Missing doves? Try these tips to hit more birds consistently.
They say the national average of shells expended per dove hit hovers each season around six. I’m not sure who came up with that figure but I bet it is a lot closer to true than false. Many factors attribute to missing doves. They are fast, they are mid-air acrobats, and most shooters haven’t fired their shotguns since last season. So what you need is practice at the local sporting clays range. But even more than that work on the mental side of shooting. Try these visual cues to hit more birds in September.
Whether you were a pro quarterback or just a sandlot superstar, most everyone has tossed a football to someone else in their life. And if they were running when you threw the pass you had to lead them right? The ball has to arrive where they are going to be and not where they were. The same principles apply to shooting a flying target.
Get out in front hitting that crossing route
Your buddy is running away from you and then turns sharply to the right and across the field in front of you. The pass has to be thrown to meet the runner at a point ahead of the target. Your focus must shift away from the runner and out in front so your natural hand/eye coordination will tell your arm to release the ball at a certain point. The same goes for hitting a crossing dove, get you brain out of the way and let muscle memory take over. Don’t think about the shot, keep the gun moving.
Shotgun shell stream similar to a water stream
Kids love to spray each other with a water hose. Same principal applies here when trying to connect with the target. But water is even closer to replicating a shot shell pattern. They are even referred to in the same terms, shot stream and water stream. Shot patterns are not shaped like pie plates, they are longer than you realize from front to back. See that water stream in your mind moving ahead of your friend in the yard, get out in front!
You are not going to hit every bird, no one does. But with a little effort and some mental imagery you can improve your skills.