Gun Targets: Different Shooting Stances

When shooting handguns, there are many different shooting stances to take into consideration. Jumping Targets specializes in developing, creating and selling top-rated steel targets. They provide information about the two significant upright shooting stances.

The Isosceles

This stance is a common beginning-shooting stance. It provides comprehensive overage in nearly all directions, as it allows the upper body to easily rotate.

  • Shooters should face pistol targets with their feet approximately shoulder width apart.
  • Knees should have a slight bend in them.
  • The handgun should be fully extended, while keeping the target in between the gun’s sights, arms both straight, and locked.
  • Shoulders are squared, while the arms form a solid isosceles triangle.


This two-handed stance is the first shooting stance in most firearm training and safety classes. In particular, this stance is simple and easy to remember under duress.

The Weaver

Military, police and self defense advocates frequently use the Weaver position. It allows for an increase in accuracy while offering the convenience of a smaller, narrower profile. The stance is also commonly viewed on TV because it is more professional.

  • With feet remaining shoulder width apart, place the dominant leg slightly back into a boxer-like stance.
  • Angle the support arm’s shoulder toward the gun targets.
  • Bend knees slightly, while keeping body weight leaning slightly forward.
  • Grasping the gun with both hands, use opposing pressure.
  • Bend both elbows, with the support elbow pointing downward.


An interesting fact is that Jack Weaver developed this gun stance in the late 1950s. He was the first person to use a two-handed grip that included opposite tension with both hands. His push/pull grip stance helped to improve shooter’s speed, accuracy and stability. This stance was rapidly adopted for self-defense shooting, as it was quickly recognized for its numerous benefits.

There is one additional stance, which is taught at self-defense academies. It is sometimes referred to as the “Tactical” stance because special forces and tactical units use this modified stance, as it helps to keep body armor facing forward, rather than exposing vulnerable body parts to criminals.

  • Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place the strong leg slightly behind the weak leg.
  • Keeping shoulders squared, aim at the target.
  • Grasping the handgun, use opposing pressure with both hands.
  • Lock the shooting arm forward, keep the support arm bent, elbow close to the body and point down.


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