Don't you just love people who come up to you to tell you the "RIGHT" way to shoot.


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waldonbuddy
February 22, 2011, 06:50 PM
A friend of mine, and I were talking about this the other day.

On both our jobs we have to qualify with a pistol on a range {nope, I'm not Leo}.

Anyway, it never fails that each different range guy wants to show me how to shoot when I shoot consistent 98-100.

I've had others tell me how to hold the pistol as well. To me it just don't matter how you hold the damned weapon, pistol or rifle, if your hitting the target.

Yes there might be a better way, but again, if your hitting well with the style you feel comfortable with, then it makes no difference to have to change and relearn a new style.

When my wife shoots she looks like a dog with a broken back, trying to scratch behind its ear {not that she is a dog as far as looks go}.

I tried to show her how I shot since she never fired a pistol before meeting me, but she has morphed my style into her own.

Anyway, any stories you would like to tell along these lines?

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EddieNFL
February 22, 2011, 08:03 PM
Cuts both ways. To compete on the local range, shooters are required to demonstrate proficiency drawing and double tapping. I have had more than a few, ranging from local LE to federal agents, ask why they were not exempt. Most (not all) qualify, but I've yet to see one worthy of a pass.

Yo Mama
February 22, 2011, 08:10 PM
I always listen. It goes from there if I pay attention.

My Wife, her Dad, and myself were at the range, and an old timer who works there came up to us. He said her Dad, and myself were doing ok, but that if he had 15 minutes to train my Wife he'd have her shooting all shots in the bullseye.

"Hey, she's all your's". He took out a black briefcase, and it had a Ruger MkII, Browning HP, and a 1911. Within 15 minutes going from .22 to .45, no joke she was shooting 8 for 8 in the bullseye! I love that old man!

Frank Ettin
February 22, 2011, 08:24 PM
...To me it just don't matter how you hold the damned weapon, pistol or rifle, if your hitting the target.

Yes there might be a better way, but again, if your hitting well with the style you feel comfortable with, then it makes no difference to have to change and relearn a new style....Sometimes that's true. But sometimes it's not.

Sometimes changing your technique or mastering additional skills will give you more options -- for example if you need to move and shoot or shoot while moving. Maybe a different technique will give you more range of movement if you have to engage multiple targets. Maybe doing something a little different could help you manage recoil more efficiently for quicker follow up shots. Maybe some different techniques could help you utilized any available cover or concealment more effectively.

CraigC
February 22, 2011, 08:39 PM
There are some folks who are know-it-alls and everybody else is doing it wrong in their eyes. Conversely, there are also folks who are doing it wrong and need some help but are too arrogant to admit it.

armoredman
February 22, 2011, 09:05 PM
Reminds me of the dominant eye argument. Was told I would shoot left handed in the Academy. Said I would shoot right handed and qualify Expert with all firearms. I did and I did.
Learning new techniques when YOU want to is great, unsolicited advice from unknowns on a range is not.

Ky Larry
February 22, 2011, 10:03 PM
These are the same people who tell me everything they own is perfect and everything I own is junk. I just smile and press on.

JohnBiltz
February 22, 2011, 10:04 PM
If someone knows what they are talking about and wants to give me pointers I'm all for it. I may or may not go with it but I'll listen and try it. Now some yahoo who pretty obviously doesn't know jack then its a different story. Sort of like the board we are on as far as that goes. And I have changed some things from what various people have posted here, like my grip.

hammerklavier
February 22, 2011, 10:14 PM
Yep, and Louis Armstrong played the trumpet wrong, and Yo Yo Ma holds his Cello's bow the wrong way (Seriously!)

Bonesinium
February 22, 2011, 10:17 PM
I think of this like any other sport. There are people who just like to tell you you are doing something wrong because they think they know better, and there are people who honestly just are trying to help. Additionally, sometimes the guy who is just trying to help, might not be helpful at all, and the "know it all" my actually know what he is talking about.

If you are simply never receptive to any outside input, you probably aren't going to ever improve. If someone wants to offer help, and they have/can demonstrate that they know what they are doing, then absolutely help me out. But do know there is a difference between constructive criticism and just criticism. Also know that sometimes being too helpful can be a hindrance. I think the quote in my signature can apply to this a lot as well.

EddieNFL
February 22, 2011, 10:25 PM
Yep, and Louis Armstrong played the trumpet wrong, and Yo Yo Ma holds his Cello's bow the wrong way (Seriously!)
Hendrix restrung guitars and played them up side down (left-handed). Worked for him.

Sport45
February 22, 2011, 10:52 PM
When my wife shoots she looks like a dog with a broken back, trying to scratch behind its ear .... she has morphed my style into her own.

If that's how you look when you're shooting, I'm not surprised that people try to offer advice. ;)

But hey, if it works for you go with it. Just don't be surprised if you have to learn new ways if you ever pick up a different gun.

Early on, I was shooting pretty good by holding high-right. I thought there was something wrong with the way the gun was sighted and was applying a lot of Kentucky windage. Turned out that my grip and trigger discipline were all wrong. Consistent, but wrong. I've since learned the sights were regulated well on that gun. But it took a few lessons from more experienced shooters to convince me.

Larry Ashcraft
February 22, 2011, 11:01 PM
I thought I shot my 45 pretty well, but my son helped me tweak my grip, just a little, and it helped.

Same thing with shotgun shooting. I've been doing it for close to 50 years, but if you have a tip that sounds good, I'll try it. If it doesn't help, nothing lost except a few rounds of ammo.

I guess I don't know everything about it, yet.

Manco
February 23, 2011, 11:26 AM
Ultimately one should go with whatever is comfortable and actually works for them, but I don't mind if somebody thinks I could be doing something better. I may disagree and not follow their advice, as not every technique works the same for everybody, but I sure don't know everything and just might learn something useful.

