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 Post subject: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died??
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:44 am 
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Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2011 3:06 pm
Posts: 43
How is popularity of competitive American Skeet looking across the country?
After 10 years away, it seems that the sport has declined. Looking at shoot registration / results, it looks like there is very little, if any new blood in my area.

It looks like Sporting Clays is much more popular, and attracting the younger crowd.

I much prefer skeet over other disciplines, so this is somewhat disappointing.

Thoughts?




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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:54 am 
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Key word is discipline.

Skeet is a discipline that requires concentration and repeat actions. You know where the target is going to be and if the traps are set up correctly, then it's up to the shooter to hit it. The challenge is definitely mental. Drop your concentration and you miss the bird. It's a skill that can be honed and like you, find it enjoyable for the mental aspect.


Sporting has a different set of challenges. A variety of targets, distances, and each station is a puzzle. To me, it's a different skill set. Wind, obstacles, and speed variations make the shooter figure out more and is a different challenge that I think younger and newer shooters enjoy more than repeating the same stations every time.

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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:56 am 
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I guess that you would have to define Skeet. But, IMHO, Skeet is in a downward spiral.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:58 am 
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Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2011 3:06 pm
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oldskeetshooter wrote:
I guess that you would have to define Skeet. But, IMHO, Skeet is in a downward spiral.


American Skeet.
Can't really define it further than that.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:03 am 
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Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 4:00 pm
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Location: north carolina
Steady numbers for maybe the last few years but definitely down over the 10 years you have been away. What state do you shoot in ?


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:13 am 
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Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2011 3:06 pm
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la angler wrote:
Steady numbers for maybe the last few years but definitely down over the 10 years you have been away. What state do you shoot in ?


MS.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:15 am 
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If this is the same ssanders224 from MSGO, skeet is alive and well in Mississippi. The state has added a state skeet and trap championship to their shotgun program and anticipates having 800 competitors next year. MSU's shotgun team has added a good bit of new blood. Other than a couple of bad luck weather days, we've been at or near capacity at the Jackson shoots year-in, year-out, and we have over 70 preregistered for our shoot starting June 22, with a max capacity of 75. We're having to look for a way to get some one-gun shooters as of right now.

We're doing pretty well around here . . . although it is a lot of the same names. Come on out to Capitol (of course, this could be a totally different ssanders224 from MSGO, and if so, sorry!).


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:26 am 
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Tyrone wrote:
If this is the same ssanders224 from MSGO, skeet is alive and well in Mississippi. The state has added a state skeet and trap championship to their shotgun program and anticipates having 800 competitors next year. MSU's shotgun team has added a good bit of new blood. Other than a couple of bad luck weather days, we've been at or near capacity at the Jackson shoots year-in, year-out, and we have over 70 preregistered for our shoot starting June 22, with a max capacity of 75. We're having to look for a way to get some one-gun shooters as of right now.

We're doing pretty well around here . . . although it is a lot of the same names. Come on out to Capitol (of course, this could be a totally different ssanders224 from MSGO, and if so, sorry!).


You'd be correct. ;)

This is great to hear. As you probably know, ALL of my time, effort, and practice has gone into pistols for several years. That being said, I'm itching to break some clays again. I used to shoot at Capitol regularly, and was a member for quite a while, but moved to Cleveland a couple years ago. There is only one field within an hour drive of me now. I know the guys shot the HIllbilly this past weekend, and it looked like they had a fair number of shooters.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:28 am 
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This is an ongoing argument here. Skeet is not as popular as it once was and sporting clays rules the roost most places. That said, there are actually quite a few very talented young skeet shooters in the game. The junior and collegiate concurrents are usually very tough. The problem with a lot of sports is that as the participants grow up, go to work and start families, the time and money to participate goes away. This is true in golf and tennis as well. My oldest son went to college on a golf scholarship but with a job and family now he is lucky to play 6 or 7 times year. Of course, he can still beat almost all of us.

Sold out skeet tournaments are very common in Texas, but there are a lot fewer of them. Lots of reasons for that.

"The report of my death was an exaggeration" Mark Twain.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 2:05 pm 
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Ssanders224 wrote:
oldskeetshooter wrote:
I guess that you would have to define Skeet. But, IMHO, Skeet is in a downward spiral.


American Skeet.
Can't really define it further than that.


After a 15+ year layoff, from registered skeet, I decided to shoot a local smaller shoot. Yes, skeet is in a downward spiral. Only those who have shot 30 years, or so, would understand what I mean. Don't misunderstand me, there are a few "Skeet Shooters" that are up and coming, but they are few and far between. Some are more interested in donning the proper attire that advertises their favorite gun than improving their game. Some others seem to be more into fiddling with their adjustable ribs, or changing their chokes, with the belief this will improve their skill. Some are more interested in getting their name in a book by bragging that they are a class "All American". I fail to see how one can get to be a "C" class all American without doing a little sandbagging.

