How to Manage Recoil When Shooting
Firearm recoil causes about 40% of unintentional, gun-related injuries. Besides injuries, recoil can cause other problems that spoil your shooting experience. Fortunately, several gun recoil management solutions are available for reducing felt recoil, and we are about to share the most effective ones. Before delving into our top tips for managing recoil, let’s clarify what recoil is and why reducing it is in your best interest.
What Is Gun Recoil and How Does It Work?
When you shoot and your gun jerks backward in your hand, that’s recoil (also called kickback or kick). It is due to the explosive force with which a bullet exits a firearm.
Pulling the trigger releases the hammer that ignites the propellant. Ignited propellant releases gases that expand rapidly to propel a bullet through the barrel and out the muzzle at high speeds.
As the expanding gases escape the muzzle behind the bullet, it generates an explosive pressure that pushes your gun backward, causing recoil. The more explosive pressure a gun generates to launch rounds, the more the recoil, which is why higher caliber firearms typically have a more intense recoil.
The Importance of Recoil Management
Gun recoil intensity varies between firearms, but you can expect to experience at least some recoil as long as a firearm relies on propellant to launch rounds. While recoil is unavoidable while shooting, there are several things you can do to reduce it. Using recoil management techniques to minimize felt recoil will lead to benefits like:
Exposure to recoil can cause shoulder, wrist, elbow, and back injuries. The more intense the recoil, the more likely it is to cause such injuries. Also, there are incidents of excessive recoil flinging guns out of the hands and into a shooter’s face.
In worst-case scenarios, shooters have lost control of their firearms and accidentally shot themselves or onlookers. You can avoid such safety issues by applying effective recoil management tactics.
Imagine a bear or another threat running at you, and you keep shooting and missing because the recoil keeps shifting your aim. Recoil management can reduce how much your gun jerks around each time you fire, leading to a steadier aim and improved shot accuracy.
Also, you are less likely to flinch and miss your target if you minimize recoil. Besides self-defense, using recoil management to improve accuracy is worthwhile if you are a hunter, competitive shooter, or gun enthusiast working on your long-range shooting or grouping.
Hitting targets is almost impossible if you are rapid firing and cannot control your gun recoil. Your muzzle will rise with each shot and continue to rise until you stop shooting, sending your aim far from your target.
Recoil management can help you keep your weapon steady during automatic fire, leading to more accurate shots. Even if you are not shooting an automatic weapon, recoil can derail your aim and delay taking follow-up shots because you need a moment to sight your target again.
Effective Recoil Management Solutions
Now that you understand why gun recoil management is important, let’s dive into the best solutions for minimizing recoil.
Use a Suppressor
Suppressors (also called silencers) are arguably the best firearm attachment you can buy. The barrel-shaped device attaches to the muzzle of your firearm to slow down the explosive force with which propellant gases escape the muzzle, leading to less recoil.
Also, using a suppressor reduces gunfire noise and muzzle flash, making you less likely to flinch and miss when you shoot a suppressed firearm. Lastly, you can get a suppressor that adds weight to your barrel to minimize muzzle rise and stabilize your shot for better accuracy.
There’s more than one way to grip a gun. With the correct grip, you can improve your aim and minimize recoil intensity to reduce the risk of injury. A proper handgun grip usually requires not gripping the gun like you are trying to squeeze the life out of it.
Instead, wrap your dominant hand around the handle and ensure that the web between your thumb and index finger is as high as possible on the back strap. Wrap your support hand’s fingers around the fingers of your dominant hand but keep your thumbs free with both pointing forward. Gripping a handgun like this will provide maximum leverage to manage recoil when you shoot.
Many shotgun and rifle grip styles are also available. However, a proper rifle grip typically requires firmly seating the butt of the gun inside the shoulder pocket of your dominant arm. Keeping the butt against your shoulder will minimize how much the gun jerks each time you fire, stabilizing your firearm for better accuracy.
How you hold your arms when shooting also affects felt recoil. If your arms are straight and rigid, you will feel more of the recoil. It is best to keep your wrists locked, arms relaxed, elbows slightly bent, and shoulders flexible. Your arms in this position can absorb more gunfire recoil instead of fighting it and increasing the likelihood of injury.
Standing straight with your legs together or with your back against a solid object is not optimal for managing recoil. Reducing felt recoil requires taking a stance that allows your body to absorb and roll with the recoil, dispersing most of the felt recoil and reducing the risk of injury.
For example, you can minimize felt recoil by centering your body over your knees and leaning forward slightly at the hips. The stance will stabilize your upper body, allowing you to absorb more of the recoil and lose less accuracy.
A nervous or anxious shooter will feel the recoil more and likely flinch when they shoot. If you flinch, your shot will likely go wide, or you might even drop your weapon. A confident shooter knows the recoil is coming and has better control to hold their gun steady and avoid flinching. You can achieve such levels of confidence by practicing shooting your firearm until you get used to the recoil and gunfire noise.
Buy a Suppressor and Start Reducing Recoil
As we’ve shown, you have much to gain from minimizing recoil, and several recoil management tactics are available. However, buying a suppressor is the way to go if you want to reduce recoil quickly and with minimal effort. Besides lowering felt recoil, a suppressor will muffle gunfire to protect your ears.
Several suppressors are available for various firearms, and you can find the highest-quality suppressors at Silencer Central. We have options for different budgets and shooting needs, and we deliver to customers in all states where silencers are legal. Contact us today to get expert advice regarding the best silencer to buy, or browse our stock and order your favorite suppressor.