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Posted: 6/13/2010 6:02:22 PM EDT
One of the most common mistakes I notice with beginning handgunners is their grip. It seems counter intuitive, what could be easier than gripping a handgun? I mean, come on, you just grab it. The hard parts are sight alignment and trigger control... right? While it IS often over looked, slight changes in grip make a big difference in felt recoil.

Look for just a second at the bore angle. People have long arguments about which guns have the lowest bore axis to help control recoil, but if the angle of the bore as it relates to the bones in your arm is off, you'll end up with a lot more movement and fatigure than necessary. I have a penchant for guns with, shall we say, more than adequate recoil. I once had a student who told me flat out he couldn't handle the recoil of a 45 acp. I observed the way he held the gun. Sure enough, in order to reach the trigger he was twisting the guns grip. This created a pivot point and caused a lot more torque than necessary.

Check your grip! Extend your arm in front of you. With your arm straight, extend your thumb and index finger naturally in a "U" shape. Place your handgun into the web of your hand so that the line of the bore is in a straight line with the bones in your arm. Now close your grip. The recoil will push back into your skeletal structure instead of applying torque to your wrist. Let your bones do the work.

Hopefully, your trigger finger will lay perfectly into the curve of your trigger. If not ... well that's the topic of another post!

Do you have a different theory of grip alignment? Do you have pictures or questions? I'll be the first to admit I'm not the final authority on any issue, so let's hear your thoughts!
Link Posted: 6/14/2010 3:28:15 AM EDT
Excellent thoughts. Size of the grip and gun also plays a major role. Without fail I see people with large hands trying to shoot really small guns (too much finger on the trigger, etc) and people with small hands trying to shoot large sized guns. The whole bore axis in line with the hands/arms is crucial. Sometimes only a slight movement is all it takes to correct it. I personally have been trying out the Magpul method of using more flesh from my support hand on the gun and 45 degree angled of the that hand to see if I notice a difference. It does feel more 50/50 v the 60/40.

Link Posted: 9/6/2010 6:37:22 PM EDT
Just today I was at range and tried a change to my grip. I picked up an old issue of American Handgunner where there was an article by Dave Anderson called "A Gripping Experience" featuring pics of the gripping techniques of several top competitors. The grip I tried was similar to Travis Tomasie where the thumb of the support hand actually rests on the trigger finger and I was placing my index finger on the front of the trigger guard of my H&K USP 40 Compact. It was working for me as my hit ratio while I was practicing mag changes improved quite a bit. My sights seemed to line up more naturally.
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