How to Properly Hold a Pistol: Single and Two-Handed Grip Techniques

Handgun holding is a basic yet essential skill for new and old gun owners who want to revisit the basic skills. Most shooters hold the firearm and shoot at a target, then check the hitting area only instead of paying attention to the gun holding process.

Fitting the grip in your hand is the most difficult fundamental to master. Keep track of your hand, focus, trigger control, and practice with one and two-handed grip. Find out the mistakes to improve shooting accuracy with single and double action guns.

How to Properly Hold a Pistol

How to Hold a Pistol With Two-Hand


If you are new to pistols, holding the weapon with two hands is the most straightforward grip technique to master the shooting over time. Everybody has different sizes and shapes of hands, so keeping the gun with one or two hands depends on your comfort. Holding the gun with two hands makes it more stable and easier to control with less recoil. Two-handed grip means thumb over thumb grip.

  • Keep your hand far to hold the grip, and the slide can be over the top of the beavertail. Also close to the bore axis.
  • Keeping the hand high makes the recoil come straight back to your arm. Also, the gun should not pivot during recoil; otherwise, limb wrist failure will happen. So the slide must come back far enough.
  • Place your index finger straight and forward above the trigger guard right onto the frame to easily place the finger onto the trigger. Keeping the finger on the frame also gives a solid frame backing.
  • Wrap the three fingers on the grip frame and hold firmly at the bottom to get enough room for your pinky finger.
  • On the other side, your thumb will be on the frame. Then wrap the other hand right underneath the trigger guard and press the finger firmly up against the bottom of the trigger housing. On the other side, place the right-hand thumb on the left-hand thumb so the right-hand thumb can rest over the top.
  • Extend the arms forward and keep the elbow and knees soft and firm to absorb the recoil when firing bullets.

Two-Handed Grip Body Position

The proper body position and stance are essential for holding the gun within range. Isosceles and Weaver’s stance is the most comfortable stance for holding the weapon with two hands. In the isosceles stance, stand up straight and keep the feet separated in a parallel position. Hold the gun with your two hands, then extend the elbow fully and comfortably.

In the weaver position, keep your feet parallel but keep your supported foot slightly ahead of the other foot so your body weight will be forward. Bend both elbows and turn the shoulder 30 to 45 angle.

How to Hold The Pistol With One Hand

Holding the pistol grip loaded magazine in one hand is challenging if you do not hold the gun correctly in a safe direction. It means the stability will be less, but the proper holding process will overcome it.

First of all, get your normal two-handed stance, then place the semi-automatic pistol in your dominant hand, wrap the pinky, middle, and ring finger around the grip and wrap the thumb at the other side of the grip. Apply equal pressure on both sides with your hand to secure the gun.

You do not have to put the index finger forward on the frame. The portion of the hand lies totally on the handle. Now place the index finger on the trigger and make sure you can pull the trigger comfortably. Remember, the thumb will be at the upper side of the grip, and the other three fingers will be right underneath the trigger area. It is also called a teacup grip.

Keep the gun perfectly vertical in a relaxed position where you can tilt the gun 5 degrees off dead center upright to get a proper grip. Keep the middle finger underneath the trigger guard and employ the thumbs-forward grip.

One-Handed Grip Body Position

Stand at a 90-degree angle from the target and separate the legs to distribute the bodyweight evenly. Keep the knees straight, then hold the gun and aim at the target. Just lock the elbow of the shooting hand and keep your head up. On the other hand, it should be comfortable for accurate shooting.

Dangerous Grip Types and Grip Techniques

The loaded firearm has dangerous revolver grip types, such as cup and saucer grips. It is a two-handed technique but not stable for the competition shooter. In this position, the right-hand rests on the grip and left-hand rests underneath the trigger, and the strong hand thumb is positioned on the other finger. Both hands won’t support each other here, so your hand will be shaken when you aim.

Also, do not cross your thumb because it is not comfortable and will injure you. Also, do not touch the barrel while firing if the gun has no grip issue. Just keep your hand in its original position for recoil control and muzzle flip.

What Is The Best Grip for Accuracy?

A palm grip is best for maximum accuracy and has the best lasers for guns. Palm grip means putting the trigger finger on the trigger to get a perfect shot. Maintain the contact of the trigger and keep the muzzle up with an acceptable grip. A proper sight alignment within shooting range is also essential.

Why Shouldn’t You Hold a Gun Sideways?

You should not hold the gun sideways to shoot because it makes the shooter uncomfortable to aim and shoot the ammunition. Also, the blowback will happen, and you cannot see through the sight. It is hard to control to gun sideways.

How Thick is a Pistol?

The standard thickness of a pistol is less than 1 to 1.2 inches. Most of the pistol thicknesses are .20 to .25 inches. An experienced shooter can shoot a thick gun, and also right-handed shooter won’t feel a problem with this thickness.

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