1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Can Enough Practice/Training COMPLETELY Overcome Ergonomics?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by coalman, Sep 26, 2012.


Can Enough Practice/Training COMPLETELY Overcome Ergos?

Poll closed Oct 26, 2012.
  1. Yes (enough practice makes all gun ergos equal)

    44 vote(s)
  2. No (no amount of practice can make all gun ergos equal)

    53 vote(s)
  1. coalman

    coalman Well-Known Member

    (I shoot the Glock 9mm well, but poorer than many other platforms. So, this is thread is about shooting well vs. better, NOT not about shooting well vs. poor.)

    I once subscribed more readily to the "practice more" or "try a different technique" line of thinking. So, I invested more in Glock 9mm (time, ammo and gear), kept shooting and trying different things to improve. Now, I'm stocked completely for Glock 9mm in mags, gear and parts. I like the durable, reliable, cheap and simple complete package the Glock offers so I kept investing in the Glock 9mm (G17, G19 and G26) because I want it to work best. I've put >40k through the platform.

    Then, I own the 1911 (3.5", 4" and 5"). I'm better pretty much right off. Comes right back on target. Must be the light and crisp single action trigger I thought, so I dismissed it, but kept the 1911. I kept investing in Glock 9mm.

    Then, I own the XD 9mm (XD9 and XD9c). I shot it as well or better after a few hundred rounds. Comes right back on target. Ergos were great, but I thought it must be the light single action trigger. Sold it because I was so invested in Glock 9mm (and liked the complete Glock package) and did not want to start over.

    Then, I own the Glock .45acp (G21sf and G30). Same story as the 1911, but now I can't credit the SA trigger. I shoot .45acp Glocks better than most guns regardless of caliber. And, it's a Glock with the same trigger system (but different ergos in the grip) than Glock 9mm guns. However, I keep investing in Glock 9mm because 9mm is cheaper to shoot meaning I can practice more to overcome my deficits (so I thought).

    Then, I own the CZ 9mm (SP01 and 75c). Same story as the 1911 and I dimissed it for the same reasons. Ergos were excellent for me. Sold it because its still a novel make and extras (to tool up to my Glock 9mm standards) are pricey.

    Then, I own the 92fs. Same deal as the XD minus the rounds needed. I kept investing in Glock 9mm because I don't want to start new with gear and the DA first shot is not gamer-friendly for me.

    Then, I own the Sig (P239, P229 and P226). Same story as the XD minus the rounds needed. Great ergos for my hand in that my trigger finger naturally aligns with the trigger each time I grab it. But, DA first shot is not gamer-friendly for me. I've kept the Sig. But, I now begin to see a pattern of shooting other guns better than Glock 9mm.

    HK (USP45c and USP40c) was a bust. Glock 40sw, too. Kahr (P9 and MK9) was okay, but not really a fair comparision because the small grip is hard to action shoot. Wheel guns don't really compare either. A Ruger was in there somewhere, maybe a few more, but none that had more than 1k downrange.

    This story takes place over many years where ownership of each gun make above is not necessarily chronological one to the next. And, in terms of "better", I'm talking consistent POI around POA of tigher group with few fliers, especially in action shooting and rapid fire. Better ergos for my hand shape and size keeps coming up in guns I shoot naturally better. That's the pattern I keep wanting to think "more practice" or "better technique" can overcome in Glock 9mm. It's still not to my expectations.

    See poll.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2012
  2. Ehtereon11B

    Ehtereon11B internet infantryman

    I read a blog about this topic called "There are many like it but this one is mine." The author of that article explained that you can be an amazing shot with one type of firearm but can't hit the broadside of a barn with another, regardless of how similar they seem (such as XDs and Glocks). For example I am very accurate and comfortable with my Walther but I downright hate Glocks for accuracy, reliability and so on. For another shooter the opposite is probably true.
  3. Bobson

    Bobson Well-Known Member

    The right amount of proper/correct/effective practice can.

    My 5th grade band teacher, Mr. Lish, used to tell us, "Practice doesn't make perfect; practice makes permanent."

