Handgun Techniques


August 31, 2009, 10:58 AM
Question on handgun shooting techniques.

I have a compressed nerve in my neck which causes some shakes when I hold/aim my pistol. Rifle isn't bad as its heavy enough and I can pull it into my shoulder to counter the shakes. Besides getting a BB pistol and just practicing, is there anything else I can do to improve my stability?


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August 31, 2009, 10:32 PM
Hey, My C2,C3, and C4 are blown with moderate stenosis & pinched nerves. C5-C7 are fused. L4-L5 also fused. I have a spinal neurostimulator added to the mix.
Are any of your shakes rhythmic or a pattern to them? I had mostly been shooting a S&W 459 9mm and my accuracy suffered in the past few years. I decided on a larger heavier gun combined with a technique that works for me.
I got a new Beretta 90-two. It has almost zero muzzle flip so follow-on shots are immediate.
Breath control, trigger squeeze, and closely watching the front sight during the shakes/quivers; When I see what looks like an anticipated shake coming I have at that time held my breath, squeezed off a round when the front sight was approaching my POA.
For me I have quivers (like fingers twitching but in my shoulder muscles) and more perceptible hand movement.
The heavier gun gave me more mass to hide or mask the shakes/tremors. Pistol target shooting had gotten frustrating before the larger gun. I love this new Dash because its weight/mass mask my movements or minimize them.
With the Smith shooting at 50 yards it truly was a hit or miss proposition shooting at the steel flip down targets. There are 3 target groups of 5 flippers each. The other day after shooting 7 and 15 yard targets I thought less see how I do at longer rangers. I was amazed. I blew down all 15 targets without an intervening miss, got all 15 with one mag!!
I was stunned. I hadn't shot like that in many years.
So for me, a heavier gun, and "anticipating muzzle movement" then squeezing the trigger worked. The only other change I incorporated was to use the 1st tip of my finger on the trigger versus sticking my finger almost through.
I am very happy. Please experiment with lighter/heavier guns and concentrating on catching the next spasm/twitch.
I am limited to 9mm as .40 and .45's hurt after a while.

Kurt S.
September 1, 2009, 12:55 PM
I have what's called Familial or Essential Tremor. It has gotten worse as the years go by. (thanks, Dad, you didn't leave me your smarts or gumption, at least I got this) I can and do take Inderal, a beta blocker which greatly improves things. Unfortunately, it was designed as a high blood pressure medication and I don't have high blood pressure. The effect I don't like is that it makes it difficult for me to get angry or excited :D (also, I can never be in the Olympics taking it :D ). I only use it occasionally.

Weight of the gun seems not to make a difference for me.

For me, using breath control and concentrating on my front sight works pretty well. However, I found that what helps most is constant practice. When I was shooting 4 or 5 sessions/month, each session 2-4 hours I was much better than I am now, shooting once or twice a month if I am lucky.

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