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Old September 4, 2012, 05:33 PM   #1
dstryr
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Arms locked or bent?

I typically shoot from an isosceles stance and haved used both straight arm and bent arm positions. What is considered correct, or is it a personal choice as to a person's effectiveness at hitting the target? I shoot more accurately with bent elbows, but suspect that as I progress and shoot faster, locked elbows and increased rigidity will aid in faster target acquisition in follow-up shots.

Say you were instructing, what's better and why?
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Old September 4, 2012, 05:51 PM   #2
MTSCMike
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Most modern technique experts want elbows slightly bent and elbows up about shoulder level.
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Old September 4, 2012, 06:07 PM   #3
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I would tell you to try both and pick the one that works best for you. That includes gun that fits better etc. All too often instructors find what's best for them and think it must be best for everyone !
I found isosceles best for me but then permanently injured my elbow -so now it's half way between the two systems !!
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Old September 4, 2012, 06:35 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dstryr
as I progress and shoot faster, locked elbows and increased rigidity will aid in faster target acquisition in follow-up shots.
I'm afraid I can't agree with this thought. In fact, I find that, for me, locking joints is a fast trip to instability, reduced mobility and slower shot strings.

I'm not going to get into the differences between traditional isosceles, modern isosceles, Weaver and Chapman stances... as I've used them all, but in any case, I find loose and limber superior to locked and rigid.
I guess you could call the stance I've used for the past 30 or so years to be a combination of the latter three... because that's what produces the most fluid and consistently accurate results.

"Over the years I have concluded that certain body and hand positions are helpful to deliver better and quicker hits, but if a student chooses to disregard my teachings it is all right with me, as long as his results are good." -- Jeff Cooper

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Old September 4, 2012, 06:47 PM   #5
dstryr
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Slightly bent has worked much better, seems like most of what I see online has recommended locked elbow on the strong side, various recommendations on the weak side elbow depending on the stance.

Wanted to ask since I am self-taught thus far with lots of good advice found on the forum. Creeper, I wasn't sure what to expect as I start shooting more quickly.

Thanks for the insight and I'll continue to use what works.
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Old September 4, 2012, 07:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Wanted to ask since I am self-taught thus far with lots of good advice found on the forum. Creeper, I wasn't sure what to expect as I start shooting more quickly.
Thanks for the insight and I'll continue to use what works.
We all have different ways of achieving the same goals. I'm in my late 50s, and in admittedly terrible physical condition. Between dozens of motorcycle accidents, being run over by a truck, neuropathy and cancer... I'm lucky I can still walk, let alone run when the occasion demands it.
At my best, I was a top 20 finisher back in the 1970s SoCal combat matches I participated in, with only occasional forays into the top 10... so basically, I sucked on ice.

The concept of regular "practical practice" is the difference between being a human weapon, or a statistic... so no matter what works for you, you're still way ahead of anyone who thinks playing "Call of Duty" is a viable substitute for actual training.

Clint Smith used to say: "If you're not shootin', you should be loadin'. If you're not loadin, you should be movin', if you're not movin', someone's gonna cut your head off and put it on a stick."
He also said: "Every time I teach a class, I discover I don't know something."

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Old September 4, 2012, 08:02 PM   #7
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I hear a lot of people shoot pistols weaver. I shoot isoceles because it feels good for me. I think some stances are better for shooting in different sorts of areas. Like a narrow hallway I would shoot weaver to help keep my elbows from hitting the sides of the walls . I would suggest that how you can find your best shooting position is to find out where your arms are in such a position where your sights are reasonably correlated to your mean point of impact. And you figure that out with time experimenting for what stances that do not bugg and tires your deltoids. Therefore you can hold your gun for a longer period of time. Without getting muscle strain. And on arms locked or bent. I would say arms comftorable and relaxed to put out effective shots. Usually that would help your accuracy ability for most situations.
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Old September 4, 2012, 09:15 PM   #8
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I had the rare opportunity to work at the same place, with different management, at three different times over 30 years. The management "plan" was "A" in the first decade. When I returned in the second decade, it had become "B." When I returned for the final time in the third decade, I found myself in a management meeting where the original "A" was proposed, as if it were a new idea. Grizzled and well-seasoned by then, I realized it was change for the sake of change - young turks didn't get promoted unless they came up with "change."

That example is exaggerated relative to the real-life practicality of shooting stances. I matured on the Weaver stance and still use it. Tried isosceles and didn't like it. But how do you sell a book on Weaver today if it is the stance that has been in use for twenty years?

I don't play golf but I watched Bubba Watson use his home-brew style to win the Masters. Try all recommended shooting stances and settle on the one that is comfortable for you. The primary objective, particularly with the handgun shooting to which this post is addressed, is to have fun. For me, "fun" most definitely includes "comfortable." When you become very good at shooting in your fun stance, it will serve you well should you need it for more serious matters.
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Old September 5, 2012, 12:50 PM   #9
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Quote:
dstryr

Arms locked or bent?
Personally, I use the Weaver stance which is strong arm elbow locked with the shoulder rolled in, and off-hand pulling against the strong-hand with elbow bent to control recoil. For me this works best to control recoil and get the fastest follow-up shot.
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Old September 5, 2012, 07:59 PM   #10
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Same here, one locked, one bent.
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Old September 5, 2012, 08:13 PM   #11
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The message is pretty uniform in answering the question.

It all depends and what are your results... That ultimately matters.

One key to consider to answering your question is what kind of shooter are you?

Are you a bullseye shooter? Meaning for pure simple range shooting or are you more in the action shooting... Self defense where you are more into moving and reacting? Rapid double taps, etc

but in the end... What works for you is the final answer for you.
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Old September 5, 2012, 09:42 PM   #12
taz1
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Pull the triger on my 460 with hot 300gn 454 loads with locked elbows and your thumb and wrists are gonna hate you!

I like a slight bend in both, I also experience shake/wobble with locked arms.
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Old September 5, 2012, 10:19 PM   #13
Bartholomew Roberts
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I find that locked elbows + isoceles leads to longer split times and more muzzle flip. Keeping your elbows slightly bent lets the recoil ride back instead of flip up for me.
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Old September 5, 2012, 10:30 PM   #14
dstryr
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Good replies. Man, I see a lot of isos stances with locked arms at the IWL range and wondered if I was missing something. I have been shooting with bent elbows and will heed the good advice 'use what works'.
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Old September 5, 2012, 11:31 PM   #15
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Formal one handed is straight but not locked. At least that's the way I was taught.
Two handed is left(weak) hand straight, right (strong) hand slightly bent.
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