Has anyone been experiencing hand pains such as arthritis or carpal tunnel which has affected your shooting? I can say that lately those conditions have affected me. I can still shoot my firearm but it has been painful. Well anyways I was reading the article on page 105 in CCM Volume 20 issue #2. I suggest anyone that is struggling with this issue to read this because it has great tips on how to improve your shooting even with achy hands.
Thanks for the heads up sir. I do find myself shying away from my .357 and .38 due to discomfort. A lot of times it’s 9mm and .380 just because they are more comfortable.
I have been dealing with Rheumatoid Arthritis for quite a number of years, and bad wrist on my off side. For me, the size of the grip frame is important. Small, thin, guns are out, as I just can’t hold them while firing. Not comfortable either. My Kel-Tec P11 is brutal now, so I won’t carry it (I have had it for 25 years about). For me now, I just stick to larger frames.
Slides are another area, as addressed in the article. I gravitate towards larger slides.
Thanks for the heads up! I had two different finger injuries over the past year. They didn’t really interfere with my ability to shoot but they did limit my ability to practice comfortably for any length of time. I’ll have to check the article out.
I typically when my hands are hurting I rub some liniment or atomic balm thickly ony hands and then put a pair of latex gloves on and tape the wrists closed. Keeps the lotion on my hand where I want it.
I put a pinch of opium between my cheek and gums. Works every time.
But I still can’t manage to shoot the large angry ravens with red eyes that always show up. How do they keep finding me?
Actually, I take advil before I go to the range. It is usually enough. Naproxen Sodium is also effective. On real bad days I find I can’t shoot very long without it ruining the training value.
Edit: I also added a Hogue Grip Sleeve to my EDC pistol, the P365. It really helped with my hand and wrist pain.
.I think I copied the whole article
PISTOLS AND AMMO FOR HAND PAIN AND INJURIES
became recoil-sensitive after years of training with various firearms during my law enforcement career, and it didn’t let up when I started evalu-
ating firearms for various publications. Writing and typing reports, along with numerous magazine articles and books, only aggravated my hand injuries. I also believe that utilizing revolvers that were not fitted with rubber grips during my years as an LEO began the process that led to me develop- ing arthritis in my hands.
It took several decades, but the day finally came when I experienced varying levels of difficulty shooting certain pistols. I had no choice but to search for the right guns and products that didn’t compromise my ability to carry and shoot.
Responsibly armed individuals who suffer from arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome or hand injuries experience various degrees of difficulty while manually operating certain pis- tols. Others who have hand ailments and injuries can also find it challenging to load magazines and engage a slide lever or a thumb safety. Disassembling and reassembling certain handguns can be equally challenging for people who suffer from hand or wrist injuries or ailments.
For me, as time progressed, certain handguns that were once very comfortable to shoot and operate became less comfortable — even to the point that I was no longer able to utilize them. I also have “good days” and “bad days,” and certain handguns loaded with standard-velocity ammuni- tion can range from being comfortable to tolerable to just plain not worth using.
While conducting my search for handguns that would be easy to operate and shoot, I concluded that ergonom- ics, the chambering and the type of ammunition used were critical components. Those factors determined which pistols and revolvers worked best for me. As far as pistols are concerned, I found that even when certain 9mm pistols were more comfortable to shoot than others, some makes and models were a tad easier to operate, dis-
FEBRUARY/MARCH2023 RESPONSIBLYARMEDAMERICANS® USCCA.com 105
Amagazine-loadingaid, suchas this UpLULA from Maglula, can make loading a magazine — even a small magazine with tight springs — far less of a chore.
The 9mm Smith & Wesson M&P and M&P M2.0 pistols have superb ergonom- ics, and they’re also extremely comfort- able to shoot and easy to manually op- erate. In my case, Smith & Wesson M&P pistols are user-friendly as far as being
very easy to disassemble and reas- semble after cleaning.
I also rate the 9mm Heck- ler & Koch P30 with a Law Enforcement Module (LEM) trigger, the 9mm HK P30SK LEM and the HK VP9SK LEM to be extremely comfortable to shoot with arthritic hands. Howev- er, I give these three 9mm HKs a 9 out of 10 as far as the ease in which I can disassemble them. These par- ticular HKs lose a point due to the way in which the user has to retract their slides and hold them to the rear until
their takedown pins are engaged.
The 9mm Glock 19X is another favor- ite of mine that I can comfortably oper- ate and shoot. This includes the ease with which I can manually rack the slide. In fact, it is one of the easiest for me to operate. As much as I enjoy shooting my 9mm Glock 48, followed by the 9mm Glock 43X, the slides on both of these
pistols are more challenging for me. After years of field-testing and own- ing various classic SIG pistols, my dou- ble- and single-action 9mm SIG P228 and SIG P226 are the two Classic Se- ries SIGs that I can shoot and operate without any difficulty. I also found the 9mm SIG P320 Compact to be incredibly
comfortable to shoot.
assemble and reassemble. I also dis- covered that I was restricted to using standard-velocity ammunition.
