What should warn the beginning shooter?

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What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Amati on 1/10/2018, 9:35 am

What are the sometimes ignored signals that should tell the beginning  bullseye shooter to stop wasting money on ammunition?

Is it old age, eye sight, shoulder/arm/hand strength, lungs and breathing, general physical condition, mental focusing or the psychology of shooting?

Many insiders are much too PC polite to tell somebody that they're just not destined to rise above the "buffoon" class and the beginner is left to suffer on their own the ignominious slow separation from the field that they had hopes to join. 
(I've seen it happen in automobile racing where no amount of schooling brought about any improvement.)

So, what are the big warning signs not to be ignored?

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by mspingeld on 1/10/2018, 9:43 am

I see shooters on the line for years who don't seem to be improving but they seem to enjoy themselves immensely. I also see former masters who no longer seem to be able to shoot those scores. So, in my opinion, if it's not fun, quit. That being said, some people don't need to reach the higher levels to enjoy a sport. Look at all the weekend softball players. Good exercise, camaraderie, time away from the spouse Smile. If a shooter has some physical difficulty with vision, strength or other physical challenge, it may limit how far they can go but it's an individual decision whether to continue or not.

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Bullseye_Stan on 1/10/2018, 10:15 am

Yep, when the fun stops then it's time to move on.  I don't think there is truly 'wasted' ammunition in shooting Bullseye.  If one is aiming and trying to improve, the fired ammunition is not depleted without purpose.  Trigger time firing live rounds is necessary to improve as all the dry firing, air pistol, and mental imaging can't duplicate that experience.  270 rounds must be fired for a 2700 and 180 for an 1800 so getting comfortable firing that many (focused) rounds is good training.

As far as improvement, I've yet to see someone who can't or hasn't improved with practice.  Will they ever be a world champion?  Probably not, but there are many golfers (tennis players, runners.. the list goes on) that can say the same.  I'm not that familiar with car racing, but I think it takes the commitment to wreck and nearly die several times (I'm comparing this to Evil Knieval) to win - but I could be wrong on that.

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by jglenn21 on 1/10/2018, 10:31 am

Like golf, BE is an individual sport..  after a while it dawns on you that equipment will only do so much..   in the end it's all about you...If you can't come to grips with that part of the equation then.. it time to throw your clubs in the lake and sell your pistols ( for a good price) to the rest of us. Laughing

plenty to compete for in BE.. win your class.. or simply shoot better than you did last match..  shoot better SF scores... all of it is fun with the right attitude.
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by dronning on 1/10/2018, 10:35 am

+1 on as long as you are having fun!  

If you are determined to make Master but are frustrated that you aren't improving it's time to take a break and determine what to change in your training or possibly get a coach.  Self analysis is hard for some people so having someone critique you can really make a difference.

- Dave
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Slartybartfast on 1/10/2018, 10:58 am

My knee jerk reaction was simply: Are you enjoying the sport?
And I was pleased to see the others that have responded say the same.

For safety sake I would add: Can you follow range rules and safely handle and discharge the firearm?
For competitions sake? Is there an open division with open spaces or an invitational for which the shooter qualifies?

Age, eyesight, strength and other factors might be addressed by finding a competition other than strict Bullseye rules. Supported pistol, scopes, bench shooting. If there's no official competition with any of those, so be it. Find what works to keep going and keep enjoying trips to the range for practice.

The following may be over the top if any sarcasm was missed in the original post. But I know for a fact that there are people out there to whom the following is relevant.

"Success" is a very personal thing. And if you think it's being "PC" to avoid being a jerk to people when it's none of your business to impose your views of success, so be it.

Personal success may be simply participating, or maintaining performance, or simply being able to finish. Some define success as beating others and having bragging rights. Others are happy about bragging about beating their personal best. For some, the success is getting out of the house to participate in an enjoyable activity.

