View Full Version : How many rounds qualify as good practice?

August 19, 2008, 08:22 PM
I was thinking about how I practice. I usually run a box of 20 on the weekend after payday (or 100 for .22). I find these to be nice sessions due to my seemingly not benefiting from extended shoots. I figured that more rounds down range would improve my shooting, as well as limiting my pistols to a pocket semi and my pietta. Is this a good amount of rounds fdr practice, or is there a way of getting over this hump?

Brian Pfleuger
August 19, 2008, 08:25 PM
All the ones fired whilst using good technique.;):D

August 19, 2008, 08:31 PM
I would have to say that what gets me sometimes is not picking up a consistent sight picture. Now when I say that I am not talking about sight alignment, just the point of aim.

August 19, 2008, 09:35 PM
It depends on what you're practicing with. Lobbing more rounds down range isn't always better, because there's a point where fatigue will set in and technique will suffer. In general, the more energetic the felt recoil of the gun, the quicker you'll reach that point.

For me, I like to shoot 50-100 rounds per session from a gun I find comfortable to shoot, or 20-30 rounds per session from a gun I find unpleasent to shoot. I also like to keep the total count for a session (if I'm shooting multiple guns) to no more than 100 rounds of centerfire handgun ammunition.

August 19, 2008, 09:55 PM
Fatigue plays a big part in practice. I can shoot some of my guns all day and not be tired or have my hand hurt. Others only take 50 or so rounds before I want to put it down. I never shoot my carry pieces less than 50 rounds at one range visit.

August 19, 2008, 10:12 PM
I generally go 100 rounds of 22LR plus 50 rounds of centerfire pistol or revolver.

Shooting once a week, with ammo prices what they are, I'm pretty sure my three 22s have paid for themselves by now :)

August 19, 2008, 11:50 PM
100 rds for any centerfire minimum 50, with 20-25 on target @ 25yds and the rest at 50+yds (into the embankment to know where to hold) then over to the 100yds range for grins. :)

August 20, 2008, 08:24 AM
What I do when at the range is shoot 50rds out of of my carry gun practicing my double taps. Then I shoot the other guns I brought with me.

The Great Mahoo
August 20, 2008, 08:54 AM
I generally like to shoot between 20 and 50 rounds per gun that I take to the range with me. Overall, I try to shoot 50-150 rounds for the session, depending on how frequently I've been shooting lately, how many guns I've brought, and how much time I have.

I usually run a few rounds through my carry guns, then move on to my fun ones, and sometimes come back to my carry guns if I feel I could have done a bit better.

August 20, 2008, 09:06 AM
Depends one what I'm shooting.

Bullseye Pistol: 45 is the hardest, and the SF portion is the most difficult, therefore I stay away from the CF and 22, fire at least 30 rounds of Slow Fire. Then fire the full NMC. Depending on how I do on TF and RF, I may or may not work on that.

High Power Rifle: Offhand mostly, then a few strings of prone and sitting rapid fire. Depends on how things go. I dont normal fool with the prone slow fire as I dont have access to a 600 yard line. This is mostly on 100 yards Reduced targets.

CCW: I carry a 642, I go through a min of 200 rounds a week. Rapid fire at sil target, frome 7-25 yards, and at 8 in plate at 25 yards. I also fire at my bullseye pistol targets to work on my sight picture.

Then depending on what I have loaded up I play with my other pistols.

You have to take into account. I'm retired, I have a 300 yd range in my back yard, a Dillon RL 1000 to spit out bullets, and lots of time.

I beleive if fatigue sets in, you need to build up your endurane by shooting more.


August 20, 2008, 09:41 AM
For me "good practice" doesn't even need rounds all the time. Dry fire, malf drills, reload drill, drawing, etc can be done at home.

At the range I prefer fewer rounds and more visits myself. I can cover quit a bit with 100 rounds or less.

August 20, 2008, 12:50 PM
You can practice without firing a round.

Dry firing is an excellent way to practice in your home. I do it when I am watching TV sometimes.

August 20, 2008, 01:07 PM
I do it when I am watching TV sometimes.

