Shooter's Corner (Ask the Pros) > Improve your skills

shooting alone vs with partner

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Interested to see how other people feel about training at the range by themselves vs with a shooting buddy or two. Im fortunate to live in an area where I can train by myself if I want to or can have a bay to share with a couple of partners. I used to shoot alone pretty often but have been shooting with a friend lately, problem is I feel sometimes having someone else can be distracting and less disciplined. We either start to shoot the shit or just start wasting ammo and tie on nonsense shooting vs actual drills. At the same time it can be beneficial to have someone else to compete against especially since we are of similar skill. So how do you guys like to train. BTW I am referring to competition shooting.

I think both can be beneficial is done right.  When either turns into "nonsense shooting" you are indeed just wasting ammo.  Having a buddy is great if you have similar goals for the session and can critique and coach each other.  It sounds like you and your buddy just need to get on the same page as to what your shooting/training goals are.

Do both.  Trying to improve while doing it with a training partner only works if you guys are focused on that task.  Keep it simple and keep the group size small. I have been to a lot of "training sessions" where the invitees invited others and it turned into a huge "show off" session. It was a waste of time and resources. Going by yourself is also beneficial because it allows you to experience things without any stress of judgement.  You won't worry about what the other guy is thinking and will allow you to try things you probably would not do with a partner.

I shoot local matches pretty much every weekend, so I don't actually train as often as I should. However, when I train, I train with a purpose in mind. In fact I write down what I want to work on and the drills that serve that purpose. When I get to the range, I already know exactly what I'm going to work on, so I am laser focused. I try to make every round count. The few times I have trained with a friend, I have been distracted from my game plan. Now I pretty much train alone so I can do what I came to do.

Agree with Leo, do both. Think of when lifting weights and the role of a spotter. While you may not "need" them for much, it the critical component for improvement. With live fire practice, it helps to have someone in the know to be able to spot even minor opportunities for improvement you might not otherwise see because you are the one shooting, and that which you may miss from match video because of where the camera is positioned. My $0.02 anyway.


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