How to Shoot a Pistol Better?

Why Bother Shooting a Handgun Accurately?

As somebody who loves guns, it is normal that you would want to shoot better. The handgun is one of the hardest firearms to shoot and also hard to master.

Firearms like rifles and shotguns are long and have the support of your shoulder, providing you with a more stable platform to shoot. However, a handgun is fired with your arms hanging out and will be much harder to control.

If you are trying to be a better handgun shooter, then you are at the right place. In this guide, we will have a look at the reasons that handguns are tough to shoot, then we’ll take a deep look at how to shoot a pistol accurately.

After learning how to shoot a pistol accurately, we also provided some information about useful range practice tips and also the gears and accessories that will give you an edge in shooting a handgun.

Reasons Why Pistols are Difficult to Shoot Properly

First, we’d like to let you know that it is natural that you are missing almost everything at the beginning of your shooting journey. But don’t be discouraged because you won’t be the first and only one that misses your shots when you’re starting out. It is normal that you can’t shoot accurately and here are the reasons why it is so hard to shoot a handgun.

Small size

Unlike the larger firearms such as rifles and shotguns, handguns are much smaller and they can significantly impact your shooting accuracy. The reason behind it is that the sighting radius for a handgun is much shorter to align the front and rear sights as compared to a large gun. As a result, the chances of shooter error in the aiming process is much greater.

The trigger

Some shooters have the tendency to pull the trigger to the left or the right but this isn’t actually the proper way to pull the trigger.

We will cover more about this later but when you pull a trigger, it is more than just using the tip of the finger to pull. If it was not done accurately, your grip will pull the shot one way or the other.

Whenever you use a rifle, the use of your shoulder and the other arm or a bipod helps to keep your gun on the target, ultimately keeping the gun steady before firing and not affect the trigger. But with a pistol, applying pressure from your finger can cause a change in the movement of the pistol and cause your shot to be negatively impacted.

How to Shoot a Pistol With Maximum Accuracy?

As we’ve mentioned earlier, pistol shooting is not an easy task and you cannot expect to master it overnight. However, you can pay attention to the things that we’re about to talk about and with some practice, you will see a huge improvement in the accuracy of your shots.

Without further ado, let’s have a look at how you can shoot a pistol accurately.

Getting Into a Proper Shooting Stance

The first and most important step in pistol shooting is to get into a proper shooting stance. No matter how good your other skills are, if you don’t get a stable shooting platform from your stance, there’s no way for you to shoot accurately.

You want to think of the shooting stance as your foundation and you’ll understand why it is so important to get this right.

Just imagine having an unstable base, it wouldn’t take too much to screw up whatever it is on top and loud explosions and recoils are the perfect combinations to mess things up.

Having a steady and comfortable shooting stance will help you manage the recoil and as a result, improve your accuracy.

There are many different shooting stances available and there isn’t one that is perfect for every shooter. Each shooting stance is unique and requires practice to master it.

In our guide, we will be going through a few different shooting stances and we would recommend you to try them all out so you can find which is the best for your shooting style.

Isosceles Stance

The Isosceles Stance is a standard stance that is commonly taught to new shooters. To get into the stance, the shooter is required to face the target squarely and keep the feet shoulder-width apart. The support side foot is to be kept slightly forward as well and the knees should be flexed at an angle.

After that, the shooter needs to lean forward to the point where the shoulders are forward of the hips and keep the weight on the balls of their feet. Both arms are to be extended and held straight with the elbows locked. If you were to view it from above, the chest and the arms of the shooter will form an isosceles triangle, hence the name Isosceles Stance.

Many competitive shooters in the action shooting sports use the Isosceles Stance and even defensive shooters for law enforcement and military use it too. It is a good stance especially if you’re wearing body armor because it keeps the body armor pointed at the target or threat.

When using the Isosceles Stance, it enhances the mobility of the shooter because the torso can be easily pivoted to move to other targets without having to move the feet. It is especially helpful in multiple-target situations.

Although the Isosceles Stance has incredible side-to-side stability, it does lack in front-to-rear balance because of the positioning of the feet. It also makes it harder for the shooter to move from his/her shooting location. Nevertheless, it is still a versatile stance and definitely one you should learn.

Weaver Stance

The Weaver Stance was founded by Jack Weaver, a deputy of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s office back in the 1950s. This stance was made famous thanks to the guru of handguns, Jeff Cooper. He would name the Weaver Stance as his modern technique of pistol shooting. The Weaver Stance has become so popular that some new shooters are learning this stance first instead of the Isosceles Stance.

