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Old 05-13-2010, 02:24 PM
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Default Anyone use the middle finger to pull the trigger?

I am having trouble hitting with my M&P 45. I hit low left some, and always left. (yes, I know the reasons for this) I do this with most semi-autos. No so much with revolvers. So naturally I am a revolver fan.

I just finished a book, Combat Handgunnery by Massad Ayoob. A shooting method was described in the book where the shooter used the index finger to point along the side of the pistol and uses the middle finger to pull the trigger. DOES ANYONE USE THIS METHOD.

I went to the range and tried this out. It works for me!!! I have small hands and can not really get to the first joint on my index finger. Using the middle finger, I can. I put all rounds on a 8 inch target, rapid fire with a Glock 35 at 10 yards and 9 out of 10 with the M&P 45 from 15 yards. The hits were dispersed on the left and right of center line for both pistols. And I have never hit from 15 yards with the M&P 45.

I plan to use this method at a USPSA competition this week end.

I would appreciate any information on this method of shooting. Thanks.
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:36 PM
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Sound's like an excellent way to bugger up yer finger.....
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:46 PM
BrianMajors BrianMajors is offline
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It sounds like there's too much likelihood it will drag on the side of the slide at some point and cause a malfunction.
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:49 PM
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Only when it's for the bird.
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:53 PM
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I would think it would be much harder to control recoil with this method.
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Old 05-13-2010, 04:17 PM
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Quote:
So naturally I am a revolver fan.
Just what do you think is going to happen to the index figer tip when you try this technique on a revolver and the finger overlaps the cylinder gap?

I've seen this so called "point shooting" technique and tried it on a semi-auto.
I don't care for it:
No control in one-handed shooting.
The afore-mentioned revolver problem.
Inferior control for precision shooting.
Possibility of interfering with slide.
Reduced control of gun for reloads.

Generally appeals most to people who have not learned proper grip and trigger control, and are yanking the trigger. Provides a change to break the "yanking" habit.
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Old 05-13-2010, 04:21 PM
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Jack Ruby used this method when he iced Lee Oswald. You can see it in the photo.

The technique is central to some forms of "instinct" shooting. The theory is that the brain calculates exactly where to position your finger if you want to point at something in the distance -- not near it, at it. The second finger pulls the trigger, and you hit what you are -- literally -- pointing at.

Individuals who have lost a forefinger or part of it will necessarily resort to second finger trigger pulls if they can't train themselves to shoot from the other side. I'm not sure I would try it on a semi-auto unless there was a lot of clearance between the slide and the top of an exposed finger laid along the side of the gun under the slide. I believe there are companies that make finger guards you can attach to the side of a semiauto that will prevent such slide/finger collisions.

There is less risk of damage to revolver shooters. With either kind of handgun I would imagine the more powerful the round you are trying to shoot, the less control you will have getting back on target after it goes off. Maybe people with big hands can manage .45 autos, but I suspect I would limit the middle-finger technique to cartridges in the .38 special/9mm class.

No, I don't use the technique. I think it is primarily a close-in defensive technique, and not one that should be pursued in target shooting. But it's tough to argue with success. If you can shoot this way and get better groups than in the traditional way, go for it. I'll be among the first to applaud your success.
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Old 05-13-2010, 04:25 PM
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If you forgot which gun you had in hand (can happen under stress) and it happened to be a revolver that day, and you reflexively pulled with the middle finger, and pointed the index finger down cylinder... It will hurt really, really bad. Not a good habit to form IMHO.
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Old 05-13-2010, 04:35 PM
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No, but I know the index finger is called the trigger finger for a reason. Heck if it works for ya go for it.
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Old 05-14-2010, 08:53 AM
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Thanks for the replies.

I can not use the middle finger with a revolver. Also, my 1911's just do not fit right. The 1911's all have short triggers and extra narrow grips.
I will not be using the middle finger this weekend at the USPSA match. i will have to practice it more.
The fact that I hit to the right is mind boggling to me. Never happened to me before. In a 2 hand hold I do not lose any control of the pistol. I have never hit like that with the M&P 45. It has been my dream for years to error to the right.

