1. Attention: We have put together a thread with tips and a tutorial video to help with using the new software. Please take a moment to check out the thread here: Trapshooters.com Tutorial & Help Video.
    Dismiss Notice

Seeing the bird

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by ram2008, Mar 31, 2009.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. ram2008

    ram2008 TS Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    Messages:
    17
    I'm new at shooting trap, so all help will be appreciated! I have trouble getting on the bird, after I call it from the 16 yard line. My gun position is correct, as explained in all the trap shooting instructions I had read, from each station, lineing up with the front edge of the trap house. When the bird comes out, I keep both eyes open, and try and track the bird, catch up to it, aim for the leading edge, fire, and keep the gun in motion. Correct? My problem is by the time I go through all this, the bird is almost reaching its arc, and on the way down! What can I do to focus on the bird, right out of the house, and follow its track easier, and faster? This is my problem. I bought a BT-99, and the gun fits me well, mounting, and closeing my eye, and coming up with the figure 8 on the beads. I did shoot 20 today at the club, but I know I can do better. Any ideas out there from all you experts?
    Thanks,
    Richard
     
  2. phirel

    phirel TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    9,556
    Richard- Your problem sounds to me like you are trying to see the bird and then put the front sight on the leading edge and pull the trigger. This is common among new shooters and it won't work well.

    What I suggest is very simple, after you have learned to do it. It is not very simple while you are learning how to do it. Walk to your post and stand normally, for now forget the details about foot position and where your barrel ends up on the house. These are relatively minor details that you can fix later. Look with intensity at the front edge of the house as you mount your gun, you may or may not see your front sight. If you do notice it, it should only be a blur. Focus your eyes on the front edge of the house and call pull. Keep your focus on the bird and let the gun go off by itself. Don't think about pulling the trigger. This is much easier after you have shot several thousand rounds. It is not easy at first.

    Remember seeing the bird clearly is easy. Keeping your head on the stock is not too hard. But, doing both of these at the same time takes a lot of practice.

    Take some lessons if you can. Listen to advice from local shooters with skepticism. A gun club is a great place to get poor advice. Shoot all you can and have fun. Things work out if you work hard.

    Pat Ireland
     
  3. Jim Lambert

    Jim Lambert Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    409
    I don't think you are doing anything wrong at all. What you are missing is "TIMING". Practice with a purpose, work on one thing at a time, shoot as often as you can. Don't be afraid to play around with your gun hold, foot positions, gun mount (all the things that are involved in developing a style of shooting that suits you personally) and one day the light bulb will come on. You will find a place to put your eyes where you will see the target the best and shoot it the quickest. This is TIMING in a nutshell and only comes with considerable practice and perservence. A lesson from a good instructor would also give you insight into the nuances of shooting. There are no magic pills
    but I think you will find there is information out there free for the asking.
    Just stand up on your hind legs and LET "ER RIP! Good luck, Buck
     
  4. grnberetcj

    grnberetcj Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    5,680
    As a new shooter...go purchase a copy of Phil Kiner's DVD.....it's got everything you'll need to improve and enjoy this game.

    Curt
     
  5. jimrich60

    jimrich60 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2007
    Messages:
    810
    ram2008:

    I noted that you said ".....I keep both eyes open, and try and track the bird, catch up to it, aim for the leading edge, fire...... " I think this clearly notes some of the problem. You do not "aim" a shotgun, but merely point it, and should not be conscious of the front bead at all when taking the shot. My impression from the statement is that you are very conciously aiming using the beads, trying to align that bead on the target and then firing. In so doing. it is very likely that you are unconsciously slowing down the gun or even stopping (even though you think you are still swinging the gun). This is a common fault of new shooters, especially those who have (or are) rifle and/or pistol shooters. Instead, try focusing exclusively on the target, not the gun. See the target, lock on it, and the brain will do the rest, bringing the gun up, aligning with the target , and shooting it. This may take a bit of practice at first, but will become second nature after a while. As an experiment, try to simply call for a target (no gun with you) and then simply point your finger at the target. You will find that as long as you see, and focus on the target, your finger will naturally point at it correctly without concious thought to do so or trying to "aim" your finger. That is the way you need to let your brain and body "swing and point" your shotgun. You should stay target focused at all time, the gun will follow.

