Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2

TOPIC: Junior Shooting

Junior Shooting 15 Feb 2014 22:53 #1


  • Posts:45 Thank you received: 35
  • Gustave452's Avatar
  • Gustave452
  • New Member
  • OFFLINE
Going by the competitions I've been too and the range I shoot at, I can't help but notice how diminutive the population of minors is at clubs, at least in Queensland. Being a junior shooter myself I attend Belmont's Junior Target Shooters branch they have in place there, as I have for the last 3 years. I've seen hundreds of people aged between 11 and 17 show up, pay their ten dollar range fee, buy a box of 22 ammo and never come back, if they do come back most of the time it's only once or twice. For what I gather most of the juniors that show up for the Belmont shoots do it for the same reason I did, which for the most part is the simple delusion that “Cool, I can go to the range and shoot a gun! That’ll be fun”. And after a time that excitement can wear off and shooting rounds down range with a club owned rifle can get boring and the new shooter won’t come back.

At Belmont new junior shooters, upon arrival must complete a mandatory safety course, just to learn the basics of the rifle they will be shooting and the range rules. From there, they then go to the benches already set up for them. To their left is myself and about 10 other shooters who compete in a junior only Field Rifle Comp, which for some may be as far as their target shooting experience expanses. Our club offers juniors a lot compared to a lot of other clubs out there; we have our own shirts, our own competition and when we do go to zone comps we get to represent ourselves, all 10 of us. But even that number is dwindling and I can’t say for sure how many shooters we have left, for various reasons. So Belmont is pretty good for what they offer when it comes to junior shooters.

What I find most concerning is how little juniors there are at Zone, State and National Competitions. Shooting, unlike most sports doesn’t require any special qualifications to participate in competitions, at least SSAA run comps. So why aren’t there more juniors there to compete? Most of the time I go to comps all over Queensland, the juniors consist of 2-3 over 18’s and maybe 1 or 2 under 15’s, sometimes all from Brisbane or occasionally from the Sunshine Coast. I think a number of attributing factors consist of; not knowing the facts, not getting any information, thinking you have to have a certain skill level to attend and mostly fear of commitment and losing money.

Fortunately for me, I have parents that have given me the support I’ve needed, including dealing with the financial burden sporting shooting comes with. For the most part starting juniors have parents that already have some sort of involvement with shooting, before they introduce their child to shooting. If they are like me, I had nothing to do with shooting at all. The only reason I started was because I found the BJTS online. And starting from scratch for 2 people, parent and child, costs a lot of money. At least a thousand dollars just to get started with a cheap second hand gun. Over the course of only 3 years the amount of money spent can increase exponentially, the more involved you get with different competitions. Once you've spent thousands of dollars on your child, you kinda wanna hope to god they don’t lose interest in shooting, especially if you’re not the one shooting. Commitment is a must if you want to be decent at target shooting as a sport and that can be daunting to a lot of people.

So, pretty much what I want to know is who on here is also a junior or is shooter/hunter who has a child that might be interested in sporting shooting. If you are either of those, I want you to know there’s plenty of comps to compete in and I hope to see the amount of juniors in SSAA comps in Queensland rise. And if you’re in the Brisbane area the BJTS shoot is on the 1st and 3rd Sunday of the month, the 3rd is tomorrow, if you show up don’t be afraid ask the range officers about a sporting career in shooting and what there is on offer or you can talk to me Jared McCarthy.


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.
Remember the youth of shooting, is the future of shooting.
"I'm not sleeping... I'm getting my heart rate down" -Me every freakin' shoot.
Last Edit: 15 Feb 2014 22:54 by Gustave452.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: several, Nigel-l, GSR, Aushunter, Send-it, Oz, Big_Col, GOD, roy cobb, patrolit

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 09:11 #2


  • Posts:119 Thank you received: 21
  • one day ill take up shooting
  • JM Caddy's Avatar
  • JM Caddy
  • New Member
  • OFFLINE
Very interesting post would like to see some real input into this.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: GOD

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 09:25 #3


  • Posts:3066 Thank you received: 649
  • Send-it's Avatar
  • Send-it
  • Topic Moderator
  • NOW ONLINE
Gustave,
you raise some very interesting a valid issues there.
i'm not sure on the answer, other than persisting with exposing juniors to the sport.
maybe there are several answers, not just one.

