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  Trap shooting is almost like playing golf with a shotgun.  Instead of whacking a ball with a club, you shoot a flying clay target with a shotgun.  A sport where the entire family shoots together and in tournaments to compete against each other and self.   Websters Collegiate Dictionary:  Trap Shooting: shooting at clay pigeons/targets sprung into the air from a trap.





The elite resorts of the world all offer trap shooting recreation.  Special low-power loads are used to hit clay targets, sort of like "skeet shooting."  It is hardly a boring sport and it is exiting and challenging.  Surprisingly, there are over six-thousand registered competition shoots taking place nationally and worldwide yet you would hardly know it!  It truly is a hidden sport.  That is, until you get into the game and discover the wide range of opportunities.  You may even meet familiar faces you didn't know were shooting these events. It is a secret sport, to a degree, but shouldn't be.


Once you get into the game and discover the wide range of opportunities, you will realize that trap shooting is a bigger sport then you may have realized.  Hundreds of thousands of American, Canadian and Europeans are competing in the big shoots every year worldwide.  People just like you; layman, professional and businessmen, women of all ages with or without families are competing in the sport and having a great time. 


Besides shooting, children of all ages do shoot at these events, and the fantastic parties that follow are not to be missed.  The food and prizes are simply first-class treasures. The camaraderie among shooters is incredible.  If you're looking to meet some great people... you have to try trap shooting.  You may meet a movie star, producer or film director, authors and other famous celebrities.  They have been known to attend small and large shooting events to break a few targets for relaxation and fun.  Don't be intimidated as most of us are "just plain folk" having a grand ol' time.


Children of all ages do shoot at these events.  It's really fun to watch as they are pretty darn good too!  Fantastic parties follow the shoot are not to be missed.  The food is great.  This really is a true family sport where all participate, meet new friends and have fun together.   


Prizes are first-class treasures.  New cars, trucks, silverware, thousands of dollars in cash money is awarded.  You don't have to win First Place to win money with the option system.  You may win money and prizes on the Luck Of The Draw and other sub-events.  There are more chances to win in this trap shooting sport than any other sport!   


If you haven't tried trap shooting you are missing out on a great time.  There are registered shoots throughout the nation in each continent.  It's really a massive sport.  Did you know?  There are over 8.5-million shotgun shooters worldwide!


  It is really easy to try this great sport.   There are rod & gun clubs near you in every city and town that sponsor trap shooting events.  There are registered P.I.T.A. and ATA trapshoots throughout the state, every weekend, all year round.  There are worldwide events too in England, Spain, Italy, Egypt, etc.  Come on out, bring a friend and try something "different" that you have never experienced before.  Make sure you attend one of the big registered shoots where all the "big action" and "big money" prizes are in full swing. 

  No matter what your age, male or female, you will find trap shooting to be a wonderful and "very different" sport that you have never experienced before.  Even if you are not sports inclined, you will enjoy trap shooting!  Unlike golf, bowling, tennis, basketball, etc., there are no physical limitations or requirements to lift, bend, twist, run, jump and get all out of breath.   Don't forget to bring your shotgun (some clubs have loaners for you to try, some don't).  We are a friendly bunch who just love to help new shooters join the sport for fun and games.

  Don't be bashful, we realize that we were all new shooters at one time.  You're welcome and we want to see you have a good time.  But hitting all those targets are not so easy... and that's what makes trap shooting so addictivley fun and challenging.  Many club members just shoot for the fun of it, for the sheer joy of seeing those little clay targets explode into balls of black smoke.  And that's fine.  But trap shooting has always been a "money game" in many of the competition shoots.  There are many fine shooters who take these events very seriously.  You can compete for the money or just the prizes or both.  The choice is yours.

  Once you attend just one of these registered competition shoots you will say to yourself, "Where have I been all my life?  This is great sport, and lots of fun!"  The friends you will meet and the vacations you will take will be... well, life-changing experiences you'll treasure your entire life.  Give trap shooting a try.  If you are feeling blue, down in the dumps, bored, feel left out, lonely, and just need that "something" in your life to turn your life around... trap shooting can do it, believe me.  One thing I guarantee, you will never find a sport like trap shooting that fulfills the inner experience.  You will never meet a nicer bunch of people!  Don't miss out on life's rewards.  Trap shooting can breath new life into being.  Mark your calendar and lets go!



Any major sporting goods store can tell you where the nearest Rod & Gun club is located in your area.  Most are not listed in the Yellow Pages. You can contact the  Amateur Trapshooting Association ATATrap & Field Magazine and Shotgun Sports Magazine.  All can guide you into this exciting sport. They list all the club locations and shoot schedules.  In Europe Clay Shooting Magazine and Pull Magazine will get you on the starting path.  You can explore our Shooting Links Page to find more information.  While you're at it, ask the magazines to send you a free complimentary issue.  Tell them James Russell sent you and you'll get a free trial issue.  Call this phone number right now to get a free issue of Shotgun Sports Magazine 1-800-676-8920 


089762b Clay Mag Women DTL team.jpg (33851 bytes)

Photo courtesy of Clay Shooting Magazine.  DTL Women's shooting team.


  The ATA in America has more than 100,000 members!   The ATA alone conducts over 6,000 shooting tournaments at 1,300 gun clubs each year!  This does not count the P.I.T.A. which add a thousands more.    Not to mention all of Europe too!  In total 8.5 million shotgun target shooters! 

