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Competition, Action Shooting And Training. Competition, Three gun, IPSC, IDPA , and Training discussion here.

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  #1  
Old 12-02-2012, 11:04 PM
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Default Tips for support/weak hand only pistol shooting

So I read on a website on the need to prepare for scenarios where the primary hand is out of commission and all you got is your support/weak hand.

So I went and tried out and it turns out my support/weak hand can't shoot for s*!t. Any tips on how to become more proficient with it?

P.S. I miss that "Ask your training questions here" thread. May be we should restart one. I would start one but am totally unqualified to answer anything above basic firearm safety and manipulations.
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  #2  
Old 12-02-2012, 11:19 PM
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Practice.

That's something most shooters don't do with either strong hand only or support hand only.

Start at 3 yards and slow fire. You may need to cant your weapon a little. Anyway, as soon as you get nice groups speed up a little. Next, move the yardage to 5 and then 7. Repeat as above.

Also, a simple trick when shooting faster as a right handed shooter using your left hand as the support hand is to aim high left. Since you're more apt to flinch with the support hand more shots will land in this way.

Also, with support hand only shooting you'll see your trigger finger in the trigger during instances where it shouldn't be there so be very aware.

Again, the secret is to practice frequently.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:45 PM
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The challenge for me is shooting with the opposite eye.

For me, I square up to the target and tightly press my strong arm to my chest. Get a good sight picture and squeeze.

However in this litigious society, I would probably just move to cover. If in a shtf scenario I would just mash the trigger and run.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:46 PM
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Thanks, Ramzar. I did notice the flinch and was surprised how pronounced it was.

Joe, I practiced using my weakside eye but found that my groups were better when using my strongside eye so I stuck with it.

Does tightly pressing strong arm to chest offer any benefit for accuracy and speed? or this is your personal preference? We were taught to fire this way but I never asked the reason why this is done and whether the force with which the opposing arm is rested on the chest makes a difference.

Last edited by gesundheit; 12-02-2012 at 11:49 PM..
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gesundheit View Post
Thanks, Ramzar. I did notice the flinch and was surprised how pronounced it was.

Joe, I practiced using my weakside eye but found that my groups were better when using my strongside eye so I stuck with it.

Does tightly pressing strong arm to chest offer any benefit for accuracy and speed? or this is your personal preference? We were taught to fire this way but I never asked the reason why this is done and whether the force with which the opposing arm is rested on the chest makes a difference.
I use my dominant eye as well.

Putting your strong hand to your chest is to get it out of the way, not shoot it and balance yourself better.

Also, try full arm extension versus bent elbow, locking your wrist, cant and no cant, support thumb pointing down or up, stance side change. Different variations to see what works best for you personally. Give each technique a serious tryout.
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Last edited by ramzar; 12-03-2012 at 12:06 AM..
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Old 12-03-2012, 12:33 AM
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You should be shooting with your support hand in a mirror image of how you shoot with your strong hand...just pay attention to the fundamentals of good grip and trigger control.

This is were understanding the forming of the grip between the middle joints of your lower three fingers and the pocket in the web of your hand makes all the difference.

Common errors made by folks who don't practice one-handed shooting are:
1. gripping too tightly and not straight to the rear
2. bringing their thumb down for a better grip
3. using too much trigger on the trigger
4. snapping the trigger when you see the sights aligned on target

Avoid doing all these things and it becomes pretty easy

Canting the gun slightly inward has two benefits. It brings more muscles into play to stabilize your arm and it makes aligning your sights with the further eye a bit easier.

Not straightening your arm reduces the arc of your wobble
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Old 12-03-2012, 1:01 AM
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Thanks 9mmepiphany. Your tips are very helpful.

I was looking at Olympic pistol shooters' pictures, who all shoot with single hand with bladed stance with completely straight arms. Wouldn't this increase their arc of wobble?

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Old 12-03-2012, 1:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gesundheit View Post
So I read on a website on the need to prepare for scenarios where the primary hand is out of commission and all you got is your support/weak hand.