What I think you're talking about are guys with a little knowledge (you know, "enough to be dangerous") who think there is not a lot to know and that they know all of it, and furthermore that there is only one right way to do anything (namely theirs). Yeah, that can be annoying (I see it here, too, and might have even done it myself in a thoughtless moment or two :o), but it's easy to brush off if you shoot better than them. ;) Not that I'm all that great, but I can outshoot most know-it-alls by now, so they tend to leave me alone.

There was this one time, though, when I was doing a bunch of Mozambique/Failure-to-stop Drills at 7 yards, while the guy in the next stall was concentrating very hard and taking a lot of time trying to place shots through the same hole at 25 yards with a .357 Magnum revolver (shooting .357 Magnum cartridges from the sound of them). He was doing a pretty good job, too, with very tight groups, while I kept increasing my speed as long as I could hit the COM and head reliably. Then while we were reloading, he made a comment--totally intended to be constructive--about how quickly I was going through ammo but not getting real tight groups. I just shrugged and said that I could make tighter groups but I was training to stop bad guys fast, not hit a bullseye (nothing wrong with precision shooting, as it's good practice too, but I was obviously doing something different at the time). Then he said that he was practicing his defensive shooting, too, and lectured me--in a friendly, helpful way--on the importance of shot placement. :eek: Well, at the risk of sounding like a know-it-all who thinks there is only one right way for everything, I hope that any real assailant he may run into holds real still for him. :uhoh:

9mm+
February 23, 2011, 11:29 AM
unsolicited advice from unknowns on a range is not.

Amen. Unsolicited advice is always to benefit the giver.

bds
February 23, 2011, 11:51 AM
Some years back, I was shooting with a friend at a range and several "tactical" types came to shoot. They were quite vocal about how to shoot "properly" and their shot groups were all over the full sized targets at 10 yards.

When I shot a smiley face on a 8x11 copy paper at 7 yards, they became quiet, packed up and left.


Like common and well known driving techniques on ice, snow and loose dirt, there are some common and well known shooting basics and principles that improve shot groups and speed.

I don't tell anyone at the range how to shoot. They usually see my shot groups and ask what I am doing - I show them what I do and have them duplicate the same. Holes on target speaks volumes.

ForumSurfer
February 23, 2011, 11:58 AM
If someone knows what they are talking about and wants to give me pointers I'm all for it.

I agree. I have learned a few things this way that made me a better shooter.

I've had others tell me how to hold the pistol as well. To me it just don't matter how you hold the damned weapon, pistol or rifle, if your hitting the target.

Yes there might be a better way, but again, if your hitting well with the style you feel comfortable with, then it makes no difference to have to change and relearn a new style.

Once I agreed, but no more. I practice so that I can be proficient in the real world. Once I focused on putting everything in the 10 ring. Then one day someone pointed out that if you are shooting ragged holes and you are practicing for the real world, you need to push yourself harder. Shoot faster, longer distances or run some drills if you can. Push yourself until you fail. Then all of a sudden that guy advising you on your grip or stance seems really nice all of a sudden, because the technique he may be showing you aides in follow up shots or dynamic movements. YMMV. :)

Radium
February 23, 2011, 12:11 PM
when i see someone holding the gun the "wrong way" = teacuping,holding ur strong arms wrist with ur whand,holding ur weakhand thumb behind the slide,doing the limbo etc i usually give en pointers.(specially if its a damzel )

when i see joe mall ninja i say nothing its fun to watch em shoot like ***** and occasinally hit the target.

if ur just bullseye shooting and ur hitting i couldnt care less.but ir ur shooting anyform of defensive/offensive and ur hand is below the magazine release or sumthing in that line i see nothing wrong in givin em a tip or 2.

ThePunisher'sArmory
February 23, 2011, 12:11 PM
I always listen to ALL advice I'm given. But there is a big difference between advice and snobbery.

Robert
February 23, 2011, 12:12 PM
I shoot with people that know how to shoot very well. If they say something, I listen. And i don't go to public ranges.

Harvey Mushman
February 23, 2011, 12:27 PM
There was a retired gentleman at the trap field one Sat morning. Very nice fellow, but felt the need to instruct me on every basic there is to shooting a shotgun from the beginning. I'm a lot younger than a lot of trap shooters, but I'm not a kid either (30 yrs old). He was nice and I was polite, but in the end, I hit 95/100 and he hit 85/100. If you shoot better than me, I am all ears. There are a lot of folks who have been shooting much longer than I have, and I have a lot to learn from them. If you don't, I will still be polite and listen, but I probably won't give you a "wow, I can't believe I never knew that" response that I think some people are looking for. But, like I said, he was nice, so everything was fine. I have also come across obnoxious types who think they need to give you an education. They are the worst.

9mmforMe
February 23, 2011, 12:40 PM
When I first started shooting I got some good advice from several shooters and it helped a great deal. I would be open to advice and its alwasy nice to meet fellow shooters, though usually I can punch out one ragged hole at the distances I commonly practice from.

Friendly, Don't Fire!
February 23, 2011, 12:50 PM
I am always ready and willing to learn something new. The first time I ever shot a scoped rifle, I was notified of the clearance between the back of the scope and my forehead. I was glad someone spent a minute telling me that I should hold on tightly to avoid getting the notorious 'half-moon' cutout in my skin over my eyebrow! I had a 45-70 with a Redfield 4X TV Screen-shaped scope!

I tried to tell a friend whose .308 rifle we were about to sight in. The scope must have been 40 years old or so (as was the gun, but the gun was a lot nicer than the POS scope).

Anyway, I warned him to hold on tightly to the gun as the recoil is going to send the scope, which had terrible eye relief, back mighty quickly!

