The support hand goes over the top for a couple of reasons. Depending on the firearm, one may need to deactivate the safety. This is appropriate for most single action .45s and products from the Springfield XD series. Second, the higher the grip, the better the recoil control.Brain support
While no one expects that support hand shooting will make a person a competent competitive shooter, practicing using the opposite hand will definitely improve the process of shooting.
Using the support side on a regular basis is brain stimulating. It improves the balance and communication between the right and left hemispheres. Neurologists regularly prescribe writing with the opposite hand to boost cognitive power. Not only does this improve concentration, it will improve overall shooting — sometimes noticeably.
When the human brain learns a new task, it forms new brain cell pathways as the components of the task are learned. These pathways are reinforced when something is learned correctly. With practice, "shortcuts" to these learning pathways are established until a task can be executed as if second nature.
After a task is learned, the neural circuits now form a network. When this is established, the brain can operate this network while the mind occupies itself with other tasks.
Switching hands while shooting will change the level of attention of the learner. The task is to create muscle memory and challenge the brain in order to improve training.Support-hand vs. one-hand shooting
Support-hand shooting should not be confused with one-handed shooting. For example, it is reasonable for an officer to be prepared to shoot with their primary hand one-handed. When clearing an engagement area, if a threat presents itself and a non-threat or obstruction (curtains, tall weeds, etc.) prevents a sight picture, the primary hand engages while the support hand clears. When the obstruction is cleared, the support hand rewraps.
One-handed shooting should have a consistent rule. It is done with the primary hand, even if a right-handed shooter needs to punch the gun out of a left barricade.
The first thing a shooter notices about using the support hand is the mirror effect of pushing out the firearm in front of the body. The second thing he notices compounds the confusion. If he has an eye dominance that agrees with his hand dominance (a right-handed shooter with a right-eye dominance), the sights are grossly misaligned.
There are certain strategies that help. First, switch up the footwork. Second, use a full-length mirror.
If the shooter uses a modified weaver stance — feet shoulder width apart with the non-trigger-side foot slightly forward — switching hands will feel unbalanced, and he will need to switch feet also. If the shooter is using the isosceles stance, the feet will be equidistant. Use the isosceles stance.Point of aim
One of the sources of confusion is the need for the body to find the natural point of aim. Before we even talk about this, let's get the gun into the sighting plane.
Using the non-dominant eye will confuse the sight picture. If the shooter can reliably shoot with both eyes open, use this method first. If this produces a double image when sighting, use the dominant eye by canting the gun 45 degrees toward the dominant eye. Remember, this will not win shooting ribbons, but combined with an instinct to prevail, it will win gunfights.
Natural point of aim is the direction in which the body naturally settles when using a firearm. For precision shooters, knowing where the body indexes prevents the shooter's body from fighting the firearm. Shooters test for natural point of aim by holding the firearm out in front and pointing it with eyes closed. Where the firearm is oriented when the eyes are opened is where the body naturally points — the natural point of aim.
If the shooter knows where the body naturally points a firearm, he can fire accurate shots faster. For combat shooting with the handgun canted, knowing how to orient in relation to the target can be critical.