    My personal experiences have shown that to be true.
  4. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

    I'll repeat the same question from your previous thread which you still haven't address and which have a lot of bearing on the answer to your question:

    How fast are you shooting when comparing accuracy...faster or slower than 5 rounds a second?

    How accurate; 4", 6", 8" groups at 7 yards?

    Putting more rounds downrange if you aren't using optimal techniques won't improve your gun control or accuracy when shooting at speed. I've shot all the guns you've mentioned and at a slower pace, you can learn to shoot any gun well.
  5. coalman

    coalman Well-Known Member

    It's less about "accuracy" and more about consistency. Any of these guns is more accurate than I am. I can crank out softball size groups at 7rds with pretty much all of them most days, and the slower I fire the more the same they all are and the smaller the group. With the Glock 9mm, it's in particular the consistency of POI around POA and the increase in flyers, both of which open up the group. I have no issues with the Glock .45. I know full well it's clearly trigger manipulation as any gun, being a tool, does what I tell it. But, I have >40k in Glock 9mm and less than 1/10 of that in some of the other platforms I shoot better. I "practice" the same with the same "technique" and shoot the other guns I've tried better with less effort (and no "warm up") than the Glock 9mm. That's becoming harder to ignore, but, given my like of the complete Glock 9mm package and how invested I am in it, I still really want the Glock 9mm to work best.

    My personal experience and observations differ. Learning to play an instrument has yet to "click" with me. I worked very hard to be a better basketball and baseball player, IMO reached my potential in those sports, but still fell short of my goals. Failure can happen regardless of effort. I'm a natural at racket sports. I played tennis for a just few years and was better than I ever was at other sports. That's my personal experience and my observations support it. Physiology and skill sets differ. Ergomonics relate to this IMO.
  6. JohnBiltz

    JohnBiltz Well-Known Member

    No, it can't. Most modern stuff is pretty good ergonomically. So yes with most modern stuff you can probably overcome it with training but there has been some really bad stuff made over the years and there are reasons its not around anymore.

    I think most people think ergonomics is how a gun feels in the hand. Its not, it also includes everything you need to do make it run and keep it running. I'll also say if you have a rifle and the stock is too long training is not going to overcome that. Its just going to stay too long no matter how much you train with it. Thousands of rounds of shooting is not going to substitute for a saw.

    Let me post a proof: I build a rifle with 5 foot stock on it. The stock is so long I can not reach the trigger or the bolt/charging handle. You can't train that away. Its pretty much unshootable.
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2012
  7. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

    OK so now we have a size ~4"

    At what speed can you keep your shots in the group?

    Does the G19 shoot a larger group (how much larger?) or does it just take long to do...what speed?

    I actually have an idea, but don't want to even start down that path without more information.

    A video clip of you shooting the G19 and the G30 would be great...from the left side please
  8. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Well-Known Member

    There was a time when there wasn't a large selection of firearms available and yet, even in those limited times, people were able to become not only competent, but also extremely proficient.

    Could they have done better with more ergonomic guns or guns that fit them better? Almost certainly. But those willing to put in the practice time were able accomplish amazing feats with what was available.

    So, practice will get you good enough, even with a gun that's not a perfect fit. And enough practice can allow you to become very good with that same gun.

    But if you can get a gun that fits you better and that you shoot better, and is reasonably equal or superior in other respects to the gun you're using now, why not take advantage of the selection available today?
    I've never really observed this in practice. If a shooter is "amazing" with one type of handgun, they're at least be decent with others. Assuming, of course that the others are reasonably functional.
  9. Doc3402

    Doc3402 Well-Known Member

    I think it would depend on what type of shooting you are talking about. If you mean a slow paced bulls-eye shoot, then sure practice can overcome almost anything. If you are talking a timed combat competition, then no, you will never become the best you can be with a gun that doesn't fit.
  10. coalman

    coalman Well-Known Member

    Based on gaming observations, I can pull the trigger faster than many, not as fast as some. I can often clear 11 rounds in 2 seconds, give or take, with "A" hits on a single target at 7 yards. The Glock 17 is my gamer gun and highest volume 9mm shooter.

