The Shotgun Speed Drill

There are not many shotgun specific drills out there beyond the really basic stuff. It is even harder to find “standards” type drills, or test, that have some sort of pass/fail metric. This one sort of gets us there. I think as more people shoot it, I will eventually assign time brackets for specific skill levels, like the FAST.

The good thing is, many drills designed for pistols can be adapted to the shotgun. That is essentially what I have done with this one. It is an adaptation of Langdon’s 9 Round Close Speed drill. Just without the headshots and some reloading because shotguns.

The drill is shot from 5 yards, which allows the use of birdshot or buckshot. The target used should be an IDPA target or some other target with an 8” high center chest scoring zone (there are a lot of them out there). Start position is a true low ready, with the muzzle entirely off the target and below the base of the target stand. The gun should be loaded with four rounds total to start.

The course of fire is as follows. Target 1 is engaged with 1 round, then target 2 gets 1, then target 3 gets 2. Emergency load, target 2 gets a second shot, emergency load, target 1 gets a second shot. At the end of it all, each target should have two hits.

For scoring everything should be in the 8” circle. At 5 yards, birdshot should still be throwing a smaller than 8” pattern even out of a cylinder bore gun. I made the scoring pass/fail. If you can’t keep the pellets in the circle, automatic DQ. I suppose you could try to assess a time penalty for pellets outside the 8” circle, but that would necessitate always using buckshot or slugs.

The accuracy standard is pretty easy on this drill, but that is on purpose. The idea is to really push the speed, and by pushing the speed hopefully expose our weak points in running the shotgun. with pump guns especially, there is a lot going on with this drill.

I have run the drill a handful of times to feel it out, but I haven’t really focused on it. In just a few attempts, I was able to pull close to 5 seconds, so I think that is going to be a doable time. Just kind of spitballing the math, half second splits and 2 second reloads will get a person to 6 seconds. Three quarter second splits and 2.5 second reloads gets a person to 8 seconds. I think most people with time on the gun will be able to manage that kind of a time assuming they are not loading out of a pocket or pouch. Ten seconds is probably where most people could get to with just the tiniest amount of effort and a well setup gun.

What I am not quite sure about is what kind of time standard to use for semi auto guns. I think faster splits and maybe just slightly faster reloads will be possible on a semi gun. For now I am going with adding 1 second for any run with a semi, but what I really need are some people to run the drill with both a pump and semi and let me know how it goes. One of these days I will bum a semi shotgun off a buddy and see how it goes for myself too. Then I will probably have a better idea what the disparity might be.

If anyone wants to try, I would really appreciate the feedback. Drop a comment and let me know what you think after shooting it. See you on the range.

4 thoughts on “The Shotgun Speed Drill

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