Ted’s essays

handgun coaching

Last night I had one returning handgun student and two new ones. I asked the one if he had been practicing his hand positioning. “A little. Not enough.” He keeps wanting to put his off thumb across the back of the gun instead of safely on top of the shooting thumb. I had to watch like a mother hen and constantly remind him throughout our first session.

“Don’t forget! I don’t want you hurt.”

I helped his wife get started. Even with a hammerless revolver, I insist on proper hand position. You are likely to use a semi-auto someday. About that time, her husband comes over to show me his bleeding thumb. “I won’t forget now.” I believe him on that. I think his wife was impressed with the lesson too.

A third student arrived and the other two said they were comfortable practicing on their own. I should go work with the new shooter. I soon suspected, tested, and discovered her left-eye dominance.

She was incredibly easy to switch over as she had very little experience shooting right handed anyway. As soon as she brought the sights onto the target left-handed, she immediately lowered it safely, turned to me with dancing, sparkling eyes and said, “WOW! The target is so clear. The sights seem so easy to line up. This is wonderful.” Then took to shooting … and continued to comment on how much easier it was… not to mention she also started hitting much better.

As always, I do most of my training on a distant target, but just about the time they have had enough, I put a silhouette up close … 15′ or thereabouts. “Load one magazine with three and another with 8 or 10. Okay, this guy is threatening you. Now put three on his nose. She got two head shots and one clavical. Now he is coming at you. Shoot as fast as you can comfortably, with full control, doing all that you have been practicing. In a steady, rapid, measured pace, she put every one in the torso. Talk about grinning. She was justifiably proud of herself … and now confident.

It was a great night. I am too dang lazy to want to go, but keep being rewarded by going. I guess I might keep it up for a bit.