Bang, blood all over his face and bleeding profusely! Trip to the ER, NOW!

Next day and five stitches or so later, let's sight this baby in, this time, be CAREFUL! I even fired a shot or two to show him it CAN BE DONE.

Bang! Bandage half off, blood running all over the place, he throws the gun on the bench and is mad as he!! that he did the EXACT same thing two times in a ROW! Quickly, pack everything up, get in the truck and dash to the ER! More stitches!

About two weeks later, we finally got to go again as I recall, and this time, his fresh-wounds which were scabbed over pretty well remained untouched! He pulled a good group with the factory ammo he happened to buy and was finally happy! I told him to stock up on THAT EXACT ammo and nothing else, as the gun really likes that ammo and another ammo you might need to go through the sighting-in process all over again!

Friendly, Don't Fire!
February 23, 2011, 01:04 PM
Another time, last year, a young guy and his girlfriend were trying to shoot an old semi-auto tube-fed .22 LR with an old scope. The way she kept moving the gun around, I could tell she was not seeing the image that she should. I went over and the guy told me the last time he shot this gun was when he was eight years old. I asked to look at the gun. I saw immediately that the scope was so far back, it was apparently set up for him at eight years old! No wonder the girl could not get a good scope image!

I asked them both to hold it the way they feel comfortable shooting. The scope was about 4" too close to their eyes! I had my work truck there and saw that small screws needed to be loosened to move the scope within the rings. I explained everything that was wrong and asked if he minds if I fix it for him. He was happy!

Whoever installed the scope did not even take time to make sure the crosshairs were horizontal and plumb - the scope was cocked about five degrees one way, I mean it was even obvious in the turrets that the scope was really crooked! We fine-tuned everything and I made sure all the screws were tight and even focused the objective for them both. When I was done, they were so happy, I was nearly in tears that I could make someone's Saturday Morning the way I made theirs!:)

I try to be helpful, but also try to have a sense of when is too much.:eek: At the first hint that I am being pushy, I immediately back off and go from there, sometimes stopping completely as the person obviously knows much more than I know, even if I see that what they are doing is totally wrong!:eek: Hey, if you want to do something stupid with your gun and you are not ready to listen to REASON, I am not going to force REASON and TRUTH onto anyone!:banghead: In fact, if the situation appears dangerous, that might be my cue to pack up and head out!:rolleyes::cool:

Justin
February 23, 2011, 01:17 PM
To me it just don't matter how you hold the damned weapon, pistol or rifle, if your hitting the target.

There are certain broadly accepted techniques for how to effectively shoot a gun. If you watch competitors shooting, it becomes pretty clear that there are certain techniques that are used by the most successful shooters.

While some may use unorthodox techniques, those techniques either aid their ability to win or do not impede it.

Bonesinium
February 23, 2011, 01:22 PM
when i see joe mall ninja i say nothing its fun to watch em shoot like ***** and occasinally hit the target.



Sometimes those are the guys you should be helping. I would wager that most of these types don't have any sort of training, want to get into shooting (I mean, who doesn't obviously!) but only know what they've seen on tv and in movies. I bet a little instruction would go a long way with a lot of them, but since you already potentially unfairly labeled them as "joe mall ninja" they don't get the help when they may be a lot more receptive to it then you think.

Then again, there are those fools who don't want your help, will be a <jerk> about it, and just want to act like Rambo. The difference is, you can usually tell them apart because they are probably already being rude without anybody even bothering them...

I shoot with people that know how to shoot very well. If they say something, I listen. And i don't go to public ranges.

Not everybody is as fortunate as you...

jeepmor
February 23, 2011, 02:57 PM
I enjoy advice when the approach is correct. Like at the skeet range and I can't the side of a barn from simple observation. However, if I'm drilling my clays and getting advice, I just smile and wait for the advisor to "go away" as I really try to be polite with other people and treat them as I would like to be treated. Respectfully, but if needed, firmly, and then bluntly, please give your advice to someone who wants it.

At the range, the only advice I've ever given is to please be mindful of where that muzzle is pointing sporto. If the person doesn't become mindful quickly, I just wrap up and leave.

Radium
February 23, 2011, 05:41 PM
Bonesinium said

Then again, there are those fools who don't want your help, will be a <jerk> about it, and just want to act like Rambo. The difference is, you can usually tell them apart because they are probably already being rude without anybody even bothering them...

this is what i meant with joe mallninja.

Sometimes those are the guys you should be helping. I would wager that most of these types don't have any sort of training, want to get into shooting (I mean, who doesn't obviously!) but only know what they've seen on tv and in movies. I bet a little instruction would go a long way with a lot of them, but since you already potentially unfairly labeled them as "joe mall ninja" they don't get the help when they may be a lot more receptive to it then you think.

i agree with u. i was one of them. heck probably still am one in the eyes of yie elders.(just a hair over 23 and not stating that i am a professional) but as u said u can clearly tell the difference between a good hearted rookie and a jerk:)

I dont judge a person by how they look but by how they act. :) ( its just that most of the time these jerks will max pimpout theyre guns as much as they can and spit out profanity . hence the mallninja term)

RogueLeader
February 23, 2011, 05:59 PM
A friend of mine and I were at a makeshift shooting range in Northern Michigan. A couple of other guys came out there and was unpacking their guns when one of the them with a .444 scoped Marlin looked at my friend who was shooting a Savage 99 .308 with open sights. My friend was shooting at tin cans set up at 100 yards, when the guy with the Marlin told him he should be shooting with a scope as no one could shoot at that range and hit anything with open sites. Well, my friend looked at the guy, and without saying a word, hit 4 cans with 4 shots. The guy with the Marlin put his rifle back in the case and they left without firing a shot.

wanderinwalker
February 23, 2011, 11:11 PM
Luckily (or not?) I think I'm the one who normally offers advice to other shooters at the range. Not that I think I'm a know it all or the best shooter in the world, but I have been shooting longer than my age and appearance indicate. (I'm 27 and will get carded for ANYTHING requiring proof of age over 16 if that tells you anything.)

