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 Post subject: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 11:52 am 
Utility Grade

Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:22 pm
Posts: 2
Location: Yulee, FL
Newbie here with a question(s) on how to practice...

After spending every weekend at the local sporting clay/skeet/trap club for the past 4 to 6 weeks I realize I may need some type of structure on how to approach practice.

Some of what I have noticed is I do not know how to fix those clays that give me the most trouble. My biggest issue seems to be not knowing why I am missing them so, I don't know how to fix it...... too high? behind, in front of, how much lead to give, etc...

Thought process is, if I can understand where I am missing I can better adjust my shooting to start hitting more......

So, do I go back to the stations that I perform well on and practice mounting, looking, swinging, etc...? or, go to the stations giving me trouble and keep trying till I find the sweet spot? Just thinking I do not want to take an approach that will only get me better at a certain station and not better overall.....??

Newbie looking to get better than <60%...... but, still enjoying the heck out of it....



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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 1:31 pm 
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Location: Athens,TX.
Ask around your area who they recommend for lesssons

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 2:27 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2013 11:02 am
Posts: 2470
Location: KS
+1 what Jerry said. Finding a good instructor to get you started properly will speed your progress and make for a far less frustrating experience. Enjoy.


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 2:38 pm 
Presentation Grade

Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2020 2:22 pm
Posts: 686
But in addition there are some things you can do without a coach. For the price of 3 or 4 lessons you can by a used or new, respectively, ShotKam. If you are not familiar with it, look it up. That should help you answer those questions about where your shot is going and the target isn’t. What technique you choose to use to put the shot where it needs to be is up to you...and your coach if you should ever engage one.

One final piece of advice is a simple rule of thumb that many have found helpful. If you are missing, try doubling your lead. If that doesn’t work, try cutting the original lead in half. One of the two almost always works.

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Last edited by Auldthymer on Mon Oct 19, 2020 4:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 3:22 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 3:34 pm
Posts: 5889
mwr01 wrote:
+1 what Jerry said. Finding a good instructor to get you started properly will speed your progress and make for a far less frustrating experience. Enjoy.


+2. Don’t go fooling around with shotcams at this point. Get yourself to an instructor, and let them show you the basics like foot position, hold point, visual pick up points, and mounts.

That’s going to be your foundation to build your house of target reading and moves on.


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 3:48 pm 
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Rooster booster wrote:
Don’t go fooling around with shotcams at this point.


Yup :)

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 3:51 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2008 6:20 pm
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What games are giving you trouble - trap, skeet or sporting? If sporting, which types of presentations are giving you trouble?

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 5:01 pm 
Utility Grade

Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:22 pm
Posts: 2
Location: Yulee, FL
oneounceload wrote:
What games are giving you trouble - trap, skeet or sporting? If sporting, which types of presentations are giving you trouble?


Mostly (SC) fast crossers, birds and fast rabbits....... most quartering birds I can get.

Just tried the skeet range for the first time this past weekend... didn't do so well but, I was standing back off the skeet range in the "5 stand" area. Might try again this weekend from the actual Skeet stations.... Did better on the ones I actual broke where you are supposed too, in the center of the field. The ones I tried to "lead" I couldn't hit, assuming they got too far out...... I do find that any bird I just look at and don't think too much I can hit. Its when I start going over steps in my mind that I get into trouble........(do i have both eyes open, where is the gun mounted, did I mount the gun to my cheek or bring my cheek to the gun, etc...)

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 5:42 pm 
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I agree with the advice to find an instructor, but I also really like the Shotkam. I am also fairly new to clay shooting sports. I took a lesson early on, and that was great for setting me up with the proper fundamentals, checking the gun fit, etc.. However, I couldn't take the instructor with me every time I went shooting, and I was very frustrated not knowing where I was missing the shot.

I bought a Shotkam, and I think the thing is worth every penny spent. You can usually find out in just a few minutes where you are missing the shot, and take immediate steps to correct the problem. Otherwise, you spend the day scratching your head wondering how you missed.


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 7:20 pm 
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My ShotKam helped me quite a bit but I've been clay shooting a while and yes it'll show the where's but IMO not the more important why's. So that's why I agreed with RB and not rushing right out to get one at the present time.

Take a lesson or 2 to help understand the "whys" and get a handle on that then down the road get a ShotKam if inclined.

