One of the things I enjoy about watching Top Shot is that these contestants have rough days too. I've been working at developing better handgun skills for quite awhile now. My wife, too, is honing her pistol talents. We've spent hours at the range together going over the basics of target acquisition, sight alignment, breathing, and trigger control only to go home somewhat frustrated with our larger-than-they-should-be groups of two inches or better. When your primary skills involve rifles that are highly regarded for shooting sub-minute-of-angle (sub-MOA), or better than 1" at 100 yards, it seems counter-intuitive to be proud of bigger groups at much smaller distances.
In the last two weeks on Top Shot I've watched in disbelief as some of the strongest pistol shooters in the country struggled to make what appear to be reasonable pistol shots. One was a world champion speed shooter, International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) Champion, and a United States Practical Shooting Association (USPSA) Champion. With all those qualifications, it was a pure shock to watch as she missed every pistol shot she took in competition. Another extremely strong shooter, a Junior World Champion, two time National USPSA Champion, 50 time match winner, and professional pistol shooter also failed to hit any targets in competition and found himself in the elimination round.
Apparently pistol shooting requires an incredible amount of focus. There are few supported shooting positions. The intensity of competition adds a significant amount of stress. Stress increases your heart rate, muscles strain burns additional oxygen, breathing rate increases - especially with running, and controlling the breathing and trigger squeeze while maintaining proper form becomes more than just difficult. Shooting under stress accurately takes significant self-control.
Judging from the way our television pistol pro's have fared in the last two weeks of competition. It's not only pistol noobs that have trouble remembering the basics when staring down the sights on the pistol range. Hell, if world champion pistol shooters can miss every shot they take in competition for two solid weeks, there may be hope for our future success as a husband and wife pistol team yet!