Even if your local range doesn’t allow rapid fire, or doesn’t let you draw from the holster, these indoor shooting ranges are still worth practicing your marksmanship. Aside from giving you locations to practice drills, they give you chances to improve your skills. Here are 5 tips for improving your range sessions.
It goes without saying always to treat your firearms as if they were fully loaded. Unholster them only when you’re on the firing line. Be sure to wear ballistic armor. Keeping your finger off the trigger is also Firearm Safety 101. This means making your ammo type is safe with the type of target backstops (which staff will usually do). Keeping yourself and others safe is the highest priority: always. One phenomenal way to ensure this is to remain calm and collected.
Indoor shooting ranges usually charge by the hour. This means the time you spend lubricating your weapon, loading magazines, or prepare other equipment is the time that comes out of your wallet. The biggest cost of all is your lack of focus: being a skilled marksman means finding your target in the face of distraction. Train your mental ability by removing as many mental obstacles as possible; carry as many bullets as possible so you don’t have to think about them.
3. Save Ammo
Some ranges have a strict rule against drawing pistols from a holster. You may know all about tabling drills; least of all because they help you boost your hand speed. The practice of picking up a firearm, loading it and shooting force your hand to process speed differently. This trains your reaction time than standard draw-stroke movements. The caveat here is that many shooters improve their speed, but decrease their accuracy. Save ammo by practicing your accuracy through slow, purposeful movements before firing.
4. No Ego
It’s time for a reality check: you are probably not as good a shooter as you think. We all have room for improvement. Just as martial artists dedicate a hefty number of decades to become masters, so is the same for marksmen. That’s why one of the critical elements of improving your shot is to constantly think of yourself shooting with paintball guns. This will keep you striving to improve your range sessions.
5. Know Your Distance
Bullseyes and silhouettes are made for shorter, closer distances (~10-15 yards). Check your ego at the door if you want to even think about hitting bullseyes from the back of the bay. Scoring accurate bullseyes and silhouettes from long distances is extremely difficult and may lead to frustration when you constantly miss. No marksman should be a showy, flashy Hollywood shooter – no matter how good their shots are.
The range is like a gym: when you’ve done all, you can and go as hard as possible, your performance suffers after some time. It’s a sign to cool down and head back home. This applies to gun ranges; after you fatigue, take a breather and wind down for the night. This will make your sessions more enjoyable and help keep your mind sharp. Your shooting range sessions should teach you an invaluable lesson every single time. Take care to remain observant about your time at sessions and take mental notes about what you can work on and what you’ve mastered. In many ways, consider yourself a boxer who is watching the after-match recordings to see where things went wrong. These show you the exact areas that you need to improve.