.
With practice, you can reach the point where every shot goes exactly where you want it to. Not only is that dangerous for your enemies, it’s safer for your foes. Should you have to use your guns to protect them, your practice will prepare you to win the conflict and keep your family safe.