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How to Shoot Skeet – 8 Helpful Skeet Shooting Tips

Skeet shooting is an enjoyable sport in its own right and for hunters in the off-season. The methodical procession of contestants from station to station and the skill and concentration of  skeet shooting is reminiscent of golf, but the thrill of aiming at a flying 4-5” target sets this sport in a league of its own. 

For off-season hunters looking to keep their shooting form strong with skeet and for recreational shooters new to the sport, these tips can get you started or help you improve your game。 

shooting shotgun

1. Know the rules.

Skeet shooting is more intuitive when you know what to expect from the course. In a round of skeet, you’ll take 25 shots from 8 different shooting stations arranged in an arch. Two trap houses are at either end of the arch and release the clay pigeons, which fly in an arch across the field. 

The clay pigeons are released from slightly different heights, but the height of each arc is about 15 feet above the ground。 

You aim at clay pigeons from the same two trap houses throughout the entire round, but, as you move stations, you’ll have different angles at the target。 Watch the flight pattern of the bird carefully as other people take shots so you know what to expect。 

2. Perfect the stance.

A good shot starts the moment you step into the shooting station. Block out all your distractions and focus fully on the fundamentals when you’re preparing for the shot. 

安徽11选5Your stance is the foundation of the shot; it’s what keeps you stable and mobile as you track the bird and take the shot. Keep a weight-forward stance with about 60% of your weight on your front foot. Your stance should be set before you shoulder your gun.

3. Mount your gun.

The mount is a fundamental move that should be repeated the same way each time. Take time to practice this motion away from the skeet shooting range to commit this motion to muscle memory. 

After mounting your gun, take time to settle in before calling for the bird. Amateur shooters often rush to call as soon as they shoulder the gun, but this often leads to excessive motion and difficulty in tracking the bird from the start. 

skeet shooting

4. Refine the swing.

Track the bird with your eyes and allow the muzzle of the gun to follow this motion。 Keep both eyes open, but only your dominant eye should be focused on the bird。 A tight cheek weld helps your gun follow your eyes for the best accuracy。 

Before you call, focus your eyes on the spot just above the trap house where the bird appears to make the most out of the swing。 Maintain a subtle lead on the bird to account for the motion。 Finding the right lead time requires trial and error and may vary with the conditions and course。 

The arch movement of the gun is another step you should practice alone and commit to muscle memory. It’s cost-effective and time-conscious to practice the mechanics of a skeet shot in your garage or backyard with an unloaded gun, and your game will be better for it.

5. Fire.

安徽11选5Fire at the high-point of the bird’s trajectory, the top of the arc. Don’t pull the trigger or disrupt your swing as you take the shot, but gently squeeze the trigger instead. Continue the motion of the swing after taking the shot as the follow-through. 

6. Learn your weapon.

A skeet shooting gun is generally an over/under double-barreled shotgun. The range and strength of the gun are unimportant for skeet shooting. Keeping relatively open chokes can help you hit the target more often. 

Practice with the same gun and learn how it fires by patterning your shotgun. 

7. Find some friends.

As with any sport or hobby, skeet shooting is more fun with a group of friends. Up to five people can make up the squad that moves together between stations during the round. Shooting with more experienced people can also help you improve your game by providing an example and often a friendly source of tips. 

Sportsmanship is a big part of skeet shooting, and shooting with a group can help you cultivate that virtue。 Look at each shot as a chance to improve and don’t let one bad shot impact your next one。 

Gun handling etiquette is especially important when shooting with other people. Shoot safely by handling every gun as though it’s loaded and keeping your gun pointed straight up or down when you’re not in the stand. 

If you don’t have dove hunting buddies to convert to skeet shooters, join the gun club for regular access to the range and the chance to join a skeet shooting league. It can also be helpful to join the so you can shoot in tournaments against people of similar experience and even have the chance to be nationally ranked. 

clay targets

8. Use proper equipment.

Eye and ear protection can protect your senses from damage caused by skeet shooting. Wear sunglasses or shooting glasses and earplugs or earmuffs to the range. 

Consult with an expert before purchasing a gun to ensure it fits properly。 This reduces the impact you feel from the recoil so you can have a more comfortable round。 The right fit also ensures that you don’t have to struggle to keep the gun steady as you track the bird, leading to more accurate rounds。 

The Take-Home Message

Skeet shooting requires repetition to hone the skills and muscle memory necessary for a good round。 These tips can help you direct your practice and steepen the learning curve so you can improve your score in a local competition or enjoy a more successful turkey season when the fall rolls around。 

安徽11选5Browse the Mossy Oak website for more tips about outdoor sports。 Mossy Oak is the leading resource for tips and tricks from the experts for sport shooting, bird hunting, and more。

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