BTW, Massad Ayoob, in his book did not speak favorably of this method.

The best outcome would be that this middle finger method allows me to correct trigger errors and I end up using the index finger.
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Old 05-14-2010, 10:55 AM
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I knew a cop who used his middle finger with his issue Glock 22 since he lost the tip of his index finger as a kid.
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Old 05-14-2010, 04:49 PM
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I don't know about this middle finger deal, I know of a few uses for it, but I'm not sure this is one of them.
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Old 05-14-2010, 10:18 PM
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While Jack Ruby did use his middle finger on the trigger when he killed Oswald, he did so out of necessity. Most of his right index finger was bitten off during a street fight when he was younger.
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Old 05-15-2010, 02:28 AM
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I always laughed at my friend when he used to do this at the arcade on the shooting games, he has never fired a real gun that I know of.

After reading the question I tried dry firing my 1911 this way, first problem I noticed was that my finger was way too far infront of the trigger for it to feel normal. I use a caspian trik trigger which is about the longest trigger I know of because anything shorter just doesn't feel right when using the proper finger let alone the longer middle finger..

So then I tried the instinct/point shooting method during dry firing, I pointed my finger at something and then looked at the sight picture. At about seven yards my sights kept lining up about 3 inches low and left of what I was pointing at which just doesn't seem like a good thing IMO.
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Old 05-15-2010, 08:54 AM
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I think if you practice dry-firing with this method, then (very carefully) with live fire, it will work. I have no way to display or link to it, but an online US military marksmanship training course I have taken suggests this be tried for members with short fingers firing the Beretta M9.

Also, in your posts you note the trigger reach of an M & P auto or a Glock is too long for you, but a standard 1911 is too short. Perhaps installing a long trigger on your 1911 is an idea?
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Old 05-15-2010, 05:14 PM
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A host of replies! Thanks.

My 1911's have extra thin grips and short triggers. I can not use the middle finger method with them and don't need to. I use the pad of my index finger. Just as I gain nothing using the middle finger with a revolver. I realize that having different gripes for different handguns is not a good idea.

Using the middle finger method, stock trigger, I went from unable to hit consistently from 7 yards, only 1 or 2 hits from 12 yards on an 8 inch target to 18 of 20 in the black at 12 yards and the other 2 on the paper shooting as fast as I can. (that did generate some enthusiasm.) BTW, no point shooting, focusing on the front sight.

However, I installed the Apex Tactical hard sear for 45 along with the ultimate striker block. The trigger went from 7 lbs to 3.5 - 4 lbs. The reset is more defined. WOW. So more work on conventional use of the index finger.

I will do some practice with the middle finger method. But it is not a priorty. Although, I would like to meet and talk to anyone who used it regularly. Thanks murphydog. Had to be someone somewhere somehow using it.
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Old 05-21-2010, 08:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shotslow View Post
I am having trouble hitting with my M&P 45. I hit low left some, and always left. (yes, I know the reasons for this) I do this with most semi-autos. No so much with revolvers. So naturally I am a revolver fan.

I just finished a book, Combat Handgunnery by Massad Ayoob. A shooting method was described in the book where the shooter used the index finger to point along the side of the pistol and uses the middle finger to pull the trigger. DOES ANYONE USE THIS METHOD.

I went to the range and tried this out. It works for me!!! I have small hands and can not really get to the first joint on my index finger. Using the middle finger, I can. I put all rounds on a 8 inch target, rapid fire with a Glock 35 at 10 yards and 9 out of 10 with the M&P 45 from 15 yards. The hits were dispersed on the left and right of center line for both pistols. And I have never hit from 15 yards with the M&P 45.

I plan to use this method at a USPSA competition this week end.