Sometimes you just see something so patently dangerous or counter-productive you have to step in. Sometimes I see somebody trying to learn on a louden-boomer beginning to develop a flinch and other bad habits. A few quick pointers, some magazines through my .22 and people are generally appreciative of the help. And ocassionally you get the "curious bystander" type who watch you hitting the 25-yard steel plates with a handgun or shooting 200-yards offhand with an iron-sighted rifle. Either way, there are many opportunities to share knowledge.

oldbear
February 23, 2011, 11:24 PM
I think most folks mean well and truly want to help. Yet many just don't understand how to approach a stranger or someone they don't know well. I'm willing to listen to advise from most folks, with the exception of the guy who must let me know how lacking my M-27 is compared to his "super" Glock, and why I need two zillion rounds of ammo with me at all times.

oerllikon
February 24, 2011, 12:10 AM
It can be good, and it can be bad. A family friend(my shooting mentor) said he scored a savage 99 saddle gun in 30-30 for $65 because the guy said it wasnt accurate. Turns out it was the guy behind the gun that wasnt accurate.

I usually avoid it, but i toss a couple of "this is how i do it"'s my cousins way when he is starting to blame his equipment. I usually try not to as well because any information i give is void unless he reads it in field and stream...

If the person seems arrogant, then challenge them to a shooting contest. If they are genuinely are trying to help, I usually listen since Im always looking to improve.

I will almost be satisfied when I can get 5 touching shots with a .22 at 25 yds offhand. I can get 3, but not 5..

Another technique is always "smile and nod"

oh, and wanderingwalker: I just read your post, Im kind of the opposite; Im 18, and DONT get carded when I try to buy ammo to feed my CZ 75

Jesse Heywood
February 24, 2011, 02:17 AM
I have found that since I got big, old, and cranky that no one tries to give me advice on shooting.

Jon Coppenbarger
February 24, 2011, 07:47 AM
Jesse that sounds like me also.

if someone who knows me comes up to me and says something like you know you are doing this and that and doing it this way may help you I listen. It may help or it may not but I will usually give it a whirl.

As far as advice I keep my mouth shut unless asked or it envolves me directly such as a teammate just tossing around ideals or coaching.

I remember some dude years ago the day before a match as I had to travel a little ways to get there I showed up the day before. I wanted to get a little practice in and a day of fishing also.
I was just trying to mind my own bussiness and just get some off hand practice in when he starts telling me his whole life history and wants to teach me how to do it better as he took a class a few years earlier.
It was pretty crowded with 3 full relays the day of the match and I thanked him afterwards for helping me the day before with the tips he gave me.
I wonder what he thought when I won 3 of the 4 stages of the match and the overall. Hoped he thought it was him that did it and he continued to ruin everybodys nice quite practice time.

Carl N. Brown
February 24, 2011, 09:13 AM
Learning new techniques when YOU want to is great, unsolicited advice from unknowns on a range is not.

Oh, boy. Glad my son is not posting here. He has taken rifle and pistol coaching from a friend in 82nd Airborne who has military experience from Grenada to Afghanistan and hunting deer on his family property for decades. My son hangs on his every word, pays attention, and adapts his good advice to my son's own style.

My son has also had unsolicited advice from know-it-alls at the range. One was a guy who had invested in all manner of top dollar gear and apparently read all the tacti-cool magazines. My son barely controlled his impulse to tell the guy to go mind your own business, I'll learn from my own mistakes. (The guy later went to a prestigous match with all manner of pre-match bragging, had his clock cleaned and did not want to talk about it when he got back.)

Last episode of "Top Shots" on TV featured an elimination challenge. The homeland security guy had the proper technique with pistol, hand in hand, but the golf instructor (bow-and-arrow archer, not a pistol guy) had learned on the old cup-and-saucer hold. The instructor advised him the cup-and-saucer hold was obsolete, no one uses or teaches it anymore. (The instructor was professional about his suggestion, not like the usually range know-it-all. The golfer/archer refused to change techniques for the challenge.) Long story short, the cup-and-saucer guy won the elimination by a hair (he hit 6 "bad guy" targets no "good guy" targets with cup-and-saucer versus 7 "bad guy" targets and 1 "good guy" target hit using "proper" technique.)

When giving advice at the range stop and think: am I sounding like a smart aleck? Does what works for me really work for everyone? After all, I switch at times between hand-in-hand (when I notice my left hand is flinching from recoil) to cup-in-saucer and back again. And it doesn't hurt to do a few left-hand-wounded/right-hand-wounded drills either if you are serious about defensive use of guns. Plus a silhouette shooter at the range probably would not want to hear my advice on how to face down a feral pack of rabid Cujos after being snake bit on my good hand.

mcdonl
February 24, 2011, 10:13 AM
Good post Carl...

I will add on to your last paragraph... the OP said something along the lines of "Who cares how you hold your gun...." and while the contestant did win with an outdated shooting style I would guess that if the "receiver" of advice, we say starting out in IDPA and the giver of advice was experienced that the advice should be considered and that the way the gun is held does matter.

Shooting at paper targets at the range for stationary shooting is one thing, but shooting for competition is another.

In the highland athletics world there are some grips and techniques used to throw 56 pound weights and cabers... some have come along with their own style, but precious few have been able to be competitors on a world class level doing so. When your peers are winning, their advice should matter.

bds
February 24, 2011, 02:04 PM
Carl, I agree with mcdonl.

