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One Gem That Will Improve Your Handgun Accuracy

One Gem That Will Improve Your Handgun Accuracy

NOTE: See Part 2 (Opens new tab) of this post on proper grip. It will cover the “Push-Pull” in your grip.

There are numerous things I can point out to improve your handgun accuracy. All of them have to be done to get on target. Proper sight alignment, not jerking the trigger, having a gun size that fits, all are part of the equation. This is one that is hardly ever discussed and one I didn’t appreciate until recently but I see quite clearly now.

It is simply this: Make sure your pistol grips are as large as they can possibly be while still allowing your palms to come together at the back of the gun. 

Make sure your pistol grips are as large as they can possibly be while still allowing your palms to come together at the back of the gun. 

The featured picture shows grips on my gun that are called Palm Swell grips. They are designed to flare out wider than normal to provide a larger grip surface, plus they have an aggressive texture to allow for increased grip traction in my hand. First I’ll explain why this is important and next the details that might help you.

Palms togetherWhy Is This Important?

The firmer you grip your gun the easier it is to control your accuracy. Your support hand (non-trigger hand) should do 80% of the grip pressure leaving your trigger hand to be more relaxed and free to press the trigger. A grip that is to small leaves you with the inability to really press your hand into the gun grip because it’s just too small for you.

This grip pressure will do 2 important things for you. First it will reduce the tendency to slightly move the barrel during the trigger pull. Dry fire and watch you front sight move ever so slightly as you press the trigger. You want that rock solid still. Now do the same thing with greater than your normal pressure on that support hand. Notice the lack of movement? 1/8″ movement can take you 6″ off the target bulls eye at 7 yards. If your barrel moves 1/8th inch between the time it goes bang and the bullet actually leaves the gun, it will head towards the new jerked direction and off target.

Secondly, it will increase your ability to come back down on your target for followup shots. You can then take the second, third or fourth shot very rapidly without sight realignment. A firm grip provides a very solid platform to shoot from.

Grip sizesI also recommend roughened texture on your grip. There is sandpaper type grip tape you can place on the front and back of your grip to increase friction. In addition the rough texture in the grip itself will help. The green grips I have on my competition gun pictured are a kind of razor edged texture. I thought they might be uncomfortably edgy at first but they are perfect because they really dig in without fatigue after a lot of shooting. These grips are made aftermarket by LokGrips in my home state, Dorr Michigan, by a range I used to compete at. There are other aftermarket companies, this is one I really like, American made in a small shop with personal service.

So, this leads me to some details. The Palm Swell grips force my hands to really have to grip tightly to get my palms together properly. If I fail to grip tight enough it leaves a gap between my palms and thus less control. My hands are not very large. I’m 5’9″ with shorter fingers. Palm Swells almost too large, therefore perfect. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve found myself off target and realized it was my lack of grip pressure because my grips were so narrow it was allowing my gun to slip just enough in my hands to move me off target on the squeeze of the trigger. Plus the stock grips were not textured enough.

I understand that if you “guess” on the wrong size and find you need something larger or smaller, you can send them back for an exchange. No risk.

Bonus Information

Glock GripWhen buying a gun you need to know how to grip your gun properly. If you’ve taken my classes (or by other quality instructors) you know the proper grip, see above photo. If the gun you are looking at fits then great. If almost, but not right, see if the grips can be replaced. Many guns come with grip variations. If not, do companies make aftermarket grips for it that will make it fit perfectly? Check LokGrips and see who they make them for. Some guns leave you stuck with what it comes with.

Some Glock pistols (very popular) come with an expanding back strap to increase or decrease size. You won’t find aftermarket for this that I’m aware of. Try the different grips and see what fits.

Think of it this way, you buy a suit in your size yet almost always the sleeves and pant length are slightly off and the waist needs adjustments. It’s the right suit after modifications by a tailor. Guns are like that. It’s the right gun size but after some tailoring it’s the perfect gun size and easier to shoot accurately. 

In the overall scheme of shooting accuracy this subject is not talked about as much as it should be. I’ve bought the wrong guns numerous times not understanding some of these principles. Waste of money not only for the gun itself, the extra magazines, the holster made to fit and magazine carriers. Your gun used is going to be 50% of new value at trade in and your holsters, etc. are a loss. Buy right and enjoy more accurate shooting. Thanks for checking in.

NOTE: See Part 2 (Opens new tab) of this post on proper grip. It will cover the “Push-Pull” in your grip.

See you at the range?

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