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As I have mentioned in earlier articles, a common reason why targets are missed is because the initial stance and target address is incorrect (stance being balanced at the break point while gun mount eye-rib alignment ensures that the gun points where you are looking). I have also mentioned the visual pick up point and muzzle pick-up point - these two points are crucial to making the shot and remain much the same for any method of shooting - pull away, sustained lead or swing through/smoke trail.

The difference between the visual pick up and muzzle pick up points is your reaction time, very important to achieving success. Let’s briefly re-cap on the difference of these two pick up points. The visual pick up point is where the target becomes a clear in-focus target, not a flash of color or blur. If you set up with the muzzle of the gun at the visual pick up point, then the target will always beat you, giving no option but to shoot swing through with little control as you chase the target. To ensure success, you must be in control by establishing separate visual and muzzle pick up points.

To establish the visual pick up point, pick any object in the distance above or under which the target is clear and in focus. Next, we need to establish the muzzle pick-up point. Soft focus into your visual pick up point with your leading gun hand pointing ahead of the visual pick up point. As soon as you clearly see the target, mount smoothly, move to the break point and make the shot.

The difference between the visual pick up point and muzzle pick up point is your reaction time. This will vary greatly from one shooter to the next - age, lifestyle, vision and physical fitness can all play a part.

Now that your reaction time has been established, the target can never beat you. If this exercise is carried out regularly on every target you practice on, it is not long before you can look at a target once, establish the visual pick up point and know exactly how far to put your muzzles out from that point.

©Keith Coyle 2015.


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