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#404518 - 09/18/07 06:16 PM Need some ex-military help with shooting question
7mm08
10 Point


Registered: 09/12/07
Posts: 4940
Loc: In a river hopefully!

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OK, I know I am nitpicking, but I am not satisfied to hit a pie plate at 100yds and consider that good shooting, as I am also well aware of the kill zone on a whitetail.

I shoot a 7mm-08 as my name implies. I can easily hit in and around a 2" circle at 100yards with my Remington 700 Mountain DM and a Bushnell 4-12x 3200. What drives me crazy is the obvious beating of my heart and the movement associated with that. Now since I can't or don't choose to go asystolic (or stop my heart from beating...HA HA), how does one control this? Is it posture, slow breathing, repetative shooting. How do/did you fine folks train for this? Obviously it doesn't matter too much if it's in the kill zone, but practice makes perfect, and come time for that big buck, the more you shoot the more effeciently and humanly you can kill.

Thank you


Edited by 7mm08 (09/18/07 06:58 PM)
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#404529 - 09/18/07 06:22 PM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: 7mm08]
smstone22
16 Point


Registered: 01/11/04
Posts: 16888
Loc: Allardt, TN

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There is a way to control your breathing that is taught in Army marksmanship, basically you shoot at the very end of your exhale. Honestly though the way I do it is by stopping breathing a split second before I fire.
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#404544 - 09/18/07 06:34 PM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: smstone22]
WestTn Huntin'man
16 Point


Registered: 11/19/06
Posts: 11960
Loc: Benton Co.

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 Originally Posted By: steven stone
There is a way to control your breathing that is taught in Army marksmanship, basically you shoot at the very end of your exhale. Honestly though the way I do it is by stopping breathing a split second before I fire.

We must of had the same course. I take several steady deep breaths. This also helps calm the heart. Then shoot after exhaling and holding for a second.
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#404650 - 09/18/07 07:36 PM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: WestTn Huntin'man]
Navy Mustang
8 Point


Registered: 10/22/01
Posts: 1833
Loc: Yuma, TN

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There are two very basic things that make a good shot. Sight alignment and trigger control. If at the point you break the trigger the sights are on the chosen target you will hit it. Several theories exist on breathing and heart beat. My method is to take an exagerated breath before each shot. It brings oxygen to your eyes to help get a clear sight picture. Heart beat is something you can only control by not doing some form of physical exertion before the shot. Even when this is unavoidable you can focus your shot by taking the big breath and knocking down whatever you are shooting at.

NM
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#404778 - 09/18/07 08:13 PM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: Navy Mustang]
FULLDRAWXX75
12 Point


Registered: 01/29/07
Posts: 6222
Loc: Adirondack Mtns, NY

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Here are a few hopefully helpful tips that worked for me, I used to shot alot, now other things in my life take some of that time away.

Some basis things to look at and work on, Do you and the gun fit each other? Meaning, when you throw that gun up to your shoulder are you looking right directly down the line of sight or do you have to snuggle in a little? If you snuggle, fix it.
adjust your scope(eye relief, height, focus,etc) the reach, comb, etc.
After that is all set and good, (take your time adjusting the fit) Practice with the gun (empty) sit in a chair, lean on a bench, sand bag it, get familiar with the feel of the gun.

Then move to live rounds, this is where it gets to the point of learning to relax, set up the shot, focus on the target, pin point the exact spot you want to hit. Then stay focused on that spot for a period of time, I mean really focus on it, at the same time start applying steady pressure to the trigger. Next thing you know blam, the shot is off.

Don't worry about if the bullet hit dead on, do it all over again. Repeat these exersices over and over, concentrate on the shot always, pick just one spot and focus. Once you start closing the group down, then adjust the sights to the center of the target.

It will start to become second nature to you after some time and practice. I practice as much as I can all yr round, even if it is to pick up the gun and hold it in various positions to stay in form.

Try this little test, sit in a chair and aim at the wall across the room, see how long you can hold the cross hairs steady. Do it even night for 2 weeks and let us know the difference from the first night and the last one.


FDXX75
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#404878 - 09/18/07 08:38 PM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: FULLDRAWXX75]
mike243
16 Point


Registered: 09/06/06
Posts: 11611
Loc: east tn

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shoot alot of 22 rounds & find out how steady you can hold your rifle,some of the best shots cant hold really steady but know their rifles & know when the trigger will break,that is 1 reason a bad trigger can make you or break you,like the old saying goes pratice makes perfect & rimfire is way cheaper than centerfire to learn control,mike243
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#405314 - 09/19/07 06:00 AM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: ]
7mm08
10 Point


Registered: 09/12/07
Posts: 4940
Loc: In a river hopefully!

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Thanks guys. All great ideas. I will continue work on tightening up those groups with these exercises.

With much respect to those in the military(that's why I went directly to the best),

Son of a 41st Div. WWII Philapines/New Guinea sargeant


Edited by 7mm08 (09/19/07 06:02 AM)
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#405329 - 09/19/07 06:26 AM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: 7mm08]
DaveTN
4 Point


Registered: 05/04/06
Posts: 354
Loc: Middle Tennessee

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The beating of your heart isn’t moving your rifle while target shooting; muscle control is. Controlling your breathing can help with that but so can position and how you are holding/supporting the rifle.

Adrenaline is moving your rifle during the shot on a deer. There is no way to practice how you will shoot on an adrenaline rush other than putting yourself in that situation as much as possible.

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#405402 - 09/19/07 07:33 AM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: DaveTN]
7mm08
10 Point


Registered: 09/12/07
Posts: 4940
Loc: In a river hopefully!

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DaveTN,
The up/down motion on the scope was to the timing of my heartrate. Maybe I just need to shoot more, do the exercises, check my blood pressure, or just become an olympic athelete and have a resting heart rate of 40! NOT! HA!

Thanks
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I hunt and fish not for the thrill of the kill, but for the thrill of the grill!!

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#405975 - 09/19/07 12:33 PM Re: Need some ex-military help with shooting question [Re: 7mm08]
Hawkeye5
6 Point


Registered: 10/26/04
Posts: 819
Loc: Hendersonville

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My guess is you must be using high magnification with a very secure rest as the only real time I would notice cross hairs jump with my heart beat was during practice and while shooting 22 prone matches with a 12X scope. And yes, the cross hairs do jump with your heart beat at higher power and a well built, steady position.
Avoid the problem by timing the shot just after your heart beat. If the sight picture is not quite right, just wait for the next heart beat. This is assuming you have breath control already down. I never tried to be steady as a rock and have always let the cross hairs move slightly. Of course, when the trigger breaks the cross hairs need to be sneaking toward the portion of target you want to hit, the bulls eye.
That said, I really don't think heart beat makes much difference for practical hunting shots. We are not shooting for score, but for a clean kill. The kill zone on a deer at 100 yards is much larger than a .22 prone bull at the same distance, I just don't see that heart beat is going to make the difference. Plus, as Dave points out, most of us experience an elevated heart rate and adrenaline rush when we see deer while on stand. The best policy is simply to learn how to compensate.
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