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Holding on to New Shooters

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by Scott Thompson, Mar 9, 2007.

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  1. Scott Thompson

    Scott Thompson TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
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    There has been a lot of discussion and speculation on here of how ATA classification and the handicapping system discourages new shooters. Maybe, maybe not. I see much bigger problems when it comes to holding on to new, young shooters and I would like to bring one problem to your attention.

    Sometimes, some entrenched, experienced club members are flat out rude.

    Yes, I said it. Rude. Those people would say to this that if I don't like then I can go away. And that is exactly what happens.

    Now, by far and large, my experience here in Northern IL has been very, very positive. Even still, at the club where I practice, I have witnessed some overbearing, power asserting, twit berate a teenager to the point that I doubt the kid would ever want to shoot again.

    The kid was actually on my squad and was on a post behind me. Apparently he was changing posts with a shell in the chamber and this member witnessed it. When we had finished the round Mr. Public Service came over an read the kid the riot act. Now, I didn't see the kid do it since he was behind me but he didn't argue with the guy, he said he was new to this and didn't realize it was dangerous. Instead of taking this kid and teaching him some safety, the dickhead, I mean Mr. Public Service, continued to belittle the kid to the point where I stepped in and told him to back off.

    Well, he didn't like this at all. He said it was to my benefit since the kid put me in danger by moving posts with a shell in the chamber. I then thanked him for seeing this dangerous situation and waiting through four position changes before he addressed the issue. Real hero.

    After that, he said if I didn't show more respect for the members he would have me thrown out. I told him if he didn't show more respect for the guests there wouldn't be any future members and that I knew more people on the members committee than he did so piss off.

    So he stormed off and I haven't seen him since. I think he only shoots leagues.

    Anyway, I took the kid aside and spent the next hour shooting with him and giving him basic safety instruction. That was far more helpful than asserting how wrong he was and how loud I could be. There were at least two other times this summer where I noticed a safety problem mid round where I stopped the squad and politely explained the problem to the offender. Both times they were new shooters and they were appreciative for the way I handled it. And, they both acted safely after.

    Sometimes you have to yell, not out of anger, but to bring immediate attention to a situation and get it under control. Once in control, there is no more need to yell, there is a lot of need to instruct, and there is never a need to belittle.

    I challenge all of you to not only help the new shooters but to correct bad behavior of your club members when they act in the role of Public Service Dickhead.

    Like I said, at this club I have met a hundred awesome, friendly folks and one dick. That kid met one dick. It only takes one to cause a problem.

    --Scott T. <--- suffering from the final stages of cabin fever
     
  2. Hap MecTweaks

    Hap MecTweaks Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Mesquite, Nevada
    Why didn't the man stop ALL shooting to correct an unsafe situation he observed instead of waiting till the round finished? I agree with John, the time to prevent accidents is before hand, not after! A vast difference in teaching and berating. Range safety is everyones responsibility. Hap
     
  3. SSeitz420

    SSeitz420 TS Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Messages:
    12
    Boy-o-Boy this strikes a nerve and I agree. My two sons and my two nephews were shooting at a local club one Saturday morning when we ran into that Dork's Sister on the trap field. We were all shooting break open guns and were changing positions after 5 shots each WITH ALL OUR GUNS OPEN. Now I don't believe that you can be too safe, but I do believe you can be too much of an ass. This female puller and range officer anounced "WATCH YOUR MUZZLES, KEEP THEM DOWN RANGE." I thought to myself, who is she talking to? There must be some squid getting ready to shoot that she is talking to. I didn't pay much attention because my group of youngsters were perfectly safe with all guns wide open as they know to do. Let me also say that my group of younsters had all had formal trap experience for several years shooting in winter trap leagues, etc. Heck, they had even shot on the same winter league trap range with the current President of the ATA. I had received numerous compliments on all the boys' safe gun handling skills over the years. They were not new shooters, just young. Well, we shoot another 5 targets and she anounces, louder this time, "WATCH YOUR MUZZLES I SAID--KEEP THEM DOWN RANGE! I MEAN WHAT I SAID!" She had my 12 year old nephew (who shoots a K-80) walking sideways from postion 5 to position one with the gun broken open and pointed down range. She only hollered at the youngsters and never directed her scold to the adults. I couldn't take it any more and I let her have it. I told her they were not new shooters and that when those guns are broken open they are as safe as a piece of water pipe. I was so mad at that Range Bitch. It ruined our whole day and I have never returned to that club. YOU CAN'T BE TOO SAFE, I KNOW, BUT IT ISN'T WHAT YOU SAY SOMETIMES, ITS HOW YOU SAY IT! If my family members had been new shooters that day they would have been scared for life from that stupid Range Bitch.
     
  4. BILL GRILL

    BILL GRILL Well-Known Member

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    Sep 18, 2006
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    Scott, I believe you are correct. Sometimes we forget that at one time we were brand new to this also. The new shooters just need to be corrected not belittled. JMHO bill
     
  5. Jawhawker

    Jawhawker TS Member

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    3,734
    First and foremost be polite! A person will remember if your safety presentation is done in an even tone and not made an embarrasing event!

    Its not hard to notice the new guy when he shows up to a club! Where are these so called "professors_of_knowledge" who can offer some helpful not embarrasing comments that may make the newcomer welcome and feel forevermore part of the club???????? Yea in the background waiting to pass on his/her negative personality!

