Hunter Constantine Draw Drill: Cold Start

Your bullet is only as good as how accurate you are, which is why we incorporate drills into our training. The Hunter Constantine Draw Drill focuses on your fundamental mental skills and marksmanship. The foundation of this drill is your processing power — how well your brain can pick on minute differences and correct them within the given time frame.

Who am I, and why did I make this drill?

I am a professional competition shooter who shoots for some common brands in the firearm space, like Taran Tactical, Magpul, and Dillon Precision. My job is to be accurate so I can achieve titles and teach people proficiently. My primary discipline is USPSA, and I achieved a Grand Master classification in Carry Optics after a mere 14 months. Since then, I have won many titles over the last five years and remain very active in the competitive space.

Practice is a huge part of staying sharp on your skills. I practice in some way almost every day. Throughout the years, I have shot many drills and have come up with a handful of my own. One drill I keep returning to almost every practice is the Draw Drill that I created. I do not continue with my practice until I pass this drill. That being said, sometimes the only drill I end up doing is the Draw Drill. Let’s break it down. 

Hunter Constantine explaining to a fellow shooter how his grip pressure affected his accuracy.
Here, I am explaining to a fellow shooter how his grip pressure affected his accuracy.

The drill uses the headbox of a USPSA target and will incorporate 10 individual draws. The target is to get all 10 rounds into the alpha zone of the headbox. You will adjust the time or distance you’re shooting depending on your skill level. This drill’s highest goal is 1.50 second par time at 10 yards. 

Hunter Constantine Draw Drill Procedures 

The gun is loaded holstered. Hands at sides. The timer is set to the desired par time.

On the audible beep, the shooter will engage the USPSA head box with one round. The shooter will repeat this for 10 strings. The shooter must complete all 10 strings before trying the drill again. The drill is passed when the shooter gets all 10 shots in the alpha zone of the headbox. Repeat the drill until passed.

Items Needed for This Drill

  • Handgun and holster
  • At least one magazine
  • At least 10 rounds of ammo.
  • One USPSA silhouette target
  • A timing device to record your shot 
  • A safe area of at least 10 yards with a backstop to perform this drill
  • I also recommend having tape or pasters to reset your target if you do multiple reps.  
shot timer
Here is an example of a shot timer. This is the Shooter’s Global timer showing my 1.24 first shot.

When you first trying out the drill, adjust the par time and distance until you pass, then adjust one of the variables. When training a student, I usually start them out at five yards and a 2.5-second par time. From there, we work back on the distance first until passed at seven yards. Then, we shave down the time until the student can pass all 10 shots at seven yards with a 1.5-second par time. Finally, we go back to 10 yards, where the drill is intended to be shot at. 

setting up a uspsa target for draw drill
Here, I am setting up a USPSA target. The primary target for this drill is the perforated area on the head box.

Goals of the Hunter Constantine Draw Drill

The Hunter Constantine Draw Drill aims to dial in your fundamentals and build a mind-muscle connection with your draw. The goal is for your gun to feel like an extension of your body. You start to feel the gun with every draw, rep after rep. You will be able to call your shot based on how the gun feels in your hand. The recoil will tell you everything. 

Some of the key points I am focused on during this drill are the following:

  • Strong hand grip placement.
  • Weak hand grip placement.
  • Speed of draw when the holster is cleared.
  • Grip pressure when hands are met during the draw.
  • Where the dot is on the presentation to the target.
  • Make a correction with dot placement if needed.
  • Following through with a good trigger press.

As you progress with this drill, you will think and analyze all of these points in a mere second and a half. This is not just an exercise for your firearm fundamentals; this is an exercise for your brain. 

Hunter Constantine applies a grand master grip on his pistol to control recoil
Here, I am applying a Grand Master grip on my pistol to control the recoil.

Being able to increase your processing power and analyze these different points in a split second will make you a better shooter overall. You will find it makes any target array easier because of how well your brain will make corrections and get your shots placed accurately. However, you will find no gain if you go through the motions on this drill and are not intently focused. You need to work on drawing in your focus on the key points that you failed on the previous rep. Some days, I do not gain my focus until the second or third rep, and then the focus clicks in. The more you practice that focused shooting, the faster you can put yourself in that mindset.

The focused mindset is also referred to as the flow state, and everything seems like slow motion in that flow state. Breaking down seven or eight individual actions during this drill appears reasonable, and being able to playback the last rep becomes easier. When you find the correct rep, you want to replicate it every time. This is where the Mind-Muscle connections come into play. 

I start with this drill because it focuses my mind for the rest of my practice. Going to the range, shooting hundreds of rounds, and not learning anything is a waste. Purposeful practice is the key to progressing your firearm skills. You will not shoot your best every day. Many factors play a part in your firearms skills. Did you get enough sleep? Did you have enough food? Things like that will affect your shooting, and you must remind yourself to shoot to the best of your ability for that day. 

custom Smith and Wesson M&P9
I prefer to shoot with my custom Smith and Wesson M&P9.

That is why some days it might only take one, two, or three reps. On other days, I will do this drill for 30 reps and not pass. This gives me a baseline for my focus level for that day. Going into a heavy practice session and not knowing how you will perform for the day can be expensive.

At the end of the day, there is a difference between going to the range to shoot and going to the range to practice. Shooting is a lot more fun than practice but practice is how you progress. You need to make every shot count to be efficient with your time and money. This drill will help you train to be efficient. It can also be done with PCCs and rifle calibers as well. Adjust the time and distance to what is challenging for you!

Try this drill out and let us know how it went. Post it on social media, and make sure to tag it @gunmagwarehouse and @hunter_constantine.

Get your focus dialed, and keep progressing your firearm skills. Thanks for reading. Comment down below if you’d like more drill suggestions! 

I am a professional competition shooter that travels the country sharing my knowledge, competing, and, most importantly, having fun. My love for firearms and the gear started at a young age but didn't come to fruition until later in life, in 2019. I have climbed the ranks in USPSA, achieving Grand Master classification in only 14 months. My educational background is in marketing, graduating with my MBA in 2017. At the end of the day I am someone who enjoys being on the range all day and being able to share that experience with other.

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