Shooting Drills to Practice

Dot Torture Test

I think this is the best use of 50 rounds you can do to improve your skills.


  • Dot #1- Draw and fire one string of 5 rounds for best group. One hole if possible, total 5 rounds.
  • Dot #2- Draw and fire 1 shot, holster and repeat X4, total 5 rounds.
  • Dot #3 and 4- Draw and fire 1 shot on #3, then 1 shot on 4, holster and repeat X4, total 8 rounds.
  • Dot #5- Draw and fire string of 5 rounds, strong hand only, total 5 rounds.
  • Dot #6 and 7- Draw and fire 2 shots on #6, then 2 on #7, holster, repeat X4, total 16 rounds.
  • Dot #8- From ready or retention, fire five shots, weak hand only, total 5 rounds.
  • Dot #9 and 10- Draw and fire 1 shots on #9, speed reload, fire 1 shots on #10, holster and repeat X3, total 6 rounds.

When you can do this clean on demand, extend the length or start timing and work on speed but maintaining accuracy. If a single shot is missed, you flunk. Only hits count and only perfect practice makes perfect.Dot Torture Test

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5x5x5 Drill

Skill Focus: combining speed and accuracy
Distance: 5 yards
Target: 5-inch circles with center aiming dot.

Instructions: Five shots, five inches, five yards, five seconds. Starting from a low ready position, at the beep fire five rounds at the circle. The goal is to land all five shots in the circle within five seconds.
Variations: For an added challenge, draw from the holster instead of low ready. To test consistency, repeat the drill five times. A “pass” is 25 shots with no misses.

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Wilson 5x5 Drill

This is one of my favorite drills to do.  It is fun, challenging and doesn't take much ammo or time.


Range: 10yd
Target: standard IDPA target
Start position: Gun in Holster, Hands at your sides facing target.
Rounds fired: 25

Another quick and easy drill to work on to measure your skills.  It is intended as a test for conceal carriers, using their conceal carry gun and holster.


Scoring is standard with a half second penalty per miss. A miss is anything not in the A-Zone or 8" circle or head cavity (3x4).

There are four strings of fire, each for time:

  1. Draw and fire 5 shots freestyle.
  2. Draw and fire 5 shots STRONG Hand Only.
  3. Draw and fire 5 shots freestyle, reload from slidelock and fire 5 more shots freestyle.
  4. Draw and fire 4 shots to the body and 1 shot to the head freestyle.

suggested scoring:

Grand Master: 15 seconds or less
Master: 20 seconds or less
Expert: 25 seconds or less
Sharpshooter: 32 seconds or less
Marksman: 41 seconds or less
Novice: 50 seconds or less
Over 50 seconds:Not proficient enough to carry a handgun

3x5 Drill

Skill Focus: accuracy, trigger control, sight alignment
Distance: 3 yards and greater
Target: 3×5 card

Instructions: Place a standard 3×5 white index card three yards away. Fire five rounds at the card with no time limit. If all five shots hit the card, move to the seven yard line and fire five more. If those are all hits, keep repeating the drill, moving back an additional yard after each successful 5 shot string. The goal is to go as far as you can without missing a shot. Once you miss, end the drill or start over at three yards.

The Super Drill

Coarse of Fire

String 1: 15 yards, 15 seconds, 10 rounds

String 2: 10 yards, 10 seconds, 10 rounds

String 3: 5 yards, 5 seconds, 10 rounds

Starting Position: Low ready. Draw from the holster for the “Advanced Super Test”.

Target: B-8 Repair Center

Scoring: Use target scoring rings and add up your total points for all three strings. Hits off the paper or over the time limit are not counted. 300 possible points. Passing score is 270 (90%). A score of 290 and above is considered outstanding.

Single Stack Version: If you’re running a 1911 or other lower capacity single stack pistol, you can use the same distances and time limits, but you’re going to fire 8 shots at each string of fire instead of 10, and you will start from the holster. Just like the standard Super Test, a passing score is 90% which, in this case, is 214 out of 240.


Revolver Course of Fire

Since they’re both big fans of the wheel gun, Wayne and Darryl also came up with a revolver version of the Super Test. The distances are the same, but the time limits have been adjusted to be more appropriate for 6-round strings of fire.

String 1: 15 yards, 12 seconds, 6 rounds

String 2: 10 yards, 8 seconds, 6 rounds

String 3: 5 yards, 4 seconds, 6 rounds

Starting Position: Low ready. Draw from the holster for the “Advanced Revolver Super Test”.