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Heads Up shooting position causes back pain?

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by bluedsteel, Apr 17, 2010.

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  1. bluedsteel

    bluedsteel Member

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    I would be curious to know if anyone who has trap shooting experience with a "heads up" gun has suffered from a bout of back pain that could be related to this shooting position. It appears that most "heads up" shooters fire in a more upright/vertical posture, and I have recently heard that this can cause or aggravate existing back pain. I would expect that most shooters who use this position fire Krieghoff Trap Specials and Pro Rib guns, Guerini trap shotguns, or the high rib Perazzis like the MX2005, the high rib Kolars, etc.

    I realize that most trap shooters still fire traditionally configured trap guns from the more traditional "bent over" or "lean forward" position, with the head tilted slightly forward. Therefore, only those shooters using the newer style trap gusn would likely be familiar with any increase or change in back pain. Perhaps the "heads up" position has lessened back pain?

    Anyway, thanks for any info from those with personal experience with this.

    bluedsteel
     
  2. jimrich60

    jimrich60 Member

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    I personally find a more "head up" shooting posture less tiring, and less back problem at the end of a long shooting session. This is why I now use a more raised rib gun than I did just a few years ago. But I suppose some could have problems with a change to a more erect posture, though I would find it a bit surprising myself. Perhaps some have some cervical (neck) problems that are exacerbated by holding their head more erect? I have fairly severe cervical spondylosis (cervical vertebrae bone spurs pressing on nerve endings) so a head up position works better for me. Best to use whatever posture you find less tiring and less conducive to back pain.

    Jim R
     
  3. SilverShooter

    SilverShooter TS Member

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    I have several trap and sporting Guerinis. Prior to back surgery when my back muscles were inflamed or stressed, holding ANY shotgun caused addtional discomfort. Surprisingly, drawing a 60# bow did not casue a problem.

    After back surgery and a full recovery, neither of my heads up SGs cause any pain, other than my wallet.
     
  4. bluedsteel

    bluedsteel Member

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    What I'm hearing is that the effects of recoil are more of a factor when shooting trap in an upright stance. In my limited experience shooting "heads up" guns, I haven't noticed anything, but I haven't had any long-term history with one of these shotguns.

    bluedsteel
     
  5. Quack Shot

    Quack Shot Active Member

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    It's been a couple of surgeries ago that I shot my last "Heads Up" gun, but it seems that if you are predisposed to back/spine issues, any recoil in any position can hurt. I know I have some pain every time I pull the trigger and it does not seem to matter if I'm straight up, bent over, or using weenie loads. I would think that it would really depend on the individual shooter and exactly what spine issues they might be experiencing, or not. Being bent forward might actually allow a little more give for the spine when absorbing the impact. The movement would be absorbed in a different manner as compared to an upright position. Some would be absorbed as compression when bent forward. Gun fit would also play a significant role. The main advantage of the heads up position for me was the fact that I could keep both eyes level. It doesn't make much difference for me these days since I now suffer from CSS, CRS, CDS, CHS, etc.
     
  6. jimrich60

    jimrich60 Member

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    As long as the overall posture is correct (that is, bent slightly forward at the waist and not leaning backward, gunfit is right, etc) then a more head up position would, I think, tend to decrease perceived recoil, not increase it. This is because the body/neck/head/shoulder area can move more freely in the upright position, thus absorbing recoil a bit better. Extreme example of this, is the increase in felt recoil when shooting from bench position where the body cannot move as freely. But all depends largely on individual perception of recoil, so each one is likely different in what posture feels best. Still, I think the increasing move to higher ribs indicates that more people are beginning to like the head up posture as both less tiring, and providing more flexibility (and thus less perceived recoil effects)

    Jim R
     
  7. chiefjon

    chiefjon Active Member

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    Most of my neck, back and shoulder problems went away when I went to the PFS. I tried high ribs, different stances, etc...it was all recoil related and when I eliminated the recoil, I was able to move into a more natural, comfortable postion and in reality have no pain problems at all now.

    JON
     
  8. JTEA

    JTEA Member

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    So. East corner PA
    I find the neck aspect more relevant. I also found that putting more drop in the pad has made it much more comfortable for the back. It's not just raising the comb / rib. I have been hunching over and crawling more until the last year. Helps keep your head on the stock as well. The guys with short necks don't understand that.

    A range master woman, years ago, commented one day that she finally found the correct length of pull for her skeet gun; 15 1/2 inches! Check the neck length.

    JT
     
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