Monday, July 24, 2017

The Circle of Martial Arts


When I was a kid the first martial arts I learned were shooting and the use of a bow and arrow. 

As I got older I got into reading everything I could on Ninjitsu and other open hand martial arts.  In high school, I started playing with a bo and wooden swords along with some other Asian martial arts weapons.  And so it went.

When I went to college I let things drop for a bit as my studies got in the way of practice.. .

Once I got married I started to look at Karate, and my wife found a local school that we both joined and back down the rabbit hole I went.  I did a number of years of Shotokan then went on to do some Tai Chi.  I took another break as life got in the way then went back to do some Uechi  Ryu for a number of years.

The someone hit repeat on me. . . . I got back into shooting and gave up on the karate for a while.  And by getting back into it I mean I started taking some formal classes and got my NRA certification in a few things so I could teach shooting and help folks get their permits.  I also started back on the archery stuff with my younger daughter.  That is a bit on and off as we can, but still. . . . my 35 yr old bow still works well.

Now that I have been teaching shooting for a few years in my free time it seems like Karate is calling to me again bit by bit.  I really need to set aside time to get back into my kata work for the styles I know.   I still have all my info from my karate days, videos of the kata, and more notes than you can imagine on it.  I had my own book I wrote along the way on how to do everything I was learning. . . .


I guess I will always be hooked on the martial arts of one form or another. . . may as well stop fighting it and get back into my karate. . . .

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Dry Fire?

Well?  Do you????

You may not believe in it but please, give it a shot.  I have found that my groups get better and my aim too.

Dry fire is a great way to get rid of those bad habits you picked up, such as flinching and anticipating the recoil.  Best done with center fire.  You can dry fire rimfire guns but make sure to have a snap cap to protect the firing pin.

The basics are to use your gun with no ammo or with snap caps to practice aim and trigger pull.  But there are some things you can do to make it better.

Some folks I know will buy a laser bore sight to put in the barrel of the gun.  You aim at the wall (you know it is a safe direction right?) and watch the red dot as you pull the trigger.  In a perfect world, it should not move at all as you fire. . .  Work on your grip to minimize the movement.

I took it a step further and I use a LaserLyte practice system like this:



The red thing is a laser that fits in your gun barrel.  I use a special blue gun with a working trigger also from LaserLyte to train.  The laser picks up the noise of the trigger snap or hammer fall and flashes for a second.

The target actually picks up the hits and records them.  Not too bad for practice in the living room.  I also like that with the blue gun there is no real gun for my kids to get their hands on if I get distracted.

Now the laser will work in a real gun too.  It is adjustable for the caliber.

On a side note, this is also a nice way to work with new students.   I had a friend who thought his sights were off.  He was new to shooting pistol so we unloaded the gun and put in the laser.  He took aim and the dot was visible in the black.  A great way for him to see it was him and not the sights.  He was anticipating the recoil and pushing the barrel down. . . . when he knew there would be no recoil he was right on target with the laser.

So go forth and dry fire my friends!  It is cheap and you will see improvements!  And who knows if you go for the laser trainer you may find other uses for it too. . . .