Dot Torture: Girls with Guns Take on the Drill

I’m always on the lookout for a good drill, and “Run Gun Heather” from Girls with Guns demonstrates one in the video linked below. The Dot Torture Drill is run here with a handgun but could easily be adapted for a rifle if you want.

Purple Sig P320
“Run Gun Heather” from Girls with Guns runs the Dot Torture Drill with her purple Sig P320.

The entire drill as demonstrated requires sixty rounds. I’ve seen another version that requires fifty. That may seem a little ammo intensive, but you practice several different skills along the way. If you were to break those skills down individually it would probably be a wash, so do it how you want. If nothing else, this saves you from setting up different targets and goes in a logical progression.

Girls with Guns Drill extra magazines
You’ll need extra magazines for the drill.

Heather runs the drill from a timer-initiated holster draw. You can do that or go from the ready if you want.

With a handgun, the drill is recommended to be shot from three to five yards distance, depending on your proficiency level. Obviously, if you’re nailing it from three, you should back up a yard or two to challenge yourself and develop those skills more. Here, Heather shoots from five.

Her weapon of choice is her Sig P320 with the cool purple slide. Use whatever gun you want but make sure you have extra magazines to run the drill properly. She likes to do a few dry fire exercises before shooting, which is probably a good idea.

Girls with Guns Dot Torture Drill Dot Torture Drill target
You can find Dot Torture Drill targets online, including free printable versions.

Drill Progression

The target consists of ten numbered circles, or dots. You can get those targets on the interwebs, including free printable versions. Each dot represents a different task or skill for the shooter. Heather does not time each stage, but you could if you wanted. She runs it from a surprise draw prompt from her timer. Let’s break it down by dot, as Heather runs it:

Dot 1: Draw, five slow shots.

Girls with Guns Dot Torture Drill fundamentals
This is a fundamentals drill. Don’t worry about speed until you’ve got everything else down.

Dot 2: Draw, one shot, holster. Five repetitions.

Dots 3 and 4: Draw, one shot on Dot 3, one shot on Dot 4. Four repetitions.

Dot 5: Draw, five shots with your strong hand.

Girls with Guns Dot Torture Drill shooting with strong hand
Strong hand shooting isn’t as easy as it looks in the movies.

Dots 6 and 7: Draw, two shots on Dot 6, two shots on Dot 7. Four repetitions.

Dot 8: Ready, five shots with your weak hand. OR, draw, switch hands, five shots from your weak hand.

Girls with Guns Dot Torture Drill weak hand
Weak hand shooting is even harder.

Dots 9 and 10: Draw, one shot on Dot 9, one shot on Dot 10, reload, one shot on Dot 9, one shot on Dot 10. Four repetitions.

woman reloading Sig P320
Reloading is an essential part of the drill.

Many of you have likely seen or run this drill before but it’s good to be reminded sometimes that fundamentals matter. Plus, we have a ton of new gun owners out there. If you’re one of those folks, welcome to our community.

Heather holds up her Dot Torture Drill final target
Don’t get discouraged if you don’t hit it perfectly. It’s challenging even for competition shooters like Heather.

The Dot Torture Drill is something you can do to gauge proficiency and improve skills without setting up a bunch of different targets. You don’t even have to have a shot timer. Just get out there and practice!

William "Bucky" Lawson is a self-described "typical Appalachian-American gun enthusiast". He is a military historian specializing in World War II and has written a few things, as he says, "here and there". A featured contributor for Strategy & Tactics, he likes dogs, range time, and a good cigar - preferably with an Old Fashioned that has an extra orange slice.

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