In SureFire Field Notes 75, IPSC World Champion and multiple-time USPSA National Champion Ben Stoeger discusses the Doubles Drill. He says it’s the most important drill that you can do as a shooter, and it’s the only thing you need to practice live. You can view SureFire Field Notes 75 in its entirety by clicking on the video image below.
Many readers might be aware that Stoeger is a huge proponent of dry-fire training and has written several books on the subject. He proposes that almost every skill, from movement to trigger control, from manipulations to target transitions can be practiced completely dry at home. However, of all the known dry-fire techniques, none can simulate the effects of recoil and how they can cause deviations between the point of aim and the point of impact when firing a live round. The Doubles Drill is Stoeger’s go-to live-fire drill to help him focus on recoil control. This drill is useful for recreational, self-defense, military/law enforcement, and competitive shooters alike, and it can be practiced with a rifle or a handgun.
Stoeger says that the Doubles Drill is the most important drill to master, and yet it’s simple in its execution. The basic drill involves engaging a target and rapid firing in pairs. Stoeger likes to shoot four pairs in succession.
“This isn’t a performance exercise,” Stoeger explains. “I’m not looking for a particular outcome on the target…The idea here is for me to connect cause with effect. What I want is to see my sight tracking up and down in a consistent, repeatable, predictable fashion. As I go faster and faster, that’s more difficult to do. What I want to do is understand where I’m falling apart or where I’m having a problem.”
Experienced as he is, Stoeger admits to finding flaws in his own technique from time to time when practicing the Doubles Drill, which is precisely why he recommends it. One involves gripping the handgun too tightly with the firing hand, which can cause a right-handed shooter to push shots left and low (or a left-handed shooter to push right and low). Another is running into difficulty resetting the trigger when firing quickly. Every shooter is different, but the Doubles Drill can show us all which problems we’re experiencing. The faster we learn that the faster we can focus on solutions.
About Ben Stoeger
Practical Shooting is Ben Stoeger’s life. He travels, trains, competes and teaches to improve both his own skills and his training methods. Things change fast in the competitive shooting scene, and Stoeger likes to stay on top of the changes in order to shoot his best and teach his students to be the best.
Stoeger discovered the sport of Practical Shooting in 2005 and says it became an addiction for him. He started training like it was his full-time job and became proficient quickly. Using dry fire as his primary training method, he was able to make USPSA GM almost right away after starting to compete. By 2007, Stoeger was competing in the USPSA Nationals to learn how to shoot better and improve his skills. He began teaching others to shoot in 2008 and travels all over the United States and the world, shooting matches and teaching classes. He has also published many books on the subject.
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