I’m not sure where it originally came from, but there is a common axiom in the shooting world that goes something, “Beware the man with only one gun, for he knows how to use it.”
Now, obviously, there are a lot of holes in that statement. Most apparent is the simple example of your average gun owner who bought a gun for home defense, but has never received any practical training or never really practices at all. Aside from that example, there are many professional shooters out there who have several weapons all individually suited towards specific missions or tasks, and use those weapons extremely effectively for those tasks. This isn’t a post about these people.
The New Rifleman just put up a post detailing his experience of taking a home-assembled 20″ AR, not to dissimilar from the DMTR, to a NRA high power match. He shot sharpshooter on his first time out. The posting is very nice, and is a reminder that most people in the shooting community are always friendly and willing to lend a hand.
I have never shot a high power match. And, in all honesty, I don’t know how I would do at one. But that’s not the point I want to talk about. The important take away is that you just need to go out and do it. Be the man in the arena who actually dares. You will only become better for it.
Too many of us approach shooting, or really any other skill-heavy sport like golf, archery, or even auto racing, with the mentality of, “I don’t have good enough equipment. I need to get better stuff before I go compete.” In reality, the best performers are not the best because they have the best equipment. They are the best because they have put the most time in practicing and honing their talents. Their specialized equipment only gives them that extra edge to better compete with other experts. If you take any of my “standard” rifles and put them in the hands of a NRA high master, they would still outshoot 99% of the population.
It is for this reason that I really started this journey, to which I am admittedly lagging behind my goals. Perfect execution of the fundamentals is what ultimately wins the day, the equipment is secondary.
Lothaen succinctly summed it up,
True mastery of your rifle will come when you have shot it under many different scenarios and conditions… and then you will understand it is *not* the rifle you must master.