To get into a Weaver Stance, your feet need to be shoulder width apart and in a boxing stance with the support side foot slightly tilted to the target. The support side foot is placed forward and the strong side foot is angled out to the side at about forty-five degrees.

Unlike the Isosceles Stance where both knees are bent, the Weaver Stance only requires the front knee to be slightly bent and the rear leg is kept almost straight. The weight distribution is approximately 60% on the forward foot and the rest of the weight on the rear.

The torso will be leaned forward at the hips and slightly twisted to keep the shoulders and the forward foot aligned. The arm of the strong side is extended out and the elbow is slightly bent, while the support side elbow will be bent and notably pointed down.

The Weaver Stance is commonly taught by defensive shooting instructors because this stance allows the shooter to handle the recoil better and can have a faster recovery from the recoil as well. The Weaver Stance is not only good for using with a pistol, but also for long guns too.

Unfortunately, there is a major problem with the Weaver Stance, especially for the law enforcement personnel. When in a Weaver Stance, the body is bladed, exposing an area of the torso that is vulnerable and not covered with body armor. As a right-handed shooter, the left armpit will be exposed, leaving a clear path to the heart. Matter of fact, many officers were fatally shot in that area despite the use of body armor.

Another issue with this stance is that to keep a bladed position can be awkward, which is why many shooters went from this to an Isosceles Stance. However, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t learn this stance, but just try it out to see if you like it or not.

Modified Weaver Stance

The other name for a Modified Weaver Stance is an Improved Isosceles Stance or the Chapman Stance. This is a combination of both the Weaver and Isosceles Stance. Unlike the classic Isosceles Stance, one foot is set slightly further forward than the other, but with the knees slightly bent.

This stance was created in the special forces of the military. It was then introduced in the law enforcement training because the officers were able to protect themselves with their hands, baton or gun all from the same platform.

In this stance, the shooting arm is fully extended while the support arm is bent like how you would bend the support arm in a Weaver Stance. This allows you to enjoy the benefits of a Weaver and the easier movements and strong foundation of the Isosceles.

With the position you’re in when using the Modified Weaver Stance, it will be much simpler to pivot and perform other movements. This stance can also be used by cross-eye dominant shooters, which are right handed but left-eye dominant or the other way round.

Generally, there aren’t any disadvantages about the Modified Weaver Stance because it is the best of both worlds. Similarly to the others that were mentioned, it is a good tool to have in your toolbox and a good shooter should learn this as well.

Gripping the Handgun Properly

The next important lesson when it comes to shooting a pistol accurately is learning how to grip the pistol properly. The first thing you should understand about a handgun grip is to grip as hard as you can, but not to the point where you start shaking. Using a strong and crushing grip ensures the handgun reduces the movement of your non-trigger-fingers, which is exactly what you want.

Before we move on to a proper handgun grip, there are some things that you should remember when you hold the gun. The first thing that you should always do is to check if the handgun is loaded. No matter what, whenever you pick up a pistol, check to see if it’s loaded, even when you’re trying to buy the gun.

To check if the pistol is loaded or not, you should take out the magazine first. Then, pull the slide back and check the chamber, ensuring there is no cartridge in the firing compartment. If there is, you can eject the cartridge by racking the slide. When you practice holding the handgun, you should retain the slide in the back to make sure that it isn’t loaded and to get used to keeping your thumb away from the action of the slide.

After you check to ensure the pistol isn’t loaded, you want to pick up the handgun while you keep your finger off the trigger guard. You may keep it straight and flat on the side. Whenever you handle a gun, make sure you point the barrel downwards, especially if there are other people around you. The last thing you want is to accidentally fire a shot and injure someone.

With that said, let’s have a look at how you should hold the gun. Remember, how you hold the gun can have a significant impact on the accuracy of your shots.

First, you should grip the handgun as high as possible. To do so, you want the web between your thumb and trigger finger to rest as high as possible on the grip.

If you use a low grip, the gun will result in a lot more flipping, which isn’t ideal if you’re trying to shoot accurately. Ideally, you want to stick your hand/web into the backstrap of the handgun so you can get a high grip. Gripping high is important for lessening muzzle flip because the closer the axis of the barrel is to your hand, the lesser the muzzle flip when under recoil.

