The following guest  article was written and submitted by David B. Monier-Williams.

We welcome a variety of points of view on the subjects of shooting and marksmanship. Test them objectively on the range and let the results fall where they may


Weaver, Isosceles/Mod Isosceles vs. The Turnipseed Technique

by David B. Monier-Williams

Let’s first off  the Weaver Stance. Look at the photo of Jack Weaver in the 1959 Leatherslap at Big Bear Lake CA.

Jack Weaver 1959 Leatherslap Big Bear Lake Fig. 1

His body is square to the target UNTIL he puts his shooting right leg a good half step behind him. This does three things. The weight now shifts to the left leg and he’s automatically out of skeletal alignment, out of balance. If, as he does, he wants to still face square to the target as he does, it torques the hips which put a twist to the spine and ipso facto puts him even more out of balance. In order to counteract that and to apply the classic Weaver Push/Pull grip both shoulders are under muscle tension and his head is cocked to the right to see the sights to make himself even more out of balance. Further, it makes it impossible to climb or go down stairs as well as effectively shoot while moving.

Let’s look at the other two photos.

Weaver Stance 2

Weaver Stance 3

The cowboy has an even wider Weaver Stance. His body therefore is weighted on the left leg and leaning forward. He’s way, way out of balance. The last photo show what happens when taken too extremes. Both men in the photo are leaning way forward and the man nearest the camera has fully hunched shoulders and is ducking his head. Both these men are even more out of balance.

If the men in any of the variations of the Weaver Stance turrets widely, they are even more out of balance resulting in over-swing.

More importantly, the Weaver Stance comes in as many varieties as there are people which doesn’t speak well for it’s basic skeletal structure only its muscular structure, which is the weakest form.

On it’s face the Weaver Stance is based on being Static not on Skeletal Alignment and is further based totally on muscle tension and is completely out of balance.

Now let’s look at the Isosceles and a brief glance at the Modified Isosceles as practiced by Doug Koenig. Who would dare criticize him?

Here again, as you can see by the photos there is a wide variety in how people interpret the Isosceles Stance. The basic Stance is body square to the target feet shoulder width apart knees slightly bent, shoulders leaning forward ahead of feet butt sticking out, arms stretched out in front elbows locked. This is another static Stance. By leaning forward with the butt sticking out the body is out of Skeletal Alignment. In this out of balance position, turreting widely left or right puts you even more out of balance. Moving in either the Weaver or Isosceles needs per force small steps. And you MUST shoot with both eyes open. The Isosceles Stance is also muscle dependent not skeletal.

The Isosceles Crouch is an even more exaggerated Isosceles Stance. The knees bent even more, leaning forward more and the butt sticking out more. It’s a Static Stance, no turreting widely please.

Finally, the Isosceles stance as Modified by Doug Koenig has a Weaver foot position that automatically torques the hips even slightly and he’s out of Skeletal Alignment. His elbows aren’t locked, but slightly bent as by his own admission there’s too much shock to those joints—guess from what?— RECOIL!!! The muscles are transferring ALL the RECOIL.

In the Turnipseed Technique, the skeleton is rigid yet the muscles are soft. Review the Action Video at and you’ll notice that the muscles simultaneous absorb and dissipate the RECOIL. Doug Koening turrets slightly left and right with great ease and effectiveness but the Stance doesn’t hold up when turreting widely too much over-swing. Nor does it work shooting effectively while moving. Remember Doug, —little steps.  Doug Koening may be Masters in what they do—there’s no question about that. However, I don’t want him as my sidekick in a gunfight.

The Turnipseed Technique

Now for the Turnipseed Technique and it’s Stance, which by the way is a constant. The same Stance is used for all small arms handguns, shotguns, rifles and shoulder fired fully automatic weapons, the only exception is the placement of the hands.
Let’s start at the feet. You’ll just have to take my word for this as the photo isn’t full length. The Starting point is that you face square to the target, standing erect in your normal walking stance, feet shoulder width apart and the feet themselves in symmetrical alignment, turning the whole of the body to One O’clock and then move only his head to face the target at 12 o’clock. He’s raised and straightened his shooting arm, none of the joints locked, then with his left shoulder fully relaxed raised his left hand to meet the right. The biceps of his left arm are relaxed as are his fore-arm muscles.  His left hand squeezing in support of his right. He has a 2% bend or belly crunch, the same as you’d have in standing up, sitting down, climbing stairs or just walking along. This not only keeps him in Skeletal Alignment, Martial Art balance, it allows his to move in all directions while effectively addressing multiple targets while moving.
Readers are encouraged to view the videos at to watch Turnipseed Technique trained shooters in action.