I would appreciate any information on this method of shooting. Thanks.
There are only two uses for a man's middle finger - and neither involves pulling the trigger on your .45!
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Old 05-21-2010, 08:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shotslow View Post
I am having trouble hitting with my M&P 45. I hit low left some, and always left. (yes, I know the reasons for this) I do this with most semi-autos. No so much with revolvers. So naturally I am a revolver fan.

I just finished a book, Combat Handgunnery by Massad Ayoob. A shooting method was described in the book where the shooter used the index finger to point along the side of the pistol and uses the middle finger to pull the trigger. DOES ANYONE USE THIS METHOD.

I went to the range and tried this out. It works for me!!! I have small hands and can not really get to the first joint on my index finger. Using the middle finger, I can. I put all rounds on a 8 inch target, rapid fire with a Glock 35 at 10 yards and 9 out of 10 with the M&P 45 from 15 yards. The hits were dispersed on the left and right of center line for both pistols. And I have never hit from 15 yards with the M&P 45.

I plan to use this method at a USPSA competition this week end.

I would appreciate any information on this method of shooting. Thanks.
That method is called Point & Shoot. It is widely taught in some circles. It is also part of the Marine Pistol training, or at least it was at one time. Not sure about it nowadays.

But it is VERY accurate, as you found out. It's a great way for concealed carry folks to learn, because we may not have enough time to actually take aim and sight a target.
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Old 05-22-2010, 07:24 AM
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I read about "point and shoot" and tried it a couple times wothout too much success. I really didn't give it enough time and should really work at it. Perfect for SD.
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Old 05-22-2010, 08:30 AM
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The point and shoot method works best on the small conceled auto's. Seecamp,p238, baby browning...where you have no sight plan, I would never use this technec on a full size auto.

That said I have use it on a Karr 9mm at 15' an on a rapid fire pulled a 5" group. This is nothing I pratice but try it once and a while. You can also try holding you gun at your hip perpendicular to your sholders and by squaring your sholders to the target you will hit it at 15'

Again you wont do 1" groups but if it is you or the dirtbag you will win.

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Old 06-08-2010, 07:36 PM
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Here's a link to a U-tube video showing aerials (pop cans tossed in the air), being shot and hit using the index finger for aiming and the middle finger on the trigger. The gun is an airsoft gun. You must be very quick and accurate.

YouTube - Point Shooting aerials is easy

Noticed that there is a post about a 1911. Here's a link to a very short historical and informational video on the 1911. YouTube - 1911 - A Fatal Flaw

Here are some pics from range visits. Usually use a rental. And I usually shoot as fast as I can point and pull the trigger. Always use safe gun handling practices and COMMON SENSE.

S&W 40 cal






If you are going to be shot and/or killed, there is an 80% chance that it will happen at less than 21 feet, and under conditions and in circumstances where traditional marksmanship won't or can't be used. So knowing and using a shooting method that is very fast and "accurate" at close quarters, would be good.

Do not expect quarter sized groups.
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Old 06-08-2010, 07:45 PM
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I have used the middle finger technique for fast bolt action rifle shooting. I would never use it with a handgun unless I had a damaged index finger.

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Old 06-10-2010, 02:53 AM
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I carry for defense.
I would not suggest shooting with your middle finger.
When you add too many details to drawing, and shooting,
you end up messing it up. In a SD situation, this mean you are done.

You fight how you pratice. repetition makes perfect.

maybe this simple chart can help you correct your shooting error.
(see attached pic)
If it helps.. i do the same thing.

Our Firearm Instructors did I simple exersize the other day.
You grip the firearm, and have your buddy pull the trigger, when you say your on target.
If his trigger pull is even you will hit your target whre your aiming.

This showed me that I was putting too much finger in the trigger.
In turn, I would be inadvertantly pushing the gun to the left (right hand shooter).
When i put the trigger on the tip/pad of my finger....
ALL MY SHOTS HIT CENTER!!!! it was instant gradification!

