The 5 Points of Practice

“What does it take to step up my game?  To move up in the roster?”  I frequently ask myself this question, and to my benefit, have been asking others too.  So a quick word of advice: ask for it.  The short answer to this question of self-improvement is almost always centered on “practice.”  But unfortunately for me I do not have unlimited access to a range, nor a bottomless green can of ammo.  Thankfully I’m not alone in this struggle, and so when a fellow shooter said “dry-fire” I wasn’t surprised.  This method of practicing is preached like doctrine; so straightforward we don’t always know what it looks like.

At a recent USPSA match a senior (in rank) competitor enlightened me.  What he presented to me is what I pass to you as the “5 Points of Practice.”  By breaking down the sport into critical component skills I left that match knowing exactly what I needed to improve.  This can come with a little bit of experience and observation, but I knew how I would practice and could quantify my improvement.  I had the information I needed to build my own practice plan, and set small goals between matches, to never stop improving.

I present to you the 5 Points of Practice.  They are ordered from least involved to most, though each is necessary.  While they originate from USPSA and a pistol-only mindset, there are concepts that translate into 3Gun.  Some might be more obvious, but I hope to get us thinking.  Enough talk: Here they are.

Be sure to unload all mags, vision gets blurry when you’re pushing yourself. Don’t end up on the news!


You only do it once, but a poor grip is like stale coffee in the morning, sets you off wrong.


Keeping a gun fed is key, and anyone who knows 3gun knows this is a killer.


Tough to practice without live ammo, but it’s a fundamental like none other.


It’s a time thing, it’s a technique thing, it’s catastrophic if ignored.


Call me broad, but it covers a lot of ground…


Each Wednesday I’ll address the next point, so unload, clear your chamber, and holster up.


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