Unsupported, off-handed shooting has often been a standard by which true hunters and outdoorsmen have judged their marksmanship. Nailing a paper-plate target at 100 yards, three times in a row in less than a minute is usually the measure.
While that may sound simple or easily accomplished, without practice and solid shooting technique, it’s not. Then, go ahead and add the pressure of buck fever. Try being out of breath or really excited, try being tired or sleep deprived from a loud rowdy night at camp. Such things change the off-hand shooter’s accuracy and often turn some shooters away from the very idea of shooting offhanded. Here are a few tips that can help you hit the bullseye when you choose to stand and deliver.
Take a full breath. Let it out halfway, then hold the rest. Don’t hold it too long. If you need to do so, repeat the process until you are ready to pull the trigger.
Hold the rifle firmly for good control but do not strangle it. You should not be holding th rifle so tightly that you start to shake uncontrollably. Keep in mind, if you are shaking, that energy will be transferred through the stock and effect your accuracy. Set your trigger finger so that it touches no other part of the rifle but the trigger.
Your feet should be set comfortably, shoulder-width apart. If you are a right-handed shooter, your left leg should be forward. Make sure to shift your weight slightly toward the forward leg so that you are leaning into the gun. Keep in mind that your feet should be at a 45-degree angle to the target.
One of the main causes of missing a target is jerking the trigger. It happens even to novice shooters, in the heat of the moment. The best way to avoid this is to put in the work when it comes to dry-fire practice. Use dry-fire exercises and to assure that you are used to placing only the pad of your finger on the trigger. This is called “thinking the trigger off.” Take the time to be certain that your cheek weld is flush and your elbow remains down.