Anyone who is serious about being a proficient shooter very quickly has to face the reality of what it costs—especially when you move away from shooting at stationary targets from a stationary position and start working on more realistic street survival/defensive shooting. At current prices, it’s easy to send 50-cents or more downrange every time you pull the trigger. And if you don’t hit your intended target, the best you can hope for and work on is to try to figure out what you did wrong and not do it next time you send another 50-cents downrange.
Simply put, trial and error is a very expensive way to get good at something. Unless you have enough money that you won’t miss it, most of us are forced to find inexpensive ways to improve our shooting skills, and with a little imagination, there are plenty of ways to do it. There are even many ways to do it for free.
Good defensive shooting, in its simplest form, can boil down to three basic elements: (1) Getting your weapon from carry position and then getting sights on target; (2) keeping sights on your target as you move toward or away that target, or move to cover or concealment; and, (3) pulling the trigger without moving the sights off target.
Even if you can get your weapon from carry position and on target effectively, you still have to be able to keep your sights on target when you move or your target moves. And, even if you can keep your sights on target when you or your target moves, you still have to be able to stay on target when you pull the trigger. Assuming you have the basics such as shooting stance, finger placement on the trigger, grip and safety down pat—whether through a firearms course, a competent instructor or coach, or natural talent, start with some simple and inexpensive—ways to improve your shooting.
One of the best ways to see how your weapon moves when you pull the trigger is to put a laser on it. A $300 to $400 grip sight is not really necessary for training. A $40 to $50 bore sight, popular for sighting-in rifles, works just fine. You can buy one at most large sporting goods stores or your local superstore. Install it and dry fire the weapon watching the dot. Don’t be too concerned whether the dot is in line with the sights. You’re looking for movement of the dot, not accuracy.