Tips for Getting Started in Shooting Sports

Photo by Unsplash
Photo by Unsplash

Shooting sports comes with a bucket load of never. Never place your finger on the trigger, except when firing. Never point your weapon at someone or something except your target. Never load up your firearm except when you intend to use it.

Like most sports, shooting sports presents many challenges. And the rules are there for a reason. Most shooting starters easily get caught up in the adrenaline rush and the empowering effect of holding a firearm. They want quick results and aim to hit targets every single time.

It’s important to realize at the onset that you are a beginner; you’re bound to make mistakes and learn from them along the way. To be better a shooter, here are some useful tips you can start with.

Minimize Risks

Most gun owners will tell you that shooting is no more dangerous than chess is. But this is only possible if there’s absolute safety. If you can’t master the basics of gun safety, then you won’t be able to earn your place at the shooting-sports arena.

Responsible shooters have codes of conduct that they religiously adhere to at all times. Most of these rules are anchored on minimizing risks, the same way martial arts experts have specific rules to follow to prevent inflicting any harm. Safety is mandatory if you ever want to turn professional at some point in the future.

When you have the target in front of you, always make sure to check what’s behind it. Check if there are people, animals, or objects beyond it. Always keep the never practices of shooting in mind.

Get to Know Your Firearm and Its Kinks

You must understand both the construction and the characteristics of your gun. For starters, AR-15s with sturdy handguards are always recommended. Handguns may appear easier to operate, but their recoils can be tricky for beginners. Rifles are longer, but they have much lighter recoil and better handles.

Firearms are manufactured differently in terms of safety functions and in-action mechanisms. Becoming familiar with these things can help prevent any accidents while you’re using your gun. Always check if you’re using the right ammunition. Using the wrong one can have devastating results.

Also, like so many kinds of mechanical equipment, the safety feature of any gun can fail at times. Don’t rely on it too much. Even with the safety switched on, always assume that your gun can still fire.

Develop Your Own Pre- and Postshooting Routine

Before you go out and start practicing with your firearm, make sure you pack a bag with your own set of essentials. Shooting for sport can take hours, so you need to have your preevent rituals. Bring a towel, sunscreen, and snacks to keep your blood sugar levels up and ready for action.

When it comes to shooting, the appropriate wardrobe is the key to success. You’ll feel and shoot better when you’re dressed right. Always check the weather before heading out so you’ll know which clothes to wear.

Go for shirts or pants with lots of compartments or pockets. You’ll need them to hold shells, accessories, smartphones Wand other objects that you may need to carry with you at all times.

Also, you have to consider possible health risks in the field. When you’re out with experienced shooters, chances are you’ll be safer, and you’ll face less danger. But if you’ll be out with fellow beginners, assume that you may pose more threat to them and vice versa. Be prepared for anything, and carry first aid kits with you for possible injuries.

These things may sound like something common sense will easily give you, but you’ll be surprised to know that these are the same things that most shooters forget. Develop your shooting rituals so they form into a habit. You’ll thank your muscle memory later should real danger ever come.

By Sam

Sam Lowy is a writer, actor, comedian, musician, and everything in between. A true jack of all trades, Sam is constantly striving to learn and grow. Whether it's for a festival or just a once-in-a-lifetime club show, Sam loves to travel across the country to catch the best artists around. When he's at home in Tempe, AZ, Sam enjoys reading, playing guitar, and watching Frasier, Seinfeld, and Curb Your Enthusiasm.