Now I just need to keep praticing that way....
so it becomes second nature....... pratice, pratice, pratice.
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Old 06-10-2010, 07:55 AM
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Too much finger in the trigger or squezzing left with your support hand, or just jerking the trigger could be causing the trouble with your trigger finger. I would try to fix that problem before using a technique that is harder and has its' own problems as well. I am not a fan of that technique.
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Old 06-27-2010, 07:19 PM
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I do that only with this gun - it helps me to get a higher and more solid grip on the gun, laying the index finger alongside the twin barrels. "Point and shoot."

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Old 06-27-2010, 07:38 PM
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I have a client who is an older lady who is left handed. She recently bought a S&W 442 revolver and was showing it to me. She had shot it a few times and said she did pretty well with it. She shot it with her right hand and pulled the trigger with her middle finger. Apparently the BC gap didn't cause a problem for her. When I asked her why she used her non-dominant hand and middle finger she said that was where she was strongest. She also throws darts (not very well) with her right hand, although for almost everything else she uses her dominant (left) hand.
I suspect age may be an issue, as well as her small stature, but she says it works for her. We plan to go shooting soon so I guess I'll see first hand.
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Old 06-28-2010, 10:25 AM
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Looks like that pocket pistol has spent some time in one or more pockets. Slick rig.

Copied and tried to blow the pic up to see the caliber, but it did not show up for me.
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:17 PM
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I didn't know that it was a recognized technique. Years ago I broke the last joint on my "bird" finger. The result is that I can only partially bend that fingertip. It's a royal pain when shooting handguns and I have to modify my grip somehow to compensate with many handguns. I have often considered the notion of resting my trigger finger alongside the frame and using that broken finger to actually pull the trigger. I may well try it now.
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Old 06-30-2010, 08:45 PM
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Thank you for the replies. I have solved most of the problems I had shooting the 45 M&P by installing an Apex Tactical sear and striker block. And use a conventional shooting method. I also got a M&P 9mm PRO. Installed same parts. Not as dramatic a result, but an improvement. I will play with the middle finger point shooting a bit. But doubt I will adopt it. An interesting thread non the less.
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Old 11-04-2010, 04:44 PM
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Lot's of people believe its always the triggers finger for Low-Left hits.
A 7'oclock consistent hit can also be contributed to squeezing to hard on primary brace hand

To expand on point:
Take right hand and simulate "gun in hand", "finger on trigger".
tighten grip with slight emphasis on Middle(3rd) finger.
Notice how grip will slightly shift left.
Now add a slight hesitation or anticipation of shot, which have tendency to pull shots low.
If you are performing "From the draw" or quick "Double tap" type shots, a shooter may have the tendency to over grip and get caught in the moment.
If you have a grouping and a descent pattern, this can be remedied. Just means a slight concentration and relaxing needs to be accomplished.

Hope it helps
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Old 01-10-2021, 12:13 AM
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Smile Middle finger as Trigger finger.

After twenty five years of lessons, reading and practice I still couldn't cure missing down and left. Recently, out of the blue I wondered about switching trigger fingers. I read the blogs and practiced dry-firing. It felt comfortable and natural. After I was sure I was safe I went to the range with the 4 semi-autos I use most (3-9mm and 1-40 cal) I was amazed at the positive results. I still wasn't perfect but I was a lot more accurate and my shots were evenly dispersed closely on and around the aiming point. It was also much easier to hold my sights on target between shots.
Surely there will be negative responses to my blog, but remember that shooting like many other sports and activities is not a science, it's an art. Picasso and Rembrandt are both wonderful artists but their techniques and styles are very different. Remember, "More than one way to skin a cat". If you're cursed with small hands or having accuracy problems you might give it a try. Practice dry firing for a while until it feels natural and comfortable before you go to the range. Be careful, be safe and have fun. I hope it works for you as well as it did for me. And finally, Massad Ayoob recommends it for shooters with small hands. Which of you critics claims to know more about guns than Mas?

