Welcome to the sport of Smallbore Target Rifle shooting
Welcome to a sport that can be enjoyed by everybody – almost everybody that is, because a serious criminal record would make life difficult for you (although minor infringements of the law certainly won’t disbar you).
The only physical constraint is that you really need to be strong enough to hold a rifle up; however, that pretty well covers everybody over the age of twelve (and some youngsters below that age have managed).
There’s no disadvantage in being tall, short, fat or slim, and both disabled and able-bodied people enjoy the sport equally as well.
The only qualification you really do need is a desire to do something different and exciting.
The sport is what you make of it
If you’re determined to compete in the Olympic Games, then here’s a sport where you can. If you’re content to take part without the need to compete, target rifle shooting will accommodate you as well.
There are no age restrictions: you can start as early as you like and finish as late as you like. Many people continue shooting in their eighties – there aren’t many sports where you can compete with people a quarter of that age on an equal basis without being at a disadvantage.
The top end of the sport is extremely competitive and expensive, but at other levels the majority of people shoot simply because they enjoy the challenge, the camaraderie and the socialising.
The sport needn’t be expensive; in fact, investing in second hand equipment can get you started with a very modest outlay. Most clubs will loan out equipment free of charge, so the initial expenses are for club membership, range fees and consumable items (i.e. targets, ammunition and pellets).
A safe sport
It is without a doubt the safest sport you could possibly consider taking up – a rifle range is the safest place in the world. There are fewer accidents in rifle shooting than any other sport (and that includes ballroom dancing and tiddlywinks!!).
The challenge in the sport is in acquiring the skill to send a bullet down the range consistently and accurately, and that’s the sort of skill used and admired in many other sports like bowling, archery, darts, curling, golf, boules, etc, etc.
The sport has been refined over the years and has now reached a degree of accuracy that would astound the rifle shooters of old, but the equipment used has also become more refined. Nowadays it’s a very sophisticated, technical sport, but it still relies on the skill of the shooter.
The series of training guides
This series of training posts is for the use of .22 rimfire rifles. We hope you enjoy the series and hopefully by the end you will reach a moderate standard (maybe even outstanding, who knows !!).
By its nature, shooting is a very technical sport and there are lots of details to learn, but we will try and keep things fairly simple.
This series of posts will, over the coming weeks and months, take you through the stages that you, a progressing shooter, need to focus on in order to develop a consistent process. That will allow you to shoot at your best every time you go to the range – whether it’s your home range or at a competition at another club.
The series will cover areas such as: The Shooters Diary, shooting equipment, how to establish a good prone position, sighting, using a ‘scope, scoring, ammunition, barrels and grouping, and of course cleaning the rifle, and safety on the range.
The first post in the series will be published soon!