View Full Version : Point shooting??

December 22, 2007, 02:06 PM
I was born near a Marine base and my next door neighbor was a Marine Corps officer. When I was a kid he watched me shoot a rifle with my left eye closed and told me to shoot with both eyes open. I did that and became a pretty good shot. When I started shooting handguns I did the same thing. Both eyes open, focus on the target, see a "ghost image" of the sights (actually two), but only the one with my dominant (right) eye lines the sights up so I ignore the other.
This seemed to work well for years for plinking, hunting, and self defense practice.
Now I read that there are only two ways: Either look at the target and totally ignore the sights, or focus only on the front sight. Well, these days, at 65 yrs, I can't see the target if I focus on the front sight. My old way of focusing on the target and lining up the fuzzy sight picture seems to work best. Are there no gray areas in this? Any ideas?

December 22, 2007, 02:10 PM
my old way of focusing on the target and lining up the fuzzy sight picture seems to work best.

if that works for you, then keep doing it. :)

December 22, 2007, 05:42 PM
When the need is for speed .. Recognized threat close and closing fast, and your gun is coming out of the holster, point shots are the answer .. If you have practiced point shooting. This can happen when a threat develops sudden and near, like rounding a corner. One second, no threat, the next theres a guy cursing and waving a gun, running at you.

It's all instinct then, either don't draw and step aside to see if he runs by, or draw and let him know you are a threat. Take your pick and good luck.

For me, 3 to 4 yards is the area. Inside 4 and closing rapidly, my first shot comes without traditional sighting. I would likely draw if he gave me anything beyond a brief glance.

That's my idea of point shooting with a handgun. Rifles? I agree with Shamus.

Real world, real time, anything can happen. Usually it's not what you expect.

December 23, 2007, 02:08 AM
There are many ways to point shoot and to use sighted fire. Whoever said there is only two ways is absolutely incorrect.

Here, is the break down with the maximum visual input on the gun, down to the point where there is none.

Sighted fire

Hard Focus on the top of the front sight
Hard focus on the front sight
Solid sight picture
Flash sight picture
Shooting out of the notch
Front sight only with focus on the gun

Threat focused fire

Front sight only with focus on the threat
Aligning down the top of the slide
Metal and meat (silhoutte of the gun)
Below line of sight with peripheral vision of the gun

The last one works all the way down to "half hip." If you can see your gun in your peripheral vision your brain will use that information to help facilitate your hand/eye coordination.....whether you want it to or not. That is what the brain, eyes, and body does.

There is also body indexed firing position such as "close contact.'

There is also muscle memory techniques such as Quick fire which relies on punching/driving the gun to the targeted area.

December 24, 2007, 06:29 AM
Jim Cirillo's Alternate Sighting methods

While many instructors use the term "sighted fire" to imply the use of the sights and "aimed fire" for a coarser visual index using the shape of the gun, the late Jim Cirillo taught a block of instruction that he called "alternative sighting methods."

Jim believed that when you shoot using the sights, your conscious mind is occupied with the sight picture. He further believed that the subconscious mind works faster than the conscious mind. While you have been consciously training with a formal sight picture, your subconscious mind has picked up on a bunch of subtleties about how the gun is aimed. In particular, the subconscious mind knows what the silhouette of the gun looks like if it is aligned with the target.

Jim taught his "weapon silhouette point" by taping over the sights on the gun, after demonstrating what the slide of an autoloader or the cylinder of a revolver look like if the gun strays out of alignment. Thus, the gun is visually aimed solely by its shape. Many students actually shoot better with the sights taped. His theory on this was that since they cannot see a traditional sight picture, they don't jerk the trigger when they think they've got a perfect one.

The purpose of the silhouette point is to get the gun aligned and fired more quickly, by relying on your subconscious mind. The method is independent of the position in which you grasp the gun. In a 1990 class I tried it with the isosceles; in a 1998 class I used the Weaver.

Jim also taught two variations on a technique where the gun remains below the line of sight. The trick here is to keep the gun parallel to the ground as you lower the gun from your sighting plane to the level at which you want to strike the target. The simpler version, the "geometric point," can be used if there isn't enough light to see your sights. (Obviously, there has to be enough light to locate the target.)

In the second version, the "nose point," you do a geometric point, making sure that the gun is under your nose. You can then pivot like a tank turret and rapidly engage targets to your sides as soon as the pivot of your body points your nose at them, so long as you have kept the gun under your nose (and you do not overswing your target).

If you are going to keep the gun horizontal and below the level of the shoulders, you are probably going to have to bend your elbows into some variation of the Weaver grasp, assuming you are using two hands on the gun. If you only keep one hand on the gun you will bear a distinct resemblance to the Fairbairn/Sykes three-quarter hip position.

matthew temkin
December 27, 2007, 07:35 AM
I took a four hour class with Jim a few years back at an IALEFI training conference.
We only "shot" lasers, but we did cover Jim's methods.
Quite frankly Jim's methods were nothing more than the 3/4 hip, 1/2 and 1/4 hip techniques worked out many decades ago.
Jim just taught us to focus on the spot that we wanted to hit--as I was taught by Rex Applegate and a host of other point shooting experts.
I still think some people--including Cirillo--were/ are trying to make point shooting a tad more complicated than it really is.

December 27, 2007, 09:44 AM
I still think some people--including Cirillo--were/ are trying to make point shooting a tad more complicated than it really is.

Subconscious progamming of "see what you need to see" is not complicated. It takes about ten minutes and you are done......period. It also extends your point shooting abilities, on the run, out to ten yards. So it is all about distance and the true dynamics of the movement. Basic point shooting works great at three yards but "the fight will be what the fight will be."

matthew temkin
December 27, 2007, 05:22 PM
According to Rex Applegate his method of point shooting will work out to 50 feet or so.
He was referring to the point shoulder method, which is fairly basic.
Pretty simple stuff, at least IMHO