Off hand shooting

This is a discussion on Off hand shooting within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; My off hand shooting is abysmal. If I take the time to turn my two-handed grip over and shoot southpaw, I do OK, but one ...

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    Ex Member Array Yankeejib's Avatar
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    Off hand shooting

    My off hand shooting is abysmal. If I take the time to turn my two-handed grip over and shoot southpaw, I do OK, but one handed I don't hit enough. Anyone have any tips/training to improve this? Would cross eye dominance have an effect? Does anyone make any left handed pistols?

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    How is your one handed shooting with your right hand? Significantly better? That is probably because you have taught yourself to shoot with that hand.

    Now you have to teach your self to shoot with your left hand. Start the the way you did with your right, close and slow. Gradually move the range back and pick up speed, all while maintaining accuracy.

    If your grip is weak, exercise it. If your arm wobbles, exercise that too. Trigger control issue, dry fire practice - you should be doing this anyways.

    You may never be as fast or as accurate with your left as you are with your right, but you can get close. I don't believe there is any "trick" to it. It's just work.

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    I wonder if buying a good quality air pistol and practicing point of aim shooting would be a cheaper way ? Cheap ammo and you practice in your garage or cellar.


    Rich

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    Distinguished Member Array TSiWRX's Avatar
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    Yankeejib, yes, eye-dominance can have an effect on *any* shooting, not just off/reaction/support-hand pistol stuff.

    Since you mentioned cross-dominance, and "shooting southpaw," I'm imagining that you're right-handed but left-eye-dominant, correct?

    And while you answer that question, let's also take things a step back --->

    How well do you shoot, one-handed, with your dominant (right?) hand?

    And for the time being, ditch the left-handed pistol idea. As a person serious about concealed-carry and surviving the fight of your life, you need to be able to run your weapon with either hand, regardless of the "chirality" of that weapon.

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    Dry fire, when the hammer/striker clicks if your sights are on the target then you would have hit what you were aiming at.

    Please make sure it is unloaded first.

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    JD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yankeejib View Post
    My off hand shooting is abysmal. If I take the time to turn my two-handed grip over and shoot southpaw, I do OK, but one handed I don't hit enough. Anyone have any tips/training to improve this? Would cross eye dominance have an effect? Does anyone make any left handed pistols?

    Practice, practice, practice.


    I'm right handed and left eye dominant so i actually do a little better when shooting lefty as I get a little better eye/sight correlation.

    What distance are your shooting?

    What is the accuracy you are expecting? IE all in the down zero of an IDPA target (8" circle)

    What handgun are you shooting?

    What is your dominant eye?

    Left handed pistol? Not exactly and if you're right handed that wouldn't help out much for your right hand only shooting.

    There are some guns that are more ambidextrous than others with true ambi slide stops and mag releases etc. Hks, Walthers, XD/XDM and others.

    If you have a .22 target gun, start with that and just get the mechanics of it all down. If you're like I was when I first started doing left handed shooting, all my left hand was good for was.....well nothing. Get one of those grip master things and a 10lbs dumb bell and do some wrist curls too.

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    Ex Member Array Ram Rod's Avatar
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    Well, maybe lacking just a little information in the OP. Weak hand shooting and cross dominance has me confused from the start. I'm right eye and right hand dominant. I shoot one handed strong side, two handed strong side, and one handed weak side only. Shooting weak hand, I've tried to sight using my left eye and it absolutely short circuits my brain after two or three shots and I get a headache and then I'm not very good at hitting where I aim. I always keep both eyes open when shooting pistol. I've never tried a two hand hold for weak side shooting mainly because the pistol is canted to the right so as to be in front of my dominant eye.....a two hand hold just won't work for that or at least not for me. In my opinion.....eye dominance rules. I think it's a lot easier to become ambidextrous or at least 40/60. Then again....my brain aint what it used to be and I may be making excuses for my shortcomings in this respect.
    Dry fire training won't use any ammo....matter of fact, you don't even need a pistol to practice your cross dominance/preference..........just point your finger (weak side or strong side) at an object with both eyes open, then close one then the other to see which is on target....adjust for effect and see what you're able to deal with there.
    Does anyone make left handed pistols? From what I hear Glock does now.........apparently a lot of folks are getting hit in the face with brass nowadays weak hand or strong hand which can only mean one thing........they are left handed pistols. If you can hit the person to the right of you at the range with your spent brass, then it's a right handed pistol. I figure you can't specifically order a right or left handed Glock........it's just luck of the draw and what you get is what you get.

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    Member Array Tayopo's Avatar
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    Evening Ram rod, coffee? You posted --> Does anyone make left handed pistols?
    ****************
    You cottin pickin right they do, called the ever fathful Revolver.

    Don Jose de La Mancha
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    Last edited by Tayopo; June 30th, 2012 at 01:56 AM.
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    Ex Member Array Yankeejib's Avatar
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    Thanks for the responses. I was at the range yesterday and spent considerable time practicing some of these things. I'm RH left eye dom.