Last edited by Crown Vic; 01-11-2021 at 01:39 PM. Reason: Addition
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Old 01-10-2021, 12:30 AM
BloodyThumb BloodyThumb is offline
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I used my middle finger to trigger a heck of a fist fight once...
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Old 01-10-2021, 12:58 AM
OttoLoader OttoLoader is offline
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My suggestion works for me. I am right handed.
Everyone hand dimensions are slightly different.
Each must experiment with the sweet spot combination.
Here is mine.
Establish stable base or hold.

Wrist. Be sure to get a consistent and steady hold cuch that the wrist never breaks during the trigger pull cycle.

Hand. Use your hand to finess the pressure on the front strap and backstrap so the pistol stays in line on target during the trigger press cycle. Really concentrate gripping force inline with barrel. Also no death grip or variation.
Trigger postion
Get terms straight . Some saty too much meaning closer to the hand farther from the tip.
Others mean too much as being closer to the tip. I will not use that term.
Next fo not assume everyone must use the pad of their finger.
Now in dryfire try trigger finger placement at different position until you establish the break point that result in the muzzle remaining on target. Press trigger straight back not off axis.

For me the pistol is level and inline with wrist and elbow. Not off axis and in middle of the web.
Yrigger finger is usually on the middle segment not near the tip.
As you described having short fingers smaller hand. I would work in first getting ge grio stable and in line, then try different trigger finger placement likely closer to the tip pad.

Note I use this method with any size gun. But tge combination is different.

I can get very good and consustent hits with pocket .380s, j l n x frame S&W revolvers. Glocks M&Ps 1911s.
There is no one size fits all .
Trend small guns pocket 380 j frame trigger finger position is far away from the tip. Larger handguns trigger position is closer to the tip.

Also just plain jane stock guns, grips, triggers etc.

Hope this helps.

Last edited by OttoLoader; 01-10-2021 at 01:01 AM.
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Old 01-10-2021, 12:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crown Vic View Post
After twenty five years of lessons, reading and practice I still couldn't cure missing down and left. Recently, out of the blue I wondered about switching trigger fingers. I read the blogs and practiced dry-firing. It felt comfortable and natural. After I was sure I was safe I went to the range with the 4 semi-autos I use most (3-9mm and 1-40 cal) I was amazed at the positive results. I still wasn't perfect but I was a lot more accurate and my shots were evenly dispersed closely on and around the aiming point. It was also much easier to hold my sights on target between shots.
Surely there will be negative responses to my blog, but remember that shooting like many other sports and activities is not a science, it's an art. Picasso and Rembrandt are both wonderful artists but their techniques and styles are very different. Remember, "More than one way to skin a cat". If you're cursed with small hands or having accuracy problems you might give it a try. Practice dry firing for a while until it feels natural and comfortable before you go to the range. Be careful, be safe and have fun. I hope it works for you as well as it did for me.
I'd give this one multiple "LIKES" if I could.
Doing something differently is not synonymous with doing it wrong, contrary to the sometimes popular majority opinion.
As long as you do it safely do what works for you.
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Old 01-10-2021, 04:50 AM
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Several years ago my wife and I went on a date night and did gocart racing and I wrecked and broke my strong hand index finger. Didn't let that stop me from shooting, I just used my middle finger instead. I even shot a deer that year with my middle finger lol.
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Old 01-13-2021, 04:54 PM
Super Trucker Super Trucker is offline
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I have found trigger placement on the trigger effects where the bullet goes.
I have small hands and found that if I keep my finger tight against the side of the gun then allow it to go through the trigger guard and let the finger touch the trigger where it does (closer to the joint in the finger), my shots improved drastically.
This was explained to me that because I kept my finger tight to the gun it did have a way to pull the trigger on an angle making the shots be off centered, keeping the finger this way only allows straight back pulls.

