Thursday, May 14, 2009

Col. Cooper On Pistol Stances, Weaver vs. Isosceles

In his July 2005 Cooper's Commentaries, he wrote:
"There is a great deal of foolish discussion bouncing around concerning the proper arm position for serious pistol work. Jack Weaver's classic contribution consists in power control. If you crank that left elbow down and pull positive counter-pressure, you dampen recoil very considerably. If you use mechanical means of reducing recoil, and if you lay great importance upon very rapid bursts of succeeding shots, this may matter, but in the overall picture, I do not believe it does. It hardly matters whether you use the Weaver Stance or the Isosceles "with both arms straight" as long as you get hits, and those hits should be delivered with a major powered sidearm under controlled conditions. The argument is silly, and I wish it would go away."

Considering that he was a master shooting instructor, it almost goes without saying that, in order to be able to get those hits, you must train to get hits.

With no less an authority than Jeff Cooper agreeing with me, I consider this matter to be Officially Closed.

You're welcome.


federalist said...

Col. Cooper was a great teacher, but this is not the end of the matter of defensive shooting postures and training. All two-handed out-stretched stances are based on target shooting. It's great if you have time and space to draw, put two hands on the gun, and push its sights out to arm's length.

But in many real-world confrontations no amount of training can buy you the time or space you need for such stances.

A few years ago I was introduced to the astonishingly effective "Center-Axis Relock" (CAR) technique and that is now primarily what I practice and teach. I can't imagine a real-world defensive scenario in which conventional target stances would be appropriate. Even Hollywood depictions look ridiculous once you're familiar with real handgun tactics like CAR.

If I ever have time and space to square up to a threat and shove my handgun three feet towards it, I'll instead spend it shooting, moving, or seeking cover.

Vote For David said...

Perhaps you missed the little smiling emoticon, indicating humor was in use?

I think his answer would be, "If you can get hits with CAR, go for it." The point is, this debate (like 9mm vs. .45ACP) will continue until 1 minute past infinity. Training is what is required, whatever stance you prefer.