The Pressure for a Good Grip: grip tips to shoot with speed and precision.

Why is Grip Pressure Important? When it comes to shooting with speed and precision good grip pressure is an underestimated and overcomplicated topic. Simply put, grip pressure may be one of the most important aspects of shooting fast and accurately.

It isn’t complicated. Instead, it’s quite simple. With a proper grip, you will stop excess movement before, during, and after the trigger press and you will minimize the movement of the gun in recoil. Both lead to faster more precise shots.

Where and how you grip the gun is important, but today we are simply going to address the pressure of the grip.

This article is from October 2018.

How much pressure?

Again, pretty simple: as much as you can muster. When grasping a handgun the amount of pressure is paramount. You want to squeeze as hard as you can. You may even start to have some slight tremors in your hand. That won’t make a bit of difference in accuracy unless you need to make a shot at distance or with great precision. Just squeeze that gun until the plastic starts to flow!

Where should the pressure be?

This is where lots of folks are silent. They tell you to squeeze it hard, but they don’t explain some important characteristics of the squeeze. Your two hands are both squeezing with all their might but the squeeze is different.

Handgun Grip
With your primary hand grip pressure should be focused from the front strap to the back strap of the gun.

Primary hand pressure.

With your strong hand you need to be squeezing with the same type of action that you would squeeze a pair of pliers or a grip strengthening spring. The pressure should be focused from the front strap of the gun to the backstrap.

handgun grip
For a solid grip with your support hand you should focus on pressing your fingertips across the gun.

Secondary hand pressure.

Your secondary hand is going to have more to grasp because your primary hand is under it. This allows for a more circular pressure and you should take advantage of that and compress the entire grip. If you have larger hands or you are shooting a thinner gun, you may be better off by focusing the pressure from side to side. Just think of squeezing your fingertips hard against the heel of your hand.


It is smart to pay attention to your grip. It matters where and how you grip your gun, but if you stop there you are missing out on the most important aspect when it comes to shooting fast and small. Grip pressure.

So get out to the range and tinker to find out how important grip pressure is to your shooting. Then let us know what you think. What works best for you?

Paul Carlson, owner of Safety Solutions Academy, is a Professional Defensive Shooting Instructor.  He has spent the past decade and a half studying how humans can perform more efficiently in violent confrontations and honing his skills as an instructor both in the classroom and on the range. Through Safety Solutions Academy, Paul teaches a variety of Critical Defensive Skills courses in more than a dozen states annually.  Courses range from Concealed Carry Classes to Advanced Critical Defensive Handgun Courses and include instruction for the defensive use of handguns, rifles and shotguns.  Safety Solutions Academy regularly hosts other industry leading experts as guest instructors to make sure that SSA's students have the opportunity for quality instruction across a broad range of Critical Defensive disciplines.

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