Has Skeet died, no it has not, but the Skeet culture is in a downward spiral. 25 years ago, my state shoot had 200+ shooters, now maybe 75. I can't speak for other states, but speaking with other, experienced, shooters the sentiment is the same. Skeet is a game that requires considerable discipline. It is repetitious and boring to the audience. A good shooter has broken the same target 25,000 times and then, a miss. That is what made the game so great, the discipline. Trying to understand and correct a mental or physical mistake and not associating a miss with bad equipment or a video that gave the wrong information.

Yeah, I know, I'm old and that was the old days. Registered skeet was a great game when folks were trying to "EARN" a AA or AAA pin. Now it seems that most are trying to "BUY" gratification and recognition by getting their name in a book.

There was a saying "Once you have seen an iceberg, an ice cube is not impressive." I really don't expect too many folks to understand.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 2:42 pm 
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Skeet can be tedious, and later generations do not suffer tedium well. It's an instant gratification culture, and skeet averages take years to accumulate. Sporting appeals more to the modern mindset of younger shooters. The scenery changes, as do the presentations, and you can miss a few targets without blowing up the whole day. It moves (usually) at a quicker pace as well. A completely different discipline to be sure, but an easier "sell" to new shooters.

I think it's safe to say that skeet has been "marginalized" - I think that's really the perfect word for it. There are still shooters, and there are a few young ones, but not enough to support the game as we know it long term. There are a lot of reasons - some I outlined above, and many others. Some feel that the NSSA is largely to blame, but I'm not convinced that even if they made all the "right" decisions things would be that much different in terms of participation. I have a whole head full of borderline crazy ideas on how to improve the game, but most of them aren't realistic. To me it's just a function of society, different options, and the game itself.

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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:11 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 6:28 pm
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I prefer skeet. I like the concept of sporting but I hate some of the goofy unrealistic presentations of some targets. I like presentations that actually simulate real things that fly or run. I don't like shooting from elevated stands as I've never hunted birds from a cliff or a tree stand. Some presentations annoy me and I don't shoot to be annoyed.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:26 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Sun Dec 17, 2017 9:04 am
Posts: 207
Ssanders224 wrote:
How is popularity of competitive American Skeet looking across the country?
After 10 years away, it seems that the sport has declined. Looking at shoot registration / results, it looks like there is very little, if any new blood in my area.

It looks like Sporting Clays is much more popular, and attracting the younger crowd.

I much prefer skeet over other disciplines, so this is somewhat disappointing.

Thoughts?



Sometime ago I posted a question concerning shooting skeet for skeet`s sake OR shooting skeet as practice for the hunting field. I shoot it as practice for dove, don`t really keep score and am fortunate enough to be in a club that`s relaxed enough to throw non-standard singles in place of doubles, if requested, to better replicate the field. I find it to be great fun, good practice, and better preparation for passing shots ( dove, teal, etc ) than sporting clays.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:33 pm 
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wasthestumper wrote:
Skeet can be tedious, and later generations do not suffer tedium well. It's an instant gratification culture, and skeet averages take years to accumulate. Sporting appeals more to the modern mindset of younger shooters. The scenery changes, as do the presentations, and you can miss a few targets without blowing up the whole day. It moves (usually) at a quicker pace as well. A completely different discipline to be sure, but an easier "sell" to new shooters.

I think it's safe to say that skeet has been "marginalized" - I think that's really the perfect word for it. There are still shooters, and there are a few young ones, but not enough to support the game as we know it long term. There are a lot of reasons - some I outlined above, and many others. Some feel that the NSSA is largely to blame, but I'm not convinced that even if they made all the "right" decisions things would be that much different in terms of participation. I have a whole head full of borderline crazy ideas on how to improve the game, but most of them aren't realistic. To me it's just a function of society, different options, and the game itself.


So what does "support the game as we know it" mean? I agree that it isn't what it was and probably won't be again. What is unclear to me is if we have reached an equilibrium point. I know a number of junior shooters that started out shooting multi-sports and have gravitated to skeet. The different disciplines attract different personalities and the friendships the kids have built in skeet doesn't exist in sporting clays. I see no point in shoveling dirt on the game at this point and sitting around wishing for the past. If you are really concerned, find a way to support it.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:58 pm 
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I started shooting skeet in the 60s when it was considered a gentlemen's game. No prize money, just plaques, commemorative coins and other rememberances. I still have them, any more I WOULD have won would have been gone a long time ago.

My local club has Skeet, Trap. Bunker Trap, 5 Stand and Limited Sporting Clays. 5 Stand and Sporting Clays seem to be where the growth is.

I lived in Louisiana and Tennessee for a few years and ran a division of a company that owned its own gun club in West Monroe. LA. I squaded up with 4 other guys and we traveled form San Antonia to the West, Jackson, Mississippi to the East, New Orleans to the South and Fort Cambell to the North. There was always a registered shoot somewhere in that geography every weekend.

Great fun, great friends and relatively inexpensive shoots.

