Long Range ShootingMarksmanshipPrecision Rifles

Beyond Trigger Control: The Imperceivable Press

In this world filled with talk of viruses, cures and vaccination, the ultimate immunity you seek is right under your nose; Imperceivable trigger press. You inoculate yourself by taking a SnipersHide Precision Rifle Course.  Within an hour of the introduction of the instructors you are handed a prescription in the form of a Fundamental Evaluation Score Sheet.  Your diagnosis; a nagging tap – slap – crush or jerk of a trigger.  

Recovery from this horrible disease will not be easy.  It will require hundreds of perfect presses.  Most of them will be under the direct scrutiny of Frank Galli or Marc Taylor.  You can’t ignore or hide it anymore and the only path to wellness is an imperceivable trigger press..

In “Mechanics of the Firing Hand” we discussed the pincer function of the trigger finger and the thumb.  Isolation of the thumb from doing what it was designed to do; move toward the index (trigger) finger during the firing process.  That movement, however slight, creates sympathetic squeeze, and is diagnosed through the obvious whitening of the first knuckle of the firing thumb or the noticeable movement of the trigger finger once married-up to the trigger.  


Remember, Trigger Control is control of the trigger, not lack of it, so one must immediately marry-up to the trigger shoe once the bolt has been run and we are ready to send a round downrange.  Anytime you have control of sight picture in the firing process you must also have control of the trigger and begin the process of the imperceivable press.

In our Course, you will be constantly bombarded with “PRESS – BREAK – FREEZE.”


The press of the trigger finger, removing the first stage of the two-stage trigger or resting solidly against the back wall of the single-stage trigger should NOT draw the attention of the instructor.  It should be THAT SLIGHT.  More of a caress than a press Further, the trigger press should not disturb the lay of the reticle on the plane of the target.  The precise placement of the trigger shoe against the center of the first pad of the trigger finger is paramount, because it is the only place that provides a 90-degree, straight back press toward the back of the trigger guard and in direct line with the bore.  Any deviation may cause inconsistency at the break of the shot.


The Break refers to the release of the sear by the trigger, and it is the START BUTTON of the firing process.  Movement during this critical stage, other than the crisp disengagement of the trigger from the sear will cause inconsistent outcome at the target.  Thousandths of an inch count and Errors are Cumulative.


The Freeze is where Followthrough begins.  Followthrough is the “Forgotten Fundamental” because it is often neglected by the shooter.  Some triggers have a noticeable travel behind the break and some do not.  Regardless, one must FREEZE at the break of the trigger and not exert any unwanted rear pressure beyond the trigger’s break.

During the Follow-Through the shooter is observing the strike of the round and only then transitioning the firing hand’s focus from the trigger to the manipulation of the bolt.

At this point, the firing process is complete.


We ARE the cure.  Student after student we fix broken fundamentals.  And the student has the Initial Eval Sheet to prove it during the Final Eval

 Trigger indecisiveness and inconsistency is overcome by firing reps with imperceivable press of the trigger under the direct scrutiny of an observer. Through perfect practice, perfect habits are formed and only through preventive medicine can one be assured of not catching the dreaded Trigger Tap, Slap, Crush, Jerk, Disease.

The Imperceivable Press

Marc Taylor

August 3, 2020


Full Member
Nov 16, 2017
So, after the the trigger brakes, despite the trigger have more travel, should you stop the movement and do not go to the end of its travel?
Thank you!


Experienced Beginner
Full Member
Jun 13, 2008
So, after the the trigger brakes, despite the trigger have more travel, should you stop the movement and do not go to the end of its travel?
Thank you!

Sure you should, but good luck. Most people DO bottom out the trigger unless it is very light with a long overtravel.

Many “modern, match, superduper” bolt gun triggers these days are set up with little-to-no overtravel, and some have very little ability to get any.

The Jewell HVR, for a positive example, can be set with a long, squishy overtravel. Perfect.

For some time, it takes a shooter awhile to get used to it, having been indoctrinated to the idea that a “crisp” break with no roll, followed by a short stop is what a “great” trigger feels like.

—The lack of roll can be fine. Lack if takeup can be fine.

—The crisp break is fine. Maybe even preferred, as long as it is consistent. (some are, some aren’t)

—A short stop to the rearward movement is not necessarily to our benefit.

One trigger that got away with a short stop VERY well was the Winchester Micromotion. It moved almost not at all (total blade motion under 0.005”, I think) generating very little free movement or rearward momentum, and was generally set light anyway.

AR triggers, as a bad example, basically canNOT get much over-travel, unless you just don’t care if the safety works. That’s ONE contributory reason why guys can’t shoot them as well, easily.
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