This is a discussion on How many kinds of practice? within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; There's a discussion now in Ammunition and Ballistics about recoil. Some thoughts quoted below. So I got to thinking, don't we all practice multiple scenarios? ...
There's a discussion now in Ammunition and Ballistics about recoil. Some thoughts quoted below. So I got to thinking, don't we all practice multiple scenarios?
There is shooting to practice shooting. For that, I get the cheapest (bulk) ammo I feel safe firing. The idea is grip, stance, trigger control, sight picture, consistency. I don't sweat where the grouping lies on the target, just that it all lies in the same group. If I have to aim 3" high an 2" left to get a 4" spread on center from 10 yeards, it's okay, I just put a piece of tape at the aimpoint and practice. This is one step above dry firing to get the 'fundamentals' right, so the ammo is just adding noise/recoil and seeing it hit. Fliers are not worth sweating unless they form groups.
There is a self-defense drill: draw and fire a short volley at 3 yards, withdraw to cover, follow-up volley at 5 yards, reload, volley ... you get the idea. This is with the same weight ammo I carry, but not the exact same round. The idea is to learn to consistently hit the target zone (which would be COM but I practice with a set of steel plates) -- don't care where on the plate -- any shot that knocks one down is good enough.
Finally there is pistol sniping practice, where I imagine one, and only one, chance to fire at the BG who is holding a gun on my loved one. This is a head shot, an all-or-nothing shot, and it's from 15 yards. This is where I practice very carefully taking out the bullseye and regaining sight picture with ammo which is exactly what I carry. Two inches is too far off. It's the slowest, most expensive practice, but it only takes a few rounds to know that if I ever have to, I can make one shot = one kill. This is when I try to get squirrel revolver accuracy from my EDC pistol. All the other practice leads up to this one. This is the shot I can't afford to miss.
Finally, there's the spray and pray. At the end of a range session, I put a newspaper page over the target face, fill one or two mags with remaining bulk ammo, draw and empty the mag, as rapidly as possible, from about 7 yards, then count the holes. Supposedly, this helps me learn to recover sight alignment. Yeh, there's some value in that, but mostly it just makes a lot of noise and smoke. There is a distinct difference between shooting and shooting back without cover. Spray and pray would probably be practice for the latter.
Using different ammo for differing methods is one way to get more 'bang' for my 'buck.' How do you practice? Does cost factor into your sessions?