There are other factors we may not know from the TV show. Although the golf instructor used the "cup-and-saucer" technique, he may had more trigger time than the homeland security guy and that may explain the "win by a hair". Just because someone is LEO does not mean that they spend a lot of time at the range practicing. I have relatives who are Sheriff/Police officers and they hardly have time for "recreational range shooting". My wife can out shoot them both in accuracy and speed using the same Glock 22, which is their duty weapon, but she has a lot more trigger time than them.

At matches, when we had new shooters start, we let them run the way "they were taught or want to" first (of course, the range/course safety is covered). Mind you, some of these shooters were law enforcement and military with previous firearms training. We also had shooters who shot cup-and-saucer all of their lives and did pretty well, at first. When their stage times stagnate and don't improve, they start asking questions and seek information as to why.

That's when we explain that shooting is like auto racing - it has evolved. Techniques that used to work 50 years ago, no longer work as well as newer techniques. I started out with stiff armed combat isosceles stance 16 years ago, but now use more natural bent-at-the-elbows stance. We video tape (HD camcorders) their stage runs and point out aspects of their run that could have benefited from better/faster techniques.

I don't give shooting advise/tips to other shooters at the range as to what is best/proper as different techniques will work for different people. When they ask, I just show them what I do and works for me. If they want, I have them duplicate and compare shots groups with their techniques vs mine. If they inquire about further training, I direct them to training courses offered by different ranges/groups and various online sites.

One RO told me that ultimately, what matters is the holes on target - "Holes on target speaks volumes".

mgmorden
February 24, 2011, 04:51 PM
There are other factors we may not know from the TV show. Although the golf instructor used the "cup-and-saucer" technique, he may had more trigger time than the homeland security guy and that may explain the "win by a hair".

As said by both of them, the guy who lost had been shooting for over 20 years. The guy who won was primarily an archer and bought his first gun only a year ago.

bds
February 24, 2011, 08:01 PM
the guy who lost had been shooting for over 20 years. The guy who won was primarily an archer and bought his first gun only a year ago.
mgmorden, you bring up a good point.

Obviously, what the archer did in one year was enough to better the score of someone who shot over 20 years. I wonder what things the shooter was doing wrong.

BullfrogKen
February 24, 2011, 08:13 PM
I thought I knew what I was doing and had all the answers back in my early twenties, too.


I'm glad that young kid grew up. I'd be no better if I didn't listen to someone else.


It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. – Aristotle
^^^^^
That sig sums it up pretty well for me.

Frank Ettin
February 24, 2011, 08:36 PM
the guy who lost had been shooting for over 20 years. The guy who won was primarily an archer and bought his first gun only a year ago.
mgmorden, you bring up a good point.

Obviously, what the archer did in one year was enough to better the score of someone who shot over 20 years. I wonder what things the shooter was doing wrong. We're talking about the new shooter narrowly beating the experienced shooter one time. That really doesn't mean anything.

Anyone who has much competition experience has seen a champion lose to a relative rookie on occasion. It happens. What really counts is a consistent level of performance.

Sport45
February 24, 2011, 10:55 PM
The TV camera and millions (okay, maybe hundreds :)) of potential viewers may have leveled the playing field some too.

QUICK_DRAW_McGRAW
February 24, 2011, 11:00 PM
learn something new every day, ever hear that before? i try to every day wether its at work (automotive tech) or shooting guns, it doesn't hurt to listen.

okiefired
February 24, 2011, 11:38 PM
I dont care if you shoot one ragged hole every day, if your technique is wrong it may one day come back to bite you in the ass at the worst possible moment. There's a reason professionals teach and train the way they do, its called experience.

There's some things I've noticed in just about all people that are the best at what they do. They are very open minded, they listen to everything, and they speak when needed.

okie

Dave21
February 25, 2011, 05:12 AM
I'm not in LE, or the military and haven't ever been professionally 'instructed' or taught how to shoot, and am actually coming from the other direction...If I'm at the range I usually walk around and look at whose doing well and ask them if they wouldn't mind watching me shoot after they're done. I've gotten advice from LE, military personnel, competitive shooters, and Old Farts who've been shooting so long its in their blood. I still have my own style of shooting, but have gotten better from asking people for advice. I went from a foot of spray at 7 yards on my first trip to the range when I was 18 to being able to place my shots at 25 yards. I'm not a pro whose gonna try out for TOP SHOT, but feel like I can hold my own now.....all because I listened to what more experienced shooters had to say. The trick is implementing their advice with what you want and what will help you.

RancidSumo
February 25, 2011, 03:54 PM
You can be using a technique that lets you hit the target but still isn't ideal. A different technique could let you hit it faster or let you be able to move more effectively while shooting.

Dulvarian
February 26, 2011, 03:51 AM
A good friendly, non-intrusive method of being able to offer advice to the person next to you that does not display perfect stance/grip/accuracy is to simply do well standing next to them.

Mention that if they want any help or advice you would be more than willing to help out. If they ask, your advice will likely be well heeded. There are some obvious mistakes that people make, and so long as what they are doing is of no danger to themselves or you, whatever.

I have stopped a person from firing on a lane next to me when I saw that the young man's weak hand thumb was behind the slide. I think I scared him a little, but I think saving a serious injury to himself was worth it. He thanked me, and then shot really well. (Left hand thumb was basically sitting right beneath the sights on the back of a Glock. While some might have let him do it, what is going to happen when he gets injured? Is he going to have a ND or two while dealing with the injury?)

I saw another man shooting terribly with an AR, and I told him that if he wanted I would give him some pointers. Turned out, he didn't really understand what he should be looking at for the sight picture. Thirty seconds and he went from all over to bullseyes.

