Friday, 1 August 2014

The Commonwealth Games - An Introduction To Sport Shooting

Hands up who went to see any of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow?  
I did!

I had a great two days away up at the Barry Buddon range for some shooting events, so thought I would tell you a little bit about them and why I thought they were special.  I also thought I could give you a little introduction to my chosen sport - shooting! 

As you guys know from my rather excitable opening ceremony post I love the Commonwealth Games and I think Scotland have put on a really good show!  All the home countries have done so well in the medal table which is really good to see as well! 

So before I tell you about our little days out I should tell you about the sport itself! 

Within shooting there are three different guns used- rifles, shotguns and pistols.  There are several disciplines within those types, who all do different things. 

Rifle
I shoot rifle, and all the disciplines within it.  I use a .177 air rifle to point at a stationary target 10 metres away, while I stand up.  

Then I also have a .22 rifle which I use in the 50 metre prone event - which is where I lie down and point at a target 50 metres away.  This is also used in the 3 Position (3P) event where you lie down, kneel and stand up. 

There is also fullbore rifle which is done with big guns (7.62 calibre) at big distances (from 300 to 1000 yards)

Shotgun 
I also have a shotgun (I got it for my 21st birthday and you might have seen my excited post on Instagram a few weeks ago) but I don't shoot competitively.  Within shotgun there are three disciplines: skeet, trap and double trap.  

Skeet sends out clays from towers at the side while the shooters move around in a semi circle.  

In trap and double trap one or two clays (you can figure out which one is which) is fired out and the shooters don't move all the way around. 

Pistol 
Pistol is similar in ways to rifle.  There is an air pistol event and events which use a .22 pistol.  .22 pistol can be done at 25 and 50 metres and there are some rapid fire events which are very exciting- there are five targets that have to be shot in short period of times - sometimes as short as 4 seconds!

Glasgow 2014 
Glasgow was great because your ticket to the shooting events was essentially a day pass which got you into all the different shooting ranges.  So we got to see all the events which were on! 

We had some amazing weather, which made the shotgun events especially enjoyable.  We grabbed some cider and sat back in the sun to watch some shooting!  We got to watch the trap events where there were lots of home country athletes in both the men and women's events.  

We were most interested in the rifle events since we both do it but it was really great to see my friend Kristian win a bronze medal in the rapid fire pistol event!  To see more of Kristian's life check out his very active Twitter

The rifle finals were crazy tense but it was great to see Jen McIntosh win some [more] medals for Scotland and I was really proud of all my friends who competed- they've worked so hard to get there and did really well! 

If you want to keep up with my shooting exploits you can follow me on Facebook here, there are also lots of other shooters on Facebook who you can follow and keep up to date with.  
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