I shot the Dot Torture drill this weekend with the Smith & Wesson Model 60 Pro; the conditions weren’t exactly what I’d call “ideal” for the test. I actually shot it at an outdoor range, my usual facility Atlanta Conservation Club. ACC is an outdoor range…in Indiana…in January. To say that it was cold doesn’t really do justice to cold, as the temperature didn’t get above 20 degrees while I was out there. However, the sun was shining, and in the bays the wind wasn’t too bad, so I stayed relatively warm under the 32 layers I had on.
To set the drill up, I shot Dot Torture from five yards, and did all my shooting double action. The DA trigger pull on the little Pro gun is pretty smooth; the gun scores high in the “shootability” department. In fact, I would have cleaned the drill at 5 yards if I hadn’t gotten stupid on the strong hand only dot and yanked two shots into low earth orbit.
Click the image for full size – you can see clear as day that dot number 5 has three bullet holes in it, and then there are two fliers…and bad ones at that. Shooting the little j-frame strong hand only double action reminded why we get out and practice, especially after a long layoff over the winter.
Shooting is a perishable skill, and it’s one of those things that if you don’t put the time and the work in to getting better, if you don’t put the time on the range in, you won’t see any progress.
But just as important is “practice” itself is to make sure you’ve having “good practice”. What skill set are you working on? With Dot Torture, you’re focusing on sight picture and trigger control. It’s not a timed drill, but rather an extreme accuracy drill. Take your time and get your hits. When I started rushing on the trigger instead of slowing down and presssssssing while watching the front sight, groups would open up and as you can see, I’d end up pulling shots.
So when you get out to the range to practice, remember to pick a skill set to practice that day. Whether it’s accuracy, speed, or something else, focus on that to insure that your practice time and money is time well spent.