Target shooting can be a very intimidating activity, especially for a new hobbyist. The whole experience may be daunting, but a lot of preparation can help stave off the scare.
Below, we’ll be discussing some beginner tips on how to approach target shooting. We’ll be focusing more on the preparations you can do to make the experience much smoother, rather than the technical aspects of shooting.
Do the activity with an experienced friend
The advice of an experienced shooter can be invaluable for a newbie. For a large group of beginners going to a shooting range, having one or more proficient shooters should help facilitate the learning process. They’re also helpful in keeping the group safe from mishaps, especially when they’re practicing on their own.
Wear the appropriate attire and protection
For your safety and comfort, you should be wearing range-appropriate attire and protection. A large part of this hinges on whether you’re going to an indoor range or an outdoor one.
Ear and eye protection are a must. Weatherproof apparel is a great addition as well. A pair of sturdy walking shoes with good grip and ankle support should also be part of the priorities. You’ll want a hat for shooting outdoors in sunny conditions. A nifty shooting bag is another necessity that will hold all your cartridges and miscellaneous items.
Know the rules of the shooting range
Every shooting range has their own rules and regulations. Some allow you to bring bulk ammo for your guns. Some ranges don’t allow outside ammo to be brought in so they can earn from sales. Some venues have additional restrictions on ammo type as well. These are just some of the ammo rules in a typical range.
It’s your duty to learn the ins and outs of the shooting range you’re going to. The word of the range officer or supervisor is the law there, so follow them at all times, especially when they’re giving range commands. Remember that they’re there to keep everyone as safe as possible.
Practice the fundamentals of safe gun handling
Jeff Cooper, a former U.S. marine and the creator of the “modern technique” of gun handling advocated four basic gun safety rules:
- “All guns are always loaded. Even if they are not, treat them as if they are.”
- “Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy. (For those who insist that this particular gun is unloaded, see Rule 1.)”
- “Keep your finger off the trigger till your sights are on the target. This is the Golden Rule. Its violation is directly responsible for about 60 percent of inadvertent discharges.”
- “Identify your target, and what is behind it. Never shoot at anything that you have not positively identified.”
Knowing these rules by heart will help you become a more responsible gun owner and target shooter.
Target shooting may be intimidating to a beginner, but preparation goes a long way in boosting a newbie’s confidence. For completely new hobbyists, it’s best to bring an experienced shooter for extra advice and safety while shooting.
Remember to bring proper attire and gear for target shooting. Knowing the rules of the shooting range is a must, as there are strict regulations to follow while inside one. Learning the fundamentals of gun safety is also mandatory for a safer and smoother experience.
Photo: Getty Images