Be polite. It goes a long way. If they aren't receptive, wish them well and continue about your business. The only downside to helping other people shoot is that you might get less trigger time in that day.

On an unrelated note, changing things usually gets you focused back on basics. Breath control, trigger control, not anticipating shots, controlling recoil. Just like picking up a new gun.

MarkDozier
February 26, 2011, 04:47 AM
I don't give advice, but if I see something not right l will ask if I can make a suggestion or recommendation that might help. Nearly every time I do this ppl listen and about 90% of what I share they use. Trigger squeze, breath control and most important other then that SAFE handling of guns is to have fun.

Bonesinium
February 26, 2011, 05:26 AM
After reading some of these responses I can see even more reasons why people don't like when others try and give you unwanted advice.

Examples:

You can be using a technique that lets you hit the target but still isn't ideal. A different technique could let you hit it faster or let you be able to move more effectively while shooting.

I dont care if you shoot one ragged hole every day, if your technique is wrong it may one day come back to bite you in the ass at the worst possible moment.

I'm certainly not saying either of you are wrong, but you may simply be missing the reason they are shooting. Not everybody is out there shooting to be a combat shooter, or shooting for self defense training. Lots of people go out to target shoot. And only target shoot. If someone is using the "wrong" technique, yet shooting out the same hole, there is a good chance that is their reason for shooting. They might not care if there is a better way to get shots on target faster.

Not everybody shoots for the same reason. Not everybody uses the same techniques. Just because one technique is what is being taught now doesn't mean that it won't change later, because most standards now were NOT the standard in the past.

I'm not saying don't try and help people, but be aware that sometimes, your help can be a hindrance if not simply unwanted. Other times it can be greatly appreciated. So maybe before you try and help someone, just ask them if they want some advice, or what there reason for shooting is.

thorn726
February 26, 2011, 10:41 AM
you would think a person might take a look at your results before trying to "help"... in my case i could use the help// funny how people are so eager to offer useless advice without determining who they are talking to first

GTR done
February 26, 2011, 12:17 PM
The TV camera and millions (okay, maybe hundreds :)) of potential viewers may have leveled the playing field some too.
The experienced top shot shooter had a problem with reacting under stress. In the previous challenge, he lost focus twice in a rifle relay race. He grabbed the rifle and ran, instead of letting his teammate take the turn. He had to run back to his teammate, and next time, he did the same thing! The loss in time lost his team the match. He recognized after losing the elimination match that he beat himself, mentally. Being on TV is different than confronting a dangerous terrorist, but I hope he looks seriously at his mental performance under stress. I also wonder if he had any life and death shooting conflicts, and how those went.

bds
February 26, 2011, 01:44 PM
Not everybody is out there shooting to be a combat shooter, or shooting for self defense training. Lots of people go out to target shoot. And only target shoot ... Not everybody shoots for the same reason.
And this is one of many reasons why I don't give shooting advise at the range unless they ask.

I often see fathers spending time with their young kids shooting at the range. Yes, it's often obvious the fathers are not proficient with firearms, but am I going to "interfere" with their quality time together? Heck no. For me, I think it's the value of time spent with your kids, not how accurate the shot groups were. Especially when you can see that the kids are having a great time shooting with their dad. Same goes for husband/wife and boyfriend/girlfriend.

I also see many shy, obviously first gun experience shooters having enough problem coping with the loud noise of the gun fire (fortunately, the range staff do a great job of providing hands-on orientation for these cases) and allow them to experience their shooting experience. Once they get more comfortable and become aware of other shooters and their shot groups, they usually seek out information.

One time, a wife of a shooter in the next lane saw my shot groups and asked if I could give her some pointers. With her husband's approval, I ran through the basics of stance/grip/sight/trigger control. When she began to out shoot her husband (she got tight 2 inch groups at 7 yards when her husband was all over the place on a full size target), he got visibly upset and wanted to leave the range. Imagine if you were in his shoes and the discussion they would have on the drive home - "Honey, nothing personal but you suck at shooting" :D

Of course, if I saw something unsafe or imminently dangerous, I would intervene. For the most part, I just focus on my shooting objectives (testing loads or practicing drills). Now, if I saw someone who was obviously shooting better than me, you can bet I will be having a chat with him/her. I am always open to advise/techniques that is working for someone else and almost every time, they are happy to share what is working for them.

Dulvarian
February 27, 2011, 02:16 AM
Maybe a better question would be:

How do you approach someone who is obviously doing better than you and ask them for advice?

Last time I nicely asked, I got invited to join a closed range 'combat' shoot. Unfortunately, the timing is bad, but I'm working to get that fixed. (That, and that day, my shoulder was done. I was having trouble plinking with a .22LR. I wasn't sure I was up to running drills with my .45.)

Look at it from the other side. Have you ever approached someone and asked for advice only to be blown off?

Azimuth315
February 27, 2011, 04:15 PM
" I dislike being taught yet I love to learn." - Sir Winston Churchill

Seems like that guy might fit right into this discussion.

Regards - Al

KodiakBeer
February 27, 2011, 05:34 PM
A better question is to ask what is considered good shooting nowadays? I see "qualification" shoots at ridiculously short ranges (7 or 10 yards) and with ridiculously loose criteria - 10 shots slow and 10 shots rapid fire with a score of 100% if you can keep them within the 10 ring...

With such meaningless criteria, it's easy for anyone to get a high score and then think they need no further instruction. You don't start seeing the results of bad technique until you back off to something like 25 yards.

I don't offer help unless asked. But, I suspect most people who do offer have the best intentions. The fact that you are getting a high score at 7 yards, doesn't mean you are a good or even a competent shooter. It might be best to at least listen to the suggestions and try them out. If they work (and you won't know unless you shoot at a credible distance) then fine. If they don't work, then do something else.

