Becoming ambidextrous is a worthy goal for any serious pistol shooter. Very few people are naturally ambidextrous, meaning they can use both hands equally well. The rest of us are inclined towards a strong preference for our right or left hands to perform fine motor skills such as writing or working the trigger. Your non-dominant other half isn’t necessarily less capable than your dominant half, barring any physical injuries or conditions. Your non-dominant side may be less developed, physically weaker, or shakier, and sometimes far less coordinated than its “better half” simply because it is less experienced. Having the confidence to handle safely and shoot the firearm with either hand can be a personal marksmanship and overall safety goal.
Some competitions and many drills require “off-hand” activities. While taking the actual shot is a skill to master, so is the act of passing the gun from one hand to the other. If executed poorly, the hand-to-hand transfer can cause serious safety violations. Done correctly, safely, and efficiently the “pass” is both safe and can shave a lot of time off of scores. There are numerous methods for the pass. The following technique implements mindful muzzle direction and trigger finger placement and builds consistency and confidence in the grip established with the non-dominant hand.
STEP BY STEP GUID TO SAFELY PASSING THE GUN
DRILLS TO TRY
Hot Potato: Slowly and safely practice passing from one hand to the other, building only one-handed grips. Pass back and forth until the technique is correct. Then try passing from one hand to the other, completing two-handed grips. This is a passing exercise only—no live fire.
One Hand Wonder: Pass the gun from one hand to the other, presenting one-handed for a single shot on target after each pass. Return to a compressed ready position after each shot to conduct the pass. Keep your eyes on the gun and hands while performing the pass.
Mirror Image: Pass the gun from one hand to the other constructing a two-handed grip before presenting for a single shot. Return to compressed ready, pass to the other hand and repeat. Keep your eyes on the gun and hands while performing the pass.
DRY FIRE: As with any new firearm manipulation skill, A Girl & A Gun strongly recommends effective dryfire practice before implementing live fire at the range. Dry fire allows the body to learn and master the skill, fix minor errors, and correct any potential safety issues before introducing ammunition. It is critical to follow dry fire safety standards AT ALL TIMES, weather at the range or while practicing at home.
LIVE FIRE: The live-fire exercises suggested above are not intended to be performed at speed. They aim to build proficiency and safety through multiple reps and correct, mindful practice. Take your time. Safety always comes first!
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