Another way you can experience less recoil is to ensure your forearm is in line with your handgun so you will feel less recoil when the slide is moving back and forth. The first time you hold your handgun, it will be natural to want to hold it at an angle, but you must resist it.

After you grip the handgun with your dominant hand, you will realise an empty space and this space is for your non-dominant hand. You should use your non-dominant hand to wrap around your dominant hand for maximum grip. To check if your grip is correct, your non-dominant hand should form a 45-degree angle with the slide of your handgun.

As for the placement of your thumb, it is up to your personal preference, but it would be best if the thumb of your dominant and non-dominant hand be facing forward with the non-dominant thumb running along the frame and strong hand thumb on top. You should make sure you push out with your strong hand and the non-dominant one pulls back so you can stabilize the handgun.

There are other semi-auto pistol grip styles out there for different shooters, but they are generally quite similar. However, many revolver shooters do it differently where they place their support hand thumb on top of their strong hand thumb.

Additionally, there are some pistol grip styles that you should try to avoid because they’re not the most ideal gripping methods.

The first grip to avoid is the “teacup” grip. This type of grip is where the support hand of the shooter rests underneath the grip, holding the strong hand. This is not a good grip because only one hand is holding the gun and there is very minimal support for recoil.

The next grip that you shouldn’t use for a semi-automatic pistol is the grip that requires you to cross your thumbs. This is a dangerous grip because as the slide moves back, the lower edge can scrape the top of your thumb and injure it.

Another grip to avoid is one where the index finger is in front of the trigger guard. This isn’t a good grip because recoil will move to the direction where there is less resistance and with one finger away from the grip, the pistol will move slightly to that direction.

Lastly, you should avoid gripping your wrist and make sure both hands are on the gun. The idea behind it is similar to the “teacup” grip where there isn’t enough support.

Obtaining a Sight Picture

When it comes to shooting a pistol accurately, aiming plays a big role and it is important that you understand the proper way of aiming. You might have heard of it from somewhere to focus on the front sight when trying to get a sight picture. Well, this saying is only helpful to a certain extent and there is a lot more to it than just focusing on your front sight.

The proper way of aiming is to first make sure the top part of the front sight is aligned with the top part of the rear sight. When aimed this way, your rounds should end up at the top and middle of the front sight and not the front dot. The same applies for all front and rear sights on a pistol.

Some people like to shoot with one of their eyes closed, usually the non-dominant eye, but because of how important depth perception is when aiming, it would be best to keep both eyes open when trying to get a sight picture.

It might be tough for you if you’re used to shooting with one eye closed. But after you master this technique, you will be able to shoot faster and experience less fatigue for your eyes.

To get an accurate shot, you will need to identify which is your dominant eye, which we will talk about in a while. Some people see some double-vision when both eyes are open and if you’re like this too, you can try adjusting the sights closer to the side of your dominant eye. This will make it easier to identify which image to use.

You should understand that it is almost impossible to get rid of all the wobble when you’re aiming a pistol. The idea is to practice keeping the sights aligned and eventually make the cone of wobble smaller when you’re aiming at a target.

If the sights are aligned properly, you can expect the bullet to hit the target as long as the pistol is pointed at the target when the trigger breaks.

Dominant Eye Test

To check which of your eyes is your dominant eye here is an easy test that you can conduct to find out:

  1. Put your arms out in front of you and make an opening in the shape of a triangle between your thumbs and fingers.
  2. You can do so by putting your hands together at a 45-degree angle.
  3. Now, keep both of your eyes open and center the triangular opening on an object that is at a distance like a clock on the wall or a door knob.
  4. Next, close one of your eyes. For this example, we will close our left eye.
  5. When looking through the triangular opening and you can see that the object remains centered, then your right eye (in this case, the eye that is open) is your dominant eye. However, if the object is no longer in the frame of your hands, then your left eye is the dominant eye.

Pulling the Trigger

Now, the most important part of shooting a pistol accurately is how you pull the trigger. The best way to remember a proper trigger pull is to squeeze extremely slowly to the point where you’ll be surprised when the shot breaks.

If you yank on the trigger, it will jerk the trigger and send the shot off, which isn’t ideal. Just remember, the more slowly you pull the trigger, the better your shot is going to be.

Before you actually pull the trigger of your handgun, there are some things that you need to be aware of for the safety of yourself and others and also to enhance your shooting accuracy.

Trigger Discipline

Having trigger discipline is extremely crucial for ensuring the safety of yourself and the people around you. It should be a conscious effort and eventually, it will reach a point where it becomes a habit. When good trigger discipline is practised, it can eliminate many stories about accidentally firing a shot.

