PSA defines dry-fire training as successfully and safely practicing the manipulation of firearms in an environment that is completely void of live fire.
Dry-fire practice is one of the most effective ways of ingraining the fundamental shooting capabilities. There are several benefits to dry-fire practice including but not limited to: (1) minimal noise from the live fire of your firearm or other shooters’, (2) eliminating the burning effects of flying brass, (3) absence of the metal-on-metal “clink” of fast moving reciprocating slides, and (4) the plethora of other distractions one may find on their local firing range. PSA recommends that dry-fire practice is consistently done in one designated area (and no other area) inside of your home. This will ensure that you have a quiet practice area and that you are mentally focused.
The ratio of dry-fire practice to actual rounds down range (in our opinion) should be 50:1. In other words, you should have at least 50 dry-fire repetitions to every single live fire round down range. This may seem like a lot, but shooting is most definitely a perishable skill, and consistent practice is imperative for the serious marksman. In your dry-fire practice, maintaining a clear sight picture is critical. Ensuring that your front sight does not move when manipulating the trigger is what we are looking for. Those of us with DA/SA pistols will have even more practicing to do!!!!
When using dry-fire practice, PSA suggests that you use “snap caps” to protect your firing pin and trigger assembly. Snap Caps are cool little doo-hicky’s that are shaped like a standard cartridge. What allows them to be able to used in dry-fire practice is the fact that they contain no primer, no active propellant, nor a projectile. If you look closely at the head-stamp of a snap cap versus a dummy round you can easily tell the difference. Below you can see an example of a snap cap. Where the primer is usually located is a small rubber nipple that allows for safe dry-fire practice. Dummy rounds DO NOT have this rubber nipple.
One way of ramping up the intensity of your dry-fire practice is to do your dry-fire practice with your eyes closed. This, if done correctly, will ensure that your trigger control is uninterrupted. The other benefit to eyes-closed-dry-fire-practice is to ensure that your grip is consistent. Understand that your trigger finger is independent of your sights and your grip is independent of your trigger finger. When we teach our students that shooting is a science, we mean it!!!
*** If you are unfamiliar with firearms and/or their accessories, and want to learn more, PSA strongly suggests that you find, enroll, and attend a comprehensive and reputable firearms safety course. Firearms safety is all of OUR responsibility.
We want to thank you for taking out the time to stop by our lane at the shooting range!! We hope that you enjoyed your stay and hope that you stop back by early and often to catch up on all PSA updates! We truly hope that we were able to hit the target, and if you ever have any questions please don’t hesitate to shoot them our way!! We look forward to shooting the breeze with you soon again!!
And as always….remember to watch your six and stay low!!!