  It's hard to believe so many trap shoots are taking place each year, hundreds each month and you didn't even know about it.  Trap shooting has always been a secret sport.

You Have a Disability?

You may still play... click HERE to find out more!



Do women play the sport? Absolutely!  All ages.  There are many women trap shooting and competing in competition.  Barbara Mandrell shoots and she has been responsible for introducing many women into the sport.   Also, women are now trap shooting the Olympics.  At every registered shoot, women are present and shooting for the the prizes... and many take the prizes and money too!  There are professional women trapshooters who compete in the major shoots nationwide.  It's not a men only sport.   


Can I bring my children?  Of course you can.  It is a family sport.  Children as tall as your nylons trapshoot.    There's no age limitations, generally.  You should attend a registered shoot to see just how much fun the entire family is really having!   


Shotguns recoil don't they?  Yes, but low-power loads are used and recoil reduction shooting vests and shock absorber devices diminish jolts.  Don't worry about recoil, it won't hurt you.  If you shoot a gun that fits you recoil will not be a problem... and it won't punch you in the shoulder like you see in the movies.   The trap shotgun's are in comparison safe & sane versions.  


I can't play golf due to injuries.  Can I shoot a shotgun? Yes.  Many people with injuries and our disabled citizens in wheelchairs trapshoot.  Unlike golf, bowling or tennis, there is no extreme twisting of the body when trap shooting.  No exertion is required.  It's a life-long sport.  The typical gun only weights 8-pounds and the angle of swing is very shallow to point the muzzle at the target.  Trap shooting is a great sport for persons with disabilities.


I feel queasy about guns.  I wouldn't like them!  You won't feel queasy around the caliber of people you will meet at trapshoots.  Once the initial shock of "guns" are seen, held and shot, you will understand the game the rich and famous have been playing for decades.    I didn't like guns until I tried trap shooting, but now I love trap shooting.


I don't like hunting so shotguns and I won't mix?  Absolutely not.  Many competitive shooters don't hunt at all.   They simply enjoy shooting at fast flying clay targets.  Trap shooting is a different sport.  There is money to win in clay target shooting, fine silver and gold gift prizes, even new cars and trucks!   


I'm too nervous to begin.  What should I do?   First, visit a gun club that offers trap shooting and tell the manager, "I've never fired a shotgun before.  Can you show me how to play this trap shooting game?"  That's all you need to do.  They will show you the game... and you'll be glad you came.


Is it an expensive sport?  It can be if you want it to be.  You don't have to shoot all the events.  You can shoot the handicap money events.  It will cost approx. $20 to shoot the handicap (long-yardage shooting).   You don't need an expensive gun.  There also are many fine used guns on the market that are like brand-new and will shoot for years without any major repairs.   The standard breech-opening trap gun has very few moving parts.   Repairs, if any, are performed by gunsmiths at low cost.  Compared to golf equipment... trap shooting is dirt cheap!  


What sort of parties do they have at trapshoots?  Basically, the event is one huge party!  Some last a couple days, others a week or two... in nice country atmospheres.  The meals served are banquet-style and the portions are far from skimpy.  If you don't shoot well, you'll sure eat well.  Raffles and other prize events are conducted.  It's like camping out with a large group of friends.  Few sports can link you up to such outdoor fun-filled rendezvous as trap shooting can.  When the shoot ends people gather to enjoy each other's company.  


What can be so fun about shooting at a clay target? Oh, you just have to experience the thrill for yourself.  I guarantee it will be fun, fun, fun!  This is a sport where all ages mix and mingle and compete against each other in a well-managed environment.


Is the sport stressful? It can be if you are a serious competitor.  But most people come just to shoot and have fun.  If so, the stress relief is incredible as you smoke those targets into balls of dust.   Frankly, I joined up for trap shooting after I found how much fun it was... and it was a stress-reliever!  So, if you are suffering from "stress" trap shooting can take a ton off your mind.  It's really therapeutic.


Will I be accepted in the group? Oh, yes.   You will, you will.  You'll meet so many friendly people you'll wonder why you didn't get into trap shooting years ago.  Just show up and be yourself and you'll fit right in.


What sort of women shoot trap?  All sorts.  From; "I swear she's a model" to the girl next-door.  Trap shooting is still an elite sport, but it is not dominated by any specific class, as it was a few years ago.  The doors are open for all. 


Okay, where do I go from here to try the sport?   Just surf our Web site and our Shooting Links page.







Photo taken by; 

Toni Palmer

imageT1N Bishop Gun Club.jpg (29637 bytes)The Bishop, California, Trapshooting Club set in the majestic Sierra Nevada Mountains.  A nice peaceful getaway!  These trap shooters are shooting the handicap yardage, standing 25 & 26 yards further distant than the traphouse that throws the flying clay targets.  It's much more challenging at these distances.  The gal sitting is Betty, pushing the button to release the target and keeping score.  These lucky trap shooter's are just having fun!  You can locate this club through a fine trap shooting web site... Click on in. Barstow Gun Club on our links page. 




Bishop Gun Club P.O. Box226, Bishop, CA 93514




There are 8-million clay target shooters? 


Over 6,000 registered competition trap shoots in the USA alone?

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by; James Russell.  All Rights Reserved.
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Written by; James Russell, Copyright 1998, Author of "Trap Shooting Secrets" and "Precision Shooting - The Trapshooter's Bible." Our web site: JamesRussellPublishing.com

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