    This is comparing full size guns: Glock 17, XDTac9, P226, 92FS and CZ SP01 in 9mm and the 5" 1911 and Glock 21 in .45acp. That's most apples to apples, though the observation applies to the Glock 19 vs. Glock 30 and CZ 75Bc, Glock 26 vs. XD9c, and so on. I run a 3.5# connector in my Glock 17, run Heinies on it, and have tried finger groove and inner tube grip sleeves. I reload so have run lighter loads as well.

    I can fire guns with a shorter reset (e.g. Glock and 1911) slightly faster than guns with a longer reset (e.g. Sig and Beretta). I fire the Glock 17 slightly faster than the Glock 21 due to recoil recovery.

    With the Glock 9mm I have consistently more flyers and pattern can be consistently less centered around POA. So, rounds 1-3 and 6-8 and 9-10 may group well, but 4-5, 7 and 11 open it up more. It's not 4" vs. 12", but it's enough to notice that I have fewer flyers and more consistent POI centered around POA with the other guns.

    That's the best I'm going to be able to give you here. I'm not the post-video-of-myself-on-the-internet kinda guy. Sorry.
  11. NG VI

    NG VI Well-Known Member

    CZ a novel make?

    They are absolutely a name brand manufacturer out there, here to stay and not some one-off company with an odd pistol that may not be around in ten years.

    They've even got a (huge) thriving cottage industry of clones and very slightly varied derivatives!
  12. coalman

    coalman Well-Known Member

    CZ fans are awesome, and quick to the defense. I have 7-10 decent size LGS in a 60 mile radius. If I visit them in a day I'll typically see 5-6 CZs total, and half of those will usually be in the same one shop. That's novel. America is not Europe.

    Local FTF and used deals remain the best deals for me, you often pay a premium for CZ extras and options are much more limited. Plus the price of the guns has spiked in my area AND we pay tax on shipped guns. They are great range guns indeed.

    Thanks for the bump.
  13. Old Dog

    Old Dog Well-Known Member

    Coalman, good thread topic.

    I'm in the camp that will offer a resounding NO! to the question.

    I've been instructing firearms for many a year now (mil & LE) and aside from my own personal experience, have seen many folks struggle and never believe that it might actually be the gun ... Too many people buy something they think is cool, or that came highly recommended by whoever or just get personally invested in their new toy ... but can't achieve as high a level of proficiency with it as they might with another platform.

    For me, 1911s and SIGs fit my hand and point perfectly for me. I can accomplish accuracy with these pistols over any others. CZ-75s feel great in my hand and shoot well for me. Even the oft-maligned Beretta 92FS/M-9 feels good in my hand and lets me achieve respectable accuracy.

    On the other hand (so to speak), I was stuck with the H&K USP for years as a duty weapon -- horrible ergos (for me) and although I shot expert with it, I never got completely comfortable with it nor felt that level of confidence one has to have in their sidearm.

    Glocks -- I tried 'em for years, convinced that the millions of fanboys couldn't be wrong. Same issues for me as with the H&K. Disclaimer -- the latest incarnation of the G-19/23 series DOES seem to fit me better than the previous versions, though I don't have enough trigger time on 'em yet.

    SA XDs left me cold, though with the XDm, I'm feelin' a bit more love ...

    Why handgunners can be so stubborn, I dunno ... most diehard rifleman will never stick with a rifle that they feel doesn't fit them "just right" and riflemen have been tweaking stocks to get the perfect length of pull for themselves, adjusting combs for the best cheek-weld, experimenting with actions, bolt throw, barrel length, sight/scope placement and eye relief all to get a "personalized" rifle that has the proper ergos just for themselves -- why don't more handgunners acknowledge that one size doesn't fit all? "Go get yerself a Glock, boy ..."
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2012
  14. Sharps-shooter

    Sharps-shooter Well-Known Member

    From my point of view: I am going to shoot better with something i have practiced more with than i would shoot that same gun with less practice. But not necessarily as well as i would shoot a more ergonomic gun with the same amount of practice. For instance, my younger daughter has practiced pretty much exactly the same amount with two different rifles: an ar15 and a ruger 10/22. Same number of 5-shot groups from each, every time we go shooting. She has gotten a lot better with both of them than when she started; but the Ar has always been easier for her to use, because it is the more ergonomic rifle (for her; the ruger is at least as easy for me).
  15. HDCamel

    HDCamel Well-Known Member

    A gun with good ergos is easier to learn.
    A gun with good ergos and good balance is easier still.

