Welcome back to another edition of Concealed Carry Corner. Last week, we looked at the importance of quality holsters and some of the different choices available on the market today. If you missed last week’s article I will leave a link to it here. When it comes to training at the range for carrying concealed, accuracy and connecting shots on the target is just the beginning of the story. Movement and being able to shoot while moving or firing from cover is one of the most important skills you can practice once you’ve become confident with your static shooting ability. Let’s take a closer look at some movement drills.
One of the simplest drills to set up is called the Box Drill. This can be orange cones, blue barrels, sticks creating a square or even a line in the dirt to follow. All you need to do is make a square with 2-3 targets directly in front of your large square. I will typically put two targets lined up with the edges of the square with one target in the middle of the two outer targets. Oftentimes, I like to start out at one of the back corners and move clockwise around the square. Each time I go around one of the corners I engage each of the targets with at least 2 shots to the body while moving.
The time to make your completion goal is around 7-8 seconds and once you do that, you can start to make things more interesting. Once you reach your target time and become comfortable with the drill, you can either add another round to the head for transition practice or you can start moving inside the square as well. Rather than just simply moving around the edge of the square, you can start moving from corner to corner making an X inside the square as well. When I go with a group of friends to the range, we will number each of the square corners and then verbally call out a corner number along with a target for the shooter to move to and engage. If you want to practice drawing from concealment, this is also a great way to practice draw motions as well as movement with your handgun.
Figure 8 Drills
A drill similar to the Box Drill is called the Figure 8 Drill. Rather than moving around the perimeter of a square, you will set up two cones or barrels and move around them in an 8-motion before completing the drill. I typically like to have at least 3-4 targets set up around the range to make you turn your body in order to engage the target. With the Figure 8 Drill, it’s important to always face the same way down range rather than turning your body away from the shooting lane.
Mixing in steel and paper targets makes for an incredibly dynamic drill that lets you practice throttle control between the accuracy of paper targets and the speed of steel targets. Simply adding in different styles of targets will take a redundant regular drill and completely change it. It makes you throttle down and focus on your shots for certain targets but speed up and make hits for others. Just like the Box Drill, you can start from the holster creating repetitions on your draw stroke.
Cover to Cover Drills
So you’re feeling confident with static shooting as well as the simple moving drills, what’s next? Working cover into the equation is a great way to build all of your skills at once while adding another obstacle to work through. Adding in some sort of cover will allow you to shoot from different positions and get the same level of movement as the other drills while having a stopping point to engage targets. It’s not as stressful most times as if you’re constantly moving which does allow you to think about your technique and how you want to attack your targets.
Most people don’t consider practicing Cover-to-Cover drills since they think other aspects like draw stroke, trigger press and sight picture are more important. Truth is those fundamentals are important but once you become confident with all of the basic shooting fundamentals, it’s a natural progression to move into cover-based training and movement. Some of you won’t practice anything other than static shooting and that’s perfectly acceptable. Some of you may not see the value of pushing and working towards more complicated drills. Doing fundamental training offers a ton of value for self-defense situations, but if you’re looking to really add in dynamic training it’s always good to push yourself out of your comfort zone.
There are countless drills you can do in order to better yourself. All it takes is motivation to better yourself and a few simple drills to set you on your way. These are three of the easiest drills to set up with minimal equipment and time. What are some of your favorite drills for range day when it comes to carrying concealed?
I always encourage people to work cover-based training and be able to shoot while moving rather than just being a static target. Let me know what you think in the comments below. If you have questions about drills or firearms in general, don’t hesitate to shoot me a message on Instagram @fridgeoperator. Stay safe out there and we will see you next week!