Proper Shooting Platform
From: Dr. Ignatius Piazza
Proper Shooting Platform
Any of the modern shooting stances being taught today will work for the first shot with a handgun if time and accuracy are not critical.
Once you place speed, accuracy, quick follow-up hits, transition to long guns and position shooting into the equation, there is one stance, or should I say, "shooting platform" that has proven to be the best overall choice.
You can shoot with any stance you wish at Front Sight. We will always do our best to make you as good as we possibly can during the time you spend with us.
However, we would like you to benefit from our hundreds of collective years experience and our proven track record of tens of thousands of students trained to levels that far exceed law enforcement and military standards. For this reason we will teach you to become a "shooting platform" that moves as a weapon, can transition to any kind of gun or any type of improvised field position and still get fast and accurate hits.
It all starts with your shooting stance.
We recommend and teach the Modified Weaver Stance. If you shoot with a different stance that is OK with us. You will not be criticized or belittled in any way. Again, we are here to improve your skills. We are not trying to make you good. We want to make you great!
If you are new to shooting and do not know what the different stances are, I will simply explain why we use the Modified Weaver Stance. If you have been shooting for some time and use a different stance, you can use it at Front Sight and you will improve your skills dramatically. As you move into more advanced levels of training, where speed and pinpoint accuracy are critical, or take our long guns courses, you will then recognize the benefits of the Modified Weaver Stance and why we recommend it over the other stances.
The Modified Weaver Stance with its isometric "push-pull" of the firing hand (pushing the gun forward) and support hand (pulling the gun backward) create two triangles of "kinesthetic awareness" that your body can reflexively "find" quickly… and more importantly hold steady in place.
The triangle formed by your firing arm, support arm, and body in the horizontal plane coupled with the triangle formed by the bend in the support arm, creates a solid shooting platform that can rotate at the hips and shoulders without losing its position.
If this sounds complicated, don't worry. It is easy to understand and use once we teach you how to shoot from a Modified Weaver Stance.
Hit the play button and you will see the Modified Weaver Stance working as a shooting platform as I deliver fast and accurate fire with a Glock 22 using full power ammunition. Note how little the gun muzzle moves on quick follow-up shots. This is due to the isometric "push-pull" of the Modified Weaver Stance we teach at Front Sight.
Watch the video a few times and then I will share some other benefits of the Modified Weaver Stance.
You see how little the gun moves during recoil? That allows for very quick and accurate follow up shots where you really can see the proper sight picture and focus on the front sight to guarantee your hits.
One of the greatest benefits of the stance we teach at Front Sight is found in our Handgun Combat Master Prep Course.
Kinesthetic awareness (your body knowing where to position itself) created by the horizontal and vertical planes of the isometric triangles in the shooting stance allow you to reflexively present the weapon with pin point accuracy. This results in the sights being where you want them at the top of the draw stroke so all you need to do is get a flash focus of the front sight and press the trigger without disrupting the sight alignment.
Here is another video of a student in our Handgun Combat Master Course presenting his weapon and completing some gun handling drills. Click on that link to view the video.
Watch it a few times and then I will tell you a true story about a European World Champion and Glock Factory Team Captain's experience in our Handgun Combat Master Prep Course.
As I mentioned before, the benefits of the shooting stance we teach become evident when speed and accuracy are critical. When there is no time for any wasted movement at the top of the draw stroke because you need that extra 2/10ths of a second to guarantee the hit, the Modified Weaver Stance makes the difference.
Back in the early days of Front Sight when I personally taught the Handgun Combat Master Prep Course, I would step up and shoot with students as part of the training to pace them for the most difficult aspects of the Handgun Combat Master Test.
In one course we had a man from Germany who was the European Combat Pistol Champion as well as the Captain of the Glock Factory Shooting Team. His "job" was to train for shooting competitions and he would literally shoot thousands of rounds PER DAY and had been doing this for years. The proof of his occupation was the callous on his thumb (from the slide rubbing) and the callous on his "Glock Finger" (second knuckle of his middle finger of shooting hand) that each measured over 1/2"! I'm not kidding. I had been training for years with my Glock and had no callous. I have trained tens of thousands of students and never seen anything like this man's hands.
The point I am making is that this European Champion, Glock Factory Shooting Team Captain TRAINED HEAVILY EVERY DAY.
He was very quick. In fact he was a fraction of a second quicker to the top of the draw stroke than I was! But because he used a shooting stance that did not have the kinesthetic awareness and push-pull isometrics of the Modified Weaver Stance, when he reached the top of stroke he was not locked on the hostage taker's obscured cranio-ocular cavity (about the size of a business card) and at 7 yards he could not guarantee a hit in the critical time frames of the Handgun Combat Master Test.
As I looked at his calloused hands , I explained to him that although he was lightening quick and very good, there was no amount of practice that he could do over and above what he was already doing to be any more locked in and steady at the top of the stroke than his current stance would allow. Because his stance only had a horizontal triangle and no push pull isometrics, he lacked the vertical triangle that locks the stance into place and creates a solid immovable shooting platform at the top the draw stroke.
As I'm sure you can imagine, after the thousands of rounds he shot each day for several years, there was no changing his stance in four days, so we worked with him as best we could, knowing his shooting stance was limiting his ability.
Sure enough, each time we entered the hostage taker head shots, the critical time frames and pinpoint accuracy required got the best of him.
There were other students in the course who had only taken a few courses with us who finished with similar scores as our German friend, but there were no Handgun Combat Masters certified that week.
At the end of the course our new friend flew back to Germany. I'm sure it was a long flight as he contemplated the limits of his shooting stance. I'll never forget his calloused hands...
In my next report, I will discuss the additional tactical benefits of the shooting platform we teach at Front Sight.
Dr. Ignatius Piazza
P.S. All the high speed, low drag best SWAT tactics in the world don't mean a thing if you can't hit with your first shot. All tactics do is place you in a position where you get the first shot and your opponent must react to your first shot. If you hit, your advantage increases dramatically. If you miss, the playing field is now level and your opponent gets his turn—so don't miss your first shot… If you have not purchased our dry practice manuals you should do so right now because PERFECT dry practice will enable you to hit with your first shot! Order your manuals today.
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