Trigger discipline is all about keeping your finger off the trigger until you’re actually ready to fire the pistol. The simplest way that you can do this is to keep your finger extended and rest it on the slide or cylinder, if you’re shooting a revolver. When your index finger is up there, it eliminates the chance of you accidentally touching the trigger.

Trigger Finger Placement

Where you place your finger on the trigger is mainly based on your personal preference and also the length of your finger. Ideally, your trigger finger should rest on the center of the trigger and on the top quarter of your fingertip to somewhere between your first joint. However, it should never be at the finger joint.

Trigger Pull

When you pull the trigger, it is best to pull it completely straight back without anything else moving except the first two joints of your trigger finger. Be sure to check your pistol and your trigger finger to see how it looks and what makes you feel the best.

During the trigger pull, you should pull the trigger very slowly and cause as little movement to the pistol as possible. To do so, use the center of the first index finger pad and get rid of the initial slack or “pre-travel” in the trigger. Then, slowly squeeze the trigger and follow through by not letting go of the trigger right away.

Generally, there are 4 stages of the trigger pull that you should be aware of:

  1. The initial slack. You can think of the initial slack as an area of movement between the trigger at rest and when the trigger breaks.
  2. The trigger break. This stage is where you fire the gun.
  3. The stop. After the gun is fired, this is the stage where the trigger has no movement. Normally the stop and the break of a gun is at this same point, but there are some firearms that are not.
  4. The reset. We will talk about the reset of a trigger in a short while, but generally, it is the point when the gun is ready to fire again after releasing the trigger.

Waiting for the Trigger to Reset

You might’ve heard some people telling you to pay attention to feeling the reset of the trigger. Well, that’s actually not a good thing to do and not something that we would recommend you for accurate pistol shooting. If you wait to feel the reset, it means you are shooting too slowly.

The trigger is made to reset and it will in due time, so you should let the trigger do its job while you focus on shooting your next shot. Don’t spend too much time focusing on the mechanism of your handgun and spend your time on things that matter like aiming at your target accurately.

If you are planning to wait for the trigger to reset, be sure to not lift your trigger finger off the trigger immediately after every shot and start looking at the target. If you lift your finger off in a fast manner, it means you could be shooting too fast and probably jerking the trigger.

After you pull the trigger, hold it down at the end until the shot breaks and only release it to the point where it resets. When you want to fire again, don’t start all the way from the beginning but start at where the trigger resets.

Control your Breath

Breath control is one of the most neglected aspects when shooting a pistol. Many people don’t realise or forget how crucial it is to breathe properly when they are shooting. Well, we’re only talking about shooting a pistol, not trying to fire at a target 1,000-yards away, so no, you don’t have to plan how you breathe or how quickly your heartbeats.

The reasoning behind breathing properly is essential because your breathing can affect the motions of your pistol and can throw you off your shots. Practicing proper breathing will help you control your gun better and also maintain a good aim.

Here are two ways that you can practice to see which method works best for you to control your breath:

  1. Take a deep breath and exhale only about half of it and hold the rest as you squeeze the trigger.
  2. Take a few deep breaths, exhale one breath but before you take in the next, squeeze the trigger. The name of this method is also known as the natural respiratory pause.

You should also avoid holding your breath for too long because if your heart starts beating faster, your pulse increases and the motion of your gun will be affected. If you realise that this is happening to you, inhale a few more breaths before starting again.

Perform Dry-Firing Practice

Before we dive deep into dry-firing practice to help with practicing how you shoot the pistol, let’s talk about what dry firing is.

Dry-firing is referring to a scenario where you pull the trigger of a cocked handgun and allow the hammer or striker to drop on an empty and unloaded chamber or a dummy round.

It is probably the best way to help you achieve accurate shots with a pistol and the best part is that you can do it in your home.

Is It Safe to Dry Fire my Handgun?

Now, you might be wondering and thinking to yourself whether it is safe to dry fire your handgun. Well, don’t worry we can assure you that it is absolutely fine to dry fire as much as you want without worrying about hitting something as long as your handgun or pistol is made to shoot centerfire rounds like 9mm, .40 S&W, .45 ACP, etc., as opposed to rimfire rounds like .22 LR.

A handgun or pistol with rimfire firing pins will be in contact with the mouth of the chamber when there isn’t anything inside. So if you plan to practice with this kind of pistol, be sure to do it with something called snap caps so the mouth of the chamber doesn’t take the hit and the caps do instead.

