It is necessary during firing to press the trigger under varying conditions of pistol movement in conjunction with correct sight alignment. In order to apply coordinated pressure on the trigger, the shooter must wait for those very definite times when all control factors are optimum and firing conditions become favorable. The rule that must be observed as the first step in attaining control of your shooting is: "You must never attempt to fire until you have completely settled into a minimum arc of movement. "
In order to learn how to fire a shot at the proper time, the shooter must make analysis of the time needed to settle and the duration of the minimum arc of movement.
The entire system, consisting of the shooter's body and the pistol, always undergoes a degree of movement. This is sometimes a pulsating, swaying or erratic arc of movement during aiming and firing a shot. The cause of this movement aside from conditions such as weather, is the action of the muscles maintaining the shooter's body in a definite position. Other action such as blood pulsation, causes movement of individual parts of the shooter's body and the pistol. The nature and extent of the arc of movement changes within the time being devoted to delivering a shot. For example, when the shooter is first getting his sight alignment and has not yet had time to settle his body and pistol, the extent of the movement is relatively great. As the body becomes balanced and the aiming is more precise, the arc of movement minimizes. After a certain length of time, the minimum arc of movement begins to increase, because the muscles begin to fatigue, and the shooter does not have enough air in his lungs to continue holding his breath. If we record the arc of movement, we will see a wavelike line with varying amplitude of oscillation (Figure 1-1).
It is obvious that under such circumstances the shooter must begin his smooth pressure on the trigger while not devoting too much attention to the arc of movement as long as it remains at the minimum. Continue to apply pressure on the trigger and intensely concentrate on keeping the sights in alignment. The resulting five to seven second period is the most favorable time for firing an accurate shot.
Taking into consideration the direct relationship between accuracy of shooting and the degree of immobility of the pistol when the shot is being delivered, the marksman must give greatest consideration to the selection of a stance, a position, a grip, and a means of breath control which will guarantee the greatest stability to both the pistol and the body. The relatively small degree of movement thus obtained provides a stable foundation, permitting use of the other fundamentals.
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