Have a Happy New Year!
Absolutely this. Spot on Jimmy.
Hunting for food and/or for animal husbandry is acceptable (when done humanely), but hunting just for the kill? Hell no.
Don’t go grouping all gun owners or hunters together. I know no one in competition target shooting or animal husbandry that thinks shooting a lion is acceptable. It isn’t, and it doesn’t help those of us who shoot with legitimate reasons (and there are legitimate reasons – but this lion hunt is so far removed from legitimate as to be sickening and disgusting).
My recent hunt post, for one legitimate reason;
Team shoot 50m/100m Marsden and King today. 2nd year running I’ve been awarded top shooter in the squad.
Joint 4th top shot out of the 52 competitors (including some internationals). Good fun shoot.
4×5 shots at 50yds and 2×10 shots at 100yds. I did reasonably (averaging 97/100). The team didn’t win this year, but it’s coming…
After a break from shooting due to injury, and then fighting with retraining myself due to muscle memory and the side-effects of taking up kick-boxing, I am pulling myself back up in my averages (average points out of 100).
I was averaging over 99 two years ago, but when I came back to shooting I had dropped to 96-97. I just seemed to have forgotten how hard it actually is after it had become so natural for me previously.
Today though I made a few changes to my technique, refocused my mind and really concentrated on the whole process… and finally got back up to shooting a ton (100).
The ton wasn’t the cleanest I had shot, but it was still a ton. Personally I prefer a clean 97 to a dirty 100, because it shows control and consistency – but for competitions you can’t argue with the higher scoring.
The video demonstrates how target shooting isn’t exactly a great sport to watch, but it is a great sport to teach you to focus.
Hopefully the music will help….
So, back in August 2008 I injured my back. This put me out of action with my sport of target shooting for a long, long time…
As I was about to start getting back into it, the cat attack happened, which delayed me again due to a wrist injury. This September I dusted my rifle off and finally started up again – shot 3 times at 25 meters over 3 Wednesday evenings, then went off to a 50 yards / 100 yards open air team shoot today.
I have to thank those who have helped me in all of my training from day 1 back in 2006, as it seems to have stuck. Thanks to my current club too, as in those three weeks I was back up to a reasonable standard. Still a bit of a way to go to get that 99 average I had two years ago, but really happy to have come back at the level I did. It’s all about being positive, relaxed and comfortable that you know what you are doing without having to think too hard about it.
A big push came from my club team captain, who put me into a four man team shoot as soon as I was back shooting. The deep end is a real great place to snap the focus back on!
As it turned out the focus snapped in sharply. I felt good in myself – the kickboxing, boxing etc have tidied me up physically and mentally, so that side of things helped me out as I came back to shooting.
The competition was over 50 yards and 100 yards. Familiar faces mingled with new faces on the various teams that showed up to compete. There was slight drizzle and intermittent sunny patches on the range – which is one of the darkest ranges around, and not one of the easiest to shoot at due to the lay out. A good challenge then….
I started out on the 50yd range – A pair of sighters (if required) and 2 pairs of targets – 10 shots per pair. I scored a 95 and a 100, which I was happy enough with. The 95 was a bit low, but the ton made up for it.
The second set of targets were at the 100yd range – A sighter with 2 targets – 10 shots each. I scored 96 and 97, which once more left me in a good place.
When the final scores were posted I was surprised to see I was in the top 10 of all the shooters there (I think I was 6, but can’t be certain). I was the top shot in our team (only a point or two separated the top three), so I came back with a Marsden “patch” prize – but to be honest, it was very close between us and could have gone either way.
As for the team placement… not so good. One of the team had a really bad day. Really bad. He has eye problems and is up for an operation – and he had trouble with his rifle sites. As such we were not destined to win the whole contest.
Had a forth shooter scored around the same as the rest of us, then by the look of the total scores, we could have won. Never mind – it’s always a good shoot with good people and there is always next year. Hopefully a friend of mine (Jez), who has just started shooting and is showing a lot of promise, will be in the team for next year – and if that is the case the others had best watch out.
TWA2LB.CO.UK is back – and this time it’s all about the health and fitness baby!
Yup, for those who follow me for the action, health and fitness things I do (ha!) I will be splitting off certain blog entries and putting them on TWA2LB without all the other stuff I talk about.
It’ll ALL still be here, but TWA2LB will just focus certain aspects.
Is there a demand…. well, I wouldn’t do it if there wasn’t.
Happy New Year…. New Decade EVERYONE!
This last one was like a shower with a mixer tap that just can’t make its mind up if it is hot or cold.
The worst of times, the best of times – all in the last ten years. I haven’t had a ten year stretch that has had such extremes.
