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    We have heard many times, "a picture is worth a thousand words". Also, it has been said that we learn from seeing things done and visualization aids in learning.

    In shooting a moving target with a shotgun we use vision and learn what is called "the sight picture". This is what the sub-conscious mind learns so it knows when to pull the trigger. But there is much more to the picture. You might ask, how or why do I need to know more than it looks right or the correct sight picture. While this is very important and will carry you to some good scores, it is not the only picture you need to look for. Another very important picture is, where the target is in relation to the gun when you start the move with the target. This will depend on many things, such as vision, reflexes, gun weight, the strength of the shooter, hold point and look point just to mention a few. Now understand this picture of where to start the gun has a large impact on where you break the target and how fast or slow you make the shot. Where this comes into play and has one of the biggest impacts is doubles on station 4, make a fast move on the 1st target and you will make a fast move on the 2nd. Some will say "I can't shoot it that fast". What they are missing is, if they will let the target get so close to the gun before they take off the gun will be moving much faster because you are now out running the target, so you will have to pull the trigger quicker to break the target. So you don't have to hold close and take off soon which is hard to do, you can hold out and wait and really go after it which is the opposite of hurrying the 1st shot. In other words by waiting longer to move the gun makes the shot quicker.

    Now back to the picture. There are many ways to learn these pictures. One way is to shoot the same shot or shots over and over, doing this by standing on a station and say shooting 100 times at one shot. But one must be careful not to teach ones self a bad way of making the shot, that is not a consistent way of doing it. In other words learn the shot picture with good basics.

    I have heard shooters say "I just know in my mind what looks right, I don't really see a lead". Well if that works for you then great. The question then becomes, would you like to do better, be more consistent? If the answer is yes, then you should know all your pictures, not just it looks right or feels right. You might ask "how do I know if I know all the pictures?" The answer is really simple, can you close your eyes and replay in your mind the film or pictures of every shot on the skeet field in your head, just like watching a replay on tv. You saw the move, when it started, the lead, the break and the finish of the shot. If you have the pictures, you just need to use them. Now understand one very important fact, you cannot think about this and do it, you have to learn it and recognize it without having to think about it (the hard part of this).

    Learn the pictures, make them clearer and clearer and watch your scores go up.

    Hope this helps some.
    Allen aka WAM
    Contact Me
    Email: allenmccannon@yahoo.com