Placing Your Finger In The Same Position Matters
In anything we do, the ability to be consistent is what helps us improve. One area in shooting overlooked is trigger finger consistency as it relations to placement.
Working To The Minimum Standard
When you fail to move the trigger finger to the same location on the trigger you can’t be surprised by the inconsistent results. Because there is a lack of trigger finger consistency there is an inability to generate the same results. Proper trigger finger placement must accomplish three tasks. It must move to the same location on the trigger, the same position on the finger and the same pressure applied. Each of these tasks must also be performed almost simultaneously. Most shooting errors can be tied to one of these tasks. While you don’t need to be perfect with each of these tasks, there is a minimum standard.
It All Starts With Location
When we talk about minimum standard it generally gets a negative view. But, this is the minimum level to achieve the desired outcome. It should be a good thing. When it comes to trigger management there is a minimum standard for each of these tasks. As you work to improve in this area I find it hard to try and correct all three at one time. Starting with the easiest one is your best bet. I recommend the location on the trigger to start. It is easy because there is a tactile index that can help. When we place our finger on the trigger, we want it low for increased leverage. The lower the better and so when we can feel the bottom tip of the trigger we are at the lowest point. Placing your finger right at the bottom should be something you can “feel”. This feel will help create consistency.
Its A Right Angle
From there, the position on the finger is probably the next easiest to improve. You want the trigger finger placed deep, up to the first knuckle for power. The more power you have, the smoother the movement of the trigger. I use to think this was the biggest issue when it came to position. What I have learned watching hundreds of students struggle is it is more about how you interface with the flat surface of the trigger. If you point the tip of the finger back, it applies pressure to the side. If you point the tip of your finger forward it applies pressure to the side. Only through applying pressure to the flat surface will you move the trigger straight to the rear. The minimum standard here would be the tip of your trigger finger is pointing 90 degrees.
Dry Fire Is Your Friend
Trigger movement is probably the hardest to develop consistency. You have to be behind the gun firing to truly develop the skill. My biggest suggestion is to slow things down, way down. You need to feel the stages of the trigger’s travel so you can control its movement. If you fail to recognize this point, you will fly over your trigger errors. The best recommendation I can make is to work on the first two tasks through dry fire. These are more about proper positioning. Getting it right, time after time. Working at moving the trigger finger from the home position to the trigger is an easy drill that requires no resetting of the fire control. You literally move it from these two positions checking to make sure you met the minimum standard. Which are the bottom edge and 90 degrees.
Practice this so you develop consistency in the overlooked aspects of trigger management. Get better here and you will see the improvements in your shooting quickly.