    Quote Originally Posted by JD View Post

    What distance are your shooting?

    What is the accuracy you are expecting? IE all in the down zero of an IDPA target (8" circle)

    What handgun are you shooting?

    What is your dominant eye?

    Left handed pistol? Not exactly and if you're right handed that wouldn't help out much for your right hand only shooting.
    Shooting at 10 yards on an 8" circle. Shot G23, SP101, and Smith 908. Just went slow and steady and did alright. It IS a matter of LH strength. I play several musical instruments (piano, strings, drums) so ambidexterity is not much of a problem for me. Muscle memory more than anything. Thanks again.

    Oh BTW, LH pistol was a joke, but now I realize you could have an ejection port on the left I guess....

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    ^ With the above information:

    Since you're cross-dominant (right-handed but left-eye dominant), if-anything, in using your left (non-dominant) hand to shoot, you should actually see (no pun intended) better results, once you've got, as you very rightfully said, the proper muscle-memory and muscle-endurance down pat.

    As for chiral-specific pistols? Well, there's awesome custom pieces like these, by Joe Chambers of Chambers Custom:

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    I was instructed to learn to shoot with both eyes open,WHAT!?,I know but after retraining I found that my Weak hand shooting actually got a lot better,and one handed shooting did to,I will roll the pistol slide inside and down,We call this "Half Homie" as its only half sideways,it helps alot in recoil control also.

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    I use a laserlyte trainer and practice indoors with both left and right handed and I have to say my off hand shooting had greatly improved. Gives you a chance to try different ways to aim and draw from a holster even when the range you shoot at won't let you

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    Ex Member Array pir8fan's Avatar
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    There are a number of pistols with ambi safeties. Revolvers don't need them. I'm ambi so I always look for the left-handed features on a firearm. I practice both hands regularly. As for cross dominance, you'll have to decide if it has an impact for you. I don't notice much, if any (I'm right eye dominant) but that's probably due to a lifetime of being ambi. The only thing I notice between right and left is that I'm a little more accurate from the left and just a tad faster from the right. I believe those differences have to do with better left-handed trigger control and faster target acquisition right handed because of being right eye dominant. Either way, make sure you practice and make sure that practice focuses on your weaknesses.

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    Ex Member Array pir8fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ram Rod View Post
    Well, maybe lacking just a little information in the OP. Weak hand shooting and cross dominance has me confused from the start. I'm right eye and right hand dominant. I shoot one handed strong side, two handed strong side, and one handed weak side only. Shooting weak hand, I've tried to sight using my left eye and it absolutely short circuits my brain after two or three shots and I get a headache and then I'm not very good at hitting where I aim. I always keep both eyes open when shooting pistol. I've never tried a two hand hold for weak side shooting mainly because the pistol is canted to the right so as to be in front of my dominant eye.....a two hand hold just won't work for that or at least not for me. In my opinion.....eye dominance rules. I think it's a lot easier to become ambidextrous or at least 40/60. Then again....my brain aint what it used to be and I may be making excuses for my shortcomings in this respect.
    Dry fire training won't use any ammo....matter of fact, you don't even need a pistol to practice your cross dominance/preference..........just point your finger (weak side or strong side) at an object with both eyes open, then close one then the other to see which is on target....adjust for effect and see what you're able to deal with there.
    Does anyone make left handed pistols? From what I hear Glock does now.........apparently a lot of folks are getting hit in the face with brass nowadays weak hand or strong hand which can only mean one thing........they are left handed pistols. If you can hit the person to the right of you at the range with your spent brass, then it's a right handed pistol. I figure you can't specifically order a right or left handed Glock........it's just luck of the draw and what you get is what you get.
    I'm fully ambi but right eye dominant. When shooting left-handed, I us a two hand grip and move my head, not the firearm. The trick is your foot work. Shooting left-handed, put your right foot forward. It gives you better balance.

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    You can't close one eye in a fight. I'm rh and rh eye dominant. Shooting rh and lh, I use my dominant eye, with both eyes open. Shooting lh I tilt my head a bit more, so the dominant eye sees the sights. Shooting lh around strong side cover, the open dominant eye is hidden, and using the off eye isn't as much of a conflict to keep exposure to a minimum.

    You may not be able to focus on the sights in a fight. When point shooting lh, I've found I do better when I cant my head a little to the left as well. I index my thumb(s) forward with the bore axis, so with the thumb(s) on target, I can roll the trigger, even from awkward positions.

    As mentioned, practice. Practice uncovering garments from both sides, the most time consuming part of any draw from concealment. Practice ambi cross drawing and passing the gun hand to hand. Forget about left handed tools. Teach both hands to use the controls, reload, and clear stops on whatever is common to most shooters. But I think a BUG ought to be ambi.

    Once I find a comfortable placement and setup for my gear, I hate to change things or introduce complicated procedures.
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