How far back in the pack of marathon runners should someone go at the finish line before shouting at people they're "buffoons" and losers and shouldn't have bothered?

If you did that, even to those that finish hours after the official cutoff, I personally would be proud of anyone who'd use their last remaining energy to kick you in the groin.

Now, the classification may have been made tongue in cheek. But "buffoon" class? Wow. I'd say that's a disgusting attitude to have. If a competition has open positions, everyone should be accepted and welcomed and made to feel at home.

The old adage of "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything" predates the whiny complaints against being PC by decades. 

"Elitist buffoon" is a class I'd bestow on those that feel they're above everyone else and that everyone should meet their definition of success to be worthy of participation.

Now, if someone is being overly optimist in their dreams, well who are we to destroy them. A good coach, and a decent human being, will direct conversation to helping the participant reach their full potential and encourage them to break their personal bests. And if necessary with a simple benchmark of what personal performance has to be achieved to "move up".
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Aprilian on 1/10/2018, 1:09 pm

Amati wrote: tell the beginning  bullseye shooter to stop wasting money on ammunition?

that they're just not destined to rise above the "buffoon" class and the beginner is left to suffer on their own the ignominious slow separation from the field that they had hopes to join. 

(I've seen it happen in automobile racing where no amount of schooling brought about any improvement.)
Posting dismissive questions on the internet?  That's one sign I might tell someone to stop wasting MY time.   lol!

There are plenty of people enjoying, golf, fishing, shooting, etc. who don't care about gaining the number one spot in that hobby.   
I wondered what unfulfilled dreams other people kept hidden inside themselves.
If only they'd realize that the first steps were the hardest, that even a dream only partially experienced is better than no dream at all.  For years I'd believed that a person with the right combination of interest and perserverence could invariably do one of two things: either achieve his or her dream, or have a wonderful time trying.  And sometimes the goal itself wasn't that important - it was the learning and the sense of personal satisfaction along the way that mattered the most.
Gerry Spiess
from Alone Against the Atlantic

As a motorcycle racing instructor, I have students who don't seem to be progressing and then one day they put it all together.  If I had been rude or condescending to them, they might have quit before making their eventual break-through

And finally, what if the hobby they really love is reloading and they shoot just to have a need to reload?

Please don't post this kind of judgement disguised as a question.


Last edited by Aprilian on 1/10/2018, 1:10 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by robert84010 on 1/10/2018, 1:10 pm

I am really interested to hear your definition of "buffoon class." The only thing I can think of as buffoon is typically at the indoor ranges leaning against the bench and mag dumping with no concern about where it goes. Anybody can elevate above that.

As far as I'm concerned anyone attending NRA matches has already elevated themselves well above buffoon.

Warning signs? The only warning sign I can think of in a beginner that would signal the inability to get better in this sport is: someone that will not listen.

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Jon Eulette on 1/10/2018, 1:30 pm

I build top level 1st class accurized BE pistols. The majority of my shooters are at the expert and below levels. If I had to wait for them to make Master first I'd have to pick a new hobby. I also coach some shooters. Every one of them grow at their own rate.
So really it boils down to are we having fun? When I was younger and trying to set the world on fire shooting/winning at BE I was miserable! Yep. I had years where 3rd place was my worst finish excluding Perry. It wasn't until I started shooting as an older guy that I actually liked shooting. So be safe, have fun and buy/shoot what you can afford.
Jon
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by MarkOue on 1/10/2018, 2:56 pm

Slartybartfast wrote:
"Success" is a very personal thing. And if you think it's being "PC" to avoid being a jerk to people when it's none of your business to impose your views of success, so be it.

"Elitist buffoon" is a class I'd bestow on those that feel they're above everyone else and that everyone should meet their definition of success to be worthy of participation.

Well said!

