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Thread: Low ammo and competition

  1. #21
    I have lots of plans… JCN's Avatar
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    The other thing live is important for a newer shooter is to test if dry is faithful or optimistic.

    There was a guy here a year or so ago that put in a bajillion hours of dry fire, but never confirmed what he was doing was what he thought he was doing.

    He didn’t have the dot stability that would translate to the hits he thought it would and when he finally got out to a match, it was MIKE city. A true disaster.

    He was a dishonest dry firer.

    So live is also to confirm your dry shot calling is what you think it is.

    Someone at a higher level won’t need that part as much. They’ll just work on the trigger to vision coordination timing on doubles.

    When I was picking up a new skill (floating the gun past steel challenge targets at speed and pulling the trigger without stopping the gun on target) I found that I needed more calibration of my dry vision to live. I had to keep going back to confirm the pace at which I was hitting everything that I thought I was hitting.
    Last edited by JCN; 12-11-2022 at 08:37 PM.
    I enjoy helping people get better.

  2. #22
    Member DMF13's Avatar
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    Feb 2014
    I also should mention @JCN hooked me up with the absolute best dry fire training aid, the "Dry Practice Drill" app.

    It makes dry fire so much less tedious, that its almost fun. You can set up strings with a built in delay between reps, and even multiple strings with descending par times. You can set up, and save your drills, so they are ready to go each session. It's so much better than using a regular shot timer that you have to reset for each rep.

    Your cousin will absolutely want a real shot timer, but for dry fire that app is great.

    For Android:

    For losers who like iPhones :
    "Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" Then I said, "Here I am. Send me." - Isaiah 6:8

  3. #23
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    Central Front Range, CO
    Quote Originally Posted by JCN View Post
    In typical PF fashion, all opinions are not created equal and I want to say how I know what I know.

    I’ll make a sidebar for @GyroF-16

    1. When I started training for a classification goal, I hadn’t shot a match and I didn’t know anybody at the local clubs. I wasn’t thinking about the sport like we traditionally do. I was just thinking of trying to train for the standard, like I would for a FAST or a Vice Card Challenge or some other technical benchmark that would be shorthand for pistol proficiency.

    2. I knew it would be paper GM, but that was okay with me knowing that my field course performance would be something that came with more experience and squadding with the people who were crushing it. But I was time limited and I don’t travel to away matches due to family responsibilities.

    3. So from that standpoint, I was content with a paper GM card. It was only a goal for proficiency validation of the stand and shoot skills. I see the field course stuff as a separate sport.

    4. I didn’t know if I would like the sport per se, that seems to be very club dependent. Turns out I love the guys and gals locally and I love shooting matches. So my field course skills have been working up to my stand and shoot skills. If I had it to do over again, I think I’d still have done it the same way. Paper GM means you’re fast with a killer index and reloads and that’s a great place of foundation to work field course prowess with.

    5. So I’m currently doing my field course training alongside my long gun training and a pretty evenly matched M in field course and on demand classifier performance in PCC. Someday when I get to GM field course and classifier in PCC, then I’ll take the field course skills back to CO and I won’t be a paper CO GM anymore….
    I’m not sure that we’re talking about the same thing. Or, it’s entirely possible that you know as little about IDPA and the various paths to classification as I do about the USPSA a process (which is almost nothing).

    My point to the OP (and his cousin) is that if the guy in question wants to COMPETE, I recommend against working towards making MA via the 5x5 classifier. And against over-practicing the 5x5.

    While the 5x5 is fairly challenging, it’s really just a drag race, shooting a series of Bill Drills at 10 yds without concealment on an IDPA target. If a shooter can get an accurate first shot off in about 1.5 sec, and shoot quarter-second splits while keeping all the hits in the 8” down-zero circle, and hit a slidelock reload in 2.5 sec (shot to shot), they’re pretty close to making MA.

    The FULL 72 round classifier, on the other hand, involves shots from 5-20 yds, transitions between multiple targets, movement, strong- and weak-hand shooting and shooting from behind cover.

    In my view, they test significantly different skill sets, with the Full 72 round classifier more closely representing the skills necessary for success in competition.

    Now, I’ve never shot a USPSA classifier, but I understand that there are several. I can’t imagine that any (or many) are as rudimentary as the 5x5.

