One Handed Recoil Control and Gripping Methods –
One Handed Grip – The grip changes slightly when engaging with one hand, as there is no longer a support
hand to minimize and control recoil. Generally, the support hand is described as the “gripping hand” as it usually does a higher percentage of the gripping than the shooting hand (the one pulling the trigger). With one hand only, that gripping hand is gone, so you must grip the gun tighter with your shooting hand. It is especially important to grip the gun with a significant amount of pressure with the three gripping fingers (middle, ring, and pinky), yet keep the trigger finger as relaxed as possible. The shooting hand thumb is also an important part of a one-hand grip, as it can be leveraged slightly up to ensure that there is equal pressure on the rear back strap of the gun. I believe in and teach a position that keeps the gun upright and have students focus on getting “the arm behind the gun and their body behind the arm”. This position requires that the elbow joint is locked yet not hyperextended, and rotated down so that the elbow capsule points down toward the ground. The wrist and elbow should both be locked up and the bodyweight should be shifted to the same foot as the arm you are shooting with. This gets maximum pressure behind the gun to control recoil.
One handed shooting position. Notice the elbow slightly bent and the arm behind the gun to help with
recoil control. The strong hand thumb is up versus down to keep pressure on the back left portion of the grip.
Shooting With The Support Hand Only – Shooting with the support hand will normally be done due to an injury, or possibly an exigent circumstance such as holding onto something or someone for control purposes. If possible the non-shooting hand should be pinned to the chest area in the upper pectoral region just inside the shoulder. It is instinctive to cradle a wounded arm, and this should replicate something that is natural if you are injured. In addition, pinning the arm in this area keeps it from swinging and disturbing the other arm during the shooting process. If the arm cannot be lifted, then let it hang or pin it somewhere near the waist. Once again, remember to get the arm behind the gun and the body behind the arm. The mechanics of gripping with the support hand only are much like that of the strong hand.
For more technique tips on shooting with one hand, please see Your Defensive Handgun Training Program.
Until Then – Train Hard!