With the current state of the ammunition economy, it makes sense to make the most out of your training as you possibly can. What I mean, is that just going to the range to sling lead at your target isn’t a good idea.
Ammo costs more than it used to and your chances of being involved in a critical incident are probably higher than they used to be because people are just a bit crazier.
This also means that you should practice things that you’re not used to practicing so you’re better able to protect yourself or family if that time ever comes.
Why practice one handed shooting?
The truth of the matter is that you just might not have enough time to get both hands on your gun. Or, you may need to defend yourself physically with your one hand while you’re getting your gun into play.
You may have a loved one with you, like a small child that you need to hold or keep out of the way that forces you to defend the both of you with just one hand.
Another reason usually cited is because one of your hands could get hurt beyond being usable.
And while many people scoff at the thought that any of the above could ever happen, there is always the chance that it could. And because it could, you must practice for it.
After all, the chances that you’ll actually need to defend yourself with your gun are already slim but you carry a gun just in case. Why not train for as many different scenarios as possible?
How to do one handed shooting
For the purposes of this article, we’re going to talk about the traditional method of shooting one handed and NOT shooting from the draw, or just out of the holster.
That is beyond my level of instruction in the form of an article and I don’t want you to take something I say the wrong way and hurt yourself. I recommend taking private instruction from a qualified instructor for that.
For regular one handed shooting, shown above with the picture of our writer Terry Nelson, there are a couple of different thoughts about how to do this.
First, form your grip and extend your arm out in front of you. Some shooting instructors teach to cant the firearm inward toward the inside of your body like Terry is doing above.
Other instructors teach to keep the firearm upright just like you would with a two handed grip. Either way is technically right and you should practice both to see which one you like more.
Something to keep in mind is that you want to have a tight grip and lock your wrist to help you control the recoil. Also, you’re more likely to experience a shooter-induced malfunction, so learning how to clear them one handed if necessary is also good.
Adding a variable to your one handed shooting
Something that not a lot of people talk about is adding a variable to your one handed shooting. For example, if you have a baby or child, clearly the last thing you’d want to do is defend yourself with him or her in your arms.
However, you may not always have the chance to put the child to safety before you draw your gun. Can you shoot your gun effectively with something that simulates a child in your arms?
In high school we carried around big bags of sugar to pretend that we had a baby. If the bag was damaged in any way at the end it was a mark against us.
I recommend something similar here. Grab a bag of sugar, hold it like you would if it was your kid, and draw your gun out of your concealed carry holster.
The truth of the matter here, is that most instructors will tell you to drop the thing you’re holding onto to defend yourself. This might work if it’s a bag of groceries, but dropping your baby on his or her head is usually not a good thing.
And holding a 10 pound bag of sugar while shooting will throw your balance off. This is a good exercise if you would ever need to defend your life with a baby.
How about a small child? What if it’s someone you don’t need to carry, but keep behind you so they don’t get hurt? How can you simulate that? Get creative with your training that is realistic enough that it’s beneficial for real world scenarios.
Leave your thoughts on this in the comments below.