Ryan – who was nearer a brother to me than a friend, died. – I got married. – My Dad passed away. – Alex was born. – We lost house deal after house deal, money hand over fist, before we finally settled. – We gained 3 cats but lost one. – I had to leave a job due to medical conditions (now cleared up). – Met new friends, great friends – Left another job after a works injury was shrugged off and left us on the edge of losing the house….and then landed in the great job I am in now. – I started shooting and got the highest awarded proficiency the NSRA give, won a few competitons… then had to quit shooting due to the works injury. – I lost the last family member from my Dad’s family tree that had grown up with him and who had all the missing answers. – Boilers failed leaving the house below freezing, water tanks ruptured flooding the loft! – The family car was written off… Too much other stuff went down and up and up and down to mention – but it was a roller coaster.
Things I wouldn’t change for the world – and things I would do anything to change…
Hot. Cold. Hot. Cold. Hot. Cold.
Things have settled down – One day at a time.
Here’s hoping the plumbing is sorted for the next ten years – it would be good to have a bit of middle ground for once.
Back in January 2008, before my back injury, new job and a lot of other stuff (read the blog and catch up…) I was training and competing a great deal with my target rifle.
I will say that I am by no means up there with the people who devote their lives to the sport – I just can’t afford that… so if you read this and think that I’m any good, then take it from me, I am a long way off of those in the top competitions – I take my hat off to those people – I wish I could spare that time and money, but I can’t.
Health reasons stopped me for a while, and now I’m getting back to it… and to get some extra wind in my sails I am posting this report I wrote for www.snipercentral.com whilst I was a much, much more active member. Now I am getting back into it all, I will be active there again – Great bunch of people with some very fine skills. Top place for newbies and oldbies alike!
Anyway, this may read a bit odd as it is out of context and out of it’s original web space, but to fill in a bit before I carry on….
“Recoil” is a guy who shoots well… and at the time had told people that they needed to concentrate on getting to grips with their rifles without all the extra bits such as scopes and bipods to help the shot. He suggested using reduced range US Marine training targets. These are silhouettes that symbolise a target at, say 800yds, but are scaled so that you only place them 25 yds away…. so it saves space and is ideal for training. The idea is to shot with non telescopic sights and just use a sling. Most of the guys that carried out this task used AR15’s that are autoloaders… I used a .22 target rifle that needed to be reloaded after each shot… which isa handicap compared to their rifles… especially during a timed run!
I did my practice targets and had my fun, but didn’t want to post my results on their forum initially, as I was much more serious and focused than the most of type of people who were trying the exercise. I didn’t want to put people off, as I was coming at these targets from a totally different background and with a skill set better suited for the task.
I am always happy to help share what I know, and more than happy to pick up new lessons and skills myself, and after much poking and requests from other Sniper Central members I published a report.
Just looking over it again after almost 2 years (Jeeeez!) has made me want to get right back into serious competition again. I miss the focus – and my back is as good as it is going to get, so it’s time to get training!
When I last shot I had just qualified as a Mastershot with a score of 396/400 – which gave an average of 99/100. I hope to be back there within the year….
Here is the report and the comments that followed it….HERE, but for Sometimespace…..
…and to get me going, and to share a little about my activities in another web group…. here is that report…
Newbies stay away!!!!
A fair few of you have asked for a report from me…..I’ve not wanted to do one before because what I do is not like what you mostly do. It can’t be compared – even though it is still lead tossing, it is a different school of lead tossing.
Right, I need to make it clear that I am not bragging – I am not showing off, and I am not saying that I am better than anyone else.
I do this. It is my thing. I don’t have to be able to run with a bergen, I don’t need to kill to survive and/or protect.
I sling my rifle, look through a dioptre sight (just a 3.7mm hole in a glass ring) and just shoot at small black spots with a “tack driver” that will always be able to out perform me.
I practice. A lot.
I joined SC to help gain some skills to help me. Skills that the “usual” target shooter probably wouldn’t be able to give me.
I shoot at targets that are much smaller than the reduced range practice pictures that Recoil put up. My usual 25yd target card (I shoot up to 100yds with the .22) is made up of ten individual diagrams that mean I have to move around the card – 1 shot in each diagram. This means upsetting my position very slightly for each shot.
Those black dots I shoot at….I have to hit inside the very middle ring every time to win….without touching the line at all. That’s a lot of dry firing, relaxation techniques, focusing, listening to others….and practice. Currently I have a 98.2 average – by no means the best. That middle ring counts as 10 points – and a 10 spot card can give you 100 points. Simple stuff.
