When I was five years old we went over to a friend’s house who had this cool and amazing gaming system, it was an Atari 2600! I still remember playing Frogger and Pitfall! I did not know it would be a classic, but Pac-Man was a personal favorite. The challenge of the game was stopping, going, and changing direction quickly. It seemed simple in nature, but it was very difficult to get more than a couple levels deep!
For the sake of this discussion, there are really only 3 different shots in Steel Challenge; “Burn it Down”, “Easy Now”, and “Focus Shot”. The Burn it Down targets are the four 18X24″ plates on Smoke and Hope, the front targets on Roundabout, the second plate on Accelerator, etc. The “Easy Now” shots are are the fourth plate on Speed Option, fourth plate on Accelerator, the back plates on Showdown, etc. And finally the “Focus Shots” are plates such as the 12″ plates on Outer Limits, plate #3 on Accelerator, plate #4 on Five To Go, etc.
As a shooter, it is important to understand the sight picture required to get your hits on all there different shot types. Each shot needs something just a little bit different. Refresh yourself on previous blog posts where I discuss Rubin’s Vase, Shooting on the Edge, and Speed vs. Accuracy. With this being said lets talk about one of the least talked about elements of our action shooting, motion in between shots.
While training a shooter this week I did not do nearly as good of a job as I could have articulating the importance of the motion in between shots. We were practicing Speed Option. This stage has all three types of shots and they are slightly exaggerated with plate #2 really being a “Focus Shot”. Despite being a “Focus Shot” many of us want to shoot it as a “Take it Easy” shot and it is not. While participating at many matches around the country, this is probably the number 1 plate missed in all of Steel Challenge. There are some top contenders!
Real speed on the Steel Challenge stage Speed Option comes from starting the gun fast, transitioning the gun fast, and stopping the gun fast. If you are able to shoot all three types of shots equally, you have to work on moving the gun real fast! The other key to a stage such as Speed Option is not to let panic set in when you approach the stage because of the largest transitions.
The next time you are out on the range, think about your stage breakdown with the three shot types in mind and then how you are going to transition the gun in the more expeditious manner possible… just like playing Pac-Man…
See you out on the range soon!