On Being Fit and Shooting

Caleb thinks that being fit makes you a better shooter. While I generally would agree, I know some utterly fantastic shooters I would not classify as fit. Actually, far from it. That said, I think it does help. I’ve had instances shooting where I’ve felt my stability would be significantly improved if I were in better shape. Certainly you will shoot better if your pulse rate is lower. So I would say it helps, but in the overall scheme of things, I think there are a lot more important aspects to being a good shooter.

BTW, Gun Nuts Media is sporting a new look. It’s cleaner and more modern, and it looks like they’ve also embraced threaded comments (which maybe they had before, but when you blog you don’t comment on other people’s blogs. It’s a rule :) )

14 thoughts on “On Being Fit and Shooting”

  1. I think how important it is depends on the sport. I’ve seen benchrest guys whose gravitational pull probably needed to be factored into their aim, but it’s harder to compete in a run’n’gun sport like USPSA when you cast too much of a shadow.

  2. “but when you blog you don’t comment on other people’s blogs. It’s a rule :)”

    Oh, I agree….

  3. On one hand it’s probably true, but on the other hand I’m in pretty good shape and know my way around a gun and I definitely don’t want to get into a gun fight with Larry Vickers…

  4. It’s one thing to calmly walk to a shooting booth and shoot at targets at whatever pace you’re comfortable with. It’s another thing entirely when you have to run, climb, etc.., when time won’t permit you to get back to a resting pulse rate. I did a cowboy match a few years back and noticed just how much harder it was to hold a handgun steady with an audience behind me and a stopwatch following me around.

  5. Along with cardiovascular fitness (I now have a blood pressure of 112/70, thank you very much), there are specific areas of fitness that matter. During my California 15 day waiting period to purchase my first handgun, I spent quite a bit of time strengthening my wrists and handguns by squeezing a tennis ball. I had read (and subsequent suggests that this is correct), that improved hand and wrist strength makes it easier to control and accurately shoot a handgun, because you are better able to handle the recoil. Since my first handgun was a Colt Government Model .45 ACP, this was probably wise.

  6. Because of my narrow focus on the action shooting sports, I at times forget that there are other competitive disciplines that don’t involve running around with a gun in your hand.

    1. Just because those others exist doesn’t mean they really count. ;)

  7. As a fat SOB I agree it depends, I can stand and punch paper for hours, but have me go 100yds downrange and change targets and hurry back? Forget it. I’d be lucky to hit the berm behind the targets. Run and Gun? How about run and pass out?

  8. You don’t have to out run the bear that’s chasing you and your buddy. You just have to out run your former buddy.

    We should all strive for a high level of fitness. Your life may just depend on it.

    Don’t drink, don’t do drugs, don’t smoke, eat right, stay fit…and die anyway

    1. Hey, let’s not get crazy now. I’m in excellent shape, and I still drink and eat bacon. One might argue that part of why I work out is so I can drink and eat bacon.

  9. I think the correct perspective is would improving the physical condition of any shooter result in improving their shooting ability. In most situations, yes. Even sitting under the shelter and poking holes in paper is tough on a hot day. Improving your physical health would most likely improve the shooting sports no matter which variety of activity you choose.

    And remember, luck favors the prepared.

  10. My technique definitely suffers after a hard sprint, and it’s good to practice overcoming that. Dryfiring during my run breaks the monotony somewhat, too.
    A lot of muscles are involved in shooting a handgun: the wrists, forearms and chest, especially. Becoming stronger, faster, and more flexible is its own reward, but it can also help your shooting.

    Not to mention the benefit of presenting a smaller target, and not needing as much cover to hide behind! :D

  11. Crap. Why doesn’t anyone tell me these rules????

    Now I feel like an arse. Crap. I just commented again. *sighs*. This is like dieting. Utter FAIL!

  12. I am fat enough that parts of by body require more than the FBI 12″ penetration minimum for my organs to get hit. Well, almost, from some angles. Still, waaaaaaay too fat!

    I find that I kick a lot more casings out from underfoot now at the indoor range, where I used to bend over and pick up the more interesting or useful ones. WAAAAAAY too fat.

    I saw a recent picture of me taken from behind and thought I was my late grandfather. Waaaaay too fat.

    I don’t drop my magazines, I pull them out, because I don’t want to have to kneel down to pick them up. Waaaaay too fat.

    Where is MArooned when I need a good example of weight loss?

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