For many people, the holidays are a time to take a break from shooting. Whether it’s family obligations, weather, or just plain old burn out after a long season of dedicated practice, it can actually be good to step away from the gun for a little bit.
What is often overlooked is the beneficial side to taking a break. Sometimes over the course of a year’s training we build bad habits: training habits, technique habits, performance habits. Walking away from the gun for a few weeks can reset the mind and allow you to come back along a better path. Too often, shooters try to force their way through burn out periods and at best it’s just a waste of time and ammo. At worst, they’re building up a lot of bad reps that will require that much more effort and practice to repair.
Looking at the bright side, maybe the break will be a good thing. I had been trying to get into a better habit of dry fire practice while my range time was reduced. That seemed like it was having a positive effect, at least until my recent Black Creek Steel match. Reading Todd's article makes me wonder if I was burning out, or at the very least starting to reenforce bad habits. I will admit that while I immensely enjoy shooting, a few of my recent range trips were influenced by "I must do this or I will get stale."
I think I'll continue working my way through Mike Seeklander's "Your Competition Handgun Training Program" that I received for Christmas and develop a better regimen for training, while at the same time keeping it fun. Going back and reviewing the basics seems like a good idea too.
My time away from the range is not by choice, but maybe there will be some good to come from it.