10 hours ago
Thursday, September 18, 2008
New Shooter Report x 25 or so
This past Saturday, I was a volunteer instructor for the Gun Owner's Action League (MA state NRA affiliate) Women on Target event hosted by Westford Sportsmen's Club and NEShooters LLC. Women on Target is a program of the Women of the NRA designed to introduce women to the shooting sports. GOAL hosts 6-10 WoT events a year at various clubs around the state. The events include the NRA Home Firearms Safety course and a lecture on MA law (which satisfies the training requirements for a MA FID or LTC) and a chance to try out various shooting disciplines depending on the club's facilities.
Westford's event included pistol, rifle, and shotgun. I ended up working on the Trap range. As posted earlier, I'm pretty new to shotgun sports. Jon Green talked up my beginners luck at sporting clays, and they needed another person on Trap, so off I went. I like to think that my relative newness to the sport helped in that I remembered what it was like to be new because it was a few weeks ago instead of a few decades ago.
I learned a lot from instructing. It further drove home how important proper swing and follow through is. I could watch just the shooter and 90% of the time, I'd know whether they broke the bird or not without looking downrange.
There's nothing quite as much fun as looking at the smiling face of a new shooter as they discover how much fun shooting can be. One of the students had an extreme fear of guns coming in to the event due to an unfortunate event in her past. By the end, she was breaking target after target and had a big smile on her face.
If you're an experienced shooter of either gender, I highly recommend volunteering for this program. If you're a woman who is curious and would like to try shooting in a safe, relaxed, non-competitive atmosphere with other like minded women, I can't think of a better way. If you're a guy who would love your wife, girlfriend, or daughter to understand and possibly share your love for shooting sports, this is the perfect way to get there.