Moving Off While Drawing and Shooting

Live fire shooters are often encumbered with moving drills and skills because of safety issues. If a line of shooters do a “step and shoot” drill, the instructor sometimes looks like a chorus line choreographer. You know the routine. Draw while stepping to the right and shoot. Draw while stepping to the left and shoot. With just a step, shooters are still maintaining a rather frontal, full-body, target offering to an enemy – especially if they shoot with two hands – and not turning to say, run while drawing. If moving is key? If moving to cover is vital? Shouldn’t we be busting off right or left?

     These answers can be better examined with simulated ammo guns, interactively. But, once you do these “step-and-shoot” drills with an actual opponent shooting back at you, and the opponent is fairly close, you begin to realize that the idea is not as successful as conceptualized. The other guys still shoots you rather easily. This is not to say you shouldn’t shoot and move, it’s rather to say, don’t expect miracles.

     Miracles like…invisibility! Invisability? There are very prominent instructors who still adhere to the cardboard tube theory of stress. They believe that when stressed out,  adreanlized, their vision becomes blinding, tunnel vision. Essential a cardboard tube. 

     They actually use the term “cardboard tube.” And they teach that if you move aside, even just a step, you will become invisible to your opponent. They use the word “invisible.” This cardboard tube idea has been disproven, and replaced by simple “target focus,” and simple “attention focus” explanations. You are looking at, zeroing in on, what’s important that second and your memory is not recording surrounding outside things and events for that second. Remember that researchers can only ask questions of your memory of incidents after the event, and base their “tubular” conclusions on your memory. You were not blind. You were just focused. The cardboard tube analogy is rather misleading nonsense and confuses reality and students.

      Right-handed, American football quarterbacks are admired when they dash to the right and throw well “cross-body.” Coaches say this is a special skill. Most times they can throw better as they dash to left and not throw cross-body. I think the same applies to shooting pistols. Will your opponent be right-handed (9 out of 10 people) and naturally choose to step or dash to their left and avoid the cross-body awkwardness? What direction will you “naturally” run in? Will you step or will you dash?

     (Oh, and by the way, a study of captured videos, body cams etc, show quite a number of shooters who DON’T move and just stand and shoot, and win, too!)

    Get the sims guns out and get busy!


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This is a segment form Hock’s upcoming book, Footwork and Maneuvering:  From the “Ring to the Obstacle Course” with Applications to Indoor and Outdoor Rural, Suburban and Urban Surfaces – due out in Fall, 2018