When I shot Recoils reduced range targets I was just out for fun. As I did not have to move around the paper I could just punch away. Because of the results I even got my Club President to sign as a witness.
Why did I say “Newbies stay away?” – A bit of a joke – but I always wanted to play guitar. After hearing Jimi Hendrix I realised I’d never be that good – so never started to learn. If you’re a newbie, then just practice…I’ve only had 3 years trigger time – but I’m in engineering and was taught my whole life to “LISTEN and DO AS I AM TAUGHT”.
I was also told that you never stop learning – so never stop listening.
I’m only as good as the people who help me – and that means each shot I fire has a little bit of all of you in it. For that I thank you.
RIGHT…..Those darn reduced range targets…..
20 shots from a single loader bolt gun. 2 minutes (well….just shy of 2 minutes). That included removing the jam caused by my fat fingers ramming a case (my very first jam!!!!)
Keeping on one target without moving made this an easy task for me. My eye stayed behind the sights and my ammo was exactly where it had to be to just reach, pick, load, pull…It has taken 3 years to get my position this far….and I’m still not happy with it…
Man….20 shots…. most of those just went through and hit the back wall….and my ammo isn’t cheap (for a .22!!!)
A bit more relaxing. Once the first shot goes in, the rest follow – once more thanks to me just having to hold one position (unlike the movement I am usually used to). These diagrams took 10 minutes total to shoot….and yes….that is 10 shots in each.
I put these in a range report because I didn’t want to post them in Recoils “reduced Range” thread. I’m a hard practising focused competition shooter – and I didn’t want these pictures to put anyone else off of having a go.
To be honest with you – I’m a bit embarrassed about even posting them here – It just feels like I’m bragging (Recoil will say grow a spine now!!!!)
Lots of it. The lake was close to flooding in places.
Finally a break in the weather and a chance to get my LEKI poles out and get some freedom from my back. I’m still suffering from the sneeze the other day – so Nordic Walking is freeing it all up…again.
A new route took me past some army training grounds and rifle range. All very busy around the area with gun fire and explosions. I found an area of derelict houses and tied up old cars – very odd, but an interesting site.
Along the way I also found an old concrete bridge. Strange to find something like this in the middle of nowhere, but that’s what makes walks around MOD land interesting!
Carrying on I came across an interesting tree root (well, I thought it looked cool!), and a track that opened out onto a huge open area of marsh/ferns. Each walk opens up new areas to head off to – which really helps in keeping my sanity at the moment!
Back home Alex proves a point from a previous blog post! (Picky, but easy post) He loves his real looking toy cars!
It’ll be a Christmas for kids this year. Credit crunch and reduced sick pay (Grrrrr) means things are a bit tight. It also means I’m pretty upset – but I leave that for now, as I’m angry too.
Luckily Alex has very simple, but specific tastes. He loves his toy cars, and I mean loves them! He doesn’t care if he has two or three the same, as long as they are realistic. Yup, he’s picky too! He isn’t keen on toy cars that look like toys. Matchbox type cars are top billing for him – and as the supermarkets have own brand cars for low prices, I can’t grumble!
Today after Physio we did a little shopping – Sainsbury’s are doing toys 1/2 price at the moment, so we picked up a half price “Little Tykes” car mechanics set, with bench, tools and engine/car to work on – but don’t tell Alex, as it’s his Christmas present!
Alex was treated to a couple of car sets – under £3 the lot! They kept him occupied whilst Chris did the heavy work and loaded up the trolley with the work bench! Usually on a shopping trip Alex will get one toy car as a treat, and that keeps him happy for the duration – and these two box sets did their job perfectly…. maybe too perfectly, as he held them all the time, even in the car on the way home…where he fell asleep still holding them tightly!
As for my back, I can feel things getting better – or at least changing for the better – so many thanks to Judith. A trained finger pressed in “just the right place” can be a very, very painful thing – so always keep your phsyiotherapist on side! Annoyingly though I hit a set back the other day as I sat up to eat. Whilst upright I sneezed, which has left my lower back aching constantly again, but also tightened up my shoulders and neck. Where I’ve been holding myself a bit taut to avoid hurting my back, the sneeze jarred me a bit harder than the usual relaxed sneeze. A sneeze!!! Damn it!
If it wasn’t for a few things I’d be going mad! Chris and Alex keep me going (Alex is a real star as he keeps me smiling with his intensity as he plays!). The Nordic Walking gives me a bit of freedom, and physio from Judith keeps my recovery progressing (progressing is the thing here – if nothing was happening I’d be more than a bit worried). The iPhone just keeps me in touch with the World (cyber speaking, that is), with twitterings, textings, Facebook and blogging.