    Enough practice CAN overcome bad/mediocre ergonomics, but the amount of practice that makes you competent with a gun that you don't like would make you a god with a gun that you do like.
  16. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

    Certainly some truth to that. But it also points out why the initial question is unanswerable.

    Put 80,000 rds downrange in a year (like some pros do) with a gun and you'll be better with that gun than with any other. Other guns will seem unnatural to your hands.

    But you can't put infinite practice into all platforms and have a truly objective answer.

    I think a better way of looking at it is, if you are forced (due to employment perhaps) to use a gun that is not your first choice, train and then practice like your life depends on it. You will develop a high level of proficiency. You may have developed a high-ER level of proficiency, fast-ER with some other gun, but you use what you're able and you'll find that you become very capable of wielding that weapon effectively.

    You'll occasionally notice that some grand-master-class shooters do sometimes change guns, and they manage to take their skills with one and train themselves to apply those skills with another. It stands to reason that the majority of those platform shifts are in an attempt to find ergonomics which work better for them than what they originally developed those skills with. So you can do the same. Take what you have, put XX,000 rounds through it in GOOD practice, then evaluate if you think some other gun will help you develop farther. If so, make the jump and then put XX,000 rounds through that one. Then you'll know if it helped or hurt. :)

    There's no correct and final answer. It's all a worthy quest for an unattainable goal.
  17. GRIZ22

    GRIZ22 Well-Known Member

    I think too much is put into how the gun "fits your hand".

    I was a LE firearms instructor for nearly 30 years and still do private instruction a regular basis. During that time I have instructed people on just about every type of DA revolver and semi-auto pistol. That includes periods where only one type of handgun is authorized. A good shooter will adapt and overcome any issues with the "feel" of the gun with practice and training. That training part is very important.

    I like to use a 4-10, 85 lb agent I instructed as an example. Most would consider her hands too small for anything but a J frame. She was a good shooter with a J frame, L frame, S&W 69 series, Glock, H&K, M16, or 870. If you're a good shooter you can be one with any qualit handgun.

    I agree some guns "fit the hand" better but I think too much is made of this.
  18. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf member

    Shoot a revolver double action about a million plus times. All guns/triggers are pretty easy to shoot well after that.
  19. Old Dog

    Old Dog Well-Known Member

    Note that you said a "good shooter." Many people, even in the military and law enforcement, never become good shooters. And while the good shooter may "adapt and overcome any issues with the 'feel' of the gun with practice and training," the good shooter might be a significantly better with another handgun that suits him/her best. I related my own experience with one pistol, and I don't think I'm uncommon in that regard. I'm very experienced, and proficient with handguns, but even with "practice and training" until the cows come home, I'm never going to be as good with certain platforms.

    Then "most" would not understand that small hands are not necessarily a hindrance to shooting larger handguns well. I know plenty of smaller-handed females -- and some males, who can, for example, shoot full-size 1911s with amazing results. J-frames, regardless of hand size, are also not the easiest revolvers to master, particularly the lighter framed Js with hotter .38 or .357 loads.

    I agree to disagree with you regarding the second portion of this statement. I believe it is a most germane factor in the discussion of acquiring above-average proficiency with a handgun, and it's not all about hand size.
  20. Sheepdog1968

    Sheepdog1968 Well-Known Member

    If you train frequently (and I don't just mean going to the range, I mean taking instructor run courses), I think you can work with most firearms to defend yourself. Some are a bit easier than others. Very few people operate at such a high level that the little differences will really matter.

Share This Page