At the end of the day, we would still recommend you to check the manual of your handgun first just to confirm. You can find many snap caps and dummy rounds available on the market and they are generally inexpensive.

What’s the Purpose of Dry-Firing?

The idea of dry-firing is to help create muscle memory so you can be consistent with your trigger pulls and shoot with incredible precision when you are really shooting. Plus, you can utilize dry-firing to identify your bad habits when you’re shooting and tweak them to enhance your performance over time.

Once you’ve practiced enough, usually about one or two weeks of dry-firing, you will start to be better and it sort of becomes a habit. At some point, you start to be a single entity with your trigger and grip. You will notice improvements like being more comfortable with the grip, the trigger and also to keep the front sight stable and in alignment with the rear sight.

Dry-firing is all about practice and improving with each practice. Bear in mind, you should be targeting to perform better than your previous training and ensure you’re heading in the correct direction by practicing the proper techniques. Shooting a pistol is a skill that requires consistent training and you will notice big differences after not practicing for some time.

Best Method for Dry-Firing

Prior to the commencement of your dry-firing practice, you should always ensure that your handgun isn’t loaded. To offer safety for yourself and the people around you, here are some Rules of Safety you should pay attention to:

  • Treat the firearms as if they are always loaded and don’t leave any live ammunition in the space where you’re working with the gun.
  • Never let the muzzle be pointed at things you don’t intend to damage. You should always be pointing in a safe direction.
  • Always ensure your fingers are off the trigger until you are absolutely ready to fire your pistol. You may rest it on the side of the slide for quicker access to the trigger.
  • Don’t always be looking at your target only, be mindful of what is beyond the target.

You should practice the habit of checking your handgun to see if it’s empty before using it for whatever purpose. Even if you use your handgun in between dry-firing sessions, be certain that the handgun is empty before using.

When you’re dry-firing, it is good to have a target to aim at. However, it is unlikely that your family or friends would like to be aimed at by any firearms, so get things that are safe to aim and “shoot” at. You can look for small objects like a switch or a doorknob as your target because it would be safer to aim at and if you accidentally fire a shot, it would be cheap to replace.

After the safety aspects are accounted for, you may begin your training by practicing different stances. Some stances might be comfortable for you to aim and shoot but some stances require your feet to be shoulder width apart and extend both arms out, which may cause difficulties looking at your sights.

Once you’ve found a stance that is best for your shooting style, you want to start training your focus on the front sight and keeping the front sight in alignment with your rear sight. Then, squeeze the trigger in a very slow manner until the pistol clicks and surprises you. You might prefer saying things out loud to remind yourself and by all means go ahead, as long as you don’t lose your focus.

One of the best methods that we’ve come across to help with ensuring the sight isn’t moving is to place a small coin on top of the front sight and if it stays on top of the sight, then it’s a sign that you’re performing well.

Next, you should train your trigger pulls along with the slack and resets. If you intend to train your trigger resets, you can do so by leaving your index finger depressed at the end of the first shot and rack the slide with your support hand. You are not required to rack it fully back for certain firearms. Once you’ve done that, get back into the appropriate grip and allow the resets for your trigger to happen and continue shooting.


With better knowledge about dry-firing, let’s look at some dry-fire drills that you can practice and have fun with to enhance your accuracy, precision and for a more enjoyable shooting experience. Here are the drills that you can try out:

  • Coin trick. The coin trick is a drill that we mentioned above where you position a coin on top of your front sight so you can train your trigger control as well as your grip control. These are some of the best drills to identify your mistakes and gain improved control over your handgun.
  • Draw. If you are using a holster with your handgun, then you should be practicing your open or concealed carry draw. Using a timer in the beginning is optional because you should focus on getting an appropriate grip, drawing the handgun and being able to keep the handgun pointed at the target. Once it starts to become smooth, you can try speeding things up and timing yourself.
  • Reloads. The next drill to try out is reloading. Begin by locking your slide to the back with an empty magazine in the pistol and a spare magazine in your mag pouch. Then, get into your preferred stance and firing position while keeping the slide locked at the back. Align your front to the rear sight and think of a virtual “bang” and reload the pistol.
  • Single-hand shooting. Shooting with two hands is already a task that requires training. However, once you’ve mastered shooting with two hands, you might like to try shooting with one hand only. Trying to achieve accurate shots with one hand is extremely tough but it is also a good skill to have in the event of an emergency. Once you master shooting with your strong hand, switch to your support hand and practice.
  • Change of position. When your dry-firing practices and drills are becoming boring and stagnant, changing your position can help to spice things up a little. You might be an excellent shooter in a standing position, but you’ll be surprised at the difference in precision when you’re in a different position. You can try shooting from a sitting, kneeling or prone position to become a more rounded shooter.