If you pull the trigger with the tip of your finger that usually leaves your finger extra room to pull at an angle. I hope this makes sense, it is easier to just show you then to try and describe it.
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Old 01-13-2021, 05:35 PM
kreuzlover kreuzlover is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crown Vic View Post
After twenty five years of lessons, reading and practice I still couldn't cure missing down and left. Recently, out of the blue I wondered about switching trigger fingers. I read the blogs and practiced dry-firing. It felt comfortable and natural. After I was sure I was safe I went to the range with the 4 semi-autos I use most (3-9mm and 1-40 cal) I was amazed at the positive results. I still wasn't perfect but I was a lot more accurate and my shots were evenly dispersed closely on and around the aiming point. It was also much easier to hold my sights on target between shots.
Surely there will be negative responses to my blog, but remember that shooting like many other sports and activities is not a science, it's an art. Picasso and Rembrandt are both wonderful artists but their techniques and styles are very different. Remember, "More than one way to skin a cat". If you're cursed with small hands or having accuracy problems you might give it a try. Practice dry firing for a while until it feels natural and comfortable before you go to the range. Be careful, be safe and have fun. I hope it works for you as well as it did for me. And finally, Massad Ayoob recommends it for shooters with small hands. Which of you critics claims to know more about guns than Mas?
Down, and left, is usually caused by a bad flinch. And Ayoob is not a full-time lawman, and I don't think he ever was. Remember, believe half of what you see, and none of what you hear. I like Ayoobs writing, but learn to take everything with a grain of salt.

Last edited by kreuzlover; 01-13-2021 at 05:38 PM.
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Old 01-14-2021, 09:47 AM
Dino1 Dino1 is offline
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If I was shooting constantly low and left with a particular firearm I would adjust my sights to hit POA. If you don't have adjustable sights you can add them, but if you don't just drift your rear sight to the right a little bit and compensate your aim with the front sight to gain elevation for the low shot. With enough practice it will become second nature and you won't even think about it. Another possibility is the sights are a little off on your gun, I have seen this numerous times. which is why I have a sight pusher to correct this. I have an M&P .40 that did the same thing, I put an Apex Forward Reset trigger kit in it, but the gun still shot to the left, I drifted the rear sight ever so slightly to the right and now it shoots dead on. And that trigger kit is nothing short of awesome. Next to my Kimber Eclipse Target series 1 it is one of my favorite range guns.
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Old 01-14-2021, 10:00 AM
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My Uncle had lost most of his index finger in a farm equipment when he was a teenager ... so by default his middle finger became his trigger finger . Hunted his whole life and was a good shot ... I wish I could hit flying game birds like he could .
If using your middle finger works for you ...roll with it !
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Old 01-14-2021, 10:56 AM
kreuzlover kreuzlover is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwpercle View Post
My Uncle had lost most of his index finger in a farm equipment when he was a teenager ... so by default his middle finger became his trigger finger . Hunted his whole life and was a good shot ... I wish I could hit flying game birds like he could .
If using your middle finger works for you ...roll with it !
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Exactly! I've seen folks on TV shows that use their FEET to shoot bow & arrow! If life hands you lemons, make lemonade.
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Old 01-14-2021, 11:10 AM
Muss Muggins Muss Muggins is offline
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According to his own bio on his website, Ayoob was always a part time officer, and primarily a supervisor. He's a member here . . .

Quote:
Originally Posted by kreuzlover View Post
Down, and left, is usually caused by a bad flinch. And Ayoob is not a full-time lawman, and I don't think he ever was. Remember, believe half of what you see, and none of what you hear. I like Ayoobs writing, but learn to take everything with a grain of salt.
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Old 01-14-2021, 12:32 PM
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All the input on instinct shooting, and the catastrophizing about the index finger dragging on the slide, etc, is probably well intended but doesn't address the OP's issue.

In general an index finger, or more commonly a thumb with a high, thumbs forward grip, is generally a problem for people with large hands, when shooting smaller pistols, not folks with smaller hands shooting medium or large frame pistols.

The OPs issue with smaller hands is trigger reach and an inability to get the trigger finger on a DA trigger all the way up to finger joint. That's essential to get enough leverage for an effective DA pull - unless that DA pull is unusually light, or unless the OP has much higher than average finger strength.

Shooting to the right is a classic symptom of not having, or being able to get enough finger on the trigger.