In the 60s and 70s I shot at Lordship in CT, owned by Remington, now long gone and Thunder Mountain in New Jersey as I was friends with the owners. It is still there but I am not a fan or their costs or format.

When I lived in Chicago I shot at Lincoln Park, also shut down.

Now I live in Manhattan and Long Island and have only found two registered shoots all year on Long Island. The Lobster Shoot at Peconic and the Long Island Championship. I shoot them both, but it is $300.00 base cost if you want to shoot all 5 events.

The only other shots in reasonable distance from me are at Monroe Gun Club and Florham Park, New Jersey.

I am hoping for some kind of resurgence in my area.

Bob

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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 6:34 pm 
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Location: somewhere east of the I-95 corridor, until you get to connecticut. but you can bank on vanzant, mo..
the wealthy are keeping the shrines and pilgrimages alive.
s.clays has honestly cornered the market lately.
the new generation prefers to shoot things on x-box, instead of real guns.
and, they prefer black plastic stocks with high cap's, over aaa select crotch.
the game has been dumbed down a bit. 100 bird matches and 250 east/wests's have made way for 50 bird weekend matches and what a....150 bird east/west? :roll:
while many call the game a game of discipline, its also a game of endurance. and many just aren't up to par in that arena.
seems everyone wants to shoot and run, to be somewhere else.
just my observations as a range owner.

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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:56 pm 
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bobski wrote:
the wealthy are keeping the shrines and pilgrimages alive.
s.clays has honestly cornered the market lately.
the new generation prefers to shoot things on x-box, instead of real guns.
and, they prefer black plastic stocks with high cap's, over aaa select crotch.
the game has been dumbed down a bit. 100 bird matches and 250 east/wests's have made way for 50 bird weekend matches and what a....150 bird east/west? :roll:
while many call the game a game of discipline, its also a game of endurance. and many just aren't up to par in that arena.
seems everyone wants to shoot and run, to be somewhere else.
just my observations as a range owner.



I think that assessment is spot on. It was not my intent to "shovel dirt on skeet" - I enjoy skeet for what it is, but for all the reasons above, and others, it's not currently sustainable. Even the NSSA has figured that out. The time has always been a killer for me - I've gone to shoots an hour away that started at 9:00 and I didn't get home until 10:00PM. 13 hours for 200 birds just doesn't work for me. When you have kids, there's always "somewhere else" to be. Conversely, I can get routinely get 200 sporting targets in and make it home to mow the lawn, cook dinner, and spend the evening with the family. I just don't have the same drive for sporting as I do for skeet - just how my brain works - but with the current format, I can't shoot many registered events.

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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:27 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 28, 2012 3:28 pm
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Ssanders224 wrote:
How is popularity of competitive American Skeet looking across the country?
After 10 years away, it seems that the sport has declined. Looking at shoot registration / results, it looks like there is very little, if any new blood in my area.

It looks like Sporting Clays is much more popular, and attracting the younger crowd.

I much prefer skeet over other disciplines, so this is somewhat disappointing.

Thoughts?


Died? In some areas, and some markets, yes. It has certainly declined in many, if not most, areas and markets. Sporting Clays does take the lion's share of the younger crowd and newbies of all ages in areas where Sporting Clays is available.

I find it more than somewhat disappointing.


Last edited by ShowMe on Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 3:26 pm 
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wasthestumper wrote:
bobski wrote:
the wealthy are keeping the shrines and pilgrimages alive.
s.clays has honestly cornered the market lately.
the new generation prefers to shoot things on x-box, instead of real guns.
and, they prefer black plastic stocks with high cap's, over aaa select crotch.
the game has been dumbed down a bit. 100 bird matches and 250 east/wests's have made way for 50 bird weekend matches and what a....150 bird east/west? :roll:
while many call the game a game of discipline, its also a game of endurance. and many just aren't up to par in that arena.
seems everyone wants to shoot and run, to be somewhere else.
just my observations as a range owner.



I think that assessment is spot on. It was not my intent to "shovel dirt on skeet" - I enjoy skeet for what it is, but for all the reasons above, and others, it's not currently sustainable. Even the NSSA has figured that out. The time has always been a killer for me - I've gone to shoots an hour away that started at 9:00 and I didn't get home until 10:00PM. 13 hours for 200 birds just doesn't work for me. When you have kids, there's always "somewhere else" to be. Conversely, I can get routinely get 200 sporting targets in and make it home to mow the lawn, cook dinner, and spend the evening with the family. I just don't have the same drive for sporting as I do for skeet - just how my brain works - but with the current format, I can't shoot many registered events.


I am still looking for your definition of unsustainable. Having been at one large sold out shoot and one small, near capacity shoot in the past 3 weeks I am having a hard time with that concept. It is not what it was, but to me unsustainable means it can't survive. If that is your opinion, I think you are wrong.


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 Post subject: Re: Returning To the Sport After 10 Year.... Has Skeet Died?
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 4:36 pm 
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There are also a lot of shooters now shooting "Monthly Targets" that in the past would have sought out and shot many of their local shoots.




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