In forums on the web, some posters say that the P&S grip is a weak two fingered grip as only the ring and little finger are used to grip the gun. And they say that is because the middle finger, which is normally used in gripping the gun, is used to pull the trigger. They say there is no way they would hold a gun using only two fingers!

Other posters imagine that the gun will be pushed to the left by the index finger if it is placed along the side of the gun, and the middle finger is used to squeeze the trigger.

The complaints go on and on....

I certainly agree that a grip using two fingers would be a weak grip. And I used to wonder how "they" came up with the conclusion that the P&S grip is only a two finger grip.

Then, when I was reading and thinking about how the US Army's Combat Pistol Manual says you should grip a gun, that light bulb of understanding flashed on in my mind.

The Combat Pistol Manual says that the gun should be placed into the web of the hand, and that the THREE LOWER FINGERS should grasp the gun until the hand trembles some.

And the thumb should be allowed to rest against the side of the gun without pressure.

It notes that: if any of the THREE FINGERS on the grip are relaxed, the GRIP must be reapplied.


With the US Army Marksmanship grip, the GUN IS GRIPPED WITH JUST THREE FINGERS of the strong hand.

So, if you used the middle finger to pull the trigger, you would end up with a two fingered and weak grip.

But, the P&S grip, is not a three finger grip or a two finger grip.

The P&S grip is a natural FOUR FINGER GRIP that works with how your body works, and particularly so, in high stress situations.

It is very easy to apply, and can be maintained easily, as basically all you do is just grab your gun with your index finger placed along the side of the gun, as it should be prior to firing.

You hold the gun in the natural, and strong pincer made up of your thumb, the web of your hand, and your index finger, with the ring and little finger assisting. Their knuckles, where they meet the hand are not fixed, and they can roll forward and add tenacity to the grip.

The middle finger, which can be flexed and extended independently, is used to pull the trigger, and its base adds to the grip.

Also, the index finger when extended along the side of the gun, helps to naturally lock the wrist and strengthen the grip, and improve recoil control.

The thumb and index finger ARE NOT HELD aloof from the gun. They are key elements to the strength of the grip.

You can squeeze the gun as hard as you like, using the natural pincer of your index finger and opposing thumb. And all that increased pressure will do, is strengthen your grip on the gun.

The P&S strong four finger grip provides a level and stable shooting platform.

And it can be maintained even when the gun is jumping and bucking in your hand with rapid firing.

Here is a picture of the grip followed by some pics snipped from a video.

gun grip
On hand pic1a
On hand pic4a
On hand pic5a


The "Army" THREE FINGER grip utilizes the web of the hand, the middle finger, and the ring and little fingers which assist in the grip and can add tenacity to it.

The P&S FOUR FINGER grip, utilizes the web of the hand, the grasping and pinching strength of our opposable thumb and index finger, the base of the middle finger, and the ring and little fingers which assist in the grip, and can add tenacity to it.

With P&S, the pressure of the thumb and index finger against each other ties the gun in place. And the action of pointing your index finger at the target, cancels any right or left push, and helps to lock up the wrist to improve recoil control.

Note: Both the index finger and the middle finger can be extended and flexed independently. And the middle finger, being in the center of the hand, pulls back straighter in the hand than the index finger, and as such, limits right or left push.

Per the WWII literature on close combat shooting taught to military forces by Fairbairn, Sykes, and Applegate, in a life and death close quarters confrontation, you will grasp your pistol in almost a convulsive grip. In Kill or Get Killed we find.... "in the midst of battle excitement, a man instinctively grips his weapon in this manner and certainly does not take time to hold his breath, line up the sights, and squeeze the trigger."

So, in a real life threat situation, you most likely will not keep your thumb or your index finger aloof and away from the gun, so you can deftly and smoothly squeeze the trigger to the rear until each shot breaks, when someone is shooting at you at close quarters or is coming towards you to kill you.

Lastly, here is the info from the US Army's Combat Pistol Manual that details the THREE FINGER grip. I suspect that it is the basis for the imagined thinking about the P&S grip and negative comments.


"A proper grip is one of the most important fundamentals of quick fire. The weapon must become an extension of the hand and arm; it should replace the finger in pointing at an object. The firer must apply a firm, uniform grip to the weapon.

a. One-Hand Grip. Hold the weapon in the nonfiring hand; form a V with the thumb and forefinger of the strong hand (firing hand). Place the weapon in the V with the front and rear sights in line with the firing arm. Wrap the lower three fingers around the pistol grip, putting equal pressure with all three fingers to the rear. Allow the thumb of the firing hand to rest alongside the weapon without pressure (Figure 2-1).

Figure 2-1

Grip the weapon tightly until the hand begins to tremble; relax until the trembling stops. At this point, the necessary pressure for a proper grip has been applied. Place the trigger finger on the trigger between the tip and second joint so that it can be squeezed to the rear. The trigger finger must work independently of the remaining fingers.

NOTE: If any of the three fingers on the grip are relaxed, the grip must be reapplied...."


If per the Combat Pistol Manual, only the three lower fingers are gripping the gun, with the index finger being held aloof and independent of the other fingers, and with the thumb resting along the side of the gun without pressure; then when the gun is fired, you can expect that the recoil action will be very significant as the first point of real resistance to the recoil force will be the base of the middle finger, which given the height of the M9 pistol of 5.51 inches, is about 2 1/2 inches below the center bore line of the pistol.

A two handed grip could give added support, but according to the NYPD's study of thousands of Police combat cases, Officers with an occasional exception, fired with the strong hand. As such, you can expect the use of a one handed grip to be the rule, not the exception in real CQB situations.

With the use of a P&S grip, the first point of resistance to the recoil force will be the strong natural pincer of the thumb and index finger, which will be just under the slide, and significantly enhance recoil control when compared to a standard three fingered grip as described in the Combat Pistol Manual.

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