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Old July 17, 2014, 11:08 AM   #1
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Odd stances and new shooters

We were all newbies at one point, and I see plenty at the range. One thing always has perplexed me though. This is common among new shooters, especially females ones (at least for what I've seen) but why do some new shoots lean back away from the firearm. It's almost like they're scared of it or something, the exaggerated stance makes it appear that if they shot anything larger than a .223 it would land them flat on their rear end. Even when I started shooting I never did this odd exaggerated lean back stance (to be fair, I was really into guns so I had a vague idea of what to do)

Is it a mental thing where hey think they must lean back to counter the recoil? A few times I've seen it corrected, but on several occassions, I've noticed that the NRA instructors at my range just let's it pass, despite seeing the shooters groupings all over the darn paper.
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Old July 17, 2014, 11:58 AM   #2
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Oh I gave up trying to correct that with my daughter and her boyfriend. Drove me nuts seeing it.

The point taking them was to see the big ragged hole from my .45 at 15yards.

That will make him think.

Honestly I think it is fear if recoil.
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Old July 17, 2014, 01:12 PM   #3
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I have always aggressively corrected this with shooters I am coaching, because with the center of balance so far back, they have no stability whatsoever. It IS from being apprehensive about the firearm, especially brand new shooters, doubly so if they are adults. I've managed to get a few to stop doing that and they now keep their balance and the groups small.
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Old July 17, 2014, 01:21 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Kimio
...One thing always has perplexed me though. This is common among new shooters, especially females ones (at least for what I've seen) but why do some new shoots lean back away from the firearm. It's almost like they're scared of it or something,...
That's pretty much exactly it -- they're trying to get away from the gun.

I'm with a group teaching monthly NRA Basic Handgun classes, and the vast majority of our students have never even touched a gun before. So this is something that comes up all the time, and that we correct. So by the end of the class, our students don't do that anymore. Just another reason to get training.

Among other things, we work on grip and stance with our students, hands-on, one-to-one, using inert training guns. So with a student holding the gun and in a stance, we can push gently on the front of the gun. That way they can experience the difference in the felt effects of recoil comparing leaning back with a more forward stance.

ETA: That exercise should never be done with a real gun. If one doesn't have an inert training ("blue") gun available, have the student hold something else, or just grasp his hands, mimicking holding a gun.
"It is long been a principle of ours that one is no more armed because he has possession of a firearm than he is a musician because he owns a piano. There is no point in having a gun if you are not capable of using it skillfully." -- Jeff Cooper
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Old July 17, 2014, 01:55 PM   #5
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They just don't realize it and the person introducing them the first time is being negligent in not correcting that.
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Old July 17, 2014, 02:46 PM   #6
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When I'm in the standing position...I'll lean back some, while trying to gain triangular bone support. But while shooting in the offhand position, I'll square my stance up some, in relation to the target --- something like a modern isosceles position --- especially for rapid fire.

For rapid fire shotgun...a shooter must fire at least --- six rapid fire shots --- in order to see if his stance fails; which means the shotgun recoil is pushing you back.
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Old July 17, 2014, 03:09 PM   #7
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I trained a lot of new staff for years and that is common for them to lean back. It really has little to do with shooting, it is just a balance thing. Forget about the shooting aspect for a moment. Stand sideways in front of a large mirror and hold a weight at arms length in front of you. What you will normally see as you extend the weight out full length your back will start moving in the other direction to counter-balance. The smaller you are and/or the heavier the weight, the more you move. You just need to show the new shooter that they need to bias their weight forward to handle the recoil better and shorten recovery time. It is just part of learning.
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Old July 18, 2014, 09:52 AM   #8
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I am another who thinks balance plays a part. If the new shooter will point their toes out just a bit and place one foot a little ahead of the other, it is easier for them to feel solidly grounded. They can then feel better about leaning forward slightly in the accepted pose for managing recoil.
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Old July 18, 2014, 12:46 PM   #9
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It's definitely a balance issue. they aren't used to the weight of the firearm and its just their subconscious trying to balance everything out. No different then us lugging our heavy range bag. we lean opposite to help balance ourselves against the weight, not into it. Moving the head looking away or pushing arms out @ the last second are more warning signs of being 'scared' of the blast.
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Old July 19, 2014, 07:04 PM   #10
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Its mostly a balance issue. I suggest all new shooters get a 5 lbs weight and practice holding it out to build up strength. If it is fear of noise a d recoil, I take out a 38 spec. Revolver and shoot it with the butt end just past the end of the cap. It shows them it can be done and not to worry. Also always use over the ear protection with new shooters!!!
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