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When we think of practicing with a handgun, we often think of spending time at the gun range. Unfortunately, we don't all live close to a range, nor can we afford the costs of daily practice (ammunition, range fees, transportation, etc.).

Fortunately there is a way we can practice that is both affordable and effective.

We are talking about dry fire practice.

Dry firing is the practice of "firing" a firearm without ammunition. Please refer to your owners manual in order to determine if it is safe to dry fire your handgun.

There are three areas of concern that can be addressed in a dry fire session.

  1. Stance and hold control
  2. Sight alignment and picture
  3. Trigger manipulation

Being able to master all of these increases your accuracy.

We're not going to go over the mechanics of each of the areas, but we will talk about how we can objectively measure our progress on them.

But before we begin, let's discuss dry fire safety. Obviously, the handgun must be empty.

Empty it, check it, check it, and check it again. Take any ammunition out of the room and when you come back, check again to make sure the handgun is empty.

Now, how do we measure the effectiveness of our practice.

First we obtain a laser cartridge insert from LaserLyte or some other company. Amazon and Ebay are full of these.

This allows us to see the impact point because when the firing pin hits the back of the insert, it causes the laser to fire.

Now we need a way to receive feedback on our accuracy.

LaserLyte has a whole slew of target options or we can use something more advanced (but very inexpensive).

If you own a computer and a webcam we'd suggest the Laser Activated Shot Reporter.

You can not only see your shots, but you can record the session for study.

By investing in a little bit of technology, you can vastly improve your marksmanship is a very short time.