Natural Point of Aim for a Handgun
Guest contribution from Shooter Guru in Wattle Glen, Australia.
See video at end of article.
We all want to improve our shooting, right? The days when it all comes together, shooting techniques, mental discipline: in short you end up shooting well and if you’re like me it gives you a buzz. You feel good about what you’ve achieved and therefore good about yourself. If you discipline yourself to routinely use natural point of aim your shooting will improve. You will shoot tighter groups and be more consistent in your shooting for longer periods. I have seen estimates ranging up to 30% improvement using this technique over time. Do you want 30% improvement in your shooting, to break that shooting plateau that’s been bugging you for ages? I can hear you saying Hell Yes!
So what is “Natural Point of Aim”? Simply put, it’s the natural point where your body is perfectly aligned with the target. Or in your shooting stance, your most relaxed body position to perfectly acquire your target. So you take up your natural shooting stance, where you are most comfortable and hopefully relaxed, and you’re not on target – what do you do? The most common thing with shooters is to move their arms, hips, head, or worst all with handgun shooters – their wrist – to get back on target. Once you do this you have moved away from your natural body alignment. You have suddenly created extra muscle tension. This is a bad thing because putting extra strain on your muscles causes fatigue. With fatigue comes a drop off in mental concentration. Your shooting abilities are going to go downhill over a period of time and you’re not going to shoot well.
To check where your natural point of aim is do the following steps:
1. Take up your natural relaxed shooting stance
2. Acquire your sight picture (sights on target)
3. Close your eyes
4. Take a couple of deep breaths to relax.
5. Open your eyes and see where your sight picture has moved to
This is your natural point of aim and most likely you are now off target. So what to do now? You need to reposition your entire body so that you maintain your point of aim and get on target. In the standing position an adjustment of your rear foot position will allow you to do this. Moving it back will raise your sights, forward will drop them. Left or right movement of your rear foot will change your position on the target sideways. In prone or other positions you may have to rotate in relation to the target. Once you have done this recheck the above steps to make sure you are still in your natural point of aim and are on target. You may have to do this several times. A tip: if you have some chalk, you can mark your feet position in your shooting bay so if you move from the firing line, you can return and instantly know where your correct position is.
If you apply some mental discipline to incorporate this technique as part of your shooting set up you will improve your shooting abilities over time.
Remember: safety first, and good shooting!
Video of Mike from Shooter Guru explaining
Natural Point of Aim for a Handgun:
Thanks Mike! New shooters, consider practicing this before your next ZSA, IDPA or USPSA match.