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Mon Oct 19, 2020 8:37 pm 
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Shoot with a partner looking over your shoulder. He'll tell ya if you wanna know or not. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 9:34 am 
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I learned by shooting a lot.

BUT , you can supercharge you advancement by getting a coach who can tell you WHY you miss. A coach who just says "you're behind" is a charlatan and a fake. Why you are behind , ahead , etc is the only way to learn.

I spent 30 yrs bird hunting and was about a 50% clay shooter when I started. I would practice where I shot the target in my sweet spot , earlier and later. I would shoot til I vaporized the target over and over. Chips count on tournament day but never on practice day.

I shot at least one case of shells for every 100 tournament targets.

Feel free to call me if you have a question.

Sera Russell 337-769-3260

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 9:53 am 
Utility Grade

Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2018 3:27 pm
Posts: 11
Location: Crockett, Texas
I agree on the Shotkam, I tried it and it did not have the desired results for me. Best advice I've had buy a coach is asking what did I see when the gun went bang. I try to discipline myself to ask myself this question after every shot whether I git or miss. I have larked over time that if I am totally focused on the detail of the target and my head is where it should be, then target breaks. I may not always be able to tell someone how I hit the target though. Maybe worth trying while you are searching for answers.


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 10:10 am 
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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 10:19 am 
Presentation Grade

Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2020 2:22 pm
Posts: 686
dallen749 wrote:
I agree on the Shotkam, I tried it and it did not have the desired results for me. Best advice I've had buy a coach is asking what did I see when the gun went bang. I try to discipline myself to ask myself this question after every shot whether I git or miss. I have larked over time that if I am totally focused on the detail of the target and my head is where it should be, then target breaks. I may not always be able to tell someone how I hit the target though. Maybe worth trying while you are searching for answers.

Do you ever ask yourself how the muzzle points at the intersection point with the target if your eyes are looking at the target? I am not suggesting that it can’t happen. On the contrary it is how most people shoot. I just think knowing the mechanism you are using to put the gun on the place the target is going to be while looking at where the target is would be helpful to your improvement. Lots of people like this to be a mystery. They just look at the target and it breaks. But I think knowing how your body moves the gun to generate lead must be helpful to hitting more targets. And corollary to that is knowing when you have generated the right amount of lead and when you haven’t. In other words using a spotter (coach?) or using a ShotKam.

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 10:25 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 3:34 pm
Posts: 5889
It’s no mystery Roberto.....it’s called eye/hand coordination. Used by all types of people daily, shooters or not.


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 8:52 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2008 11:12 am
Posts: 5608
Gun fit, proper mount, proper stance and learning how to read a target. Most of which is part of a lesson from a proven coach with good references and results. And that's for starters.


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 10:57 am 
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Shotcam won't help. Trigger time will.

Perfect gun fit is an illusion and eventually becomes an excuse for not learning to shoot.

Perfect gun mount is baloney. There are Olympic Gold medalists who have horrid gun mount/fit.

Go to a skeet field and learn how to shoot the crossers w/ swing thru . maintained and pull away. Use a Mod choke.

No excuses.

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Our prentice Tom may now refuse
To wipe his scoundrel master's shoes
For now he's free to sing and play
O'er the hills and far away.


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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 11:13 am 
Presentation Grade

Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2020 2:22 pm
Posts: 686
sera wrote:
Shotcam won't help. Trigger time will.

Perfect gun fit is an illusion and eventually becomes an excuse for not learning to shoot.

Perfect gun mount is baloney. There are Olympic Gold medalists who have horrid gun mount/fit.

Go to a skeet field and learn how to shoot the crossers w/ swing thru . maintained and pull away. Use a Mod choke.

No excuses.

If seems to me you are saying that if OP emulates the “horrid” fit of some champion, he too could be one. But you are a smart guy, so I know I must have misinterpreted your post. If you don’t hold out for best fit, what becomes your standard? Good enough is good enough?

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 Post subject: Re: Newbie question(s) on practicing
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2020 11:45 am 
Presentation Grade

Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2020 2:22 pm
Posts: 686
And also this: gun fit is a lot like meeting your in-laws for the first time. You only have one chance to make a first impression. With shotguns the fit you adapt to on your first one will be the one you apply for the rest of your life. It is imperative to get it right the first time. If you fit yourself to the gun instead of vice-versa, you are lost. Maybe not if you are world champion material, but for sure if you are like most other people.



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