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  1. #1
    wpshooter is offline Member
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    correct placement of "off" hand thumb when shooting pistols ?

    I have seen on some instructional videos that when shooting with a two hand grip, that the thumb of your non-trigger hand should be placed on the same side of the gun as your regular shooting hand (like for me being left-handed, my right hand thumb would be along side or possibly on top of my left thumb on the right side of the pistol).

    But to me, I have always had the tendency to place my right hand thumb wrapped across the back of my left hand, just behind the joint of my left thumb and trigger finger joint, i.e. basically directly behind the hammer area of the pistol).

    I know that how I hold the gun is ultimately up to me, but I am wondering if I would be better off if I tried to force myself to place my right hand thumb along side my left thumb on the right side on the pistol, even though it seems sort of unnatural ?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Bisley's Avatar
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    I switched to the combat grip a few years ago, and it helped my shooting consistency considerably. It felt weird for about 50 rounds or so, but I got used to it quickly.

    http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=...ed=0CB4Q9QEwBg


  3. #3
    zhurdan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wpshooter View Post
    I have seen on some instructional videos that when shooting with a two hand grip, that the thumb of your non-trigger hand should be placed on the same side of the gun as your regular shooting hand (like for me being left-handed, my right hand thumb would be along side or possibly on top of my left thumb on the right side of the pistol).

    But to me, I have always had the tendency to place my right hand thumb wrapped across the back of my left hand, just behind the joint of my left thumb and trigger finger joint, i.e. basically directly behind the hammer area of the pistol).
    If you're shooting semi-autos, you're probably going to get slide bite from doing that, or you are not getting high enough up on the backstrap to mitigate recoil. The higher up your shooting hand is on the grip, the better.

    I know that how I hold the gun is ultimately up to me, but I am wondering if I would be better off if I tried to force myself to place my right hand thumb along side my left thumb on the right side on the pistol, even though it seems sort of unnatural ?
    Thanks.
    Technically, it's not totally up to you, in the sense that there's a better way. You can choose what you want, but it may be choosing the least effective way to manage recoil. Keeping in mind the "Thumbs forward" grip, try to make sure that you are covering the exposed portion of the grip with your support hand (the heal thru your thumb like the picture Bisley posted). As the Magpul Dynamics guys say... "The gun will follow the path of least resistance", and the thumbs forward, full contact to grips is the best way to ensure that recoil impulse is traveling in more of a straight line thru your body.

  4. #4
    wpshooter is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bisley View Post
    I switched to the combat grip a few years ago, and it helped my shooting consistency considerably. It felt weird for about 50 rounds or so, but I got used to it quickly.

    http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=...ed=0CB4Q9QEwBg

    Couple more quick questions.

    On the grip shown in the picture, just looking at the bottom of the gun's slide, it almost looks like that the bottom of the slide might hit the top of his trigger hand (the skinny bridge part between his thumb and index finger).

    And also, on the weak hand thumb, is it placed against the side of the pistol ? If so, this seems like it might interfere with the functioning of the slide if you got up too high and placed it on the actual slide or do you have to just make sure you hold it away from and don't let it touch the side of the gun, which would seem sort of awkward to me ?

    I will give it a try this weekend, when I can get back out to the farm.

    Thanks.

  5. #5
    bruce333's Avatar
    bruce333 is offline HGF Forum Moderator
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    Here is the article those photos are from.

    http://www.handgunsmag.com/tactics_t...306/index.html
    Bruce, Life Member: NRA, NCRPA, GRNC, GOA

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  6. #6
    Vom Kriege's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bruce333 View Post

    Here is the article those photos are from.

    http://www.handgunsmag.com/tactics_t...306/index.html
    This is the grip that I use although I have less finger on the trigger than in the picture.

  7. #7
    Bisley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wpshooter View Post
    Couple more quick questions.

    On the grip shown in the picture, just looking at the bottom of the gun's slide, it almost looks like that the bottom of the slide might hit the top of his trigger hand (the skinny bridge part between his thumb and index finger.

    And also, on the weak hand thumb, is it placed against the side of the pistol ? If so, this seems like it might interfere with the functioning of the slide if you got up too high and placed it on the actual slide or do you have to just make sure you hold it away from and don't let it touch the side of the gun, which would seem sort of awkward to me ?

    I will give it a try this weekend, when I can get back out to the farm.

    Thanks.
    There's more than one single precise way to do this grip.

    Basically, you are gripping the gun by pushing with your strong hand and pulling with your weak hand. If you are doing it right, you 'lock up' like a vice, and can hold your sights on the target very well, for as long as is necessary. The more you practice, the faster it gets, naturally.

    The thumbs are not a major factor, although the weak hand thumb does support the frame slightly, below the slide. The strong hand thumb basically just lays down out of the way - it is not a major factor in controlling the gun - that is taken care of by the push-pull, with a slight lateral assist by the weak hand thumb.

    Remember that your goal is always to keep your trigger finger moving independently of your grip, so that you may press the trigger with the pad of the first joint, straight back.

    As for keeping your thumbs and all clear of the slide, master the grip on your largest pistol, so that everything clears and you are shooting consistently, then adapt it for your smaller pistols. I have large hands, but am still able to use this grip with my LCP, even though it practically 'disappears' from view, inside my grip.

  8. #8
    ichiban's Avatar
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    Here's a lesson from Todd Jarrett.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysa50-plo48

  9. #9
    SK2344 is offline Junior Member
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    My way.....

    I shoot all guns with my left thumb curled over my right thumb. This is the way I have been shooting all my life and it works very well for me. No Problems.

  10. #10
    Bisley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SK2344 View Post
    I shoot all guns with my left thumb curled over my right thumb. This is the way I have been shooting all my life and it works very well for me. No Problems.
    Most folks shoot the way they want, and there are a lot of folks out there who break all the fundamentals and still shoot well, either because they have natural ability, or they have just practiced enough to learn how to compensate for their bad mechanics. I have a brother-in-law who is a very good pistol shooter, who does everything wrong. The only thing he does 'correctly' is to keep the sights lined up until the firing pin strikes the primer, and follow through. That's all that really matters.

    All of the training and teaching of fundamentals does is try to make your shooting mechanics as simple as possible, so you don't have so many things to try to overcome. It allows you to spend your time and money more wisely, learning to shoot well, instead of re-inventing the wheel. The combat grip is just the best, so far, for the majority of folks, but not necessarily the best for every single person.

  11. #11
    Vom Kriege's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SK2344 View Post
    I shoot all guns with my left thumb curled over my right thumb. This is the way I have been shooting all my life and it works very well for me. No Problems.
    This gives you less contact with the grip. I do as you describe when shooting an SA revolver so that I can thumb cock the hammer with the support hand thumb, but for autos thumbs forward or high thumbs are superior gripping methods.

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