Mid-South is a facility still likely to be in use by the Navy SEALs as well as many other law enforcement and military units. Back in the in the late 90's and early 2000's Ross Sanders was one the lead instructors at Mid-South. Ross, although never in the military was an accomplished competition shooter who strived to make relevant what he had learned in competition and apply it to combat.
In teaching the SEALs how to shoot faster than 99% of the people out there Ross prescribed a technique that entailed counting. For example, in a typical holster draw the process of drawing from the holster all the way up to presenting the gun and pressing the trigger would be broken down into steps and each step received a number. For example, the complete movement of drawing from the holster may be broken down into 7 steps and each step had a corresponding number. The shooter is thinking of the numbers in his or her head, as each step is performed.
This may sound slow and burdensome, but in actuality, if you practice this it's a very effective method for practicing perfectly and increasing your speed at the same time. As the process movement begins to flow more easily make an effort to speed it up the numbers without sacrificing quality of movement.
Learning by the numbers is a technique for focusing your attention upon what you are doing more effectively than if you weren't counting at all. It also promotes even and consistent movement. Setting a cadence is really helpful in getting smooth and as we often say, smooth is fast.
The faster you say those numbers the faster you'll be moving. Years after being at Mid-South and during the courses I was teaching, I began teaching students to do two things at once. So, each step of the Process Movement meant the hands were doing two things simultaneously. If you like to learn by the numbers, this method just cut the number of numbers in half.
Repetition is the key. Trips to the range, back and forth, this and that, most people I know just don't have the time and money to shoot live rounds at the range to become a stellar shooter. Everyone I know who is a stellar shooter practices dry fire, that way you can practice at home and get the reps in that you need.*Look for another post here in the Frog Blog that discusses dry fire training.
Back in the day, I was told that under pressure we become primitive like apes and aren't capable of fine motor skills or doing two things at once. I suspect this mistaken belief came about because many people do suffer a lapse in fine motor-skills. I'm not denying it happens, it does. But, why does it happen? In doing research on the topic I found that our abilities under pressure are directly related to our training techniques and mental conditioning, including techniques for calming the mind. The fact is I've been training to do two things at once for years and I've exercised fine motor skills in combat while experiencing a massive adrenaline dump. Our performance and abilities have everything to do with how we train ourselves. If you're interested in learning more I wrote a book in which I delve into sports psychology and neurology techniques for achieving peak performance under pressure . It's called Image Processing Training and it's available in the HVT store and on Amazon.