Some of your most important practice will take place without a round ever going into the chamber. Champion shooter Julie Golob shares her top four ways to make dry fire training even more productive.

First, let’s define it and lay out some ground rules. Dry fire is simply the act of going through the motions of shooting without any ammunition—usually in the comfort of your own home, where you can practice more and more often than you could if you were forced to drive to a range and burn through actual rounds. Considering the setting, safety is critical but simple. You need to make sure you have an empty magazine, show clear your firearm and don’t have live ammunition anywhere nearby.

Golob’s first step to better dry fire practice is prep and planning. Put training days and times on your calendar or set reminders on your phone, then assemble all your gear and have it ready ahead of time for these scheduled sessions. Bottom line is to make it as simple and automatic as possible, so it will be easy to follow through.

Number 2: Make your dry fire practice focused. Don’t work an all things shooting—instead focus on a single skill and dedicate your time to it, so you can start to see real improvements.

Next, make it perfect. We’ve all heard the saying, “Perfect practice makes perfect.” It’s true, and dry fire training should be your time to ensure you’re building skills exactly as you’d like them.

Finally, make it productive by keeping a dry fire log that honestly details the outcome of each practice session. What you document will help you identify areas of concern and set up future dry fire work accordingly.


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