National Skeet Shooting Association
National Skeet Shooting Association



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Who Says You Need a Gun to Practice?

When you think about it, skeet is really a game of memorization. You must remember the stance, hold points, and leads of all eight stations to consistently break all 25 clays. A mental lapse in any of these results in lost targets.

Most of us go to the range about once a week if we’re lucky. When we get there, our minds are filled with clutter from our personal lives. As we step on the first station, thinking of what’s needed to break targets is probably the last thing on our minds. We raise our gun, call for the target, and miss. This usually wakes us up, and it’s then that we start to concentrate on what has to be done to break the remaining targets.

This type of mental error doesn’t hurt you during a practice round, but it can be disastrous during a registered event. So what can be done to keep this from becoming a recurring problem?

The answer is to be able to step on any station, call for the target, and break it, without having to consciously force ourselves to think about how to do it. However, to reach this stage in your shooting, you must practice many, many rounds, and most of us just don’t have the time.

However, as the famous man once said, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” Recalling that skeet is primarily a mental game, you should start shooting a complete round mentally at least once each day.

See yourself stepping on each of the shooting stations. Picture your stance, hold points, and where to focus your eyes. Tell yourself where you want to break the target and with how much lead. Then call for the target, pull the trigger, and SMOKE IT! Do this at least once a day until you’re familiar with the shooting procedure for each station. Know it as well as you know your own name.

Once you’ve mastered the mental process, the next time you step on station one, even if your not consciously thinking of how to break the target, your subconscious will be. Soon, missing targets at station one, or any other, will be a thing of the past.
By Barry Greenberg