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Semi Automatic Pistol: How To Reload



The loading mechanism of a semi automatic pistol makes it ideal for personal defense, law enforcement, and competition shooting. A lightning fast reload is not really necessary if you're not competing, but you should be able to do it consistently as a shooter.

Semi Automatic Pistol Effective Reloading Technique

The average gun owner should know how to reload a gun efficiently in any given situation. Although you don't need to be super fast in reloading, it's a very useful skill to master and can be the difference between life and death in defensive shooting or an unexpected gun fight.  A shooter who's adept in reloading has the bigger advantage against the opposition in a gun battle.


1. Drop the Elbows and Bring the Gun Inward

Elbows Dropped And Bring The Gun Inward | Semi Automatic Pistol: How To Reload
After the gun is fired until it's empty, drop your elbow down and bring the gun inward to your chin. Slightly rotate the gun until you can look through the trigger guard and make sure it's just below eye-level. This allows you to maintain your vision up front and see what's going on around you.

2. Magazine Release

Magazine Release | Semi Automatic Pistol: How To Reload
Move your thumb to the magazine release to drop the magazine. You can also use your support hand's thumb if you can't reach it with the thumb on your shooting hand. If you're left-handed, and your handgun doesn't have an ambidextrous magazine release, you can use your middle finger or your trigger finger to release the empty mag.

3. Grab a Fresh Magazine

Grab a Fresh Magazine | Semi Automatic Pistol: How To Reload
Use your support hand to grab a fresh magazine in a pouch somewhere in your belt. The magazine should be positioned upside down so it's easily ready to load into the gun once you grab it with your index finger. Guide it into the magwell and use your palm to seat the magazine firmly in place.

4. Chamber A Round

Chamber A Round | Semi Automatic Pistol: How To Reload
Grasp the rear of the slide with an overhand grip using your support hand,rack the slide, then release the slide to chamber a round. Now go back to a two-handed grip and back to shooting stance, or reassess the situation if there's more shooting to do.

Watch this video and learn how to efficiently reload a semi automatic pistol:

You can utilize these basic steps for reloading a semi automatic handgun whether you're in an unfortunate gun fight or simply spending time at the firing range. While some gun experts use different techniques they're comfortable with, as a beginner, familiarizing yourself with this routine over and over will help you develop your reloading skills with effortless ease.

What do you think of this reloading technique for a semi automatic pistol? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Up Next: What To Look For When Buying New Handguns For First Time Users!

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. FEDUP6

    September 25, 2017 at 1:07 PM

    Why do you turn the muzzle 90 degrees? Bring it in, but leave it pointed downrange, and reload! (the guy to your left on the range will appreciate not being muzzled. You should know where the mag well is with out looking – or at worst case using peripheral vision.

    Also why drop a partial mag on what you call a “proactive reload”? Pull the partial, replace it with a full mag, and put the partial in a pocket or mag holder. you may need those rounds – not likely, but possible…

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