Gun Owners: Weaver and Isosceles Shooting Stances

According to the USCCA magazine The Weaver Stance was developed by L.A. Deputy Sheriff Jack Weaver, in an effort to win Jeff Cooper’s “Leatherslap” competition in Big Bear, California in 1959. At that time, the typical competitive shooter JackWeaver40shot from the hip or one-handed from the shoulder…By the time the 1959 Leatherslap rolled around, Jack had realized that, “A pretty quick hit was better than a lightning-fast miss,” and decided to bring the pistol up using both hands and use the pistol’s sights, rather than just shooting from the hip. Jeff Cooper commented, “Jack walloped us all, decisively. He was very quick and he did not miss.”

In an article from The American Rifleman, Choosing a Handgun Shooting Stance.  Whether it’s the Weaver, Isosceles or an adaption of either will depend on what the situation calls for, according to Paul Rackley, Associate Online Shooting Editor.


isosceles-platformThe Isosceles

  • Stand facing the target with your feet shoulder width apart.
  • Bend your knees slightly.
  • Extend the handgun fully toward the target keeping your arms straight and locked.
  • With your shoulders squared, your arms form the perfect isosceles triangle from which the stance receives its name.
  • The Isosceles is the first two-handed stance taught in most firearms training classes, including NRA First Steps and Basic Pistol classes. It’s taught because the Isosceles is a strong, simple stance that is easy to remember under stress.

weaver-stanceThe Weaver

  • Stand with your feet shoulder width apart with your strong-side leg slightly back in what is often called a boxer’s stance.
  • Angle your support arm’s shoulder toward the target.
  • Bend your knees while keeping your body weight slightly forward.
  • Grasp the gun using opposite pressure with both hands.
  • Keep both elbows bent with the support elbow pointing downward.

The above information on the two stances is from The American Rifleman.  For more detail please refer to the article in the USCCA magazine February 2013, that provided the bio on Jack Weaver at beginning of this post.


There are modifications to each of these stances and a shooter has to find what is comfortable for himself.  I have used both shooting stances over the years in the military, police and security employment.   No matter which you stance choose, handgun training and practice at the shooting range is essential.


The video below, titled “The REAL Weaver Shooting Stance” features Jack Weaver being interviewed by Jeremy Clough from the American


Photos:  Compliments of the USCCA Magazine

Video:  Compliments of fmgpubs on


Just a reminder: We at have monthly drawing held on the 15th.  The prizes for this month are: the book “Firearm Fundamentals” by Gary Behr, the “How to Shoot Fast & Accurately” by Lenny Magill Productions, and a “One Pistol” Range Bag by Glock.  To be eligible to win, either “Like” us on Facebook or register on our website, no purchase necessary.



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