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Are you still learning to shoot trap?

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by biff, Nov 7, 2007.

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  1. biff

    biff Active Member

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    Do you feel like you have exhausted every means, ideas, and ways in which you can improve your trapshooting skills? Are you, like me dissatisfied with how you are shooting and do you continually think of ways in which you can improve?

    I have found it very frustrating to shoot very good one day and go out the next time and shoot poorly. When this happens I try to analyze what the difference was and what I need to do to change this. Many times it seems I am in a cycle of making the same mistakes and then doing the same old things to improve. It's like I slip back into old habits and forget all the good stuff I knew and not apply it.

    I see shooters shoot the same gun and shoot the same scores and never seem to improve; this makes me wonder how many shooters on TS.Com are like me and are constantly striving to improve? Biff
     
  2. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

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    I hope that I will continue learning how to shoot for as long as I can still hold up a shotgun. Improvement came in large increments during the first few years of practice and registered target shooting and then tapered off. Even if it were possible for me to totally master the game and shoot perfect scores every time I don't think that would help me enjoy the game. The satisfaction comes from setting realistic goals and working towards achievement it doesn't really matter if you get there. Remember this is a recreational activity, cut yourself some slack and enjoy what you are doing. Take time to smell the powder as it were.
     
  3. tcr1146

    tcr1146 Well-Known Member

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    Biff,
    Fight with this all the time! Just when I think I am on my way to improving, the crap again hits the fan. I took a very intensive 2 day seminar from Kiner in late Sept but here in N. In, I put the gun up for the winter. I don't think I learned anything real new, just the same old bad habits such as coming out of the damn gun, and absolutely staying still til I see and lock on the bird. My singles average is down from 97 + to 96+ the last two years and this is the most frustrating for me. Caps are decent with near 90 average in 2007 from 27 with a few clunkers in there! Doubles are good for me as I still consider myself a recreational doubles shooter at 92+! Anyway, deep down, I think this is what ultimately drives more shooters out of the game as they don't or can't improve! It is very frustating to say the least! Tom Rhoads
     
  4. Neil Winston

    Neil Winston Well-Known Member

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    biff, though I'm creeping up on half-a-million registered targets, I've never had a "theory of shooting" and wandered between outright aiming (lots of 99's few 100's, one 425) and less aiming (similar scores, one 450) so I spent last week in Texas sticking to one of them and hope to have the will power to do it. "It" in my case is less aiming, but far from just seeing the bird.

    I'm thinking all the time, trying to connect the misses with what made it happen. The differences are tiny, in my case usually just connected with not getting ready to shoot a bird, rather just calling. It's like cocking a single-action revolver for me. It's amazing how you can set up for an essentially automatic response, one which happens too rapidly to "think" or at least be aware of thinking. I can think (ahead of time) "shoot more ahead of this one" and it happens, though I can't mentally track the event in real time.

    Try simplifying what happens before you call. Take a moment to get ready to start tracking the bird. Calm your eyes. Loosen up a bit. Let it happen, with a bit of pre-guidance. And when you miss, take a moment to reflect on whether you did what you were trying to do. Did you _look_ for the bird. Did you properly take a moment to switch on the autopilot which is what you count on whether you aim or not?

    Good luck and never quit trying to learn.

    Neil
     
  5. grnberetcj

    grnberetcj Active Member

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    Every time I step to the line!

    Curt
     
  6. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    I am constantly trying to figure out ways to improve my shooting. I am fortunate in that I have much more room to improve than many others. Thinking back, the scores I now typically shoot would have made me very happy 25 years ago, but now I am quite dissatisfied with them.

    Pat Ireland
     
  7. dbart1948

    dbart1948 Member

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    Every day, no matter what you do, should be considered a "learning day." No one has all of the answers, I don't even have all of the questions!
    My trap scores are just like the DOW, they go up and down. I am not winning any shoots, but I am having fun shooting.

    Dave
     
  8. biff

    biff Active Member

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    Thanks to all who responded, I knew there were many many shooters on here who are constantly trying to improve. Once I found "The" gun that was right for me, I felt then I could work on the things which would improve my scores. I still feel it is the small things I forget to do which I know that seems to cost me a target or two on each round. I look up to Neil and Tom(as well as several others on here) and to hear them working on some of the same things I am like when I aim at the target: I know I do this, yet I have to fight that impulse each time I shoot but realize it stems from when I shot using one eye!

    Last time I shot poorly, some onlookers said I was arm swinging and I know that will take your scores to the pits. So now with my dryfire/mounts I theorized I would use the Double Delta method inorder to eleminate the arm swinging and can't wait to try it in a live fire practice--in my mind I am hoping it helps.

    Jack, I'm on that Bowflex more than I should be and just love working out with it. Best purchase of the year!
     
  9. Rollin Oswald

    Rollin Oswald Active Member

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    Interesting comments, above. Given a gun that fits and allows you to use the correct shooting form (the one that has resulted in the best scores over the years), there are bound to be limitations to your shooting success that are difficult to identify and reduce.