    Jim R
     
  6. WNCRob

    WNCRob Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    Messages:
    594
    I think PAt Irelands advice, as well as that of some others is quite good. I would emphasize the following.

    Mount the gun.
    Check to see that you have a "figure 8" with the two beads...if you dont, you need to adjust the stock.
    Next, focus about 20-30 feet in front of the house, try to clearly see blades of grass....DO NOT LOOK AT THE BARREL OR THE SIGHTS AGAIN!
    Next, make sure that you keep your head solidly in place, and call for the bird.
    Once you achieve a hard focus on the bird, you should pull the trigger fairly soon after that, but do not rush it.
    Keep your head in position and look at the birds remnants and note how cleanly you did or did not break the bird.
    NOW, raise your head and dismount the gun.
    Takes practice, but you'll get it ok unless you have cross-domination issues.

    WNCRob
     
  7. wolfram

    wolfram Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2007
    Messages:
    6,263
    One of Kiner's coaching methods involves blacking out the shotgun beads with a marker. The idea is to get the student to see the target and stop looking for a bead reference (aiming). When you do start 'seeing the target' the world of trapshooting will change for you.

    Kiner's video is a must and if you get the opportunity, take one of his classes.

    Have fun
     
  8. BigM-Perazzi

    BigM-Perazzi Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    8,542
    Location:
    HELL, MICHIGAN
    Ram2008, It's a lot like a hammer and nail.. If your holding the nail with your fingers, and you keep your eye on the hammer, you will smash your finger. If you keep your eye on the nail and just let your other hand holding the hammer do it's thing, you will hit the nail and not mess up your finger....

    hammer=gun and nail=bird...

    Jim
     
  9. ram2008

    ram2008 TS Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    Messages:
    17
    Thanks everyone for the info. I will try this advice out when I get back on the 16 yrd. line.

    Richard
     
  10. dr.beav

    dr.beav Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    352
    Jimrich60 hit the nail right on the head -- do not look for the front sight once you have mounted your gun -- in fact, I would suggest you take your front sight off for a month or two and see if that does not help! You really do not need the front sight except for lining up in your gun while mounting it. the beav
     
  11. welderman

    welderman TS Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2006
    Messages:
    102
    Sound advice from everyone. I offer two additional suggestions. 1) checking sight allignment before you call the bird is called a bead-check. It's okay if you always plan to shoot high gun. If you decide to shoot low gun (sporting clays) it will slow you down and be a difficult habit to break. Try to learn how to point the gun without relying on a bead check.2) There is a limited area that the bird can first appear when shooting from any station. Don't waste your eyesight and mental concentration by looking at any other area, and, try to learn to focus on a spot a few feet in front of the house. We have a hard tome learning to focus our eyes on a spot in space where there is no image. The trick is to see the bird as soon as possible and then let your body and brain take over. The earlier you see the bird, the more time you will have to react. So try to focus your eyes on the small area where the bird first appears. Welderman (Tom S)
     
  12. LWLarson

    LWLarson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    346
    I skimmed through some of the posts... And you do have a bunch of advice to consider.

    Here is what works for me... I don't like having my eyes behind the bird going "out" to it... I put my eyes downrange, and let them come back to the target. I seem to get focused on it much quicker this way. Actually, I always thought this was some sort of eye-morphodite process unique to me. Took a Kiner clinic, and found out that it was actually quite normal.

    The blacking out the bead thing didn't work however, first time in my life I couldn't make the gun go off... I had to joke to Mr Kiner that I paid all that money for him to get me flinching.... The clinic was fabulous, so this isn't a shot at him...

