In my mind they're about the same thing as well.
Everyone has different goals ...with handguns / some shooters want "bulls eye accuracy" at 25 yds / some shooters want "tactical accuracy" in their drills / some shooters want to improve their speed - out of holster to 1st shot, reload drills and split times .../ some guys want to work on better trigger control using a big revoler in double action....or all of the above..
some guys just want to be able to fire 5 shots reasonably quickly( say in under 10 sec ) and hit a 7" circle consistently ...
Learning each step in the process ( trigger control, how to draw a gun from a holster safely, when does your off hand go out to meet the gun as it comes up and out of holster, where do you hold the gun as you drop a mag and reload (muzzle up, on same plane as when you're firing, etc), what grip to use, thumb position on semi-auto vs a revolver, how much strength in your off hand.../ and you can think of a dozen or more little things in the stance, grip etc that someone wants to work on.
So in general, what I want to do is set goals for a range session:
a. say improve my draw - gun position as it comes up and I start firing - say my par time is 3.0 sec out of holster to 1st shot...can I do it 100% at 9 Ft, 12', 15'....30' / should I drop my par to 2.8 sec ..or 2.6 sec...etc...
so I may run that drill in and out of holster ( and 1 shot ) ...at each distance...3 times ( if I miss at a distance --- I go back to the previous distance and do it over, then move on ....until I run the drill clean ( 3 shots at each distance from 9' - 30' under my par time and 100% on target for tactical accuracy ( like the A section on an SJH target).
I may run that drill with my primary practice gun (say a 1911 in 9mm )...then I may run it with my primary carry gun (say a 1911 in .45 acp)...then I may run the same drill with an N frame S&W 4" in .357 mag...
That's Practice ...with a goal ...and I'm Training...
My target in these drills might be the blank side of a T-2 target ( 8 1/2" by 12" or so ), or an IPSC A zone , or a SJH A zone.../ or maybe I tape an 8" by 8" piece of paper on a silhouette target to try and tighten up my shots...
Maybe the course of fire my buddies and I run one evening a week ...is to draw from holster - 2 shots - reload - 1 shot in under 6 sec. So my practice that week ...was working on one aspect of that course of fire.
I might repeat my drills ( draw - 1 shot - reload - 1 shot )...and I want to keep my draw speed up that I worked on before ...but I also want to keep that reload split time down to 2.5 sec or less ....
and everybody should set their own par times ( I'm 63, have some arthritis in my hands, poor eyes, so I know I'm slower than one of my kids in their 30's with good hands and good eyes). But to me, its about taking some aspect of your shooting that you think is weak ...and practice it / break down the steps / maybe ask a buddy for advice, etc....and then develop a plan to work on it.
Just putting up a target at 30 Feet....and slow firing 100 rounds at it may be fun ....but if you don't have a goal ...it's just ammo downrange. Now maybe that's all ok ....if you're having trouble with a trigger reset on a new gun or something.../ not everything has to be run to a timer, to be good practice.
But that's my perspective.
Last edited by BigJimP; April 26, 2013 at 03:02 PM.