The Best and Most Practical Pistol & Rifle Shooting Tips
Every hunter has to start somewhere with regards to his shooting abilities. Consider yourself lucky if someone had taught you when you were younger, but if you’re really starting from scratch, how do you know where to begin? For this reason, I’ve decided to lend a hand to beginner hunters and give a few pistol & rifle shooting tips.
With these tips, I’m sure you’ll be able to get on with the basics and perhaps proceed to intermediate levels of shooting. Just make sure to remember not to rush yourself throughout the process; talent takes a lot of time and a lot more practice.
Pistol & Rifle Shooting Tips
1. Start at close range
Once you get your first handgun, you’re bound to be overwhelmed with excitement. I have a lot of friends who have been too eager with their shooting and started target practice at long ranges. Needless to say, none of them harnessed the energy of Annie Oakley on the first try.
Thus, to avoid the frustration of multiple missed shots and to truly test out your innate talent on shooting, start at close range and work your way up from there. In this way, you can gauge your capacity at close range. This will make shooting long distances easier to transition to.
Generally, you can apply this tip for both pistol and rifle shooting.
2. Practice follow-through
Hunter looking through rifle scope.
Follow-through means watching your shot hit the target without taking your eye off the scope. This technique will allow you to see where your shot has gone and allow you to adjust your aim right then and there.
Furthermore, it will immensely help you improve your accuracy. Otherwise, if you’re not seeing where your shot goes after you pull the trigger, you miss the opportunity of realizing where you went wrong (in terms of aim and/or position) and thus limit improvement.
Therefore, if you want to be the best rifle hunter, you’re going to have to make an effort to improve yourself.
3. Train yourself in unfavorable conditions
There’s almost always going to be wind during a hunting trip. For this reason, you need to rain yourself to shoot even during unfavorable conditions. Since wind greatly affects the accuracy and precision of your shot by influencing its direction/speed, you need to practice adapting your shooting with this type of weather.
On the other hand, practicing in windy weather will also train you on how to adapt to the situation. A well-practiced hunter will be able to shoot down a buck even with the wind blowing in his face. Again, it all comes down to hard work to be able to shoot in any kind of condition.
4. Develop the correct position
I cannot stress this any further: position plays a key role in your shooting! It is perhaps the most important aspect of shooting other than technique and timing. Thus, a beginner hunter should focus on developing his/her position while you’re starting out.
Moreover, it’s also best to have an expert take a look at your form and position. Chances are, he/she will be able to tell you what you’re doing wrong so you can take note of it in the future.
5. Invest in good equipment
A rifle with a scope.
Of course, the equipment will mean nothing if you are a lousy shot. However, if you know how to use these equipment for the improvement of your shooting, it will definitely happen.
Examples of these equipment are rifle scopes, gun mounts, and IWB holsters. The best IWB holster, specifically, is made to contain your pistol and provide easy access to it in times of need. Generally speaking, equipment and accessories that can add convenience to hunting is usually a good investment.
6. Work on your trigger pull
Most beginner hunters do not know the proper way on how to pull a trigger. And no, it is not simply pulling it back until the gun fires. Ideally, a trigger pull will cause minimal influence on the gun and thus increase the accuracy of your shot.
What is the proper way to “pull a trigger”? Experienced hunters say that a trigger pull is more of a trigger squeeze instead. Simply put, you squeeze the trigger slowly to the rear without causing any external change on the rifle whatsoever. In this way, you don’t change the aim of your rifle upon taking the shot.
The result? A more accurate shot. It can take a lot of practice before you master the proper trigger pull, but remember that it is one of the most important aspects of shooting (for both pistols and rifles.)
7. Be organized
The best hunting backpack can allow for maximum organization, which can help you shoot more comfortably and efficiently. Of course, no hunter wants to go all the way out to the woods or shooting range only to find out that you left some gear at home.
Therefore, keep your gear organized and ready to use before every run. Keep accessories and equipment clean and make sure that they are not broken beforehand.
8. Work on your weaknesses
Okay, so maybe you’re good at shooting moving targets, but suck at shooting long-range distances. I expect you to be focusing more on the skills that you find yourself good at, which is a great practice—however, what about your weaknesses?
To be a great pistol/rifle hunter, you’re going to need to polish your weaknesses as well. Otherwise, you’re going to stay bad at them, unlike when you work on them tirelessly where you’re bound to get better with each practice session.
In this article, we’ve stated the most important pistol & rifle shooting tips. Generally, what I’m trying to say is: practice, practice, practice! Practice every chance you get and improve your skills. However, you also need to make sure to work on your weak sides as well.
Written by Joseph Gleason of Captain Hunter.