The secret to shooting around these obstacles is to incorporate them into your Action-Pistol stance. Here’s how to do it.


In 1985 the Gilmore Brothers, Riley and Kelly, developed a shooting technique that solved the problem of the Barricade Event at the Bianchi Cup National Action Pistol Championship. At the Barricade, the shooter is required to deliver six hits per string from each side of the barricade from distances of 10, 15, 25, and 35 yards. The main opponent for the shooter is the barricade itself, which blocks the shooter’s vision and forcing him into an unnatural stance.

To make the barricade an ally instead of an impediment, shooters began to incorporate touching the barricade into their technique, using it for support. Into the early 1980s, it was common to lean on the barricade with the thumb and knuckle when shooting strong hand. For weak-hand shooting, 1984 champion Brian Enos employed a weak-side grip of looping the index finger over the barrel and grabbing the barricade with the thumb and remaining fingers. This was a tremendous advancement, but it wouldn’t work on the strong side.

The Gilmore brothers, one of whom is left handed and the other right handed, created the “Gilmore Switch,” which solved the problem. Arguably, the switch-shooting barricade technique was the difference in Riley’s 1986 win and is now widely used by both right and left-handed shooters.

To begin, when practicing always strive for match simulation. At a distance of 35 yards, you have up to 8 seconds to shoot the barricade targets. Try beginning with this par time when working the Switch into your bag of tricks.

Click here for the other fine points of the Gilmore Switch.


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