When you live on the range, being stuck at home can feel like an eternity. Whether you’re busy with work, school, or the busyness of everyday life, our team at Las Vegas Shooting Center knows all-too-well the feeling of an itchy trigger finger. Although many of us don’t have the vast real estate available to set up our own backyard shooting range, there are still a handful of exercises you can do at home to keep your equipment and technique well-oiled and ready to rock. If you’re not practicing at-home drills using your Barret 50 or other firearms, you’re about to discover a new favorite way to pass the time.
A Note on Safety
Before we go any further, let’s take a moment to talk about safety. At Las Vegas Shooting Center, safety is our top priority. Although you may not be on the range, we still believe that you should use just as much, if not more, caution as you handle your firearm. Regardless if you’re dry firing or simply running positioning drills, you should always conduct yourself responsibly anytime your firearm has been removed from the safety of its case. Here are a few safety tips you should always remember:
Remember, no matter how you’re using your firearm, there are always risks associated with any firearm that is not safely stored.
The Importance of At-Home Drills
Shooters come in all shapes and sizes. Some, like our Las Vegas Shooting Center guests, love grabbing a Barret 50 and unloading a little brass therapy on the range. Others prefer to hone their aim for sport or improve their accuracy, so that they can leave every hunt with trophy in hand. Regardless of why you decide to take aim at a target, you want to hit as close to the mark as possible. But like any other activity, taking time away can make you a little rusty. Even your stance, positioning and muscle memory can be negatively affected by a lack of range time. Thankfully, at-home drills will help you shake off that rust and keep you range-ready at all times.
Dry-firing is one of the most effective practice techniques you can do at-home. You can train at home with seldom more than a little space, your firearm and a dedicated target. Whether you’re training with your Barret 50, AR-15, or Remington 700; keep yourself polished with these great at-home rifle drills.
Simple Breathing Techniques
Perhaps one of the easiest drills to perform with your Barret 50, or any other firearm for that matter, is to practice your breathing. Control over your breathing is control over both your mind and your shot. Breathing correctly will help you get in the zone, get comfortable in your position and get your shot going straight for the target. How can you tell if your breathing is off? Look through your scope at max power and you’ll notice your reticle moving. The less it moves, the more in control you are of your body.
One great breathing technique is that of practicing a series of inhales and exhales until you’ve gained controlled, measured breathing. Inhale deeply and slowly exhale for five-to-ten seconds. Inhale for five-to-ten seconds, then exhale again for just as many. As you calm your breathing, you’ll notice your heartrate will slow and your aim will steady. This is a great at-home drill to help you focus your mind for the following drills.
Assessing Your Shot
Now that you’ve worked on your breathing, it’s time to work on the shot itself. Choose your favorite position and take aim at your target. When you’re ready, take an unloaded shot and pay attention to how your crosshairs move after you’ve squeezed the trigger. Depending on the severity of their movement, your position may be off, or you may be unsteady when squeezing the trigger. Repeat this exercise a few times, adjusting as necessary and see how close you can get to a shot with limited movement.
Enhancing Opposite Hand Accuracy
After you’ve spent a little time steadying your shot, you can integrate it into another exercise that will also help improve your performance with your non-dominant hand. While some individuals may not see the need to practice with their nondominant hand, we believe it’s a handy skill to learn for fun and a valuable resource to have if you’re using your firearm as a member of the military or law enforcement. For this exercise, choose a position and fire a few dry-shots with your dominant hand, paying attention to how much your crosshairs move after you take the shot. Then, switch to your nondominant hand and take a few dry-shots, again paying attention to the crosshair movement. Repeat five times on each side and take note of which adjustments you’re making each time.
Practicing reloading can be a fun drill even if you’re not using live ammo. Always verify that all of your magazines are empty and that your chamber is clear before doing this drill. Choose a position and dry-fire as many rounds as are in your magazine. After you’ve counted the final shot, release the magazine and immediately grab your full magazine, load it and reposition yourself to dry-fire on your target. Repeat this a few times, taking note of your speed and how well you’re re-centering your shot.
Dry-Fire from Multiple Positions
For a final drill, you should perform dry-fire from the standing, kneeling and prone positions in quick succession. You can begin by standing or from prone and cycle through all three positions, taking note of the control of your breathing and ability to center your shot.
There are plenty of at-home drills that you can do with your Barret 50. For more advice, check out our blog. Be sure to visit Las Vegas Shooting Center and hit our range to see how well your at-home Barret 50 drills are working! Give us a call today with any questions.