    There is one individual who has been part of a home based club of mine in KS that has a pathetic people skills! He has been appropriately addressed and made realize that this behavior will not be tolerated! These "negative_impact" individuals need to be addressed! There is enough other circumstances involved in our sport that continuely helps shrink our_ranks!
     
  6. recurvyarcher

    recurvyarcher Well-Known Member

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    I agree with the above posters. For the most part, as a new shooter, I have run into so many great people (helpful, kind, polite, fun...), but I have also seen a creton or two. If the new shooter doesn't have the fortitude to let someone else's bad behavior roll off his/her back (most like with young shooters and/or female shooters), then we are likely to lose a future shooter.

    If you pay attention, the same thing happens here on ts.com. One or two mean-spirited ones versus an ton of good people who enjoy the sport and like sharing their time.
     
  7. juniorshooter

    juniorshooter TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    36
    I started shooting at age 11. I had more than one "experienced" shooter give me a bad time about something that made no sense. There were mostly two reasons for them to do that to me 1. they were shooting bad or 2. I was beating them.
     
  8. rjdden

    rjdden TS Member

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    Dec 20, 2006
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    I always liked lead of shooter. There are some responsibilities to lead off. Making sure all are on line and being safe and are ready even after the station move. Except for this one time, Just after I had finished my last shot on 5 I wouold look down the line and watch the shooters. Then proclaim the round was over when the last shot was fired. I had been acknoleged that I was straight throught the round and most had congratted me on it except this one lady. In all the stations together I shot a 21,23,23,25 for a 92 She went in and complained to the shoot manager that I was moving around a lot as well as dancing on the stations. Don Was the shoot managers nane. He looked at her and said he didn't believe her. He said to her that I was the most conciencous shooter he had ever seen. He came and told me what went on and she wound up in the handycap squad with me and a couple others who shot with us during the 16's. She stood on 5 and of course I was on 1 as usual. I said before any one had shot that there would be no dancing tolerated nor will there be any excesive movement out of the ordenary. She knew then that the Manager had spoke with me. I went out and burned a 94 with a couple more 25 straights. She huffed off the range and I never seen her after that. Rich.(inPeoria,Az.)
     
  9. Hap MecTweaks

    Hap MecTweaks Well-Known Member

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    Pay her no mind a tall, she ain't R kina gurl ennyhows, she don't dance!! :) Hap
     
  10. rjdden

    rjdden TS Member

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    Never thought of that. Probably didn't know how to dance. She never got a 25 straight let alone two in the same round of 100 in 16's or handycaps. Never thought of that. Maybe I was Dancin knowing I was goin to get two 25's in the same round of 25. Didn't do it in a 50 straight though. I had one of those pesky 23's jump in the middle of em. Shot several 23's that day. Na! To conciencous of things. Maybe!! Rich.(inPeoria,Az.)
     
  11. drunk_again

    drunk_again TS Member

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    Jan 28, 2007
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    well, some times, " Tuff Love " is needed to get the point threw their pointed lil heads.

    this thread reminds me of the days that i was an oklahoman higjway patrolman. i stoped a guy who ran a stop sign, when i pulled him over and asked him about it, he replied, " i slowed down" . i told him that it was a STOP sign not a slow down sign. i the asked him to step out of his car, which hed did. i proceeded to pull out my knight stick and started to beat him repeatedly over his head. after 5 minutes of beating him repeatedly over his head, i asked him, do you want me to slow down or STOP.
     
  12. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I was on an empty trap, instructing my kid. Another shooter asked to join us. I said sure, if you don't mind that I'm instructing my son. He said OK. After my son had missed about ten in a row (0 for 10), I stopped and reminded him to think about what the shooting coach had told him about consistent mounts and leads, and not stopping the gun. This guy got miffed because I was talking and interrupting the flow of the squad. I reminding him that I told him I was instructing my son when he asked if it was Ok to join us, and that he agreed to that condition. He just glared. What a jerk.
     
  13. lumper

    lumper TS Member

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    There are many things that will drive off potential/new shooters to this sport. People like the above mentioned are only one of those things.

    Most people like those above are that way because of feeling threatened by somebody new or want to show there better for some reason. Kind of like this is our field and your not really welcome to be here or around me cause I/we did not personally ask you to be here.

    Another drawback of trap that I have seen is it is much less of a social sport than some of the other shotgun sports. You shoot as individuals and move from station to station as individuals. I have seen it on more than a few occasions as well that between rounds other trap shooters are standing and watching intently and not really socializing with any other shooters or when they do socialize they are socializing with the same people they always do because that is the squad they shoot with. At times it is a very uninviting situation for a new shooter or new to the club shooter.

    New shooters and guests to our clubs are the future of the shooting sports. Embrace them as one of our extended shooting family and it will only give us more brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, grand sons and grand daughters, nephews and nieces ... well you get the point I hope.
     
  14. Texshooter

    Texshooter Member

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    Someone drove me away from trapshooting the first time I tried it and I didn't return for twenty years. I now really regret that I did not start shooting trap when I was younger. I will cuss that mid-yardage old bas.... to my dying days for what he has cost me. AJ
     
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