However, people looking at an analysis chart fail to realize that not having enough finger on a DA trigger ALSO almost invariably results in the person tightening their grip during the trigger pull - especially as their trigger finger begins to tire and weaken. That pulls the shot down. They'll also increase pressure with the thumb and lower fingers, which tends to pull the shot to the left.
Those effects offset the pulling to the right effects of not having enough finger on a trigger - which is really a generic description applying to single and DA triggers.

Excessively large grips also mean the person cannot adequately wrap their hand around the grip to properly grip or adequately control the pistol, so increased thumb and finger pressure during the trigger pull also occurs for that reason as well.

The end result is that someone shooting a pistol or revolver with excessive trigger reach starts out shooting left and then devolves to low and left as their trigger finger tires.

----

Possible solutions include things like:

1) Thinner grips or grips that leave the back strap exposed in order to shorten the trigger reach (distance to the trigger).

The Beretta 92 is a good example of a pistol with a long trigger reach, given that it's badly over sized for a 9mm pistol. Beretta makes a short trigger reach kit for it and if you have one, one and can't get your trigger finger on it up to the first joint it's worth getting the short reach kit.

Beretta has finally figured this out with their new 92X. It uses standard straight backstrap profile frame with new flatter grips that allow it to fit the majority of shooters out of the box without the short reach trigger kit.

2) Thinner grips are often the best way to shorten trigger reach.

That's the approach that Beretta took on the 92X - making them flat along the backstrap and thinner over all.

Ruger's GP-100 and SP-101 revolvers also use a grip stub, rather than the grip frame they used in the older Speed/Service/Security Six series, and Red Hawk series DA revolvers. S&W also uses a grip frame.

The advantage of the grip stub is there is no back strap to limit the minimum trigger reach, so you are able to get or customize grips that will accomodate any hand size.


3) Some decocker designs shorten trigger reach

The CZ 75 and CZ 2075 pistols are a good example of this. If you pull the trigger on a round with a defective primer where the pistol will not cycle and re-cock the hammer, you'll have the full length trigger pull for a second pull to re-attempt to fire that round.

However, under normal circumstances where you decock the pistol after it is loaded, or when you are done firing, the DA pull will be significantly shorter (and of course once it fires and recocks the hammer, you have a very short SA pull). That shorter decocked DA pull is much more amenable to shooters who need a short trigger reach pistol.

That's a lot different than a DA/SA pistol like the S&W 39, where the decocker puts the hammer all the way down.

----

With that in mind the best approach is to shop around, try different revolvers or pistols on for size and be aware of different grip options that might help reduce the trigger reach.

Last edited by BB57; 01-14-2021 at 12:44 PM.
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Old 01-14-2021, 01:47 PM
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As for Massad Ayoob's discussion of the very old practice (dating back to at least WWII) of pointing the index finger along the side of the frame for "instinct" shooting, particularly at night. It does work for many people, even if it is out of fashion.

-----

As for people bashing Ayoob for not being a full time officer, I'm not sure how that is relevant, other than as a justification for instructors and full time officers to disagree with what he says.

The sad fact is most police officers are not gun people and are just not very proficient with their service pistols. Despite the PR to the contrary, they are also not all that well trained in using them.

I shot tactical pistol competition for a couple decades and I rarely saw law enforcement officers who were competitive, even at small local matches. In fact I rarely saw them. The two I remember most were FBI agents who were smart enough and humble enough to realize they didn't shoot very well, despite far better than average training at Quantico. They were firmly in the bottom of the pack but improved significantly over time with practice and more competitive experience. They stand out as the average LEO showed up for match shot poorly and then never came back. To proud to admit they could not shoot well, or to embarrassed to show it in public was a likely possibility.

Thus when I see an LEO show up in a forum and talk like they are some sort of handgun combat expert, I take that with a HUGE grain of salt.

Now... that probably raised the hackles on a lot of LEOs, and they'll counter with arguments such as "over 80% of officers involved in shootings report never using their sights", or that under extreme stress your sights are useless.

