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Shooting is NOT Like Riding a Bike

I don’t care what anybody says, if you don’t shoot for an extended period of time, you get sloppy. Shooting is NOT like riding a bike. If you don’t practice, your skills will degrade.

This became apparent on Monday when I shot the monthly Action Rifle match at the WCFETC. It was the first time I’d shot a rifle in 3 months, and even longer since I’d shot this particular lower receiver/trigger.

  • On the first stage, I experienced a dead trigger a couple of times, because I wasn’t used to the longer reset on this particular rifle.
  • Later, when using my sling on a different stage, I found that because I’ve been losing weight (sitting right at 50lbs lost!), my sling was out of adjustment and even with it tightened as far as it would go, it was too loose to provide any aid to my shooting.
  • I was also not consistent with my reloads with the rifle slung. Sometimes I would unwrap my support arm from the sling to reload, and other times I wouldn’t. This definitely cost me time, and points on target.
  • This was also the first time I’d shot through a red dot in quite a while, and transitioning to a target focus, instead of focusing on the dot was troublesome right off the bat. Once I realized the problem, it was remedied quickly.
  • Lastly, and most embarrassing: on one stage we started with an unloaded rifle on a table, and on the buzzer we had to load the rifle and move to a port to begin engaging targets. I slapped the magazine into the rifle, and moved. When I got to the port I pressed the trigger, and the magazine popped out of the rifle, and hit the ground. I have a bad habit of inserting the magazine and giving it a tap, instead a tug to ensure it’s locked in place.

I don’t have these issues when I shoot regularly, but after taking only a couple of months off from rifle shooting, these issues come right back.

All of this to say, train with your gear. Stay current, and practice doing things the right way. If you only take the rifle out and shoot it a couple of times a year, you will revert back to whatever bad habits you have.

About Lucas

Editor/Head Honcho at Triangle Tactical. Lucas is a life long shooter and outdoorsman, avid concealed carrier and competitive shooter, and a lover of pork fat.

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