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Learning to Shoot Like John Wick – Some Training Tips

How to Shoot Like John Wick

John Wick, played by Keanu Reeves, is a swashbuckling, gun-toting widower keen on hunting down the men who stole his car and killed his dog, which was a gift from his dead wife. The action movie was well-received with positive reviews, with critics saying it’s one of the actor’s best performances to date.

We’ll show you how to shoot like John Wick today. 

Most people don’t know how to begin the entire process of shooting like John Wick. Butler’s advice is not to get overwhelmed — start slow until each step makes sense and becomes subconsciously easy to do, then thread the entire course together.

The movies did a pretty good job of showing realistic shooting scenes. Hollywood movies rarely produce technically accurate gunfights, but this had the police and other characters taking precious seconds to reload. Because of this, aficionados wanted the skills to shoot guns like him. 

In real life, though, gun fights aren’t as cinematic as the movie makes it out to be. Taran Butler of Taran Tactical Innovations trained Keanu Reeves on his excellent weapon handling skills. Butler has been Hollywood’s go-to guns trainer for decades — he had to train A-listers like Johnny Depp, Halle Berry, and James Cameron in the past.

3 Steps on How To Shoot Like Him

3 Steps on How To Shoot Like Him

1. Run Your Gun in Close Quarters

Unlike in firing ranges where the targets are far (which is ideal), John Wick faces his adversaries in close range. His weapon is usually pretty close to his body, with shots in line with his hip until he gets enough distance to aim properly. Mastering this skill ensures that your firearms can engage targets at the same time without wasting precious seconds.

2. Master Your Speed

One thing that made our jaws drop while watching the movie was that John Wick took out the bad guys within seconds in every fight and his final body count was high. Speed is vital. Train your movements and trigger control until you perfect it. After you fire the first shot, you must be prepared to pop that second one right away. 

Cut off unnecessary movements. Practice your draw. Once you draw the weapon from your hip, don’t unnecessarily point it anywhere else; you want only linear movements. 

When it comes to reloading, position your fingers the moment you draw the magazine from your hip. They should already be primed to support your dominant hand.

John Wick

3. Focus on Your Movements

Stand using the balls of your feet instead of your heel for fluid movements and pivot your hips, so your aim is not affected. Your transition from one target to the other must be quick and precise — don’t hesitate while you’re making the adjustment, especially if using the left hand. Get your grip locked in, so your shots are tight. 

Movement is also important because it will be difficult for the shooter to zero in on you.

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FAQS

The techniques displayed in the movie and video aren’t for beginners. Keanu Reeves trained to use a pistol, shotgun, and rifle [1] for months before he was able to pull off those moves. This video of James Reeves, Keanu’s cousin and owner of the firearm blog TFB TV shows what training with Butler is like when it comes to shooting guns like Wick.

Taran Butler of Taran Tactical taught Keanu Reeves’s character advanced firearms training. He owns a firearms range in Simi Valley, an hour away from Los Angeles, which used to be a parking place.

His style is called Center Axis Relock (CAR). This stance is used to take shots in close range, where you don’t have the liberty to stretch your arms as you would traditionally. Law enforcement trainer Paul Castle (who died of cancer in 2011) created this technique, and it’s used by police departments all across the country. Taran Tactical also does training on this stance. 

The CAR places the gun close to your chest, so the assailant has a harder time seizing your firearm. This also puts you in the best position to handle a shooter that is already too close for comfort to save your life should it happen.

Shooting the John Wick Style

While John Wick is a fictional character, the film stayed true to realistic firearms handling and techniques. Many shooters probably won’t get engaged with the same intensity fights in the real world (at least, we hope not), yet it still makes for an entertaining watch that gun enthusiasts will surely appreciate. 

With a lot of practice and discipline, you too will definitely be able to take shots – the John Wick style.

References:

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2214785321025323

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