Application Of Trigger Pressure

1. Positive Uninterrupted Trigger Pressure - Surprise shot method - is primarily the act of completing the firing of the shot once starting the application of trigger pressure. The shooter is committed to an unchanging rate of pressure, no speed up, no slowdown or stopping. The trigger pressure is of an uninterrupted nature because it is not applied initially unless conditions are settled and near perfect. If the perfect conditions deteriorate, the shooter should not fire, but bench the weapon, relax, re-plan, and start again.

In instances when the pistol is stable and steady, and the periods of minimum arc of movement are of longer duration, it is immaterial whether the release of the trigger is completed a second sooner or a second later. Anytime that the shot is fired with minimum arc of movement and the sights are in alignment, it will be a good shot. Therefore, when the shooter has established stable minimum arc of movement and sight alignment, he must immediately begin to press on the trigger, smoothly but positively, and straight to the rear without stopping, until a shot is produced. This method of controlling the trigger action will give the shooter a surprise break of the shot before any muscular reflex can disturb sight alignment.

Time in seconds

Figure 3-2. Surprise Shot with Positive Uninterrupted Trigger Pressure.

Time in seconds

Figure 3-2. Surprise Shot with Positive Uninterrupted Trigger Pressure.

2. Interrupted Application of Trigger Pressure or the "Point" shooting Method: This is a method of trigger control not recommended, although used by some shooters. Some shooters think they can pick the trigger release time even after years of experience.

a. The shooter will align the sights and exert initial pressure on the trigger. He will then make every effort to hold the weapon motionless. During extremely brief moments of motionlessness, pressure is applied on the trigger. If the sight alignment changes and is not perfect, or the arc of movement of the weapon increases, the pressure on the trigger is halted and trigger tension maintained. When sight alignment is again perfect and movement diminishes, pressure on the trigger is resumed until the shot breaks, or after the slack in the trigger is taken up, initial pressure is applied and the shot released by a single swift movement of the trigger finger when there is a decrease in the minimum arc of movement. In this case the presence of perfect sight alignment is not considered essential in initiating trigger action. Abrupt action in applying trigger pressure will disturb the existing sight alignment and other fundamental control factors are subordinated to a minimum arc of movement. The application of all other fundamentals is required regardless of whether or not they are optimum.

Figure 3-3. Application of Trigger Pressure When Based on Perfect Sight Picture.

b. While applying positive trigger pressure straight to the rear, if any thought enters the shooters mind to speed up or slow down this trigger pressure, it will result in the concentration on sight alignment being broken down.

c. The decision to increase the trigger pressure may result in a reflex action commonly known as anticipation and usually results in heeling the shot (The bullet strikes the target at approximately one o'clock). The recoil becomes more imminent and the brain will send a signal for the arm and hand muscles to react prematurely a split second before the shot is fired; resulting in frequent bad shots and low scores.

Figure 3-4. Shot fired With interrupted Trigger Pressure Compared to Shot Fired With

Uninterrupted Positive Trigger Control.

Figure 3-4. Shot fired With interrupted Trigger Pressure Compared to Shot Fired With

Uninterrupted Positive Trigger Control.

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