Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

All shooting sports - ISSF/ IPSC/ HFT/ Sporting Clays etc.
Post Reply
partheus
Almost at nirvana
Almost at nirvana
Posts: 118
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:42 pm

Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by partheus » Tue Jun 09, 2020 4:17 pm

Hi folks,
I have been shooting almost regularly for the past year or so and am at a quandary with regards to triggering. As per my instructors, the trigger needs to be depressed deliberately and slowly, which makes sense to me on a theoretical level. They are also a huge proponent of the "surprise trigger break". I was told to disregard instinct as it can lead to trigger jerks. Only I seem to be far more accurate when I follow my instinct and press the trigger when the opportunity feels right. Sure there are the occasional flyers, but nothing of the kind of misses I get when I try the surprise break method.

Should the shot feel right and should I look for an opportunity to complete the trigger press? Again, theoretically, doing so does seem to carry the risk of jerking the trigger but I find the whole surprise break thing really antithetical to my preferences. I used to shoot a lot in my teens and was fairly accurate with carbines and rifles but I heard about the surprise break only an year or so back. Some online scouting revealed that there indeed is lively debate between surprise and deliberate trigger breaks with stronger support for the former. What do you guys prefer?

Thanks

For Advertising mail webmaster
User avatar
Basu
Veteran
Veteran
Posts: 1396
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 7:14 pm
Location: Salt Lake Kolkata

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by Basu » Tue Jun 09, 2020 5:13 pm

I could not get you properly.
Here is my understanding about Air Rifle trigger.
An excellent trigger should have following quality.
1) Within 3 lbs pull weight
2) 100% predictable
3) No creep or spongy
4) 2 stage breaking , if not fired then trigger returns to 1st stage again.
HW, Airarm , Diana ,among Indian only Xena and other do have real two stage trigger.

Basu
Not all those wander , are lost...............

partheus
Almost at nirvana
Almost at nirvana
Posts: 118
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:42 pm

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by partheus » Tue Jun 09, 2020 5:32 pm

Hi sir,
I use a Steyr Evo 10 for 10 meter air pistol which IMO has an excellent trigger that ticks all the checkboxes. My question pertained to types of trigger breaks. To the best of my knowledge, there are two - surprise trigger break which basically means the shooter consistently applies pressure on the second pull until the gun fires, which should come as a surprise.

The second way to fire is the command or deliberate trigger break. Here, the shooter deliberately completes the trigger pull and is well aware of when the gun goes off. My natural inclination is towards this way. However, the consensus seems to be that command breaks have an inherent risk of jerking the trigger which can cause the shot to go off in a different direction.

Also, an inconsistency I have noted is that much like your observation, everyone also seems to agree that the best triggers are the most predictable. If you know when the trigger is going to break then how exactly is a surprise break supposed to work since predictability is kind of the opposite of being surprised :)

riflemarksman
Almost at nirvana
Almost at nirvana
Posts: 132
Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2018 5:47 pm

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by riflemarksman » Tue Jun 09, 2020 8:12 pm

If a shooter is anxious about when the gun is going to fire while pressing the trigger then it can lead to a bad shot so.....surprise trigger break is the right way to shoot.

Having said that if you ate an experienced shooter then you can accuratly shoot using deliberate trigger break method......if you have to take a split second shot then deliberate trigger break methode is more practicle

User avatar
eljefe
Old Timer
Old Timer
Posts: 2541
Joined: Sun Jun 04, 2006 3:37 am

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by eljefe » Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:51 am

Since you’re shootings is target mode, the deliberate method will be drilled in by instructors.
I found the breathing , hold, sight picture and trigger operation are part of the muscle memory one develops. When the brain recognises the the sight picture and tells your finger to squeeze. As it develops, the time between sight picture Confirmation and trigger release shortens. So the deliberate melds into the surprise. Try to look at it that way.
I started with the classic bullseye stance , hold, breathing etc. moving on to IPSC style, which is time dependant, the same deliberate break gets ‘smoothened’ into a ‘surprise break.
Your brain learns to recognise the window of opportunity in a shorter period of time and commands the release of the trigger.
So the sight picture ,breathing, first stage of trigger operation happen / blend into a very smooth and faster sequence
PS- I keep both eyes open.
''It dont mean a thing, if it aint got that zing!''