    I very much respect your motivation and discipline to make such rapid progress to GM. And understand that you set “Paper GM” as a goal, knowing that you’d have to work on your “field course” skills afterwards.

    I’m just trying to provide advice to the OP’s cousin (and anyone else considering jumping into IDPA). And that advice is that trying to max out the 5x5 will just put them in a position of getting regularly beaten by some Marksmen and Sharpshooters in club matches. Because IDPA only rewards speed on a single target up to a point.
    Last edited by GyroF-16; 12-12-2022 at 10:36 AM.

  4. #24
    I have lots of plans… JCN's Avatar
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    Sorry it was probably my clutter obscuring my message.

    I was trying to say that if he’s focused on achieving a classification he might just be wanting a published standard and might not be interested in competing in the sport of IDPA at all!

    That was my position when starting in a sport before trying the sport out.

    That’s what I was saying… that getting good at a sport wasn’t something I wanted to commit to before getting into it.

    But committing to a time standard achievement was.

    USPSA classifiers can be as simple as draw and three head box targets at 7.
    Or as fast as 5 reload 5 at almost point blank range.
    Or as complicated as partials at 25 yards.

    The classification is a running average of the last 8 on file (with lowest two dropped) so you never know what you’re going to get. It’s pretty robust unless you game it hard (hero or zero) or unless you luck out with getting classifiers over the years that suit a limited skill set. The fastest way is to develop the whole package of speed and accuracy but it’s really hard to do.

    That’s why I liked USPSA as a more robust standard of comprehensive pistol skills at diffeeent ranges.

    For a 21 year old kid in the OP, who knows if he’ll even like IDPA once he tries it?

    It’s very region dependent, I think. For us here, USPSA tends to skew younger and faster and by far most of our 20-30 year olds wind up here as opposed to IDPA….

    EDIT: If the cousin’s goal was to be “master level” performance at a match in one year from starting handgun, I would say very unlikely because of all the other things like you said that take exposure and experience.

    I took it to mean “get classified as Master” on the 5x5 by then which is something different.

    Totally agree with you that the “best” way if you’re committed to a sport is to work up.

    But people get different things out of the sports.

    Like steel challenge. My goal is to perform solidly on demand at my classification level and not get up classed with hero runs. Other people want that classification even though on a given day they perform at a much lower classification.

    Also as an aside, Max Michel’s opinion on sandbagging was that he made GM at 15 years old and even though he was getting crushed on course by the big dogs, it motivated him to punch at that weight by working harder.

    So it all depends on how people motivate.
    Last edited by JCN; 12-12-2022 at 12:08 PM.
    I enjoy helping people get better.

  5. #25
    I have lots of plans… JCN's Avatar
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    While we wait for the cousin to check in, maybe we can wax philosophical a little.

    I’ll mention some anecdotes that I’ve found interesting / amusing.

    I used to compete in SCCA autocross and have a long history there with a couple national podium finishes.

    There’s no national standard so you test at nationals and against national level competitors (which is kind of what you’re saying with IDPA).

    Competing locally, there were strong regions and weak regions. It was very easy for a weak club to have one kind of fast guy. But some clubs had 6-7 national champions jockeying at any given point.

    As a newer competitor, you didn’t necessarily know what bar was being set.

    It’s like that for shooting sports and why I love the USPSA classifier system. It’s a “reality check” and “context check” for a match performance.

    For example you could have a weak club where the guy on top is only shooting B level classifiers on demand.

    Or you could have a strong club where the guy on top shoots M/GM classifiers on demand.

    A classifier is often shot as one of the 5-7 stages at a local match (each club is required to shoot a certain number to retain affiliation per year).

    It helps contextualize performance and avoid big fish, little pond syndrome.

    Our region is strong in USPSA with a number of high level national competitors. I’ve seen some people visit from out of town or here for the summer for work that were their local hot shoe and talked like it… only to get crushed at our local matches. When they hit a classifier, they’re putting down B level work. Which is good, but mid pack here.

    So this way if you’re crushing things, you get a contextual grounding with how you’re doing against the national standard if classifiers are part of the match.

    It’s a very powerful “spot check” of skill and I love that about USPSA.
    I enjoy helping people get better.

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