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Skeet Shooting: From a Game to an Olympic Tradition

 

In this world the outdoor sports ‘realm’ offers something for absolutely everyone. There are many people in this land that very much want to be marksman as a form of entertainment and recreation.

 

Skeet shooting has expanded by leaps and bounds over the past two decades, becoming a sport that is not only recreation but also extremely competitive. People have come from across the globe to compete in special events, as well as on television shows that have cropped up around the sport.

 

Skeet shooting is not the only type of competitive shooting, however; when speaking about this wide category, you must also look at both trap shooting skeet shootingand sporting clays. But when it comes to skeet, the interest in this particular sport expands every day – even with one form of skeet shooting becoming so popular that it reached Olympic status (i.e., Olympic skeet or international skeet).

 

Now when it comes to the American version of the game, the clay discs fly a distance of 62 yards. Whereas, when you embark on the international skeet competition, you are speaking about disks that are far harder to break because of the thick dome center they have and because they travel over seventy yards which causes a faster target speed and far more practice necessary in order to acquire the skills needed to be a champion.

 

High-quality, double-barreled over and under shotguns are usually the hunters choice, with either an improved cylinder choke or a skeet choke (one with a wider pattern).

 

Now, it’s no surprise that it was a bird hunter that actually created skeet shooting in the first place. Originally called ‘Clock shooting,’ the course was Clay Pigeons and Shotgun Shells 2first created as a circle with a radius of twenty-five yards; its circumference was marked off like a clock with a trap set at the noon position. Shooting from all directions was how this first came to be, but as the game progressed and more and more people began seeing the danger of shooting ‘all round,’ a second trap was placed in the six o’clock position, cutting the course in half.

 

The appeal of this sport was growing fast, so in 1926, the very first national event that came about was when the “National Sportsman Magazine” offered a prize of one hundred dollars to the person who could come up with a name for this brand new ‘national’ sport. Skeet it was! Which was actually a word used in WWII when teaching gunners the principle of leading and timing on a flying target.

 

Skeet became international and well-renowned very recently, however, being accepted by the Olympic Games in the summer of 2000. In Olympic skeet, there is a random delay of between zero to three seconds after the shooter calls for the target to be released. And the shooter is required to hold the gun so that the gun butt is at mid-torso level until the target appears. Simplifying things, American skeet offers no delay after the shooter has called, and the shooter may do this with the gun already pre-set on their shoulder.

 

When it comes to competing in a full tournament, the entrant is typically looking at five events. And it is the title of HOA Champion that is extremely coveted.

 

Clay pigeon shooting, (AKA Inanimate Bird Shooting) is also a realm to explore. When embarking on this sport, the enthusiast is looking at a true art form that was created by shooting special flying targets. This is one sport that offers an extreme amount of ‘competitions and types.’ In fact, there are at least twenty regulated competitions out there.

 

When it comes to Sporting Clays, the enthusiast is looking into joining a truly ‘British’ sporting discipline most of the time, because it brings in the fans and the enthusiastic crowds. Not only are you speaking about a variety of targets, but the targets are thrown in a variety of trajectories, angles, speeds, elevations and distances. All of this work makes it a true ‘mirror’ of what it is to shoot live – soaring – prey. The disciplines involved in this ‘group’ include English sporting, international (FITASC) sporting, super sporting sport trap, and Compak sporting. And when it comes to a true adventure and a whole lot of fun, these types of target shooting are the ones most people want to be a part of.

 

So for all those outdoorsmen and women who want to try something new, learn a wide variety of skills, techniques and methods, or simply want to be a part of the ‘shooting’ events and competitions – Skeet shooting is made for you!

 

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