Accurate Handgun Shooting Skills
Gun experts agree there are several handgun-shooting stances that shooters rely on for shooting accuracy. Jumping Targets highlights the most common stances for shooting gun targets.
- Power Stance – This stance is usually the first one taught by gun teachers. Avoid having one heel behind the other, as this offsets balance and can make the body sway sideways, which can be dangerous when shooting. A squared parallel foot position generally causes shots to be either high or low, as this does not give the body the necessary balance to accurately aim and shoot. The proper power stance is commonly referred to as a “fighter’s stance.” Known as a “front stance” in karate, this stance involves placing the pelvis at a 45-degree angle, with the left leg facing forward and the right leg backwards. The leg positioning can be switched depending upon dominant legs and if someone is right- or left-handed. This position helps maintain forward and back balance, while balancing both sides. In rapid-fire situations, the shoulders should lean forward, allowing the body to control the gun’s recoil.
- High Hand Grasp – This stance is perfect for double-action revolvers, which require the hand’s web to be on the rear edge of the back strap. For single-action weapons, it is best to use a high hand grasp. Semiautomatic pistols require the hand’s web placement is high, behind the back strap of the grip, along the top edge. A higher hand means a lower bore axis, which allows for better control over recoil. Low hand placement will pull the muzzle downwards, which results in low shots. Semiautomatics rely on the slide moving and low grips can cause jams.
- Hard Grips – This subject is debatable, but most gun experts agree guns require a firm grip, keeping the sights straight in line. If the sites are moving, grip the gun tighter. Stress and anxiety levels can change when shooting, so it is important to be consistent when focusing on gun grip, as this helps enforce consistent performance, even in stressful situations. Thumb position varies and some shooters feel comfortable with higher, straight or lower placements. For guns with powerful recoil, consider curling the thumb for added strength. The thumb needs to be in a convenient location to easily slide the gun’s safety in the off position.
- Front Sight – Shooters need to focus on the front sight. This is a steadfast rule in shooting and helps with moving targets, paper targets and even metal spinning targets.
- Trigger Release – Never place fingers on the trigger unless the weapon is prepared to fire. This helps prevent unwanted, tragic accidents. When pulling the trigger, jerky movements are counterproductive. Instead, shooters need to use a smooth, uninterrupted and fluid pull. To best practice this technique, shooters can dry-fire weapons without worrying about using ammunition or practicing with loaded guns.
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