At our local club I provide coaching when asked and otherwise only to those who are ready for coaching.  What?  Yes, many will shoot enjoyably for years not wanting anyone to interrupt their fun shooting bullseye.  Sometimes though I will observe a shooter who is positive and trying to figure it out.  That's when the Obiwan Markobe in me comes out and guides them to higher scores.  "Let the X-ring be with you and you with the X-ring."

That said, I shoot sporting clays with vintage Parkers, AH Fox, and Dan Lefever side by sides.  I have no interest in shooting competitively with scatterguns, nor do I want every Tom, Dick, and Harry to offer me advice.  I shoot those old guns for pure enjoyment not wanting to spoil my fun with constantly trying to improve my scores.  I reserve that for pistol and rifle shooting.

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by TexasShooter on 1/10/2018, 3:46 pm

Amati wrote:
...So, what are the big warning signs not to be ignored?

Safety. Whether the shooter is a beginner or high master doesn't matter, if they can't be safe they need to go play something else. Other than that there are no limitations except the ones we put on ourselves. I probably qualify for the buffoon class but since I run the match I doubt they're going to run me off anyime soon  Smile .

We have Bullseye shooters at our club that will never, ever move above marksman. Physical limitations, no interest in practice (and there is nothing wrong with that), whatever the reason they're stuck at marksman. First to show up and help set up, last to leave after cleaning up, cheerful no matter what their target looks like, encouraging no matter what my target looks like. They enjoy the day, always trying to improve and never losing sleep if they don't. They'll never travel to a regional match and certainly won't ever make it to Camp Perry...and they don't care, they're there because they enjoy our Saturday mornings.

We need a few thousand more just like 'em...

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Amati on 1/10/2018, 5:35 pm

Aprilian wrote:


Please don't post this kind of judgement disguised as a question.

Nothing disguised here, it is an honest question that doesn't deserve being accused of trolling. 

I may have made a poor choice of words (English being a third language to me)  and I accept the blame for it but I assure you that my intent is sincere. 

The unanimous opinions of all the responses proved to me that the sport of BE is one where the competitors are not solely focused on rankings and ultimate tournament achievement but equally, or maybe even more so, enjoy the camaraderie of the contestants. 

I'll sound off by expressing a huge thank you to all and offering an apology for writing my question in a style that could be misinterpreted.

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by sbtzc on 1/10/2018, 6:02 pm

Retracted


Last edited by sbtzc on 1/11/2018, 12:32 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Retracted)
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Aprilian on 1/10/2018, 6:46 pm

Amati wrote:
Aprilian wrote:


Please don't post this kind of judgement disguised as a question.

(English being a third language to me)  but I assure you that my intent is sincere. 
Sorry.  Your english is very good, I didn't even entertain the possibility it might not be your first language.
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by MarkOue on 1/11/2018, 6:10 am

TexasShooter wrote:


We need a few thousand more just like 'em...

Agreed!  

Out of that next 1000 Saturday morning shooters a champion may emerge.  If not those guys and gals support and love our sport the same as we do.

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Slartybartfast on 1/11/2018, 8:53 am

Amati wrote:

The unanimous opinions of all the responses proved to me that the sport of BE is one where the competitors are not solely focused on rankings and ultimate tournament achievement but equally, or maybe even more so, enjoy the camaraderie of the contestants. 
The above is true of EVERY sport.
Without a critical mass of participants that compete for the love of the sport, no sport can survive. Kids stop playing baseball or hockey for in pick-up and shinny leagues and the professionals will soon be out of a job for lack of new players and lack of an audience.

BTW: Apology accepted on the choice of words. As I said in my reply, your question may or may not have been meant in the way that I responded to. But I think what I wrote is very relevant to those that do espouse the views of sport in the way your question could be (and was by many) interpreted.
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Bullseye_Stan on 1/12/2018, 6:43 am

If I were to give one warning to a new Bullseye (precision pistol, etc.) competitor, it would be:  Don't expect to see this shooting sport televised.