The first statement is true but the second is only conditionally true and failing the second is the reason for the first. That's where they need to hear me out - as a former LEO, who's been shot at twice. Under extreme stress people devolve to their lowest level of fully mastered training.

For an LEO who qualifies once or twice a year and never really masters any of the basic skills, pointing the service pistol in the general direction of the bad guy and mashing the trigger is all he or she has when under extreme stress. Hit rates in the 20% range are the result with lower percentages in low light conditions and or at ranges longer than about 15 yards.

In contrast, if you take an LEO who shoots often (100-200 rounds per week) and more importantly learned to shoot properly to:

- keep his eyes on the target/threat;
- draw his pistol and bring it up into his line of sight;
- place the front sight on target;
- pause to verify sight alignment or align the rear sight with the front sight; and then
- press the trigger.

You'll see much higher hit percentages and you'll see the LEO using his sights, even under extreme stress.

That happens for a couple reasons.

First, the shooter has repeated the process above so often that over time the he develops muscle memory in his hand that ensures the pistol rises into his line of sight with the pistol positioned so that the rear sights will automatically be aligned with the front sight when he places the front sight on target. During practice, once that grip is mastered and committed to muscle memory, the "pause" in the above process is extremely short - less than a tenth of a second - and mostly just verifies the front sight is on target. The sights will always be aligned as the response from the muscles is automatic and is no longer a conscious thought.

Second, under extreme stress, the response is automatic and takes zero mental bandwidth. The shooter just focuses on the front sight placed on the target/threat. Any pause that is taken is just to confirm the need to send the shot/next shot. For example if you've double tapped the threat and are transitioning to a failure to stop shot to the head, as the pistol recovers from the recoil and your transition to the head, that very brief "pause" is just confirming the head is still where it should be and the front sight is on it. If that head is on the way down to the ground, you'll recognize the need may no longer exist and extend the pause.

If the LEO has also shot competitively it's a plus as the shooter has experience shooting under time pressure and some degree of stress, while also having to divide his attention.

The key either way is having the basic grip, sight picture and trigger pull skills firmly committed to muscle memory so that they do not require any mental bandwidth at all. That leaves the reduced bandwidth you have under extreme stress 100% available to make the critical decisions and assessments, without compromising your shooting.

Not many LEOs ever come close to that level of proficiency, and most then shoot very poorly under stress.

----

Now...I'm not saying that you should agree with everything Ayoob says. First of all doing something just because someone said is authoritarian learning that is the least robust, least valid and lowest level means of learning anything. Second, like *any* "expert" or "authority" he's biased by his experiences, preferences and individual skill sets.

I don't agree with everything he says. However, I do listen to what he says, and then evaluate it critically and *objectively* based on how well it fits with my experiences, philosophy, preferences and skill sets.

I also come with an attitude that I am willing to change my point of view if what he suggests works better for me.

I do not discount what he says just because he says it from a part time officer perspective. Part time or not, most of what he says is well considered and well thought out and at least worth considering even if you don't choose to follow it based on your own experience or specialized circumstances.

A lot of full time officers could stand to significantly improve their objectivity as well as their critical thinking skills. They shouldn't be discounting what someone says based solely on some sort of authoritarian learning that says something different.
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Old 01-14-2021, 02:44 PM
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I just had to read this thread to see the replies. Oh, by the way, I wouldn't use that method with any gun.
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Old 01-14-2021, 07:52 PM
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The simple reason for low left is if you have low left shots it is because your trigger finger is pushing the trigger up and inward at the time of break. By pushing the trigger end up and in to the right the gun pivots and rotates the muzzle low left.

All the cliches of , death grip, milking, drift the sights , use the pad of the finger, muscle memory etc.are never going to solve the low left shots.

In competition the game gun is tricked out to shave off time.
Yet for average stock handguns, not needed just to hit the target unless you never developed solid fundamentals.

Bottom line. You need to figure out why your gun is dipping low left. Concentrate on a consistent grip and most important work on your trigger finger / trigger control.

Skip the work arounds.

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