    Among the possible limitations are reaction time, eye-hand coordination, visual mistakes, e.g., failing to use a soft focus at a particular spot that varies with the station you're on, mental focus or concentration and the avoidance of distractions, differing light conditions with the lens color being used, differing wind conditions and different moods, from confident to nervous or fearful.

    With consistency being the key to good shooting, some of the things defy consistency. They, alone, can account for a lot of inconsistency in one's shooting success. We are all limited in what we can do to improve mood or any of the emotionally-related things.

    Rollin
     
  10. ljutic73

    ljutic73 Well-Known Member

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    I learn something about myself and my ability to prepare for each target every time I shoot...hope that never ends.
     
  11. richrob

    richrob TS Member

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    I have only been shooting since this spring, but some days I feel like I must be forgetting how to shoot trap. -Rich
     
  12. yvonne

    yvonne Banned User Banned

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    I know I don't compare, experience wise, with some of the others that have replied, but I have days of shooting a 96 (best score ever) and then go out the next day and shoot an 80!!!! I'm on the line and start in my mind..... "I'm going out duck hunting in a few days and ....mmmm do I have hevi-shot in my bag? did I pack the key to the boat?....wonder what time they want to meet at the blind?" My mind starts racing and I'm thinking of things I shouldn't be thinking about! I know I should have my mind on what is happening NOW and when I miss a few targets, I lose it. I seem to give up the fight before I even begin it.
     
  13. Hipshot 3

    Hipshot 3 TS Member

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    Biff...good thread! I think the variation in the way many of us shoot from day to day is due to many things. Among these are aging,differences in shooting ability[ie, some shooters will never get any better than they are now because they have maxed-out at their abilities],differences in how we feel from day to day,general health changes,etc,etc. Its not a matter of still learning....its a matter of still being able to apply what we have learned.
     
  14. Rollin Oswald

    Rollin Oswald Active Member

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    Biff - What you are doing is called "back sighting" and is a more accurate way to point a shotgun (when it can be learned.) As you found, the difficulty lies in keeping the front bead in your peripheral vision and avoiding glancing back at the barrel.

    Rollin
     
  15. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    I know how to shoot trap. What I am still learning is how to be a trapshooter.
     
  16. vanman

    vanman TS Member

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    Very good topic and I'm right there with you. I shoot somewhat the same way
    U.S. Marine Retired does. I can't get a good focus with two eyes on a shotgun and it might have something to do with more rifle shooting than shotgun??? I make sure the beads are lined-up and 8, focus long and after the call I have a habit of closing one eye as I chase the clay. I too have learned a lot from this site and have met some great people.

    Van Rader
     
  17. biff

    biff Active Member

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    A couple more thoughts about the learning process one from the quote "No one becomes good from chance." and another oft quoted on here "I'd rather be lucky than good!" Sometime I feel lucky or maybe it's just a feeling that shooting these targets today is easy, I think the term used for that feeling is called being in "The Zone". To me what seems to bring on The Zone is a mixture of success and full knowledge about what you are doing.

    This thread got me to thinking about it seemed like all my life I've been competitive, not necessarily that I was only in it to beat others, but something inside is challenged to reach the next plateau--taking myself or rather pushing myself seeing if I could raise my limits. The statement Hipshot made about some shooters have maxed out their limits--but have they really or have they just given up and settled for less. Maybe they are just lacking in knowledge of one thing which could inspire them for improvement; maybe the success I strive for just isn't a goal they have. When I started shooting I did believe we all had an upper limit and that when attained that would be IT. I also pondered about all the shooters who were so great and everything just seemed to come to them so naturally and no mortal could ever beat them. Also I thought about the number of people who shoot trap, it's a small percentage, and that there are people out there who have never shot trap who if they took it up may be greater than the greatest trapshooter EVER!

    Yes, I know I think too much! But, I feel if you want to be good at something, you need to give it your best and if you don't you'll never know how good you could have been. More thoughts later and thanks everyone for sharing your thoughts. Biff
     
  18. bigclown

    bigclown TS Member

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    Switch to 7/8 oz. loads...enjoy less recoil. Best Regards, Ed
     
  19. biff

    biff Active Member

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    Joe, Thanks for asking, I thought that comment may have just passed on by. I'm sure many shooters are already using this method inorder to avoid arm swinging, anyway I feel it will eleminate it. Delta means triangular, so it is nothing more than the triangles the arms make when the shotgun is mounted and the elbows are parallel to the ground, it locks you into the mount. It makes you move the whole upper body, helps lock you into the gun and may help to eleminate head lifting. I realized I had been getting lazy and let my elbows droop along with my scores! Biff
     
  20. shot410ga

    shot410ga Well-Known Member

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    Are you any different than Tiger Woods? Some days are good some days are bad. One never stops learning or correcting little issues that keep cropping up. Trap Shooting is a lifetime endevor, it not a horse race.
     
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