    Stating the obvious, seeing the target, exceeds all other acts associated with trapshooting...

    LWL
     
  13. WNCRob

    WNCRob Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    Messages:
    594
    Take a look at Frank Hoppe's columns in this months and last months Trap & Field. In particular pay GREAT ATTENTION to his comments on head/eye positions and how important mounting the gun properly is to promptly acquiring sharp focus...the articles are on gun fit, but proper gun fit facilitates a good mount and target acquisition.

    WNCRob
     
  14. Old Cowboy

    Old Cowboy Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,988
    Sounds like you're THINKING your way thru' the shot Richard? Don't DO that......actually this is a pretty simple game, don't overcomplicate it. Just point the gun out there somewhere in the vicinity of the traphouse, call for the target and when it comes out---->point the gun at it and shoot
     
  15. SirMissalott

    SirMissalott Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2006
    Messages:
    2,241
    In baseball you watch the ball not the bat. Its very similar but we use steroids for different reasons and we can bet!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  16. snowbird

    snowbird TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    999
    This was posted on trapshooters.com it is very important, keep it on file and read it regularly.

    Terry.



    The Quiet Eye Phenomenon


    March 2006—Trapshooting Olympic Way 306 sidebar

    Dr. Joan Vickers, professor and director in kinesiology at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada, has been a pioneer in the identification, study and measurement of the Quiet Eye phenomenon in sports performance. The following material is a combination of direct excerpts from Dr. Vickers’ excellent article, “A Quiet Eye” [Golf Digest, January 2004] and additional text inserted by me to illustrate how her findings while studying golfers’ putting techniques can be applied to trapshooting.—Les Greevy

    Why is it that shooting consistently high scores is so difficult for so many shooters? Almost anyone can learn to mount the gun and determine the lead in an acceptable manner. The difficulty lies in using your eyes to detect the right information about distance, speed and direction at the right time, then using your mind to relay that information to consistently make the shotstring and target collide.

    By recording data under laboratory conditions (using sophisticated eye-movement tracker technology, which allows us to monitor precisely what the eye focuses on and for how long) the mystery of what separates really good competitors from the rest is beginning to be figured out. We call it the Quiet Eye; here’s what it is and how you develop it.

    The Quiet Eye occurs when your gaze remains absolutely still at the target pick-up point just before and as the target is called for and the gun move is initiated. There are two important aspects of this basic yet essential skill: location and duration.

    Concerning location, the shooter must determine his target pick-up point (look point) with precision. It must be on the line of the target, and the look point must be identified with a very small feature in the background of the scene.

    Quiet Eye duration is also important. The expert shooters have a Quiet Eye duration of 2+ seconds on average, while less skilled shooters hold the gaze for less than one second.

    The same results have been found in a number of other sports, including rifle shooting, darts, billiards and basketball free throws. In all of the self-initiated target sports, the Quiet Eye is emerging as the primary indicator of optimal focus and concentration.

    This QE period is essential because your hands are controlled by your brain. The brain gets valuable information from your eyes. As you shoot, your brain needs to organize more than 100 billion neuron networks that are informed by your gaze and then control your hands, arms and body as the shot is performed. These networks will stay organized for only a short period of time; a window of opportunity opens that must be used when it is at its most optimal. This is the QE period.

    The notion of being in The Zone or of “flow” in sport has been around for a long time. Until now, there has been only unscientific evidence that The Zone exists, let alone has measurable characteristics. Perhaps the Quiet Eye will emerge as one of objective measures.

    The Quiet Eye is the glue that keeps neurons from being scrambled when under stress. It supplies the right information at the right time. Overall, the Quiet Eye has the essence of simplicity alluded to when the shooter is in The Zone. More research will tell. In the meantime, QE is something you can learn and add to your game today.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
Search tags for this page

how to really see the bird in trapshooting