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Why not all 10s?

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Why not all 10s? Empty Why not all 10s?

Post by Psween Mon Mar 08, 2021 12:09 pm

This question I think is related to mental shot process, and I'm curious. I got out my 45 yesterday after about 2 months off. I dry fired a bit, then fired 2 strings of five shots at 25 yds. Shots felt good, pretty much called, and were about what I had been shooting before the break ~85%. 

I had another magazine loaded and decided to fire them at a steel spinner I have at 50 yds. The spinner is 4", so just slightly bigger than 10 ring. Of those five rounds, 2 were solid center hits and 3 caught the edges and would have probably been 10s on paper. 

My question is, why could I seem to shoot  a string of 10s on a spinner, and not on paper? My shot process felt the same, same front sight focus, same trigger speed, etc. to the best of my ability to tell. Both paper and spinner I was shooting about the same pace. Ideas?

Patrick

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Post by SteveT Mon Mar 08, 2021 12:51 pm

A few thoughts all related to mental image / mental process.

The difference between a "Hit" and "Miss' is a lot bigger on a spinner so your mental approach and concentration level is different

A spinner is just for fun, so it's easier to pull the trigger smoothly

Shooting on a spinner you goal is to hit is anywhere within a circle. Shooting on a target you goal is to hit is exactly in the center. Area hold vs point hold

The target is there to record your shots (good or bad) for all to see, so the fear of failure is greater (changing you mental approach)
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Post by javaduke Mon Mar 08, 2021 2:37 pm

When I start a slow fire string, my first shot is almost always X or 10. Then, of course, I start throwing 8s or 7s left and right. I remember my conversation with John Bickar a long time ago and he said, "if your first shot is good, why don't you shoot all shots as if each one of them was your first". Years later, I'm still working to fully solve this koan from the great Zen master so that I can "reset" my mental state after each shot. Of course, it's easier to say than to do. If it wasn't this way, we'd all be high masters here shooting perfect scores Smile)

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Post by Ed Hall Tue Mar 09, 2021 11:00 am

javaduke wrote:When I start a slow fire string, my first shot is almost always X or 10. Then, of course, I start throwing 8s or 7s left and right. I remember my conversation with John Bickar a long time ago and he said, "if your first shot is good, why don't you shoot all shots as if each one of them was your first". Years later, I'm still working to fully solve this koan from the great Zen master so that I can "reset" my mental state after each shot. Of course, it's easier to say than to do. If it wasn't this way, we'd all be high masters here shooting perfect scores Smile)
By "reset" do you mean truly starting over or just suggesting to yourself that you are starting over?  I've known more than one High Master that would reset his grip for every Slow Fire shot, even though a common theme is to not change anything once you're set. You must also be careful not to suggest, "doing the same as" that last shot, since that wasn't what you thinking then.

One extra thought: to be a good shooter, you need to already "know" your process is good. If there is any doubt as to your process, you will realize that doubt. Have confidence in your process and go with it, rather than trying to improve it at a match.

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Post by javaduke Tue Mar 09, 2021 11:09 am

By "reset" I mean just returning to that mental state I was in when I fired that first good shot. No physical changes of course, same posture, same grip, same sight settings. I've heard stories about people who would put the gun down and sit down, or use a restroom, or have a snack, between shots, but it doesn't work for me, too much distraction.

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Post by Ed Hall Tue Mar 09, 2021 1:12 pm

javaduke wrote:By "reset" I mean just returning to that mental state I was in when I fired that first good shot. No physical changes of course, same posture, same grip, same sight settings. I've heard stories about people who would put the gun down and sit down, or use a restroom, or have a snack, between shots, but it doesn't work for me, too much distraction.
Perhaps you (and others) might enjoy this story from a fellow shooter of yesteryear:

A National Record Story

There are three co-holders of the record described - Bonnie Harmon, Andy Moody and Brian Zins.

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Post by javaduke Tue Mar 09, 2021 1:15 pm

Haha, good story. Too bad I quit smoking a very long time ago Smile))

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Post by CR10X Wed Mar 10, 2021 10:01 am

I've been reading this topic and watching the responses.

So, why could you hit a spinner, but not group that size on the target?  A learning moment is a precious thing not to be dismissed lightly.

Think about the shooting you were doing on the target.  From my understanding, you did the same thing you always did and got the same result.

Then you shot at something different and got a different result, thinking you were doing the same thing.  But the results say there was something different going on.  So I would suggest you start down a path of questions.

Did you "expect" to hit the spinner, or were you just shooting at the spinner?
Was the size of the spinner so small that you had to concentrate more on the dot / sight?
Were you gripping harder for a smaller target?
Were you more relaxed since there may have been less expectation of actually hitting such a small target?
Etc., etc.

Anyway, based on your shooting at the spinner, I predict a change in your classification in the near future.  You just have to reach out and get it. 

CR

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Post by Psween Sun Mar 14, 2021 2:23 pm

CR, I like the way you turned my language around, into what was different, not the same. I believe the key may be that because I so very rarely hit that spinner, I never 'expect' to hit it. That takes the mental pressure off and allows better sight focus and trigger pull. Seems that more dry fire and blank target work is in order. It's both encouraging and a bit daunting to realize I'm capable of 10 ring sized groups if only I can focus on the right things and ignore the wrong things.

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Post by CR10X Sun Mar 14, 2021 5:44 pm

Bingo.  Apparently you know how to shoot 10's.  The question is how to do it more consistently.  

So:

"Never study an "eight"; forget it and move on.  Study every "X", ask what, how and why, make notes; and then do it again."

CR

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