Shooting on the Edges

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In using a
handgun in self-defense, every instructor of any worth teaches that
your goal is to be able to fire, on demand, a well-placed – most
times high-center-chest – hit. We collectively practice developing,
and then maintaining, this ability.

Handgun competitions
are built around how well a competitor does this. This ability is
then often coupled with tactical considerations of concealment,
cover and movement.

Little if any
thought or effort, though, is devoted to learning to "shoot
what you can see when you can see it," so to speak. In fact,
all the competitions penalize the shooter for firing what is, correctly
by the rules, a poor shot.

However, a
problem can arise when forced to defend yourself because threats
do not conveniently present themselves as a full-value, broadside
target. But because all your training, practice and competition
has habituated you to always attempt to position yourself to get
a good hit, you will most likely do this instinctively when engaging
a real adversary.

The "cure"
for this problem, luckily, is not all that complex. Recognizing
that what you are doing in one application is incorrect for the
other is almost the solution in and of itself. To reinforce this,
practicing shooting at a humanoid target’s extremities – its "edges,"
if you will – can further imprint this difference.

I suggest using
realistic human silhouette targets, if possible, to better imprint
in your mind what you’ll see in a real encounter.

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the rest of the article

January
9, 2010

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