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Old July 15, 2011, 11:04 AM   #1
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How many of you lift weights to improve handgun control?

Curious. I am 57 years old and lift when I get time, wish it was more often. I do lift with light weights hold my arms out straight in front similar to my shooting position.

Between my age, lack of experience and teaching I think it helps some but hard to tell how much. Anyone else have suggested lifting techniques or exercises?
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Old July 15, 2011, 11:21 AM   #2
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As someone who has lifted most of my life there is no doubt it can be an asset. I would also suggest focusing on your lower back and abdominal muscles this can prevent injuries and improve overall stamina. While these activities in theory could assist your shooting I think the greatest benefit is that they may allow you to practice more without experiencing fatigue. I went shooting with an out of shape buddy and he gave out very quickly.
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Old July 15, 2011, 11:33 AM   #3
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Any downtime - watching television, reading, doing something on pc - I will usually be working with a grip strengthener or a couple 5 pounders.

I have found that it really does help with both recoil management and trigger control, especially on the DA pull of a DA/SA auto.
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Old July 15, 2011, 11:35 AM   #4
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Every day

All exercises designed to improve the muscles I use when shooting:


Just in case the mods decide this is in the wrong forum and they lock it I can say:

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Old July 15, 2011, 11:38 AM   #5
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I don't but maybe I should,,,

Last weekend I took a young man out shooting,,,
I took handguns ranging from .22 through .44 Magnum.

Myself I fired 18 rounds through my S&W Model 629,,,
Later that day my right forearm was very sore.

One of my buddies calls it "Magnum Arm".

I used to work carpentry and general home construction,,,
7 years as a student and 5 years as a desk jockey,,,
I've gotten very puny in my old age.

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Combat: "A Silent Cry"
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Old July 15, 2011, 11:45 AM   #6
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I do 500 trigger finger pushups a day in preperation for an outing with my sigma!

LOL! Just kidding. The sigma rocks!
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Old July 15, 2011, 11:52 AM   #7
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I lift, but not a great amount. I don't intend to go to the olympics. I regularly lift 40 pounds, a moderate amount, just to slow the loss of muscle mass with age. Recently I had a hiatus from the gym, and when I got back I found that I needed to start with 30 pounds. Doesn't take long to lose muscle tone, about a month for me that time. Got back to 40

So yes, I do lift, not to be a muscleman but to maintain what I have.. I don't seem to gain what I lack very much. I'm 75

The lifting does give muscle tone for steadier shooting I recently read somewhere that after age 40 or so the average male loses 7% muscle mass a year.
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Old July 15, 2011, 12:31 PM   #8
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No, but I walk by the workout room in my house ...and threaten that weight machine most every day ...
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Old July 15, 2011, 12:44 PM   #9
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I lift but I never even associated it with shooting. I mainly do carido and lift to strengthen my lower back and chest. And to keep my beer belly to a minimum . Although I can see how lifting has helped in the last 4-5 years.
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Old July 15, 2011, 12:59 PM   #10
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Tons of pushups, pullups, chinups squats and lunges. 200+ pushups in a session isn't bad for a 54 yoa. But I also teach and am not a fan of out of shape instructors trying to teach movement, when they can't. I do find that stronger pecs and lats help with recoil management and it is something i talk to students about - no preaching.
"We do not rise too the level of our expectations, rather we fall to the level of our training"
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Old July 15, 2011, 01:03 PM   #11
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I lift, but not for handgun control purposes.

Primarily, I lift because, being in my 40's, resistance training is necessary to prevent muscle loss and bone density issues.

Secondarily, more muscle mass (to a reasonable extent) yields higher metabolism, and helps burn off fat. My father is of Swedish and Welsh descent; the Swedish side tends to be tall and heavy. My mother is of Sicilian descent; her family is a mix of wiry people and keg-shaped people. My natural tendency is toward a barrel shape - especially since I like good food. If I don't lift, there's no way I can do enough cardio to avoid porking up.

