Trigger Jerking Is A Myth

According to Sheriff of Baghdad, trigger jerking is a myth. It is anticipation that causes wayward shots.To prove this, he jerks the trigger for his students. He uses a 1/2 ratchet to go inside the trigger guard. Then he palm strikes the ratchet to simulate a hard trigger jerk.

Trigger Jerk is an Illusion! There is no such thing. Your trigger finger is not strong enough. In this vid I pulled the trigger with this 1/2″ ratchet. Look how hard I hit the ratchet. I regularly break Glock triggers so I carry extras. Lol. Trigger jerk is actually #Anticipation. Anticipation starts in the brain and moves the gun before it goes off. Not your Finger!!! Commonly known as a flinch. The fix is relax the brain and Don’t Do It! Lol

Is this snake oil or does he have a valid point?

Nicholas C

Co-Founder of KRISSTALK forums, an owner’s support group and all things KRISS Vector related. Nick found his passion through competitive shooting while living in NY. He participates in USPSA and 3Gun. He loves all things that shoots and flashlights. Really really bright flashlights.

Any questions please email him at


  • Riot

    There is a training method that involves loading a handgun with both duds and live ammo.

    Generally it is live, live, live, dud. More often than not the shooters wrist will still jerk up.
    The exercise is repeated until they stop having “recoil” on the fake cartridges.

    • Bear The Grizzly

      This is probably one of the best exercises anyone can do and best yet it’s super cheap.

      • CZFan

        I dry fire more than I shoot real bullets, especially now that ammo is so expensive, I can balance .223 casing on the top of my pistol and even with the long heavy double action trigger on my CZ85 the bullet will stay standing. Dry fire practice is better for trigger control than anything. Its in the same spirit of the live, live ,dud drill that is used to show people there anticipation of recoil/jerking the trigger.
        I used to shoot full size all steel pistols better than plastic fantastics. Now since I have my trigger pull squared away it doesnt matter what gun I use I shoot them all pretty much the same. Obviously I still shoot some “better” when I shoot quickly just because its easier to mitigate recoil on a 42oz 9mm than a 22oz one but a solid trigger pull is critical for good pistol shooting.

    • JLR84

      Ball and Dummy Drill

  • Darkpr0

    This is not an entirely fair test. The good news it that he is correct: The strength with which you press the trigger should not affect where the gun is pointed if you use a 1/2″ ratchet.

    The bad news is that the muscles for your finger are tied to your hand, which is wrapped around the gun. Your muscles pull on your skeleton for support, so the extra force you put into your finger is also jerking on the bones in your hand. The ones holding the gun. The physics he’s applying are fine, but they fail to take into account that the anchoring structure is not grounded in space, and is not independent of the gun’s orientation.

    • Gener

      I came here to type this. Well, i wouldn’t have stated it so articulately, but I would’ve written something similar. 🙂

    • Darkpr0

      I’d also like to follow this up with this though: When you pull the trigger straight back, the only force that will change the orientation of the gun is the friction between the parts of the trigger mechanism, both before the trigger starts to move (static friction), and while it’s moving to the firing point (dynamic friction).

      However, if your trigger finger does not pull straight back, and there’s no left-right give in the trigger (and there really shouldn’t be), then all the side force will get transmitted directly to the frame of the gun. Trigger jerking in theory is not an issue, but only if you assume things that aren’t realistic given the construction of the gun, the construction of the human body, and the imperfect interface between the two.

    • buzzman1

      Futher it is affected by how much of your finger is in the trigger well (squeezing with the area between the first and second knuckle) also most of your grip and finger strength comes from your forearm and not your hand itself.

  • Joe

    He can do and say whatever!
    I will keep training my trigger control specially with a Glock!

  • jeff k

    ???? there are numerous people way more qualified than him including navy seals and larry vickers who all say trigger jerking is real and does affect accuracy . its been proven forever and is all over the web. hitting a ratchet is not the same as finger jerking the trigger as the ratchet is moving straight back no matter how hard he hits it and your finger pulls to the side (thats what affects the accuracy not how hard you pull)

    • Orion Quach

      Not trying to start a debate, but SOBs background is very diverse.

      • Ross

        Having ten million rounds downrange and 20 years of killin terrorists does not make you a biophysics professor.

        He. Is. WRONG.

    • Texas-Roll-Over

      Go read “Kill Bin Laden” and then take his class…nuff said

      • jeff k

        believe me I am NOT saying he doesn’t know what he’s talking about all I’m saying is that what he is saying contradicts almost every other person in the same field. he may be a tier 1 operator but the method he used to test his theory is fundamentally flawed.

        • Grindstone50k

          A SEAL shot himself in the head with what he “thought” was an unloaded gun while showing off to a potential lay. I don’t really care how Tier 1 an “expert” might be, I take it all with a giant grain of salt.

      • CommonSense23

        Which doesn’t mean anything. There have been tons of things that the SMUs did that years later people look back and say, man that was retarded, who came up with that idiot idea.

      • DonDrapersAcidTrip


    • Juvie Record

      “…and is all over the web.” (Internets, the bible for true believers) must be true!

  • Drapetomanius

    Anyone who breaks triggers regularly is doing something wrong.

  • Don Ward

    It is a good thing that a ratchet and a finger are completely analogous. As has been mentioned above/below, it isn’t the finger jerking, per say, but rather the effect of that action on your hand, wrist and even forearm of the physical action of jerking your finger.

