I Really Need a Psychiatrist!

Discussion in 'The Basics, Starting Out' started by CaptnC, Feb 15, 2018.

  1. CaptnC

    CaptnC Well-Known Member

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    I've had this problem since I was a kid. Target panic! It even bad with my bow...move to shooting a traditional long bow for a while in the early 80's to over come it.

    Put fur on it or some odd shape or rock...no problem...put a round spot on it and I'm doomed!

    I kind of high jacked a thread yesterday with issues at the range. So I decided to start my own.

    The range I like to shoot at has steel at 400 and 600 yards. Nothinged extra to shoot them, but you have to qualify to shoot at those distances. I have tried several times to put 5 in a 5" "dot" at 300yrds and always pulled one.

    They don't police those targets so I can always go shoot without incident. Lart Saturday on a 600yd deer target that has a flapper plate in the kill zone...I hit it on my first shot, next shot was one inch low, next shot was between this two shots. It was two wet to walk down there, but I had videod the shots so I knew where I had hit. 4" group max...most likely a little less.

    So the gun shoots...my loads are decent at least. But I can't shoot 5 in a 5" spot!

    Yesterday I had three qualifing targets set up, plus one to zero on. First shot on the first two were way out of the white so not need to waset the ammo. I did shoot the second target a few more times hoping I could get it done on the tlast target. I left a three shot group that was well under one inch to to shot the last target before they closed.

    After a little cool down, the first shot was finally perfect...right under the crosshair! The second shot was not bad but we'll away to the right. The range faces due north and we had a south-southwest wind that was gusting. I'm playing down the second shot as wind pushed. Shot three is 6 o'clock, very low but in the white. I was mad I had dove into the gun again so I fired shot 4 right away but it too was low, but still in...need one more shot.

    To be honest this was the first time I had got this close. I always pull the third shot ALWAYS! So I settle down...let the gun cool...did 4 dry fires that were perfect. No movement, no heart beat, nothing! Load a round in the chamber but don't close the bolt for one last trigger pull before the shot.

    Must have jerked the hell out of it because shot 5 in out of the white in the orange! Really mad at myself this time I grab a round and fire it. Don't even check to see where it hit. Then walked down to pull my targets to go home.

    2018-02-15 10.42.38.jpg

    If you call I never mentioned two shots in the same hole...shots one and six are in the same hole...at 12 o'clock above the center of the bull...exactly where the gun is sighted!
     
  2. CaptnC

    CaptnC Well-Known Member

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    2018-02-15 10.48.27.png
    Captured this image out of one of my videos before I went to try and quailfy. The one on the right is 4 or 5 inch...these are at 400yds. The one just hit and swinging is 2 or 3 inches. That was first try after hitting the one on the right...also first shot.
     
  3. dmoon

    dmoon Well-Known Member

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    I feel your pain, I used to have target panic as well. It started back in the mid 90's when I was doing a lot of 3D archery shoots. A guy I knew that taught people to shoot Olympic style archery got me to shooting into a bale at the inside range with my eyes closed. It amazed me how I could feel all of my "issues" with my shooting form. It didn't take long and I was cured, and if I started throwing shots I'd revisit this strategy. After I got serious about shooting rifles it wasn't long until I started throwing shots with my rifle. I used what I had learned from archery and started shooting groups at 100 yards with my eyes closed. Again I could concentrate on my form instead of the target and my groups tightened up, it worked for me.....maybe it would work for you. ;)
     
  4. CaptnC

    CaptnC Well-Known Member

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    I've tried that with my bow, but never had the time to run to the range to do it long enough to over come it. I only have 3D targets...I hate loosing arrows.

    I'm going to have to try that...my gun is solid enough I might be able to hit the quaifying target that way...be a great excuse it I don't hit in the white! LOL
     
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  5. Gregg C

    Gregg C Well-Known Member

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    Aggravating! I know how you feel, but I got nothing . Just some support....although, my shrink wanted me to take meds. Maybe I should have taken her up on that ,, put an end to these voices in my head....wait, those are my only friends ! Hahaha , just kidding.
     
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  6. Timnterra

    Timnterra Well-Known Member

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    What is you trigger set at? Are you shooting prone or off a bench? What are you using for a rear support? What are you doing to build a shooting position? Do you have a routine, or do you just lay the rifle down and start shooting? It is easy to develop bad shooting habits. When I got started shooting it was with a pump action shotgun. I didn’t know it but I developed a terrible habit of pumping the action as soon as the shot broke. I didn’t know I was doing it until I forgot to take the safety off and almost threw myself on the ground trying to cycling the action when it hadn’t even fired.
     
