Jim Cirillo's Modern Point Shooting Techniques

Discussion in 'Self Defense Tactics & Weapons' started by kilogulf59, Jun 11, 2008.

  1. kilogulf59

    kilogulf59 Former Guest

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    From the late, great, Jim Cirillo: "Alternative Sighting Methods"

    * While many instructors use the term "sighted fire" to imply the use of the sights and "aimed fire" for a coarser visual index using the shape of the gun, Jim Cirillo offers a block of instruction that he calls "alternative sighting methods."

    * He believes that when you shoot using the sights, your conscious mind is occupied with the sight picture. He further believes that the subconscious mind works faster than the conscious mind. While you have been consciously training with a formal sight picture, your subconscious mind has picked up on a bunch of subtleties about how the gun is aimed. In particular, the subconscious mind knows what the silhouette of the gun looks like if it is aligned with the target.

    * Cirillo teaches his "weapon silhouette point" by taping over the sights on the gun, after demonstrating what the slide of an autoloader or the cylinder of a revolver look like if the gun strays out of alignment. Thus, the gun is visually aimed solely by its shape. Many students actually shoot better with the sights taped. His theory on this is that since they cannot see a traditional sight picture, they don't jerk the trigger when they think they've got a perfect one.

    * The purpose of the silhouette point is to get the gun aligned and fired more quickly, by relying on your subconscious mind. The method is independent of the position in which you grasp the gun.

    * Cirillo also teaches two variations on a technique where the gun remains below the line of sight. The trick here is to keep the gun parallel to the ground as you lower the gun from your sighting plane to the level at which you want to strike the target. The simpler version, the "geometric point," can be used if there isn't enough light to see your sights. (Obviously, there has to be enough light to locate the target.)

    * In the second version, the "nose point," you do a geometric point, making sure that the gun is under your nose. You can then pivot like a tank turret and rapidly engage targets to your sides as soon as the pivot of your body points your nose at them, so long as you have kept the gun under your nose.

    * If you are going to keep the gun horizontal and below the level of the shoulders, you are probably going to have to bend your elbows into some variation of the Weaver or Isosceles grip, assuming you are using two hands on the gun. If you only keep one hand on the gun your stance will bear a distinct resemblance to the Fairbairn/Sykes three-quarter hip stance..
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    Mr. Cirillo was also intent on demonstrating that one could shoot from virtually any position. His downed defender positions were as follows (performed at 7 yards):

    * Lying on one's back, head toward the target, with hands over the head (e.g. upside down), 2 handed, 6 shots
    * Lying on back, same position, right hand only, 6 shots
    * Lying on back, same position, left hand only, 6 shots
    * Lying fetal position, right side, gun between the knees, 2 hands, 6 shots
    * Fetal position, right side, right hand only, gun between the knees, 6 shots
    * Fetal position, right side, left hand only, gun on top of uppermost knee, 6 shots
    * Fetal position, left side, ditto to each the above, total of 18 shots

    (Ken’s note, Ed McGivern, though primarily an exhibition shooter, in his book “Fast and Fancy Revolver Shooting” developed a rather complex police officers training program. One of his mantras was shooting from the above positions or ones similar another was shooting while running. These methods are from the 1930s…)
  2. noslolo

    noslolo New Member

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    My father in law is the best shooter that I know. A few years back he went for his state recert, when he knocked off the front sight. He finnished with a 99%. The state instructor was blown away. I wished that I had 25% of his skill. But that would still take thousands of hours of range time.
  3. kilogulf59

    kilogulf59 Former Guest

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    Outstanding noslolo and kudos to your father-in-law. I have a speculation that many of the “sights only” style shooters do not realize they are not actually using the sights anymore. Granted, it is a hunch on my part and most likely un-provable as well.

    One must consider though that this type of combat shooting, generically called point shooting, is not a substitution for sighted fire, it is an adjunct to the same. Moreover, so-called “point shooting” is in fact aimed fire except the aiming device is hand/eye coordination as opposed to a mechanical or optical sight system.
  4. delta13soultaker

    delta13soultaker New Member

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    Depends on Uncle Sam's whim every 3 yrs.
    I tend to agree with that.

    Earlier this week we were doing a reflexive fire range using M16A4's with M68 sights (Aimpoint red dot). The range was set up with staggered pop-ups at 25 and 50 meters. The targets were set up to fall after 2 or 3 hits, random between the 25m and 50m targets. (I have to say the guys from that range did an awesome job of reprogramming the Lockheed software to a task never intended.)

    After the shoot and when everything was being packed up, we had policed up all the live rounds from the sand on the firing line, which was a good pile so we loaded the stuff up to expend. We hate turning in any ammo ya know. By then all the M68's were off the rifles and packed back in their cases.

    So we fire the A4's slick. No carrying handles; no rear sights. We still dropped targets quickly and nearly as well as with sights. That was shooting off pure motor muscle memory.
  5. TranterUK

    TranterUK Guest

    Hey, I have that book by Ed McGivern, I found it in a second hand bookshop here in the UK. First addition too, 1938. Amazing shot with a revolver. How about five shots into a playing card, in 2/5th second. He could also shoot thrown objects by the dozen, often hitting two at the same time with a revolver in each hand. Fantastic. :)
  6. kilogulf59

    kilogulf59 Former Guest

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    Delta,
    I have documents on both Reflexive Fire and Quick Fire. If I can locate them I will post.

    Tranter,
    Ed McGivern was amazing, check out his police training program in that book.
  7. kilogulf59

    kilogulf59 Former Guest

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