Shooting at Robert Goulet, Elvis? :D

The Great Mahoo
August 20, 2008, 01:41 PM
Shooting at Robert Goulet, Elvis?

Ha, that really made me laugh. I was thinking the same thing when I saw the post.

August 20, 2008, 02:09 PM
I see a lot of interesting ideas, I just need to get ahold of some snap caps. I was also thinking about throwing a few snap caps in my magazines at odd intervals to practice misfire drills.

August 20, 2008, 02:32 PM
I was also thinking about throwing a few snap caps in my magazines at odd intervals to practice misfire drills.

Excellent. Even better if you have a friend load the mag for you. That way you have no idea how many or in what order. I had one buddy put 4 snap caps in my mag. I thought my Glock had transformed into a 1911 it was malfunctioning so often LOL:D.

August 21, 2008, 03:21 AM
It all depends on your mentality and physical condition. If you can stay mentally and physically focused for 2K rounds then each round will benefit you. If you're only focused for the first 2 minutes / 10 rounds at the range and then you loose it, then your really just wasting your time and money beyond those first 10 rounds.

I've spent whole days shooting in classes and otherwise and have gone through well over 1k rounds. I definitely benefited the entire time.

On a regular basis I'll typically shoot about 300 rounds a session. I could probably handle more but I couldn't afford to do more than that with the frequency in which I shoot.

If your anything like me, somedays your mentally into it and other days you may not be. The days your not should be short so as to keep from picking up bad habbits.

August 21, 2008, 07:51 AM
It depends.

It depends on how many you have shot in the last week.
It depends on how many you have shot in the last month.
It depends on how many you have shot this year.
It also depends on your experience level (or lack thereof).

August 21, 2008, 09:04 AM
IMHO most people DO NOT PRACTICE... in fact I detest the term... I prefer to say "train"... that being said most folks fire too many rounds in one session to be of benefit... the key is to make every rd count during training...

August 21, 2008, 10:38 AM
As others have said, it depends on the guns you have with you ...

I can't shoot more than 50 rounds through my regular carry piece, a PM9 ... very agressive checkering chews up my hand pretty quick ... I almost always take a .22, and shoot 150 or so rounds with that ...

any other centerfire handguns I have with me, I'll shoot 100 rounds ...

the range is a ways away, so gas and the daily use fee have to be taken into account; I spend several hours at the range at least once a month ...

August 21, 2008, 11:11 AM
I try to train once a week. 100 to 250 of 22lr P-22 depending on how I am doing. and 25 to 50 of everything else:D

p-22 22lr
625 .45acp

keep a record of your progress. So you can tell if you are getting better.:D

August 21, 2008, 02:22 PM
Every shot reinforces the skill levels used in making that shot. If you used perfect technique, you reinforced that perfect skill level which will help you next time. If you are just putting rounds down range, you are actually reinforcing careless skill levels which can lower your skills. EVERY shot in practice shoud be as perfect as you can make it. When you can't exert that level of concentration, QUIT shooting to avoid lowering your skills.

August 21, 2008, 05:45 PM
Centerfire ammunition now gets a bit of a pass until I get the reloader up and running again. If my carry weapons, about 20 rounds per, starting with the loaded mags. Anything I bring along for fun, more if I have a lot of food for it. .22, oh, about a thousand rounds or so.:D

August 21, 2008, 11:25 PM
lately i have been putting about 50 rounds through the para p 13,

thirty or so through the rugar mkII(what a sweet pistol),

about the same from the buckmark, which is just about heaven to shoot.

between i and the wife we put fifty through her little 5 shot taurus 38,

about two hundred through the new S&W mp15. it is the new gun so its gettin a workout and has had no problems by the way using everything from magpull mags to pawn shop cheapo mags.(ok, ok, i taught myself to bumpfire it. it was impressive but i got over that quickly)

ive been pulling out the steyr m95 stutzen and killing my shoulder with ten rounds(yes, it shoots way high and kicks like a mule, but i LOVE IT)

somewhere in there ill usually sit down and put two or three three round groups through the big springfield M1A. im gonna have to start shooting it farther than the fifty yards we have staked off.

its been some busy sunday afternoons around here, lol. the wife LOVES the ar. she pulls the stock in two notches and it fits her perfect.

now, i have to get the broomhandle mauser running(inherited and ive never shot it)

what ive noticed is that im getting on the target much quicker as time passes, both with pistols and the springfield. with the springfield im very much aware of breathing and sight picture, and im improving.

ive shot all my life but i have to admit i was pretty rusty till i bought the ar and i and my wife started going shooting together. i daresay there are many of you out there like this.

