When it comes to competitive shooting, one thing I have learned is my grip and stance make a huge different to the level of my performance. The way that I grip, the strength that I grip with and the stance I shoot in can make or break how well I shoot. That’s why when I start to have problems it helps to take a look at these basics first.
Here are some key indicators that I need to adjust grip or stance:
1) I can’t find the sights. Have you ever drawn the gun and it takes you forever to find your first shot? One of the reasons for this might be a bad grip. An occasional bad grip happens but if it is a constant problem it is time to adjust.
2) I am missing the second shot of a double tap- or shooting a LOT of c zone hits. This can be either a grip or stance issue. A loose grip might mean that I am not recovering from recoil as fast as I am used to so I am missing. Misses can also mean a poor stance because the recoil might be rocking my body backwards meaning the sights are no longer on target.
3) Slow movement. I am lucky that I get to shoot with a regular group of people. If my times start to lag behind them, from experience, I know that I am probably not moving aggressively. Leaning forward into my stance makes me more aggressive which makes me move faster. Having a proper stance with my feet even also means that I can move faster side to side.
Here are a couple of great drills to help you train on grip and stance:
1) The Super aggressive Drill- Sometimes to see if I am shooting in an aggressive stance I like to do what I call the Super aggressive Drill. You can do this shooting almost anything, the key is you want to stand with your knees bent very deeply and leaning forward. Shoot at least a couple of magazines this way. It is liable to feel very awkward but I bet you will see a difference in your shooting. After a couple of magazines you can relax some of the aggressiveness until you find a more comfortable position- as long as you are still leaning forward and have some knee bend.
2) Shooting Groups- This is a great drill to use to check grip. When I shoot groups I am focusing on squeezing the trigger and watching the sights. If when the shot breaks the gun’s recoil carries it up more than about an inch I know that I am not squeezing the gun well enough. For my body, I have found that I must have a good strong grip with both my hands in order to control the firearm. This may not be true of all shooters, but for my size and body type grip is extremely important.
Throughout the shooting season it is always a good idea to revisit basics for a practice or as part of your practice. It will keep your shooting on track and help you continue to advance. What basics make a different in your shooting?