What if I could offer you a training method or technique that is designed to effectively improve your handling with a gun, with very little ammo and very little time? This drill uses only 50 rounds of ammo and can be done in about five minutes. The training method or drill is called Dot Torture. Dot Torture was invented by firearm's instructor David Blinder. It’s hard to classify Dot Torture as a drill because, in reality, it's several drills that all utilize a single target. All in all, it may not be a classically defined drill, but for simplicity's sake, I’ll just call it a drill.
The Dot Torture drill is one of my favorites for a few reasons. First, it's easy to do. The instructions come printed on the target itself. On top of that, the target is free to download and print from pistol-training.com. To complete the drill you don't need much, all you need is the following.
50 Rounds of Ammo
Dot Torture target
The Dot Torture Drills Broke Down
In total there are 7 complete drills that utilize ten different 2-inch diameter dots. Each is numbered and has printed instructions below it. The creator of the exercise advises you to start at 3 yards for the first go round. The Dot Torture drill utilizes the following to improve your skills
Dot 1 - Slow fire 5 shots into Dot 1
Dot 2 - Draw and Shoot one Shot Repeat 5x
Dot 3 and 4 - Draw, fire one shot 3 and one shot on 4. Repeat 4x
Dot 5 - Draw and fire five shots with strong hand only
Dots 6 and 7 - Draw fire 2 on 6 and 2 on 7. Repeat 4x
Dot 8 - From the low ready fire five shots with the weak hand
Dots 9 and 10 - Draw, fire 1 on 9, speed reload, and fire 1 on 10. Repeat 3x
As you can see the drill incorporates a ton of valuable skills into a straightforward target. These skills are useful for concealed carriers and general defensive firearms use. While the exercises include critical skills like drawing and reloading they also force you to shoot a tiny target.
This small target forces you learn how to shoot your gun accurately, and even under a slight bit of stress. As you work to improve your skills with this drill, you’ll find yourself moving faster and hopefully shooting just as straight.
It’s also a great evaluator of skills. You run through several drills exceptionally quickly, and you can see where you need to improve. This drill helped me learn how to draw and get on target rapidly.
At 3 yards this drill doesn’t seem hard, but the targets are small, and a single miss means you failed the drill.
Conducting the Drill
When you start this drill go slow. Take your time and stress accuracy over speed. Speed comes with time, and accuracy is more important than speed. When speed and accuracy are combined, then you have a winning edge.
Going slow allows you to build on the skills needed to properly execute a draw, as well as reloads, and other shooting fundamentals. Going too fast may build bad habits that are hard to break later.
Adding Some Challenge
If you've found yourself as a master of the drill at 3 yards, you can make things a bit harder. For one, add some distance, back up a yard or two. Small targets and increased distance makes it a bit harder than you think.
Another way to add difficulty is to add a time restraint. You can do this for individual drills, or for the entire drill. Trying to do it under 5 minutes is a nice challenge.
Dot Torture is an excellent way to train and allows you to do so with minimal time and ammunition investment. If you can get only out to the range for a lunch break session give Dot Torture a try.