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Old November 12, 2010, 07:19 PM   #1
JBial
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breathing methods/tips

I did some range shooting today with my new to me Browning 7mm and I'm having trouble getting the proper breathing method down for long range shooting. I did pretty good target wise (1 dead center shot) after getting the scope dialed in. My main issue is, I can't keep the target in sight long enough without screwing it up by breathing. Any tips or practice methods to work on at or away from the range?
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Old November 12, 2010, 07:23 PM   #2
raimius
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Breathe, relax, aim, squeeze

I was originally taught to breathe normally, stop at mid-exhail, relax, aim, and slowly squeeze. It works decently well. I have also heard of some long distance shooters breathing deeply for 3-4 breaths before to get some extra oxygen in their system.
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Old November 12, 2010, 07:54 PM   #3
Sefner
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I've been taught the same thing raimius has. I usually take two deep breaths and on the second exhale, let the air out until it no longer comes out naturally (at least that's how I feel it, the increased pressure from the deep breathe naturally forces air out, there will be a point at which I have to try to get more air out), and squeeze nice and slow.
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Old November 12, 2010, 08:16 PM   #4
spanishjames
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Sefner

You explained that well. I just tried that sitting at my computer and it seems more natural and relaxed than trying to hold my breath at "half exhale" like I've read about so often.
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Old November 12, 2010, 10:25 PM   #5
Wag
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Sitting here at the computer, I can visualize this technique quite readily and "practice" to some extent.

As I near the end of my exhale, my breath is moving more slowly and I start my gentle squeeze on the trigger and by then, I should be mostly sighted.

I allow my exhale to complete naturally, on its own without consciously pushing any air. When the exhale is complete, I pause before inhaling and during that pause, I can make a final adjustment to put the crosshairs on target and finish my squeeze. I don't know when the shot will fire so I do have to hold my breath for a moment or two. Not longer than three or four seconds, though I'm not counting.

At the beginning of my exhale is when I relax completely. The whole exhale can be described as allow the air to kind of "fall" out of me or find it's own way out without any help from me.

But that's just me!

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Old November 12, 2010, 11:09 PM   #6
TeamSinglestack
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Take a couple of deep breaths to oxygenate your system.

Than, either:

A. Press off the shot during the natural respiratory pause between breaths.

OR...

B. Complete your sight picture, do a deliberate exhale, press off the shot during the pause you create before you feel a desire to inhale.

I prefer "b" as it gives me a little more control, and can be faster than having to wait for a natural exhale.
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Old November 12, 2010, 11:46 PM   #7
kraigwy
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I found too many people concentrate on trying to breath in an abnormal fashion that they loose concentration of firing the shot.

just stop the instant you're ready to let the hammer fall. This will come natural if you just concentrate on a smooth trigger pull.
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Old November 13, 2010, 12:37 AM   #8
JBial
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Thanks for all the tips. I'll practice them before the next range trip. Now if I can only find a pair of shoulder pads to borrow, this 7mm kicks like a mule. Shoulder's still sore 8 hours later
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Old November 13, 2010, 12:13 PM   #9
Carne Frio
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Aerobic conditioning keeps heart rate down and allows for
better breath control. I learned to not drink coffee before
shooting. I used to put a folded up wool sock between my
shoulder and rifle butt when sighting in. I finally got a Lead
Sled and that makes it more fun to shoot with a bad shoulder.
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Old November 13, 2010, 02:04 PM   #10
Wag
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Interesting you mention coffee. I think one thing that matters a lot is that you don't change your habits. If you normally drink three pots of coffee in the morning, make sure you do it the day you're going to shoot. If you smoke a pack of cigarettes every morning before 9:00am, make sure you still do that the day you shoot.

Etc.

If you change things up in anticipation of the shooting you're about to do, you're going to throw of import variables, namely, you're composure and ability to relax, etc.

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