Range Practice

Many shooters tend to spend an exaggerated amount of time at the range trying to be more accurate. However, that doesn’t help to build up a solid muscle memory, but instead, it is building up their flinch reaction. To overcome this issue, you should be certain that you’ve done enough dry-fire practicing at home before you continue your training at the range.

Even before range days, we would highly recommend you do some dry-fire practices at home and dry-fire some shots before actually loading up the real ammunition. For shooters who are new to the gun range, we will be covering some necessary information in a moment. As someone who’s experienced, you might also find the things that we’re about to mention to be useful.

Essential Terms to Know

When you’re at the range, there are some basic terms you should know to prevent any confusion. Here are some of the most common terms used:

  • Firing line. This term is probably the most crucial term you should know. The firing line refers to where a shooter may be standing. It is usually represented by a painted stripe across the floor so it’s easy for shooters to see. Before you load or fire your firearm, you must be positioned at the line. And before stepping behind the line, you are required to unload and lock the slide or cylinder of your weapon open.
  • Downrange. Downrange is a term referring to the area past the line of fire and where the targets are set. Simply put, it is anywhere past the shooters. This is essential to know as well because it might come up in safety commands at ranges.
  • Hot and cold. When you’re at the range, safety officers will sometimes call out “hot” or “cold”. When they say “hot” it means shooters are actively shooting and you’re allowed to shoot too and at this time, no shooters are allowed past the firing line. When it’s “cold”, it means the guns are unloaded and locked open so shooters can go downrange.
  • Backstop. A backstop just refers to the barrier or the wall at the back of targets. For indoor ranges, it is usually a black wall. For outdoor ranges, the backstops are usually a berm or embankment of soil made by men.
  • Lanes. Lanes are pretty obvious from its name. In an indoor range, every shooter will have their designated lane and the lanes are made to be parallel to one another. When you’re at the range, you’ll be expected to stay in your lane and shoot at your targets only.
  • Bench. Benches are normally the tables or counters that allow you to place your unloaded and locked open guns. While this term isn’t the most essential, it is still good to know to avoid misunderstandings and miscommunications with other people.

How You Should Practice

There isn’t a set or fixed routine to practice how to shoot a pistol at the range. However, if you prefer the method that gives you the best convenience, then we would suggest you get proper training from qualified instructors.

Besides that, you should always plan ahead for the things you intend to do at the range and it shouldn’t be more than 2 things. For a general guide, here are some of the objectives you can include for your training day:

  • Maintaining an appropriate grip
  • Work to acquire an accurate sight image as quickly as possible
  • Work to acquire an accurate sight image as quickly as possible after shots
  • Work to acquire an accurate sight image between two targets
  • Keep focus on the front sight
  • Maintaining correct posture or upper body and arms position
  • Work on pressing the trigger straight back without causing disturbances
  • Work on drills for improving precision, reload speed, clearing malfunctions or others.

From the list, you can see that we talked about drills. Well, drills are helpful for making you a better shooter and they shouldn’t be neglected. One of the most helpful drills that we would suggest you try it out with your shooting partner is to have them load a magazine with both live rounds and snap caps, so you won’t be aware of what’s going to come next in the stack.

The purpose of this drill is to see if you have a natural flinch when you’re shooting and you will notice it when the snap caps arrive. At that moment, you will get to see how you really handle the recoil. Remember, the recoil in dry-firing and actual shooting is very different so doing this drill will be helpful in identifying your natural reflexes.

Appropriate Shooting Gears and Accessories

With a clearer understanding of how to shoot a pistol with precision, let’s take a look at some shooting gear and accessories that are helpful in making you a better shooter.

Snap Caps

Snap caps are especially helpful if you have a rimfire pistol like a .22 LR. But this doesn’t mean you can’t utilize them for other calibers because they can be used to help enhance your reloads if you plan to do so in the future. Plus, they are incredibly cheap and accessible.


A laserlike is an incredible accessory that helps you see where your shots are hitting. It is a tool that is meant to be fitted into your pistol as a dummy round but when the firing pin hits it, it fires a beam of laser. You can acquire randomized targets that detect the lasers so you can enhance your target transitions and also other competitive shooting skills.

