Video: Transferring Your Pistol To Your Support Hand

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A primer to moving your pistol from one hand to another quickly, safely and efficiently.

For one reason or another, circumstances may force you to shoot with your support hand. Outside the truly ambidextrous, it’s not the easiest task, requiring a fair amount of practice to become proficient. Equally important, the ability to transfer your pistol to your support hand safely and quickly. If you’re in a situation where support-hand shooting is called for, it’s no time to fumble.

Few know this better than shooters who fight the clock in practical pistol matches. And in most cases, they have worked out efficient methods to pass their handgun off when a stage demands support-hand shooting. As champion shooter Mark Redl demonstrates, the process isn’t mindboggling, but, like a handoff in football, requires attention to minutia to execute it without a hitch.


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More than anything, in Redl’s system, transferring a pistol between hands requires ensuring your fingers – mainly the thumb – don’t get in the way. It might sound counterintuitive, what else are you supposed to grab your pistol with? But often times, the thumb of the hand holding the gun proves an impediment to the one it’s being transferred to, costing precious seconds in a match … maybe worse in real life.

Realistically, Redl’s technique might not prove directly transferable to self-defense. In a situation calling for support-hand shooting, generally, you won’t be able to work in your headbox. That said, some sort of game plan and drilling to get a pistol to a hand that can shoot is advisable, no matter what discipline you’re honing.

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