I've been shooting for 35 years and I learn new stuff all the time.

rr2241tx
February 28, 2011, 02:22 PM
I had a newly received Vaquero at the local range Saturday and was having some POA/POI issues due to my grip not working well with the skinny top of the stock and putting too little trigger finger on the trigger. I was getting consistent hits about 3" left and in a decent, not great group all in the black on an NRA rifle target. The guy next to me was spraying .25ACP all over an E Silhouette, mostly in the white or missing altogether. Not being familiar with single action revolvers, he took my deliberate firing as me having trouble and helpfully volunteered to show me how. So, I loaded the cylinder with Buffalo Bore .44Mags and handed him the revolver. To my relief, he managed not to drop the revolver but he didn't need a follow up shot either, having convincingly killed the berm with the first one. A ceasefire was called and I retrieved my target which was full of wadcutter holes in the black and thanked him for his assistance. It was an awful thing to do but I couldn't help myself.

jonmerritt
March 1, 2011, 10:29 PM
wow my thumb sits behind the slide, and I have never hit my thumb, never. Not even in the sandbox have I hit my thumb. Thats on full size auto's where I won't hit my thumb. I also have very large hands. My thumb is actually on my wrist. I have people watch me (self proclaimed experts) and after many rounds, tell me " you can't shoot like that!" I have no tact when dealing with these kind of people. And what I tell them varies, but either way, they get the point. I have even told them "Gee, you should have been in combat with me, I probably wouldn't have survived!" Befor you open your mouth, be sure your brain is engaged.

RancidSumo
March 2, 2011, 04:11 AM
Just because it hasn't killed you yet doesn't make your technique a good one...

General Geoff
March 2, 2011, 04:21 AM
The only time I offer advice is when I observe a person obviously having trouble keeping shots on target, and even then, I'll simply ask if they'd like some help. If they say they're fine, I'll stop bothering them and mind my own business, as long as they're being safe.

skipjack
March 2, 2011, 09:45 AM
The weak hand thumb behind the slide is not what I
consider shooting advice, but rather, a safety issue.

I work at an indoor range, and have seen at least
one injury from that grip that resulted in a cut tendon.
I have seen numerous injuries that resulted in a need
for stitches.

gym
March 3, 2011, 05:34 PM
The guy that owned the custom shop when I first started carrying back in the 70's claimed to be the "expert" in everything. He was a Russian, and specialized in German Walthers. Only problem was that none of us ever saw him shoot a gun. We used to go every week out to the nassau county police range, and shoot in friendly competition against other clubs. I think he was full of "you know what". Show me, that''s my motto. If you shoot great I will galdlly listen to you all day. But unless yu shoot at least as good or better than I do, ride on. I challenged him after about a year, of his finding excuses not to shoot or why his gun wasn't ready or whatever. Finally I realized the guy was a great salesperson, he had us all out shooting every week giving us rediculous pointers, and we all kept going. He never did shoot a pistol, only shotguns, when we went for birds. Nothing any better than the other guys. So beware of people who claim to be top guns, they are probablly going to try to sell you something, lol

rustedangel
March 17, 2011, 01:33 PM
I apologize for resurrecting a 2 week old thread, but I just had my first case of unsolicited gun range advice last night! A guy noticed me picking up my brass and asked if I reloaded, so I told him that I don't have a press yet but plan on getting one in the next year or so. He made a recommendation on a progressive press of some type, which I have no issue with. Where I got irritated was when he went from discussing the advantages of the press he had to criticizing my choice 9mm caliber. Out of the blue he said that .45 was a much better choice for self defense because it's a more reliable stopper and doesn't overpenetrate like 9mm. I told him that I was a new shooter, and deliberately chose 9mm because it is the least expensive, allowing me to get the most trigger time and proficiency for my money, and that I could always move to another caliber when I feel confident in my abilities.

KodiakBeer
March 17, 2011, 01:38 PM
Did you tell him that 9mm vs .45 would be an excellent Internet forum thread?

rustedangel
March 17, 2011, 01:52 PM
Haha no, I didn't really want to talk to him more than necessary. I was having way more fun shooting! I got a new Ruger Mk III a few weeks back and I love it to death. I've run about 700 rounds through it now and had my first FTE last night, which I think is excellent for a .22 autoloader to begin with. When you consider that the FTE happened at the end of the night after shooting 250-300 rounds and the gun was getting pretty dirty....I'm pleased with the purchase :)

thorn726
March 17, 2011, 05:20 PM
I SO LOVE people who would suggest i need to spend 3X the money or im not doing it right.

GLShooter
March 17, 2011, 08:39 PM
I've been "helped" on more than one occasion by well meaning individuals. Some were obnoxious and some were quite good.

I've been "coached" by firearms instructors from the US Border Patrol, US Marshals and Fed. BOP. All good folk and at the time only one of them could out shoot me!! LOL

I always nodded politely, did what they said and went about my rat killing after I left the range. I was there as a student so they knew I needed coaching. I always felt that I got a nugget or two out of those training sessions and I did. It was usually a whole compendium of exposure to different ideas.

Out in the world of the non-LEO shooters I have had the dime store Commandos try to show me how it's done and I am always polite. I thank them for their input and then will just flat burn a course down in front of them. They usually do like many of the guys mentioned earlier they will either pack up and leave or find that the tips of their combat Nike's are more interesting than put on those pasters on the A-zone.

I'll give advice if asked regarding technique but only when asked or when it is my job as an instructor. I'll step up if it is a safety issue like the scope on top of the eyebrow before the shot or the thumb behind the slide but other than that I just watch for safety.

Most of the guys on here have been around the block a bit so we know which way the pointy things go. A beginner wanting to learn will realize that and ask for help. I have done more than one session in firearms handling with shooters I had never seen before or since. Always helpful but never pushy.

