What Comes From 100 Days of Dry Fire Practice?

I remember a time not so long ago when I routinely had conversations with people who not only thought dry fire, (practicing with an unloaded firearm) was useless, but believed doing so was detrimental to performance. “Well, there is no recoil” they would say, “so you are building training scars for when you are on the range”.

Isn't Dry Fire Practice Bad—

You might have heard this misconception about dry fire practice, or that it will damage your firearm. I know I did. I'm not sure why or how these ideas came about, and it's not really the focus of this article, but overall that is a good thing that more people understand the benefits of dry fire practice.

The Benefits of Dry Fire—

One thing that has helped dis-spell inacurate representations of dry fire practice is education. We aren't the only ones in the industry who made it a point to publish content explaining the various benefits from dryfire practice. Many industry professionals explained how they use dry fire in their personal training, as well as how they employ it as a teaching tool for students in their classes.

Using Technology in Dry Fire—

We can't overlook how technology changed dry fire practice in a big way. Next Level Training's SIRT (Shot Indicating Resetting Trigger) training gun is an incredible tool that makes dry fire more fun and expands on what you can do in dry fire practice. With a simple device like this LaserDot Trainer from ReadyUp Gear, you can transform your existing gun into a laser training pistol for dry fire practice.

Combining these laser trainers with a shot recording software like LASR X from LASR APP, you can replicate the expensive training simulators used by law enforcement and the military at a fraction of the cost. And then there are way cool devices like the Mantis X device that is basically a tiny gyroscope that you mount to the accessory rail of your gun. This device provides so much data about the gun's movement before, during and after the trigger break, that you can use to improve your fundamentals. You can even use the Mantis X during live fire, so that device is quite versatile.

Shooter Ready Challenge—

Several years ago, we partnered with LASR to publish a monthly video called the Shooter Ready Challenge. You can check out last month's Shooter Ready Challenge video where Riley discusses the 5-to-go steel challenge stage. We've heard from many people that regularly take part in the Shooter ready Challenge, and they've told us how much the monthly dry fire drills have helped them become more proficient.

shooting around cover

Conduct Dry fire Safely—

And I would be remiss if I didn't mention that there are definite safety protocols you should set up for dry fire practice. Here is one in a series of posts I published documenting real life unintentional discharges during dry fire practice. The series is called: When Dry Fire Isn't Dry. One safety strategy is using BarrelBlok, which ensures the gun is not only clear, but inert.

Dry fire practice is not just beneficial, it can be fun. Let us know what dry fire drills and devices you like to use.

About Matthew Maruster

I follow my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ who is the eternal co-equal Son of God. I currently live in Columbus, Ohio with my wife and daughter. I served in the Marine Corps Infantry. I was a Staff Sergeant and served as a Platoon Sergeant during combat in Iraq. After I was a police officer at a municipal agency in San Diego County. I have a Bachelors's Degree in Criminal Justice from National University. MJ Maruster Defense.


  1. TFK on January 17, 2023 at 11:22 am

    Is this an article on dry practice or an ad? Do these gizmos let you practice malfunction clearances and emergency reloads like “dummy rounds” ? Old school is still best.

    • Matthew Maruster on January 17, 2023 at 11:35 am

      No the mantis device isn’t a dummy round. Just like a dummy round doesn’t track muzzle movement. A comprehensive dry fire routine utilizing ‘old school’ and new products is better than limiting yourself to dummy rounds. But you’re certainly entitled to do what you think is best. And no it’s not an advertisement for a product. If anything it’s an advertisement for dry fire.

  2. MD Perry on January 17, 2023 at 12:07 pm

    I own and use most of the devices shown here and have for years. LASRApp has shooting scenarios that tell you to reload at different times during the course of fire. You can utilize a SIRT pistol that has the feel and weight of a Glock 17, and a magazine. You can purchase xtra mags to go through the routine of changing magazines. You never know it the training when the command comes, do it is very life like. AND you can do it at home, in your living room with safe, reliable equipment that gives you feedback on where your shot hits.
    This isn’t a replacement for live fire. The dynamics there are somewhat different. BUT, a lot of ranges won’t let you draw from holster, you CAN do that with the dry fire equipment. And, up until and when you pull the dry fire trigger, the action is exactly the same as with a loaded guy.
    Dry fire is supplemental to live fire, with a lot more options. It’s fun, your wife, girlfriend, significant other, mom, et al aren’t intimidated and afraid of the equipment so you can walk them into firearm use gently, without the fear associated with live fire training.

  3. Randall Milam on January 17, 2023 at 4:34 pm

    Enjoyed the article. I know the benefits of dry-fire practice, it’s just not as fun as live fire! I will be looking into some of the products mentioned in your article to see if they would add a little fun. I’m glad that you are bold in your faith and mention it right up front in your bio!

  4. Steve Agon on January 28, 2023 at 11:47 am

    I have used dry fire training for years, mainly to reinforce muscle memory when operating my firearm. Practicing reloads, clearing drills, drawing from concealed carry, checking my “six”, moving and reloading, moving to cover, etc… all while operating the gun. I do believe this training absolutely transfers to the live fire range. I have started my daughter (15) on dry fire training in our house to learn the mechanics of the firearm. When we head to the range she almost always incorporates what we practice at home into live fire. It does translate, if you will. I / we use plastic dummy rounds at home to operate the firearm. At the range we incorporate those dummy rounds with live rounds, so we can simulate malfunctions with live shooting, it again reinforces our home simulation training.

  5. Ben Campomanes on March 2, 2023 at 11:43 pm

    Spot on Matthew. Also love all yall’s the comments.

    Dryfire is never a replacement for live fire and it’s true it’s not as sexy as live fire. Matthew and I can vouch for that from out time in the Corps and doing grass week in boot camp. However, dryfire was never intended to be so, nor was it meant to replace live fire.

    Absolutely we need to live fire and go to the range. Your results from live fire IS THE ULTIMATE arbiter as to the efficacy of what you worked on during dryfire—there is no substitute.

    Just reiterating everyone’s point, the reason we dryfire is to eliminate the masking effect of the explosion that takes place. When you do, many of the minute, subtle issues occluded by the explosion are exposed. Now you can see what is adding the split second here and there or causing you to constantly hit at 4 O’clock and fix the issue. This, INSTEAD of compensating (e.g., forcibly aiming at 10 O’clock) to strike bullseye center mass, thus unnecessarily compounding possible error to correct error.

    Also whether you use our system or someone else’s you’ll likely save on ammo and range fees with the sessions you can do with dryfire. Depending on how often you go to the range and how much ammo your shoot on that regular trip to the range YMWV but you’ll likely save enough in just one year to buy another beautiful gun. OUT.

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