The goal of using a pistol for self-defense is to stop the threat before the threat has a chance to stop you. To that end, if you are shooting at anything other than images or outlines of human beings, you are basically practicing your marksmanship, not your fighting skills.

To be effective with a handgun, you need to know some basic human anatomy, and you need to be able to quickly put lots of bullets into the important parts of the body. The primary point of aim for the area we describe as the high-center chest means putting holes in the lungs and, if possible, the heart. The goal is to reduce the blood pressure to the point that the attacker stops functioning.

Alternative shot placements include the head (specifically the cranial-ocular cavity), the central nervous system and the pelvic girdle. Hits to any of these locations will help to stop your attacker quickly.

Stop the Threat

No matter where you are putting your rounds, keep shooting until the threat stops … then stop shooting.