First let’s define the strong and weak side terms since we’ll use them to describe different shooting positions. A right handed shooter’s left side will be their strong side. A left handed shooter’s right side will be their strong side. The weak side is the opposite.
Imagine standing in the center of a clock with your eyes and body facing directly at 12 o’clock. For a right handed shooter, it’s easiest to shoot from 10 o’clock to 7 o’clock without moving your feet. For lefties, it’s from 2 o’clock to 5 o’clock. Those zones are what I call the hunter’s “strong side”. Reversing the directions results in the “weak side”.
Now imagine being 20 feet up a tree attached with a tether in a saddle. The tree is in the 12 o’clock position and directly behind you is 6 o’clock. It is advantageous to setup with the expected shot opportunity to your strong side. This isn’t always possible, but it simplifies maneuvering for a shot. A strong side shot requires almost zero movement and can be executed very quickly. Conversely weak side shots require you to turn your body and either walk around the tree (ring style platform) or turn around (pivot style platform) the tree.
There are 4 different shots saddle hunters can take. We’ll address them from the perspective of right handed shooters moving counterclockwise around the tree. The four shots are: The Strong Side Shot (10 o’clock to 7 o’clock), the Drop Shot (7 o’clock to 5 o’clock), the Weak Side Shot (5 o’clock to 2 o’clock) and the Top Shot (2 o’clock to 10 o’clock). It’s also worth mentioning that proper shooting form is easier to maintain in a saddle versus a traditional treestand. The geometry created by the saddle makes the “T” form more natural.