Of course, there are other factors. Vanity, of course. And it does help with shooting, as well as martial arts. But those are all tertiary, after health concerns.
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Old July 15, 2011, 01:05 PM   #12
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I do weights related to my forearms, but thats because my hand has a tnednecy to shake when I shoot the Kimber.
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Old July 15, 2011, 01:06 PM   #13
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I lift weights cause I like it, never really associated it with handgun control, but having muscle is always good.
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Old July 15, 2011, 01:23 PM   #14
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I definately do. I hold a dumb bell sideways in front of me as in a isoceles position. This keeps the necessary muscles in shape for a long day of shooting.
Every shooter should know what it feels like to hit a Bowling Pin in the sweet spot and see that sucker fly.

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Old July 15, 2011, 01:55 PM   #15
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Hammer curl:

Ulnar dumbell:

Wrist curl:

Another one I do is reverse wrist curl:

I posted this elsewhere but it's a good article so I'll post it again:


Last edited by C0untZer0; July 15, 2011 at 02:02 PM.
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Old July 15, 2011, 03:26 PM   #16
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Since my semi-retirement I work at an auction house clearing out estates and moving stuff from point A to point B.
Not as strong as I was as a kid but it does seem to have increased my anaerobic strength.
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Old July 15, 2011, 04:52 PM   #17
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I started out by doing 25 curls with a 5 pound potato bag. After a couple of months, I went to a ten pounder.
After two years, I was using a 100 pounder.
Next week, I will start putting some potatos into the bags.
God Bless America
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Old July 15, 2011, 04:54 PM   #18
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I don't lift weights anymore but stay very active. I heat with wood so that alone helps keeps me in shape along with stretching excersises and swimming.

I also do more 12ounce curls then I used to do.

For many yrs. I've excersised my hands,wrists and forearms by squeezing tennis/racket balls. Had to quit for a few years due to wrist surgery but have been back at it for the last two years.
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Old July 15, 2011, 07:17 PM   #19
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Does lifting and tossing a few hundred 60lbs hay bales once or twice a week and shoeing stubborn horses count as weight lighting?

No I don't lift weights but I do enough around the farm that I don't need to. I do try to swim at least 150 laps a week though.
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Old July 15, 2011, 11:20 PM   #20
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As I was doing my morning lift I wondered about this question and also wondered where or if it would fit anywhere on this forum. Here is what the category description states: "A wide open area for Handgun posts that don't fit well in the Revolver or Semiauto Forums. Ammunition selection to shooting technique and more."
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Old July 15, 2011, 11:23 PM   #21
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I try to keep my upper body in decent shape. It definitely helps during long shooting sessions and makes recoil control easier.
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Old July 16, 2011, 12:44 AM   #22
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Occam's Razor makes a good point. Any way you can increase the mass of the muscles throughout the upper body, you gain more recoil control. The extra strength helps, but the actual gain in size helps to defeat recoil.

Much like a large strong neck aids in preventing KO's in combat sports. I've noticed that I generally can shoot longer and more accurately for longer than most of my friends. I'm also very broad in the shoulders and chest and I think this is an advantage when shooting. There comes a point of diminishing returns though, where your muscles require more oxygen than you can supply and they tire more quickly. Big muscles equal big oxygen consumption.
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Old July 16, 2011, 11:45 AM   #23
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I lift weights to not feel so old and creaky. The better shooting is a pleasant byproduct of lifting for me. However, I am big proponent of specific training for enhancing your physical abilities to compete whatever the sport. It works.
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Old July 16, 2011, 12:48 PM   #24
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Next week, I will start putting some potatos into the bags.

Ahhhhhhhhh..... [insert laughing emoticon here]
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Old July 16, 2011, 01:25 PM   #25
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At 49, I try to stay in pretty decent shape. I lift and do various other exercises.

Not especially for 'shooting techniques', but just for over all health.

It would suck to win a gunfight and then fall over from a stress-induced heart attack...
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