Armory, Self Defense, And EDC > Firearms Advice For Beginners

Fitness for Shooting

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David in MN:

--- Quote from: ID_Joker on April 25, 2013, 02:24:20 PM ---Search on youtube for some of Rob Pincus' videos on FitShot.  They should give you some ideas.

--- End quote ---

Fitshot is crazy awesome. I had already been into crossfit but this went to another level. Some of the workouts really push me and there's something crazy good about sucking wind and shaking while trying to get sights on target. Not only will it improve your shooting fitness but it will improve your ability to shoot.

I also strongly recommend boxing. I box and getting a heavy bag and training will rapidly develop the shoulders and upper back. Plus the footwork skills strengthen your standing shooting position. Other martial arts probably would do the same.


--- Quote from: PrepperJim on April 23, 2013, 11:50:24 AM ---All -

I know this is probably a dumb question to ask, but I am going to ask it anyway.

I want to get in better general shape, but want to target my fitness to armed self defense. That is, I don't want to be tired holding a shotgun or AR to my shoulder for a couple of hours or going to the range and shooting three guns (handgun, shotgun and Glock) from a variety of of positions - sitting with rest, sitting no rest, standing no rest.

Is there a fitness routine for this beyond general cardio and weights? Perhaps I could do something while traveling....

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My advice would be to work on balance and stance first and increase strength later.

My girlfriend is tiny. She was spanking new to shooting when we met. Her accuracy was OK at best. Taught her stance work then made her practice balance techniques and this improved dramatically. Her strength came last and now she is dialing in.

Balance- try doing everyday things on one foot. Pick things up with your toes.

Strength- work upper arms, shoulders, back, chest and stomach. Overall strength training will help either way but focus should be on those areas.

I'm going to take this idea in a different direction:  Yoga or other serious stretching routine.  This can be accomplished through a martial arts course as well if they do lots of stretching.  I personally prefer hot yoga.

From helping to teach at Appleseed courses I've seen many, many people who couldn't sit well or at all and who were extremely tight getting into a prone position.  Being limber allows one to get into awkward positions and allows one to get into their natural point of aim easier since they aren't fighting their own body.  On the second day many of those who were tight on Day 1 are extremely sore and had even more trouble.

Being limber will also aid in preventing other injuries like pulled muscles and joint injuries.  Having tight muscles and then firing them up in maximal exertion mode is a recipe for a torn muscle.  Having been there more than once I can attest to how limiting it is when one's calf or hamstring get's ripped!

I've never had to go in to combat or defend myself from a stalking serial killer, but I do hunt a lot (on foot) and find that simple cardio excercises along with promoting average strength, while keeping very limber, suits me just fine.  I've guided many friends over the years and have found that most of them, even when in good cardio shape, struggled with balance, agility, and coordination issues more than anything else.  For that reason I suggest athletic excersises that exploit balance, agility, and coordination. 

you want to work on balance/agility/coordination a la nelson's suggestions, get into plyometrics. that will leave you sucking wind and wishing you were dead.

heavy g posted a long time ago about how he did some targeted strength training to help him shoot better. mind you he doesn't have a left pec muscle but he may have some good suggestions for this. if you PM he'll probably get back to you about it.

i would suggest general strength training, but focus on doing more reps with less weight. if you bulk up you'll actually reduce your range of motion because your muscles will get in the way.

work on cardio (the plyo will do that) and agility training.


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