August 22, 2008, 02:57 PM
It depends on what I have gone to the range to accomplish. Take last night for example. I had two tasks I wanted to finish. One was to sight in a new scope on my .22lr. When I had done that, I was finished. The total was just a few rounds to get the scope zeroed. My other task was to check out a new return spring on my pistol. When I make a change to my primary, I shoot at least 200 rounds through it. So last night I shot enough to satisfy myself that the spring will not fail on me.

My next tasks are to pattern my Mossberg and get a feel for where POI is in relation to POA. To do that should take no more than ten to fifteen shells at most.

Another purpose may be to test a new load. That would take anywhere from 30 to 100 rounds in a session, depending on the min-max spread of the load data.

So you see that each time I go I have a purpose in mind and will use whatever it takes to accomplish that purpose.

Deaf Smith
August 22, 2008, 05:44 PM

Hard to give a definate amount. If you are gifted, a few shots might be enough, if you are a klutz, even a bucket full isn't enough!

It's more of the quality of practice and not the quantity (but it's nice to have quality and quantity!)

A good 100 round session, if you do lots of dry firing and drills, maybe twice a week would do. But then, it just depends....


August 23, 2008, 09:56 AM
It depends on what I am training for during a particular session. Rarely do I shoot more than 100 rounds in a session, regardless. Rarely do I bring more than two guns. I find that maintaining a worthwhile focus past 100 rounds is difficult. I prefer to return to the range on another day or even later that same day. Fortunately, both ranges that I frequent are close to home; indoor pistol/small bore rifle is a two minute walk. The rifle range is a two mile drive. I have a 100 yard smallbore point in my yard, though I use it only when my neighbors are not home.
For Bullseye practice ("training") I pretty much do what has already been described in terms of slow fire and NMC practice. I do spend time on a few strings of Rapid Fire ("Win it in Slow Fire, lose it in Rapid.")
Smallbore prone, I usually shoot 50 rounds at 100 yards. High power, 20 standing and at least 20 from each of the other positions.
For hunting, I'll shoot maybe twenty from sitting and "a few" standing, usually at some type of deer target.

August 23, 2008, 07:36 PM
Back when Ross Seifred was a world champ combat shooter,he discussed practice from a South Africa point of view.I read the article years ago and I don't recall that well,but ammo was scarce and so his practice sessions might have been 8 or 16 rounds,but the point was to shoot each round very well.It worked well enough to be world champ.
Another world class shooter was Ron Long.He kept a pellet pistol in his shop.He would start a cut on his lathe,and while the cut was running,he would shoot at a target.
As you practice,you are burning in muscle memory,reaction,etc.Twenty shots where you focus and execute the fundamentals,call the shot,etc,are better than 300 repetitions of a bad habit.

45Marlin carbine
August 23, 2008, 07:55 PM
with a pistol I'm familiar with a dozen rounds to practice front sight alignment will do. a new gun or one I haven't shot in awhile maybe a box or more.

August 23, 2008, 08:16 PM
I think that it's a good idea to develop a training option that relies on fewer rounds fired. When I'd first started shooting seriously, I'd go through at least 150rds per session, often more. But as my technique has matured, I've gotten that number down to about 50. Frankly I think that these sessions are more productive. Shooting until fatigued simply reinforced bad habits for me.

I don't know how many shots you should fire. A better approach might be to set goals and try to reduce the number of shots necessary to accomplish them.

August 23, 2008, 11:46 PM
Every round you fire correctly is one round of good practice.

Every round you fire incorrectly will require TWO good rounds to replace the bad habit you just encouraged.

A good practice routine requires you to fire every round as if it matters.