Dueling Tree

Round one of this week’s tactical shoot involved a scenario where you were paired against another shooter for time and accuracy, basically a paper based dueling tree.  Once the buzzer sounded you had to shoot three targets then move an shoot three more targets.  The engagement required making both head and body shots.  Seems pretty simple on the face.  However the additional pressure of balancing speed and accuracy is surprisingly difficult.  The thing I noticed immediately was my adrenaline response.  It was light, but still created a scenario where my hands were slightly shaking.

The second scenario was similar except that a barrier was erected that had two 8″ holes separated by one foot.  When the Range Safety Officer (RSO) said go you had to shoot three targets then move behind the barrier.  You then had to shoot through the hole to engage three more targets.  The thing is that the other shooter was doing the same thing.  Thus we were literally touching shoulders and you had brass ejecting from the other person’s gun towards your face/body.  You also had to deal with the report (sound) of the other persons’s gun.  These two factors changed my performance, at least for the first round.

Loaded Up

Loaded Up


So what are the take aways from this shoot?  By-the-way this applies to general martial arts, not just shooting!

  1. Never assume you have skill mastery unless you have tested those skills in a very wide variety of environments
  2. Adrenaline will have an effect on your performance.  The more Adrenaline the less fine motor control you will have.
  3. You have to learn to focus in spite of distractions.