Recently I was doing some filming for the release of our new TRICON MK6 from LWRC, virtually every shot I took was shot on the move. The secret to movement will surprise you.
Looking good for the camera
It all started well enough, the camera crew had an amazing gyro-stabalizing camera system that allowed them to capture some bad ass video. To take advantage of a super high speed camera we decided to take as many shots as we could while shooting on the move. I ended up firing approximately 2,000 rounds on the move in the best Hollywood rendition I could muster. Some of the required shots definitely were outside normal engagement distances appropriate for shooting while on the move and others were up close and personal at impressive speeds.
Get outside the comfort zone
I’ll admit I had some reservations about a few shots, being programed to hit the target at all costs has taught me to respect my skill level and recognize my limitations. The only problem is I hadn’t pushed my limitations in a while. I have been pretty remise on my professional development lately. With all the projects on my plate it is hard to find the time, but I was reminded the importance of solid fundamentals. A few days of filming and my hit ratio was getting impressive enough I started to take notice. As I paid more attention to my movement I observed two very important points.
Get your hulk on
Locking the rifle in was a HUGE one. I mean proper biomechanics combined with power applied. Lining up the body so the rifle is pulled directly into the shoulder pocket will create an incredibly solid platform. I didn’t realize how solid because most of the shots I took were within 25 yards until that day. First off, you need to separate the upper unit from the lower unit, you cannot be worried about what your feet are doing. If you have trouble walking then no amount of instruction is really going to help you. I hear all the time how you should use slow and steady movement or heel to toe movement or any of the other descriptor such as “ninja walk on rice paper” technique. It is all crap! All you need to do is separate the two units, let your feet do what they know how to do and focus your attention on shooting.
Crush that grip
I honestly don’t recall what my feet did, they were simply the tank tracks of my mobile firing platform. But…I remember pulling the rifle into my shoulder pocket using the upper portion of my back, not just my arms. Here was something else I noticed that lead to the improvement…my pinkies. That’s right, pinkies. When I gripped harder with my pinkies it translated into a more rigid platform. I did several runs with a crush grip then a few runs without. The major difference was my shot to shot recovery was not too impressive with a weak grip. We preach crush grip with the pistol and honestly I had taken for granted the powerful mount was sufficient, but with the crush grip it was that much better.
So, the secret to movement is simple. Get moving, worry less about how your feet hit the ground and more about shooting. Then apply more power, crush that grip. When I took time to check out the targets I was impressed. The number of misses were incredibly low for the speed of movement, distance to target and total rounds fired.
That and it was just pretty damn fun to shoot so many rounds on the move. Can’t do that enough.