"...Oh but if I went 'round sayin' I was Emperor, just because some moistened bint lobbed a scimitar at me, they'd put me away..."

partheus
Almost at nirvana
Almost at nirvana
Posts: 118
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:42 pm

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by partheus » Wed Jun 10, 2020 12:22 pm

eljefe wrote:
Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:51 am
Since you’re shootings is target mode, the deliberate method will be drilled in by instructors.
I found the breathing , hold, sight picture and trigger operation are part of the muscle memory one develops. When the brain recognises the the sight picture and tells your finger to squeeze. As it develops, the time between sight picture Confirmation and trigger release shortens. So the deliberate melds into the surprise. Try to look at it that way.
I started with the classic bullseye stance , hold, breathing etc. moving on to IPSC style, which is time dependant, the same deliberate break gets ‘smoothened’ into a ‘surprise break.
Your brain learns to recognise the window of opportunity in a shorter period of time and commands the release of the trigger.
So the sight picture ,breathing, first stage of trigger operation happen / blend into a very smooth and faster sequence
PS- I keep both eyes open.
Thanks, this makes a lot of sense. :cheers:

Timnorris
Almost at nirvana
Almost at nirvana
Posts: 105
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2008 3:51 pm
Location: Bangalore

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by Timnorris » Wed Jun 10, 2020 1:31 pm

No matter what type of shooting you do it is better to start in the right way anf once you learn the basics then you can do some modifications in your technique

Yes holding breathing are important, but it is a part of the process it should not be looked in as a seperate thing

partheus
Almost at nirvana
Almost at nirvana
Posts: 118
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:42 pm

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by partheus » Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:06 pm

Tim, agreed. I have though, heard and read quite a few conflicting opinions on what constitutes a good technique. There appears to be strong preferences inherent to the more subjective qualities of shooting. Some prefer exhaling and holding, while some inhale and hold, others still hold a half exhaled breath.

Since our body types are different a stock technique will ultimately need to be modified. Case in point, my left foot is almost an inch shorter than my right. This is something I discovered during long hours of standing on the range, when my left knee would begin to hurt and go numb. If I tried distributing my weight 50-50 between both my feet as mandated by the technique, my pistol would end up dipping low (I am a lefty). Consequently, I had to adapt my stance to compensate and now it's quite different from what I was taught, but does help me shoot better.

But, I imagine negotiating all this is part of the learning curve?

Timnorris
Almost at nirvana
Almost at nirvana
Posts: 105
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2008 3:51 pm
Location: Bangalore

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by Timnorris » Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:03 pm

partheus wrote:
Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:06 pm
Tim, agreed. I have though, heard and read quite a few conflicting opinions on what constitutes a good technique. There appears to be strong preferences inherent to the more subjective qualities of shooting. Some prefer exhaling and holding, while some inhale and hold, others still hold a half exhaled breath.

Since our body types are different a stock technique will ultimately need to be modified. Case in point, my left foot is almost an inch shorter than my right. This is something I discovered during long hours of standing on the range, when my left knee would begin to hurt and go numb. If I tried distributing my weight 50-50 between both my feet as mandated by the technique, my pistol would end up dipping low (I am a lefty). Consequently, I had to adapt my stance to compensate and now it's quite different from what I was taught, but does help me shoot better.

But, I imagine negotiating all this is part of the learning curve?
Since you are a target shooter with experience you have a better understanding about what changes have to be made to make your shooting better

User avatar
eljefe
Old Timer
Old Timer
Posts: 2541
Joined: Sun Jun 04, 2006 3:37 am

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by eljefe » Thu Jun 11, 2020 4:54 am

Find a good orthotist and get appropriate footwear. 👍🏻
''It dont mean a thing, if it aint got that zing!''

"...Oh but if I went 'round sayin' I was Emperor, just because some moistened bint lobbed a scimitar at me, they'd put me away..."

partheus
Almost at nirvana
Almost at nirvana
Posts: 118
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:42 pm

Re: Surprise trigger break vs deliberate trigger break - Is the latter really that bad?

Post by partheus » Thu Jun 11, 2020 2:38 pm

eljefe wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 4:54 am
Find a good orthotist and get appropriate footwear. 👍🏻
Yes, I saw one before the lockdown. He suggested an insole that I got a few days back. Must say, it feels super weird. :)

Post Reply