Greg

woad_yurt
March 18, 2011, 10:40 AM
when i see someone holding the gun the "wrong way" = teacuping,holding ur strong arms wrist with ur whand,holding ur weakhand thumb behind the slide,doing the limbo etc i usually give en pointers.(specially if its a damzel )

What's wrong with teacupping if it works for one? It feels just right for me and I do very well with it, better than with any other grip I've tried.

As for advice given me, I'll listen if the advisor asks nicely if I'd like a tip ot two. If they come over and start pontificating, it doesn't go down all that well. It's all in the packaging. I'll also listen to those who don't shoot as well as I do because they may be saying something of worth nonetheless. The NFL, for example, would have a tough time finding coaches if the coaches had to play a better game than the athletes themselves.

Prion
March 18, 2011, 10:51 AM
Mind your own business unless it's a safety issue.

People today are in your business about everything, keep your advice to yourself unless asked. Bunch of do-gooders up to no good.

SSN Vet
March 18, 2011, 11:08 AM
I never would have guessed it, but there appears to be a fine line between minding your own business and being considered unfriendly....

That said, some of the most helpful advice I've received came unsolicited from a guy in the next lane over. But I think it was pretty obvious that I was frustrated and getting nowhere. The gentleman very carefully asked if I'd like to have someone watch me shoot and make some suggestions, however.... and that's a lot different than just spitting out criticism/advice.

On the other hand, I often wind up next to guys who want to yack it up.... while I'm trying to actually accomplish something in a limited period of time.

5 min. on this or any other gun board will quickly reveal that there are a lot of opinionated people out in the world who thrive on proving to others how much smarter they (think) they are. I chalk it up to human (prideful) nature.

Don't ask me how I came to this conclusion :o

gym
March 18, 2011, 06:13 PM
If it works for you it's no ones business, even the "experts" differ in their opinions on what is the "right way".
If you aren't getting the results you want, then it's up to you to decide how and who you want to inquire about getting where you want to go. There is no one way to do anything.

Chester32141
March 18, 2011, 07:03 PM
Years ago when I rode a bicycle for fitness, I was hammering along a country road when, a car pulled up and an elderly gentleman proceeded to tell me all that was wrong with my technique ... I blew him off and thought he was a crazy old man ... later that day I learned that I had somewhat rudely blown off the coach of United States Olympic cycling team ... oops ... :what:

kwelz
March 18, 2011, 07:37 PM
The fact is that most people don't know how to shoot and think they do. I see it all the time, especially in a class environment. Guys that qualify expert on the police range or do great on a bench come in and fall apart. Because what most people think of as shooting isn't really right unless you are in that specific setting.

The aforementioned Top Shot shooters are a great example of this. Supposedly these are great shooters. Most of them are actually pretty bad.

sonick808
March 18, 2011, 07:53 PM
I don't mind it, as long as it's not overtly incorrect :) I've picked up some great pointers from fellows at the range (and it usually leads to swapping guns and new shooting experiences ;)

True Grit
March 19, 2011, 01:48 PM
The right way to shoot is the best way that you shoot. Unless your a cop or in the military.

Frank Ettin
March 19, 2011, 03:34 PM
The right way to shoot is the best way that you shoot. Unless your a cop or in the military. Not necessarily.

A lot depends on the level of proficiency you want to achieve. There may be ways to shoot that are more efficient or effective. Maybe changing something can help you be more accurate, consistent, faster.

I've competed; I'm an instructor; and I still take classes on a regular basis. I learn new things every time I take a class. And just last week, I met with another instructor whose acquaintance I had recently made for a little, informal tutoring. He showed me a couple of things that will improve my performance.

Sometimes people are reluctant to make a change because the change feels awkward. Of course it does. If you've gotten accustomed to doing something a certain way, changing always fees awkward.

the_skunk
March 19, 2011, 03:49 PM
The correct way to shoot at an indoor shooting range

1 .... Keep the barrel down range



The correct way to shoot at an outdoor shooting range

1 .... Keep the barrel down range

millertyme
March 19, 2011, 03:51 PM
In short: No. Not really.

One-Time
March 19, 2011, 04:13 PM
Im always open to advice, ive taken numerous pro courses and all had thing done the way they wanted them, I just take what works for me best and press on

AJumbo
March 19, 2011, 06:04 PM
On giving advice: I generally don't give unsolicited advice. If solicited, I'll give my best advice, the best way I know how, provided the "student" is ready and willing to listen. I occasionally get to turn non-shooters into beginning shooters. The deal is, first, I acknowledge that I know what I know, and can teach only what I know; and second, I can't teach anybody who doesn't truly want to learn. If the student will agree to do what I ask them to do, I'll give it my best effort. If not, the lesson is over until my requirements can be met.

On taking advice: I keep a flexible mind. There is no endeavor on this planet in which I am the pre-eminent authority, and I shoot differently- and better- today than I did twenty years ago. Semper Gumby! I will seek pointers from those who can clearly help me become a better shooter. If unsolicited advice is offered, I stay open to the intent of the offer. I have gotten some great tips over the years. Yes, sometimes you get advice from folks who just want to show you that they fell confident enough in their abilities that they can share their wisdom with you. That's fine; they're not necessarily wrong, and I'm not going to make them wrong by refusing to listen. I may not take some of their issues to heart, like the guy who told me that my boots were the wrong color...........seems my black work boots were making my feet hot, so I was uncomfortable and less able to concentrate on my shooting........this from a man who had never worn my boots.......and it seems that I further needed to zip right on down to the uniform store and invest in a pair of nifty neat-o Brand X desert assault boots and thereby shrink my groups. I have yet to do so.

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