Jump to content

Challenge Your Own Norms

Recommended Posts

  • Administrator

While not professionally lead training, I feel that this falls into the category of "Knowledge" therefore I humbly share it with you.


Earlier this year I made another foray into the world of the Smith & Wesson M&P series.  I have owned numerous of them over the years and always liked them for not being Glocks, and the new M2.0 design piqued my interest.  I've found it to be an excellent blaster, but still couldn't quite figure out why it wasn't as natural for me to shoot as other handguns are.  And I *really* wanted it to be.

For as long as I can remember I have opted to run the Small sized palm-swell on the M&P 9mm and .40SW as they allowed me to more easily manipulate the mag release without breaking my grip.  I have also found it challenging to refrain from pulling my shots to the left (not low-left, just left) unless I paid careful attention to where my finger went on the trigger.

This past weekend I made an assessment and then made a change.  The assessment being:

  • Statistics show that the vast majority of shootings involving LEO or Civilians do not involve magazine changes.
  • The M&P 9mm carries 17+1 rounds.
  • It is more important for immediate proper trigger-finger placement than it is to keep my grip perfect during a mag change.
  • The Medium size palm-swell perfectly positions my trigger-finger every time.


After swapping to the larger Medium palm-swell, my shots were 100% where I wanted them, every single time, immediately from a draw.  Additionally, I am able to get more purchase on the grip with my support hand, aiding in what is already an incredibly flat shooting 9mm.

This may seem like a trivial thing or an obvious foregone conclusion, but consider also that I have been shooting for over 30 years now, have been carrying a handgun for over 15 years, have attended numerous classes, attend the range at least twice a month (frequently more) and have used the M&P platform since it was released in the mid 2000's.  NONE of this is new or even a revelation to me, but it demonstrates how we can become so myopic in our own thinking that we might disregard an obvious solution with an elementary challenge with our equipment.

The M2.0 is now one of my primary carry weapons and has finally edged out my Glock 19 for regular duty.

Lesson Learned:  Be brave enough to experiment on the range where your life doesn't depend on it.  You might discover something surprisingly simple yet extremely effective and it could save you from spending money needlessly.


  • Like 4
Link to comment

I agree with this. The only caution I will add is do not make a change simply for the sake of change itself. TGO David had a focused reason for making the change. If you have a setup that works for you don't mess with it unnecessarily, the time will be better spent on drills.

That considered, I have loved my Sigs for many years, I have a first gen P229 that still runs like a train and is in its second barrel. I did have an issue with the DA/SA transition that I was unhappy with. I had never shot Glocks (Gen 1) well at all, I never made the commitment to try. Years went by and I hadn't bought a new pistol in YEARS (Thanks NY). A move to the great state of TN and I was determined to cure my gap between the first and second shots. Many new striker guns are on the market, and I gave a P320 a try and I simply shoot it better than anything but a govt model.

I used to dislike striker guns, but they have come a long way since the gen 1 glock...

  • Like 1
Link to comment

I also had an issue with my rounds tending to drift let of center but only a few inches. First shot was normally dead on and as I continued to go through the magazine I for some reason seemed to always drift a little left but only a few inches by the time mag was empty. Finally a buddy of mine went to the range with me one day. He taught classes on hand gun safety and HCP classes.  He just stood back and watched me for about 3 magazines and finally stepped up and gave me his assessment. He said that as he watched me I was softening up my grip which was allowing the gun to pull off to the left just slightly.

He went out to his truck and came back in a with a lemon squeezer 45 and had 3 mags loaded for it. He said shoot this gun because it requires you to grip the gun firmly or it won't fire. We made three more trips to the range over the next month and each time my shooting improved with both my Bersa Thunder and my Bersa Model 85 until I was about 95 tp 98% dead on with both guns at 10 to 12 yards and about 90% at 15 yards. I know that is not perfect but with my vision beginning to fade a little back then I felt far more comfortable than I once did. Just that little tweaking made a bunch of difference in my confidence level. I am looking forward to when I get my eyes fixed so I can again enjoy the range. I did go about a week ago and burn up about 5 mags and I am still good to go up to 15 yards if it came down to defending myself wearing my glasses. Just thought I would share what I have learned about problem I was having...................:cheers:

  • Like 3
Link to comment

While complicated but not, these are perfect examples of modifying and controlling yourself/platform to give one the best trigger pull.  To me the missing or elusive component was being lazy with my support hand.  Maximize weak hand grip and 'tuck' in left elbow.  Left shots back to center.

Link to comment
3 hours ago, chances R said:

While complicated but not, these are perfect examples of modifying and controlling yourself/platform to give one the best trigger pull.  To me the missing or elusive component was being lazy with my support hand.  Maximize weak hand grip and 'tuck' in left elbow.  Left shots back to center.

Yea that was what part of my problem was when I was drifting left, it I was softening up my grip over all. Once I fired that Lemon Squeezer 45 it taught me to keep both hands firm. My friend called that comfort relaxation which is a bad habit many shooters get into that can become more routine the more they shoot if they don't correct it. He said shooters need to learn not to accept less then their best and if their best is not 98% then they need to find out what the problem is and correct it.

Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


Tennessee Gun Owners (TNGunOwners.com) is the premier Community and Discussion Forum for gun owners, firearm enthusiasts, sportsmen and Second Amendment proponents in the state of Tennessee and surrounding region.

TNGunOwners.com (TGO) is a presentation of Enthusiast Productions. The TGO state flag logo and the TGO tri-hole "icon" logo are trademarks of Tennessee Gun Owners. The TGO logos and all content presented on this site may not be reproduced in any form without express written permission. The opinions expressed on TGO are those of their authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the site's owners or staff.

Before engaging in any transaction of goods or services on TGO, all parties involved must know and follow the local, state and Federal laws regarding those transactions. TGO makes no claims, guarantees or assurances regarding any such transactions.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to the following.
Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Guidelines
We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.