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by mikemyers on 1/15/2018, 8:03 am

I've got one different thought.   In radio control car racing, whether at the local level, or a World Championship, the final events are sorted by ability.  The same racer, could race in the "B-Main", and finish first or second, and bump up to the A-Main with the faster racers, and with the identical performance finish 7th or 9th.  I did that for many years.  There were lots of racers who were faster than me, but they often drove faster than their ability, and crashed out.  Me?  I was usually enjoying the racing, even if I wasn't at the "top".

How well you do depends on YOU.  How that stacks up against your competitors depends a lot on THEM.

Moral of that story, to enjoy the sport, consider the only competitor you've got to be how you did the week or month before.  If you're improving, that's wonderful.  And even if you're not, if you're enjoying what you're doing, why not continue to enjoy it?
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by fpk on 1/15/2018, 10:11 am

If I had my first year to do over again, this is the advise I would give myself:
- Do NOT chase equipment for at least the first year. Settle on a 22 and 45 quickly that is "good enough" and focus entirely on fundamentals until you can shoot expert scores.
- Adopt a training program for at-home with elements from this article: https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2017/12/7/drill-your-way-to-victory/
- Dry fire 10-to-1. Use range time to assess scoring progress, or focused training (e.g. ball & dummy)
- Get out and shoot matches no matter how well you shoot.

Unlike precision rifle where conditions and/or ballistics can predominate the results in any given match, this is all about you and your ability to score. If you score well for your class, you will win.

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Toz35m on 1/15/2018, 5:05 pm

It really depends on what you want to get out of BE.

If you want to see your scores improve then you might want to set some goals and figure out how to achieve them.

Maybe your goal is to get out of the house and just being doing something and your scores are not a concern.
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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by lyman1903 on 1/17/2018, 10:23 am

one thing I would warn a new competitor about would be the more experienced competitors,

when I started out shooting Service Rifle years ago, I was fortunate to start on a range (I was a club member) that had somewhat relaxed rules for the sport,
not relaxed safety, but relaxed as in you were allowed to compete even if you did not have the proper firearm, just to get your feet wet, so to speak,  for a few matches,

some of the competitors only shot short course, others were members of the State Team, (Expert up to High Masters)

that was a gold mine as far as having folks at a match with you that you could chat about the sport, do's and don'ts  , reloading , fundamentals etc etc,

the warning would be not to think each fellow competitor would be approachable,

most would bend over backward to help a new shooter, and give tips to those that needed them
some would not give anyone but a fellow high master the time of day

I realize everyone is different, and yes some newby will ask you a seemingly crazy question while you are shooting a string,, seen it happen, , and had it happen to me during an offhand string


reading the posts here, and realized the OP did not mean anything negative by his buffoon comments, however just wanted to add that if anyone in the sport, (rifle, pistol, shotgun) truly thinks like that, just remember  you were a beginner once too, and no matter how great you thought you were then,  someone likely thought of you as a buffoon,,,, Cool



thought of a joke I had heard when I started shooting,

High Power (Service Rifle) shooter,  Smallbore Shooter and a Bullseye shooter are walking to firing line at Perry,
as they are walking,  they come across a big ole mudhole,
Bullseye guy just steps over it and continues on,
Smallbore guy gets mad, storms off the the range control to file a protest on range conditions
Service Rifle guy get down in the mud in position,,,

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Re: What should warn the beginning shooter?

Post by Wobbley on 1/17/2018, 11:54 am

There is a reason some High Masters don’t have a lot of time for talking to newbies. If they’re at a match, they want to keep the conversation to a minimum to concentrate and keep their mental game focused. They also dont want to get into a discussion about esoterica about “what makes this (item) better or worse nor do they necessarily want to critique or coach fundamentals. They know what works for them. They might not know what works for you and they may not be a good coach.

As a HM HP shooter I’ve often been asked the “what, why, how” type questions and I’ve never been unapproachable in reason. But there’s a time and place. I’m a decent coach but not the best one.
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