Why is a Good Shooting Stance Important?

Before we dive into any discussion of shooting stance, or any discussion of any practical firearms skills or drills, we like to cover the basics.

Always remember your four safety rules anytime a firearm is being used.

1.  Treat ALL guns as if they are loaded.  (I do this even with my rubber guns. I want this to be second nature.)

2. Never point the muzzle at anything you’re not willing to destroy.

3.  Keep your finger off the trigger until your eyes are on your target and you have made the decision to shoot.

4.  Know your target and what’s beyond it.

When in doubt, lean in. This is the best way to control recoil.
When in doubt, lean in. This is the best way to control recoil.

Proper shooting stance.

Obviously in a high stressed situation your grip is far more important than your feet, but it’s important to have balance while you are shooting in any situation.

There are a few shooting stances you can choose from. There is an isosceles stance, a weaver stance and a modified weaver stance.

An isosceles stance or a modified weaver stance is what I personally like to use. Having a martial arts background, I tend to go more for these two for balance and ease of movement, with my knees softly bent for stability.

Any good shooting stance will feel awkward at first, but you will get accustomed to it with practice. Build that muscle memory so it will be there when you need it most!
Any good shooting stance will feel awkward at first, but you will get accustomed to it with practice. Build that muscle memory so it will be there when you need it most!

Get down!

Lowering your center of gravity will give you a solid platform for recoil as well.   Your center of gravity is about two inches below your belly button. If you feel unbalanced while shooting, bend your knees and lean forward. That will lower your center of gravity and help you to shoot from a stable platform.

For Isosceles, you want your feet shoulder with apart and your weight more on the balls of your feet. Basically, you should be able to lift you heals easily on both feet.

Make sure your shoulders are over your toes. You need to be in a comfortable position and leaning forward by bending at the hips. This will help stabilize you during recoil during shooting.

Shooting is a whole-body exercise.
Shooting is a whole-body exercise.

Your arms will be extended out, holding your firearm, making an isosceles triangle with your arms and your body is the third side. If you were looking from the ceiling down you would see a triangle made with your arms and chest. Your legs are making another triangle as well, giving you a solid platform to shoot from.

The modified weaver stance is basically the same as the isosceles except your strong side foot is back about six inches, or half the size of your foot.  So, if you’re right-handed, your right foot would be slightly back. If you’re left-handed, your left foot would be back.

For the Weaver stance, your feet are pointing to the corner of a room at a forty-five-degree angle. Your strong side leg will be back and your strong side arm would be straight. Your weak side arm would be slightly bent.

This used to be used more for police as it makes their body a thinner target. It is harder to move in both directions easily with this shooting stance. This is also the footwork that you would use for long guns as well.

As with anything that requires some discipline, practice helps. Test out all of the options to see what works best for you.
As with anything that requires some discipline, practice helps. Test out all of the options to see what works best for you.

The shooting stance is just the beginning.

Whatever stance you choose make sure you have a solid grip. Then it’s all about sight alignment and trigger pull to make those accurate shots.

 

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