First off, let me say I’m not here to compare resumes or try and distract from John “Shrek” McPhee in any way. If you take my years in the military and contracting and multiply them by three, that’s John’s years. This is an article about nuance and fundamentals.
Shrek recently put out a video of him placing a ratchet handle inside the trigger guard of a student’s gun and then slapping the handle to activate the trigger. This was done to illustrate that trigger jerk is a myth as the impacts were not very far outside the small target at a close distance(looked like 3 yards, could be closer, could be farther). And that’s a good point to make. But it certainly does not “slay the sacred cow” of trigger control. What it does is illustrate that up close, with a solid two-handed grip, your fundamentals don’t need to be on point and you can just mag dump into an effective zone if need be.
Get up about 3 yards from a target, ratchet down your grip as hard as possible, and mag dump and see that you’re gonna be dancing around a 4-8 inch impact circle…Now do it at 50 yards. Now do it moving. Now do it one handed. Now do it one handed with your nondominant hand. See my point? This only slaughters the sacred cow if we’re only going for zone hits, up close, static range, two-handed grip. If for some reason you have to fight with, say, a toddler on your hip, things will be different. A man in Houston had to kill a home invader holding his wife at gunpoint back in July. If you’re shooting the head right next to mine while I’m being held at gunpoint… PLEASE don’t just yank on the damn trigger. These are real scenarios to worry about. The drill presented by Shrek is not for these scenarios.
The point of the drill is the same as Aaron Barruga’s “Grip is why you’re missing” video. Good grip can make up for shitty fundamentals. Personally, I’m not gonna try and compensate for shitty fundamentals with good grip. I’m going to try and mylenaite the neural pathway that is proper trigger control until it is muscle memory. Because if I suddenly have to fight one-handed holding my child, I don’t want to suck at trigger control in a situation where trigger control just became really important.
If I gotta pull THIS off in real life, I can’t suck:
Sgt. Alvin York described killing 6 Germans, and earning a Medal of Honor, with a 1911 as “Touching” them off. That doesn’t sound like yanking a trigger as hard as you want to me. That sounds like a deliberate attempt a pulling the trigger straight to the rear without disturbing the sight alignment.
If you wanna score a bunch of rapid hits with a two-handed grip at close distances you go ahead and solidify that grip and rock that trigger like AC/DC rocked Donington. If you want to be able to score good hits at a decent distance and good one-handed hits, master that trigger. If you’re gonna consider yourself some sort of samurai sheepdog spartan, maybe you should actually attempt to master all of the intricate workings of your weapon like some sort of spartan samurai would. Or, if you want to spend your last moments on this earth with your child panic scream over your bleeding body because you didn’t have the trigger manipulation skills to end the fight one-handed… your life, your family, your rules. As for me and my house, we will continue to train the fundamentals.

Author – Seth Lewis served as a reconnaissance infantryman in the 82nd Airborne with two deployments to Iraq as well as 18 months in Afghanistan doing High Threat Protection for the Department of State. He has a bachelor’s degree in economics and us currently working as a security contractor for DHS and a firearms instructor.