Once my hands became more sensi- tive to recoil, I started installing Uncle Mike’s Round Butt and Square Butt Rub- ber Grips as well as certain Hogue and Pachmayr rubber grips on my revolvers. Doing so effectively mitigated the ef- fects of recoil.
As far as ammunition for revolvers, I determined that I had no problem using 135-grain .38 Special +P Speer LE hollow-points when I trained with a heavier-frame wheelgun such as the Smith & Wesson Model 66 with a 2.5- or 4-inch barrel. While evaluating my favorite Smith & Wesson five-shot J-frame Model 60, I determined that I
was better off using stan- dard-velocity 125-grain Hornady Amer- ican Gunner and 125-grain Speer Gold Dot .38 Special hollow-points as well as 148-grain wadcutters for training and concealed carry applications.
What surprised me to no end was that when I field-tested an eight-shot Smith & Wesson TRR8 .38/.357 Magnum revolv- er fitted with Hogue Rubber Grips and a 5-inch barrel, I was able to comfortably run 125-grain Hornady American Gunner .357 Magnum through it. Field-testing the Smith & Wesson TRR8 was addition- al proof that I had to evaluate each and every firearm on its own merits. I came to the same conclusion when I was able to comfortably operate a full-sized (and very ergonomic, might I add) HK45 while other pistols chambered in .45 ACP were not as comfortable to shoot.
It is ok @Robert1246 this way everyone can read it right here.
I didnt get my magazine yet when did you get yours?
My wife has those on her Ruger .45
I prefer the look of wooden grips, but they are not always a pleasure to practice with.
I get skin chaffing, and blisters sometimes when at the range.
For use on my dominant hand, I just recently got some padded gloves. Not sure if it helps absorb the shock, I think made for shooting. But I cut the finger tips off so I can manage the more fine tactile things, such as the ammo, mag release, etc.
One of my “arms” is an easy to rack, easy to load model, and I must admit, it’s easier on my beaten up hands.
Excellent topic. I, too, had carpal tunnel (and dupuytren’s contraction) on my left or weak hand. I had both before I began shooting at the range. A year ago I finally had surgeries for both conditions after other treatments for both failed. I highly recommend the surgery depending on the extent of your carpal tunnel. I am able to shoot with little or no pain in either hand. My left hand is much weaker than my right and I do have some problems racking and field stripping my handguns (a Glock 48, a hellcat pro and my prior Sig P365 XL). I do not have arthritis except in my left ring finger where I had the dupuytrens far too long.
I can get on a 100# bag with 4oz gloves for 10-3 minute rounds, without wraps and have no ill effects. If I take my Ruger LCR 38 spcl out I’m good for no more than 20 rounds before it just isn’t fun anymore. I guess the gun has more punch than I do.
I use a THC lotion on my hand on a regular basis for the arthritis pain.
Same haven’t got mine in the mail yet.
It’s been a real issue with me lately, too. Bought a brand new Ruger GP 100 recently because I wanted didn’t own, but wanted to, a .357 wheel gun. Fired only 12 rounds through and ended up selling it because it was way too painful for me to shoot. I can shoot my 9 mm semi-autos without to much trouble but anything with a lot of recoil I just can’t do anymore.
Yes. About 6 months ago, I woke up with my right bird finger curled into a claw, and it was too painful to uncurl using the muscles in my finger and hand. Over the next 2 days, I discovered that it was a condition known as “trigger finger”. I went to the chiropractor and he told me that my diagnosis was correct, and he gave me some instructions on stretching and massage (I already had a gua sha stone) which gave me some relief. He also told me that the normal MDs would carve it up or inject steroid pain killers, neither of which would address the cause of the pain.
Anyway, at the range, it hurt to shoot the pistol and I found that my accuracy was about a two foot diameter group at 50 feet. Since then, I’ve noticed that my hands are just too shaky to hold a good small pattern. I’m a little better with a rifle, but as I close on 70, I find I’ve got the shakes. I’m off coffee now, but I drink decaf when I do, so it’s not caffeine.
Way behind on my reading and haven’t read this article yet (that is until I scrolled thru the comments and read the one Robert1246 posted). I seldom go to the range now a days, but I finally just went out and picked up a S&W M&P Shield 380 EZ. So much easier to load, rack and shoot in my opinion. I just need to get my lazy butt out to the range more often. And I just read an email article regarding a new offering called EAA Girsan MC 14T in 380. It has a unique no rack method to load the first round. See the article here (that is if it’s ok to post another publications link): EAA Corp. Releases New Girsan MC 14T - American Handgunner
Thanks for adding the EAA Girsan MC 14T. I never heard of it before. I’ve practiced with a similar model, Beretta in .22, and another in .32, with that similar tip up/pop up barrel.
I’ve not yet tried the Smith Wesson EZ, but tried the Ruger .22 LCP that has an easier to rack and also easier to load technology, and I really note how much softer and smoother it is on the hands.
Be well friend.