This tool is slightly expensive, but it saves you your ammo and also the money you spend on acquiring ammo. Plus, they are harmless so you don’t have to worry that shots will go off in the event of an accident.
Hand Strengtheners

As we’ve mentioned earlier, the harder you can grip your pistol, the easier it is to manage recoil and control the pistol. This is why we highly suggest you get a hand strengthener to strengthen your grip. Also, expect everyone that sees this tool to want to give it a try because it’s just irresistible.

Talon Grips

A talon grip is usually sandpaper or rubber sticker made for your specific pistol model. They are meant to increase the amount of grip on your handgun. Talon grips are also inexpensive and a great addition for increasing grip on your pistol.

Dry-Firing Training Cards

Dry-firing will become boring at some point regardless if you are an experienced shooter or a beginner. However, with a set of training cards on hand, you can spice things up a little based on what the cards tell you to train. You might even come across drills or training that you’ve never thought of.

Training System

This accessory is meant for those with a more flexible budget because it is a hi-tech gear to go with your pistol. A training system or sometimes goes by the name training module is something you attach to the front rail of your pistol and it gives feedback to your mobile phone through Bluetooth.

With this training module, you will be able to accurately identify your mistakes and it will also suggest how to correct them.

Gun Safety Rules

With a detailed knowledge of how you can shoot a handgun with precision, let’s take a look at the safety rules that you should abide by. Guns are extremely dangerous and not to be fooled around with.

A single mistake can take your life or the life of the people around you. So, here are some safety rules to keep in mind at all times:

  1. Treat the firearm as if it’s loaded.
  2. Keep the gun pointed in a harm-free direction.
  3. Maintain a straight index finger and ensure it’s off the trigger until absolutely certain to shoot.
  4. Unload the gun when not using it.
  5. Don’t be pointing guns at things you don’t plan to destroy.
  6. Maintain visuals on your target and be aware of what’s beyond it.
  7. Learn about the mechanical and handling traits of the guns you’re using.
  8. Utilize appropriate ammunition.
  9. Ensure the barrel is free of obstructions prior to loading and shooting.
  10. If the weapon fails to fire after the trigger is pulled, stay in the same shooting position for a few seconds and with the muzzle pointed at a danger-free direction, unload the weapon with optimal care.
  11. Never fully rely on the safety of guns to prevent them from firing.
  12. Be mindful of your surroundings when dealing with guns to prevent pointing and firing the firearm at someone or something in case of accidents.

All the rules mentioned are incredibly helpful in ensuring the well-being of yourself and the people around you. Besides the ones that were mentioned, there are other safety rules that you should be aware of when you’re at the range or hunting.

Range Safety

  1. Follow the 12 rules that were mentioned when handling a firearm.
  2. Be aware and understand the rules of the shooting range.
  3. Follow what the range master or safety officers instruct you to do.
  4. Uncase and case your weapon at the bench and never behind the firing line.
  5. Ensure the barrel is pointed downrange at all times.
  6. Ensure the safety of your gun is on until you decide to fire it.
  7. Wear protection for your ears and eyes when shooting.
  8. Shooting at water or hard surfaces should be avoided.

Hunting Safety

  1. Follow the 12 rules that were mentioned when handling a firearm.
  2. When going on a trip with a group of people, appoint one person to be the safety officer.
  3. Ensure that everyone knows where everyone is by sharing information about each other’s zone of fire.
  4. Ensure the safety of your gun is on until you decide to fire it.
  5. Restrict from climbing over objects with a loaded gun in hand or on you.
  6. If your rifle or handgun has a scope, restrict from using it as a binoculars.
  7. In the event of minor accidents like a fall or trip, take control of your muzzle and check for damages on the weapon or obstructions in the barrel.
  8. When unsure, never squeeze the trigger.

Conclusion: How Should You Hold Your Pistol To Achieve Maximum Accuracy?

You’ve come to the end of our guide for shooting a pistol with precision. We believe the information that was given to you is enough to carve you into a greater and more accurate pistol shooter.

At the end of the day, it is all about consistency and constant training and you can’t expect to turn pro in just a few days. Bear in mind, Rome wasn’t built in a day.


Are pistols considered handguns?

Yes. A pistol is a type of handgun and was initially introduced in the 19th century. Generally, people utilize the words “pistol” and “handgun” interchangeably.