So I went and tried out and it turns out my support/weak hand can't shoot for s*!t. Any tips on how to become more proficient with it?

P.S. I miss that "Ask your training questions here" thread. May be we should restart one. I would start one but am totally unqualified to answer anything above basic firearm safety and manipulations.
Here are my tips.
  • Assuming you start from scratch my plan would be two stages.
    a) Work on getting acceptable trigger control.
    b) Work on getting fast follow up shots.

    Trigger Control
  • Start dry firing with one hand only. Number one is just getting used to pulling the trigger without having the front sight move with just one hand. If you are there already you are half way there.
  • I generally start with dry firing on a blank wall and focus on getting a trigger pull that doesn't move the front sight. After that is there you can move to focusing on dots that are slightly bigger than the front sight.
  • For live fire I'd start from scratch. Work NRA B-8 bulls at 10 yards and work your way to 25 yards. Make sure you are not wasting a single shot so during live fire, so track your sights and call the shots. This is important because it feeds back to your trigger control, i.e. w/o seeing the sights you can't close the control loop if you know what I mean.

    Follow Up Shots
  • Faster follow up shots is just a matter of recoil control. I like my recoil to be straight up and down so I work out my arm/hand position to get that result. Some people like to cant the gun but I think its slower to get back on target that way.

Straight arm like the bulls eye pistol shooting is the more stable position I think. But I guess, technically, if you bend your arm the arc does decrease because r*theta=length_of_arc so if r1 < r2 then LoA1 < LoA2. I also think that if you lock your joints like that you only have to manage keeping your shoulder motionless since the other points that move on your arm are still. But accuracy is mostly trigger control and how you want your arm/shoulder/stance to be should be about recoil control.

In a TigerSwan course the instructor Dave mentioned asking the Army Team he held a course for what they would do with their left hand if they didn't have to stow it. They said they would use it to brace against their shoulder for stability if anything. I tried it and I didn't think it mattered too much like he implied. Also Dave said if you want you can flag your thumb up and at first I found it useful for stability but I don't seem to do it anymore.

Last edited by GM_77; 12-03-2012 at 1:42 AM..
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  #9  
Old 12-03-2012, 6:51 AM
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Cant the the hand slightly inward (NOT LIKE A GANGSTA) about 15 degrees, this will help with muzzle flip and is good practice shooting One Handed on or off side. As pointed out above, practice is important, but you'll need more strength in that hand and arm. So lift your beers and burgers off handed from now on.
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Old 12-03-2012, 6:57 AM
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Maintain the same stance as 2 handed shooting, then tuck your right hand into your chest, and roll the gun slightly to the right to pickup you right eye. You will need slightly more grip force because your left hand is now steering the gun and pulling the trigger.

Like this, Rob Leatham

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  #11  
Old 12-03-2012, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gesundheit View Post
Thanks 9mmepiphany. Your tips are very helpful.

I was looking at Olympic pistol shooters' pictures, who all shoot with single hand with bladed stance with completely straight arms. Wouldn't this increase their arc of wobble?
Olympic shooters control wobble differently because they aren't interested in shooting quickly or in recoil recovery for follow up shots. They can accept more wobble because they only apply pressure to the trigger when the sights are on and hold that pressure when they drift off. What that shooter is doing is limiting the axis of her wobble. You'll also note that there is little gripping pressure being applied to the front strap.

If you look at Robbie's arm in the picture above, you'll see that it isn't straight; also note that his strong arm is held to his chest but fairly relaxed
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Last edited by 9mmepiphany; 12-03-2012 at 11:42 AM..
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  #12  
Old 12-03-2012, 5:23 PM
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Thanks again 9mmepiphany, GM77, Highlander and gschoelles. Now it all makes sense.
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Old 12-03-2012, 10:07 PM
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what highlander said.

rob leatham is so 80's ha ha
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Old 12-04-2012, 5:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Bobby Hated View Post
what highlander said.

rob leatham is so 80's ha ha
Yes, and he is 10 years younger than I am.
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