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  7. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    The first thing I would do is buy a very good trigger that you could not anticipate and/or set the trigger to about two pounds. The next thing it to work on trigger control and trigger hand position. Not all stocks are trigger/ grip friendly.

    This happens to all of us at one time or another (If we will admit it) and
    it is something that takes the right equipment and lots of practice to eliminate. When I was match shooting, I sometimes shot a 22 rifle to practice because it allowed lots of practice and helped with the consistency of my trigger control. (I used a heavy 22 target with the same stock and trigger pull as my match rifle).

    When shooting bows in competition, I saw people walk up to the 10 yard line and start practicing. The best thing I found was to walk up to the 60 Yard for my first shots. On some bow ranges we had 80 and 100 yard targets that would really test you for target panic. This makes you think about hold, release and follow through because you know if you screw up you are going to miss the whole target. To start Practicing at the long distances with a rifle will do the same thing.

    The other thing I did was to imagine that I could guide the bullet or arrow By holding the bow or rifle on target until the projectile hits the target or game (This is a way to practice follow through). It is very difficult with a rifle because of recoil, but it helps.

    Just a few suggestions that might help. You are already half way there
    because you know that it exist. Many are in denial if they don't think it affects everyone at one time or another.

    The best way to solve a problem is to first admit it exist.

    J E CUSTOM
     
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  8. CaptnC

    CaptnC Well-Known Member

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    Tim,
    I have a bi pod in front and a bag in the rear. I squeeze the bag to get on target. I lay over the gun trying to not bear down on it too much. The gun is solid...no heart beat shows...during dry fires the cross hairs don't move.

    Trigger is is great hunting weight...I have not measured it yet. But I feel it will be around 2lbs. I have polished and re-springer the factory Axis Trigger which is junk in the factory configuration.

    When I was preparing to video one shot at 600yds...I put a round in the chamber but left the bolt handle up while I got everything ready to video. When i got behind thr gun and pulled the trigger I felt like I was trying the tackle the thing!
     
  9. piute

    piute Well-Known Member

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    Shooting at targets with friends I noticed many bad groups came from their having a poor sight picture, parallax and eye relief because of scope fit!
     
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  10. CaptnC

    CaptnC Well-Known Member

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    My original post was already long enough so I left that part out. But before I started the last attempt I checked and adjusted everything to make sure it was perfect so that issue would not be the cause my failure to hit where I wanted.
     
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  11. Timnterra

    Timnterra Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like what some call a “flinch.” You are worrying about the rifle going off and treat it different then a dry fire. I have heard of several shooting instructors that will work with guys by loading the rifle for them and watching their form as they shoot. They will do a couple live rounds then not load it and watch how the guy responds to the trigger pull. If he has a problem it becomes very evident as you discovered when your bolt was up. The reason I asked if you have a routine is because that is one way to cure your problem of panic. Focus on the routine not the shot. I think you should make a literal checklist write it out and go through the list dry firing at home infront of the Tv or something. Take the list with you when you go shooting. Following the list just as you do at home and your habits will begin to change. Also have you heard of “natural point of aim”? This is something that needs to be part of your list.
     
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  12. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    You probably already know this, but when shooting off a bipod you must/should push the rifle forward to load the bipod and prevent the stock from contacting the barrel just before firing

    This also takes practice and discipline but can have a huge effect on consistency.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  13. 26Reload

    26Reload Well-Known Member

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    Then the other problem....sometimes you are just not programmed to shoot perfectly...I don't shoot perfect most of the time...
    on the range one day I shot the factory 7 wsm as perfect as it will ever be shot...300 yards..heat waves and wind...3/4...not moa...3/4" group at 300 yards and most of the time I couldn't see the little 1" dot......
    bows....I used to be able to shoot those really well too...but my brother could pick up a bow and outshoot me any day....
    Sometimes practicing to be perfect has its drawback...
    Just shoot to the best of your ability and take good days with the really good days.....and be happy to be out enjoying your time...and remember...some people have to shoot for a living...
     
  14. CaptnC

    CaptnC Well-Known Member

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    Well aware of it, but for get about it pretty easy...yesterday I would find that my rifle was over a foot away from the front edge of the bench. Because I'm try to free recoil the rifle it moves backwards quite a lot between shots.

    Technically I think I'm great...on 90% of the aspects of shooting...execution is a totally different story.

    I shoot alone the vast majority of the time. So having someone load the rifle for me would be difficult. I need the gun loaded about once out of ten attempts.