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PaladinVC
December 4, 2001, 01:56 PM
but I figured this would be the forum frequented by the most knowledgeable people. I'm 21, and in mediocre physical condition. I also have fairly shaky hands. I'm in the weight room about three times a week for fencing, so I have access to all kinds of terrific equipment. Are there any specific exercises that'll steady my arms and hands that I can do to improve my aim? I'm a recreational handgunner, and it's all I can do to keep ten rounds on a bullseye at 25 yards with a S&W 22A with a 7.5inch barrel. Can I exercise some muscles to get better? Should I just practice more? Thanks in advance for any help you can offer.

KP95DAO
December 4, 2001, 02:16 PM
Don't wory so much about exercise. Remember: Perfect practice makes perfect. Get a good shot to work with you about your hold, breathing, finger placement, squeeze, sight picture, etc.

Kermit
December 4, 2001, 02:44 PM
Practice, Practice, Practice. Plus, learn proper technique. Sure, it would be EASY to just use a rest everytime you shoot, but in a practical sense, you aren't learning anything. Also, start at shorter distances in the beginning...20'-25'. As you get your grip & stance down, work on your breathing and then start adding some distance to your shots. Your shooting will improve as you gain confidence in what you're doing.
Have fun too! :D

WESHOOT2
December 4, 2001, 05:07 PM
Supinated curls, bench presses, triceps presses, squats, and any wrist/hand/forearm tricks anyone can come up with.

And one other no-**** helper -- rowing machine.

IamNOTaNUT
December 4, 2001, 05:56 PM
Relax. You will NEVER be able to eliminate a certain degree of unsteadiness in your hold. You will have to get used to the fact that, even when you do everything else right, you will still be somewhat unsteady from an unsupported position.

Now having said that, dry fire, dry fire, dry fire. You must train your trigger finger to press the trigger, without flexing the rest of your fingers. When you tighten them all, you change your grip on the gun and induce movement. You also want a light smooth motion, don't mash it. Regular practice will develope those muscles.

Watch your front sight as you pull the trigger and you will probably see some movement, maybe a lot, while pressing the trigger. That is probably where your groups are opening up.

Get a good grip.
Aim at a safe target and pay close attention to your front sight.
Control your breathing, and with a smooth steady motion, press your trigger.
Keep watching your front sight.
Repeat.

Turn the TV to the discovery channel or Animal planet and have some fun shooting lions and tigers and alligators. Just make sure your weapon is clear first.

9x45
December 5, 2001, 01:51 PM
Start out at 3 yards, not 25. When the front sight alligns with the target, press the trigger. Practice this with dry firing and try to maintain the same sight picture after you pull the triger. When you can make one ragged hole, move back to 7 yards, and so on.

First On Race Day
December 7, 2001, 02:38 AM
The exercise that helps me greatly is the three foot broom handle with a light weight (5 lbs) hanging on a 5 foot string. Roll the weight up to the broom handle and let it down slowly.

My routine is to increase repetition, no more than 5, before increasing the weight. This builds indurance for me.

You are doing them correctly when your forearms start to "burn" on the last repetition.

Ditto on the suggestions above.

blarney
December 20, 2001, 10:58 PM
Paladin- I might be to late here, and I'm not exactly speaking from years of experience, I'm just a year older than you, but always remember that other things can effect your body's performance besides muscle fitness. Rember to eat a full breakfast and get a good night sleep. In my rifle/pistol club I introduce a lot of new shooters to the sport and sometimes they wonder why they can't hit the paper--after they've just told me how little sleep they've gotten, or how they haven't eaten anything. Take care of your whole body and it will reward you. Also: read a lot of Zen books. :)

pistolsplus
December 28, 2001, 12:17 AM
A couple other considerations:
1) Don't do weight-work the day before competition, your muscles will be jittery from fatigue.
2) Don't use caffeine (any form) the day of competition. It will not help your steadiness - any serious target shooter will tell you that.

Gary H
January 1, 2002, 05:14 PM
I know a rather accomplished competitor who spent his youth with a weight in hand and arm outstretched. He took the weight with him and used it wherever possible. He swears that this exercise and lots of practice, greatly improved his shooting skills and steadied his hand.

Pigshooter
January 2, 2002, 03:29 PM
One technique is to spiral your sight picture around the target, making a smaller and smaller circle until you finally get it on center, and then fire at that moment. The idea is that you engage all of your muscles and concentration, thus controlling the movement rather than fighting it. Or so the theaory goes. It doesn't work for everyone, and it isn't easy to do. But you can practice it in the house on pushpins across a 20' room and get better.

My way, however, is to mount a 4x scope, fire off a dozen at 100-200 yards, and then remove the scope. You will be amazed at how your perception of movement has changed ;)