Put your weight on the balls of your feet, with a slight bend your knees. This takes the pistol's recoil pressure off your back and lets thighs, legs, and upper body absorb the shot.
Of the three main stances, which he explains in the video—Isosceles, Weaver and Chapman—one isn't more correct than the other. Try them all and go with whatever fits your body best.
Don't turtle your head. Keep your head up, and bring the gun to it.
There is no wrong way if you're safe, confident, and accurate.
"To test your stance," he told us, "hold it static for 45 seconds to a minute. If you shake or become sore, it's the wrong position for you. You need to be able to hold your pistol stance for the duration of an extended confrontation. Find what works for your body."
A good grip starts in the holster, high on the backstrap, like a firm handshake.
Find a spot on your gun away from the trigger and index your trigger finger there, to keep it out of the trigger guard until you're ready to shoot. On my Glock 19 the takedown tab was a natural spot that was easy to find, blind and fast. With the SIG M17, it was the recess in the frame for the takedown lever.
The non-shooting hand has more to do before the shot. Index it with a slap against the bottom of the trigger guard and firmly wrap it around the shooting hand. Then, it's all about thumbs. Bottom of the shooting-hand thumb should run along the top and back of the support-hand thumb, with the pad of the shooting-hand thumb resting just behind the large joint of the support-hand thumb.
No gaps! Masters said this again and again. Any gaps in either shooting hand indicates a loose grip. The first shot may be on target, but the recoil will throw a loose grip out of whack and follow-up shots won't hit.
The tops of the front post and rear dovetail should be level, or flush.
Looking down the gun, there will be visible air space on either side of the front post. That air space should be equal in size, or you'll pull the shots left or right.
Eyes should focus on the front sight, with the rear sight and target slightly blurry. This felt like a Jedi mind trick. By working to concentrate on the front sight, not the target, my bullets flew into smaller and smaller groups.
Masters explained lollipop vs center mass targeting. For defensive handgun shooting, the goal is to stop a threat, not shoot a bullseye, so you aim at the largest center-most spot of the target. If a bad guy is standing square to you, that's the center of the chest, but if they're shooting around a wall, center mass might be the high shoulder or right pectoral.
Don't shoot and look to see where the round hit. Stay in the sights. Without knowing it, I was coming off the pistol after my first shot to see where I hit. "You're looking!" Masters would say, watching me shoot. "You looked again." For at least three magazines, he stayed with me until I could mentally and physically stay in the front sight through all my shots. Downrange, groups improved.
He doesn't say it in the video, but it's important to focus on breathing normally while learning the pistol fundamentals. This is a way to train out the natural tendency to hold your breath or breathe heavy while shooting.
"Breathe!" this was another order that got barked at me on the firing line more than once. Without being aware of it, I had a tendency to hold my breath while concentrating, so for several magazines, I didn't worry about my target, and just worked on breathing normally while shooting.
- Practice this in half time until it's natural, then drill at a regular pace before going for speed. Remember Wyatt Earp who said, "Speed is fine, but accuracy is final."