What is the most famous pistol?

There are many firearms in the industry but there is always a pistol that everyone knows and that is the Colt Single Action Army. The Colt Single Action Army is the most iconic pistol to ever exist.

This pistol gained its popularity in the holsters of Roosevelt’s Rough Riders and won the West in the hands of men like Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson.

Another incredible modern handgun that you’ve definitely heard of is the Glock pistol. They gained increasing popularity in recent decades thanks to their innovative design and incredibly practicality. Many law enforcement and military personnel and government agencies are also using the Glock pistol.

Who invented the handgun?

The person who invented the handgun goes by the name Samuel Colt. He was the first to develop the mass-produced, multi-shot, revolving firearms. There were many revolving designs at that time but precision parts were unavailable to be developed with the available technologies. However, Samuel Colt was the first to apply Industrial Age machining tools to the idea and developed the handgun.

What are ghost guns?

If you’re a gun enthusiast, you might have heard of “ghost guns” before. Well, a ghost gun is essentially a fully functional firearm that was made at home with parts and kits that are sold by dealers or online sellers. The most crucial part of a firearm is the receiver and it is designed to accommodate parts like the hammer, bolt and the trigger group which will allow the firearm to shoot.

The construction of ghost guns is with the utilization of receivers that aren’t exactly finished and will require some extra gunsmithing at home like drilling a few holes, before it can be used to construct a functional weapon. In recent years, there are more and more resources available for building weapons using unfinished receivers.

However, when weapons are made at home using incomplete receivers, the ghost guns do not consist of a serial number or other information to prove its identity. So, when a crime has been committed with one of these weapons and is recovered, it will not be traceable.

This type of weapon is a big contributor to the violent and unsolved crimes in the country, but unfortunately, it is legal because the regulations set by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) allows ghost guns to be built.

What pistol has the most bullets?

The pistol with the most bullets for its size is the Glock 22. It is a popular police service pistol in the United States because it fires the powerful .40 S&W and it can hold 15 rounds and up to 22 rounds with a larger magazine. At the same time, the Glock 22 pistol weighs about 34.5 oz only with a loaded magazine.

What is the difference between a pistol and a gun?

A pistol is a gun that is either a single shot or is able to fire many shots at a time if it is semi-automatic and a pistol has a chamber that is integrated with the barrel. A gun on the other hand, is a firearm that casts projectiles and is commonly used to refer to a firearm.

What pistol does the Delta Force carry?

The United States Army has a standard-issued pistol and it is the Beretta M9. As a result, the Delta Force personnel also utilize the 9mm Beretta M9 pistol as their backup firearm. Many years ago, the Delta Force were using the Colt 1911 but that is no longer true anymore.

What handgun is used by the Navy SEALs?

The Beretta 92. Initially, the beloved Sig Sauer P226 was used by the Navy SEALs. However, in light of some serious issues that happened during the trials of the XM9 pistol, the Navy SEALs started the adoption of the Beretta 92.

What handgun does the Secret Service carry?

Sig Sauer P229. The current handgun that the Secret Service uses is the Sig Sauer P229 double/single-action pistol chambered in the . 357 SIG cartridge. This handgun was in service since 1999 and is the issued handgun to all special agents and also officers of the Uniformed Division.

Is a .357 SIG more powerful than a 9mm?

If a handgun is chambered for the .357 SIG instead of the 9mm, it will usually have a lower capacity, harder to control and also have greater muzzle blast and flash. However, even when it’s performing optimally, it still doesn’t have any gain in bullet penetration and expansion characteristics.

Are Glocks the most reliable handgun?

When it comes to handgun reliability, the fewer parts present, the lesser chance there is for problems to arise and that is exactly what the Glock handguns are about. Glock pistols have an extremely simple design and are also very easy for people with or without experience to shoot.

Glock pistols also have a strong reputation for having high reliability because the military and police forces from all over the world are utilizing them. Plus, the aftermarket support for Glock pistols is incredible which makes their parts inexpensive. Though, there are some that are much higher than the market price.

How many rounds does a police officer have?

For a police service revolver, it will usually hold 6 rounds, while a semi-automatic handgun of a police officer can hold more than a capacity of 12.

What are the most gun-friendly states?

The 9 states that are most gun-friendly are Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Mississippi, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Utah and West Virginia. Some of these states allow a weapon to be carried by shooters as young as 18 years old without a permit. As for the other states, the rules are stricter and one of the least gun-friendly states is California.

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