    Do it right now. Hold your hand in front of your face, grip it as you would a handgun, jerk the trigger finger. You’ll notice your hand, wrist and forearm jump all over the place as the tendons and muscles in your arm contract.

  • stephen

    Darkpr0 hit the nail on the head – I would also add to totally isolate the trigger finger movement from other muscles (fingers, hand, wrist, etc) is very hard. We spend a lifetime grabbing things with all our fingers then when we shoot, we suddenly think that decades of muscle memory is overcome just because we pick up a gun?

    I don’t think so.

    So in light of that, whoever this SOB guys is, I will have to say he is missing the mark. Neat trick but its not based in reality (that includes arms, tendons, fingers, etc. etc.).

    • Texas-Roll-Over

      go take his class and understand the context. I’ve taken his rifle and pistol course. He is extremely talented and has lots to offer.

    • Mark Riley

      Oh, I’m sure 1 Bn Ranger, 7th SFG soldier, and 1st SFOD-D Sergeant Major has absolutely NO idea what he is talking about. Please, we should all just ignore what he has to say. *deafening sound of eyes rolling*

  • Bal256

    I dont agree with this guy. I will say, though, that accusing a youtuber of jerking the trigger is an overused way of critisizing others to pretend you know what you’re talking about.

  • Bill

    Call it what you want, anything that isn’t a smooth, steady increase of pressure from the front of the trigger straight to the rear until the pistol fires is bad. Bash, jerk, preignition push, whatever.

  • Nicks87

    More youtubers posing as firearms instructors. Yawn, So tired…

  • Avid Fan

    If you can drop a car on your trigger and do it in a straight line that does not move the rest of the gun you will hit your target. If you have a butterfly land on your trigger and press it in a way that does not move the gun you will hit your target.
    IMHO, all this tactile reset, shoot to reset, feel the reset, wait for the reset, be the reset BS is just gimmicks to make me or my trainer more “tactical” than the next guy.
    We’ve become more interested in how we shoot, rather than how well we shoot. SMH

  • steve


    So when an instructor watches the front sight of a gun and when a right handed shooter slaps the trigger and the instructor sees the front sight go down and to the left, it results in rounds going down and the to the left (imagine that – I know its hard to understand that there is a cause and effect relationship – the guy in the video doesn’t believe that but then again many thought the world was flat, that demons caused sickness and flies spontaneously generated from mud). The instructor then tells the student what is wrong, adjusts the trigger finger placement and in the next round of shooting the bullets end up on target. Student is happy and the instructor is happy.

    So this is accomplished by fairy dust and unicorn farts? Its all in the shooter’s head? While some may experience this mental problem, the majority don’t – they have to deal with reality.

    I don’t care how much of an operator you are if you slap or pull the trigger your rounds will go off target.

  • Lt Donn

    I guess Max Michel said it best” Your job is to press the trigger to the rear without moving the sights”…I guess we all have our own methods for performing this function…whatever works for you is OK with me…don’t really care how you do it…but Michel’s comment remains true…figure out how to do this in your particular style and let the holes in your target show if it works or not

  • AlDeLarge

    “Jerking the trigger” has a specific meaning in context. He’s playing semantics with jargon. A lot of jargon has a specific meaning that falls apart when taken literally, out of context. Some of it would mean something else entirely or be complete nonsense taken literally, out of context.

    Of course you can “jerk” the trigger without disturbing the aim if you do it just right. All you have to do is see some IDPA or cowboy shooting to realize that. But most people call that “squeezing” the trigger, very fast. There’s “jerking” and there’s “squeezing,” specific terms with specific meaning. The terms have as much or more to do with how well controlled your pull is, than how fast you pull it.

  • BuzzKillington


  • Archie Montgomery

    A ‘distinction’ without a difference.

    “Jerking” the trigger is part and parcel of clenching the entire hand when shooting. The same combination of muscle movements that cause ‘jerking’ are exactly the same as the combination resulting from anticipating recoil – or report.

    The writer of the thesis is essentially saying, “Wild shots are caused by violent and convulsive muscle movements, they are instead caused by violent and convulsive muscle movements!”

    What a breakthrough.

  • Tierlieb

    The headline chosen is very attention-grabbing. Sadly it implies something that might not actually be SoBs point.

    He demonstrates nicely that the mechanical part is not highly relevant. The group produced is not exactly good, but the method producing it is really crude, so the example is rather valuable for that, I’d say.

    Sadly, the headline implies an argument like “haha, everyone thinks jerking is a mechanical issue while only I know it is psychological”. SoB deserves the benefit of a doubt that this is not what he meant, as it would be wrong, of course: I personally never heard anyone assuming it to be mechanical. Hell, a lot of people use the terms “jerking” and “anticipation” interchangeably. Everyone shooting seriously for about 5 minutes knows the ball-and-dummy drill. It has come up in this comment thread already.

    Note 1: The fun thing is that independent of the issue, the same technique that is supposed to reduce your “mechanical” jerking solves your psychological jerking, too: Whether it is dry-firing working on a compressed surprise break or live-firing the aforementioned b&d drill, the reason does not matter, the cure is the same.

    Note 2: If you ever do the drill where you balance an empty case on your front sight while dry-firing, you will see the mechanical effect on a perfect trigger pull. It is not impressive but there nonetheless. You have to decide whether it is relevant for you.

  • Bob

    Look at the recoil and flip on the pistol, in the video. No flip almost dead still. If you have a gorilla strong person holding the gun, it is the same as locking the gun in a vise, it will not move. This is a useless display and proves or shows nothing.