For many people, January is a time to set goals or resolutions for the new year. I must admit, I am one of those people that never felt the urge to do so. Probably because at some point in my past I realized I never carried through on those well planned intentions. However, this year I decided to change things up a bit. Perhaps it’s the feeling of, “New Year, New Me,” or maybe just because I want to challenge myself to grow. Regardless, I made the decision to set some pistol training goals for 2022 that I think you may find beneficial, too.
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Honestly, with everything going on in my life this past year, I’ve spent very little time working on my pistol skills at the range. However, as you read through my list of goals, understand firearms training is more than just live fire shooting. When considering what goals to set for myself, I looked back through my 2021 articles in this Gear Up column for inspiration. I believe the goals I chose will help me become more well-rounded as both an instructor and a shooter.
Henry Ford once said, “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” One way I enjoy learning is through reading books. Yes, I’m that person on the airplane with her book out along with sticky notes, a highlighter and pen. I truly immerse myself in whatever I read. My first goal is to read at least two books this year specific to firearms training. I know that might not sound like a lot, but I have many books on other topics I plan to read.
A few years ago, Col. Dave Grossman handed me the book, “Secrets of Mental Marksmanship.” He highly recommended I read it. Regretfully, I just found the book in my basement, where it apparently got buried soon after I brought it home. So I decided to make this the first book on my reading list.
As for my second book, I haven’t decided yet. I plan on beginning reading that one in May, so I have a little time to ask around for some suggestions. Or perhaps I’ll find one while organizing my basement this winter.
Every year in the spring, when I begin spending time on the range, I’m discouraged by how much my hand strength diminished from the previous year. That inspired me to write the three-part series “How to Increase Your Grip Strength.” Since I now have all the hand strengthening tools, as well as the weights, my second goal is to increase my grip strength this winter.
To help make achieving this goal easier, I placed a basket with the hand strengthening tools under the coffee table. Now, when I watch television in the evening, everything I need is right there. I have no excuse to not spend some time (even if it’s just during commercials) working on increasing my grip strength.
Last summer I wrote a two-part series with tips for learning to use a red dot optic on a pistol. As I mentioned above, I didn’t experience very much live fire in 2021, so I realize I need to set aside time this year to really work on my red dot skills. My third pistol training goal is to increase my confidence and accuracy when shooting with a red dot optic.
Since I live in Ohio, the likelihood of getting out on the range before March is slim-to-none. Plus, realistically, I know it’s best if I work on one goal at a time. So, I plan on waiting until March to begin working on my red dot optic goal. To remind myself, I created a note in my calendar for March 1, with an alarm set.
As I mentioned above, these are my pistol training goals for 2022. I hope they inspire you to create your own. I wish you a successful and happy 2022.