Friendly and Certified Firearms Training for Women Since 2011

How to Change a Pistol Magazine

Removing and inserting a magazine into your pistol is a basic function that new shooters must know, but it is also an important task that needs to be done correctly so that you develop muscle memory with the right habits. If you plan to use your pistol in a defensive situation, then you will need to change your magazine quickly, effectively, and possibly in low-light or no-light or one-handed situations. If you shοot competitively, you will have to plan your reloads and execute them flawlessly.

Keep the gun in your personal workspace where your muzzle and sights can remain on target. Push the magazine release and allow gravity to help the mag fall out of the gυn. When grabbing the new mag, extend your index finger along the front of the magazine and hold the baseplate in your palm. Bring the new mag up to your gυn using your pointer finger as a guide. As the new magazine nears the mag well, glance quickly to see it into the gun. Firmly seat the magazine with the palm of your support hand.

Many women assume that a firearm doesn’t fit their hand because they can’t reach all of the controls with their firing (i.e., strong) hand. Women’s hands are typically smaller than men’s hands and may not reach as far as theirs.

Every manufacturer’s position for the magazine release button is just slightly different based on the design of the grip and the frame. This means that your hand may reach the button easier on some models than others.

There are multiple ways to release the magazine — a one-handed or two-handed approach. You can use the thumb of your strong hand if you can reach the magazine release button and have the strength to depress it as long as you do not compromise your grip. If you are unable to safely manipulate the magazine release button with your strong hand, you can use the thumb of your support hand to depress the button.

When you’re evaluating if a gun fits your hand, test the best way to release the magazine. Don’t give up on a full-size gun because you can’t reach the controls if utilizing both hands is a viable option.

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