that's a very good post you've just put there with some good thought put into its content and delivery.
(thought of being a junior ambasidor for your club?)
sometimes its easier for a junior to encourage others juniors to participate.
which no doubt you are doing.
keep up the good work.
and remember,......shooting isn't for everyone, so don't be suprised if they try it, then not find it action packed enough to keep them interested.
but,........lets do what we can to keep juniors involved. ;)
Life's too short to keep them in the safes on weekends. ;)
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 09:35 #4


  • Posts:1742 Thank you received: 512
  • Maitland NSW
  • several's Avatar
  • several
  • Premium Member
  • OFFLINE
Great topic, a topic we should be putting more effort into IMHO.
My son is keen to start shooting competition but being 10 yr old in NSW he has to wait another 2 years , never mind the fact he can group 5 shots into a 6" group free standing with his dads 94 Winchester @ 50m, the law says he must be older.
I think the age limit is silly, as long as the kid is strong and mature enough to shoot they should be able to.
I'm not a member of any club or range but I will be joining us both up as soon he's eligible, I've already started looking around for a rifle for him, I need to find out what clubs near me have a junior program and what other hoops I have to jump through to get him going.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 09:39 #5


  • Posts:262 Thank you received: 42
  • Capn Dazza's Avatar
  • Capn Dazza
  • Forum Member
  • OFFLINE
I think part of the problem is the general publics perception of shooting/hunting as a sport. If the mums and dads discourage or wont support their kid taking up the sport or fund it so they can continue it, or take a lot of pressure from their friends about letting their kid be involved with (OMG!) shooting then the ranks of the juniors is unlikely to ever grow.
For example the husband of one of my wifes friends is horrified to the point of never coming with his wife to anything he knows Ill be at because he knows I hunt.
The flip side to this parent is another mate whos a keen bowhunter is teaching his daughter to shoot/hunt and she loves it. Outdoor time with dad camping and so on.

My point here is I guess without changing the attitude of joe public mums and dads on it I doubt were going to get many young folks joining our ranks. Of course theres always going to be a few but not as many as when I was a kid and shooting was fairly accepted by your average aussie adult.
“Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.”

― Albert Einstein
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Biggest bushman in Australia, andrew ucle? 17 Feb 2014 09:51 #6


  • Posts:1742 Thank you received: 512
  • Maitland NSW
  • several's Avatar
  • several
  • Premium Member
  • OFFLINE
Let's not forget ranges can be an intimidating place for your first visit, even more so for young juniors.
You always have the crabby old buggers who think they own it, they get there at bird fart and occupy a bench all day even when are not shooting.
Most people I've met at ranges have been very friendly and helpful but some are just arrogant bastards who look at you like your trespassing on their private property.
Each club needs to have special days dedicated to giving juniors and newcomers a taste of what it's like with no pressure and a friendly atmosphere.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Biggest bushman in Australia, andrew ucle? 17 Feb 2014 13:03 #7


  • Posts:794 Thank you received: 274
  • Nigel-l's Avatar
  • Nigel-l
  • Topic Moderator
  • OFFLINE
several wrote:
Let's not forget ranges can be an intimidating place .......
Most people I've met at ranges have been very friendly and helpful .....
Each club needs to have special days dedicated to giving juniors and newcomers a taste of what it's like with no pressure and a friendly atmosphere.

Each club - there's the key.
What policy do they have in place for juniors.
What do they do to actively encourage them..

A tale of two clubs.

My son turned 12 and for his birthday I took him to the local shotgun club for a round of skeet.
After a while we got grilled by the president on membership, insurance and other concerns he had.
That I met all the requirements meant he went away and let us shoot in peace.

My son's first impression - not very friendly - don't really want to go back there.

A few weeks on and he did his WIT.
It was being run by the president of another branch.
I suggested to him that we go there for a shoot - we rolled up and were immediately invited to shoot with the president.
My son had a great day out and was encouraged by many.

This branch has free junior nominations - that means he's got about 5 years of shooting where the only cost is his ammo.
If he happens to place in his grade and wins some shells - he often breaks even.
For me this makes it somewhat affordable - as I'm only paying my noms.
The club breaks even when there's an accompanying adult shooting the comp as well so they're not really out of pocket.
What they will have is a more sustainable membership place.

Guess which club he wanted to join.

Shooting is an expensive sport to get in to with plenty of bureaucratic barriers to entry.
We have to ensure we don't add any other unnecesssary barriers and encourage take up.

When I was on the commitee at a local branch, we used to send out a voucher for a packet of ammo and a free round to all new members that joined the organisation.
There were very few that got cashed in so it really didn't break the budget.
Anyone that did claim their freebie usually ended up spending more money on the day so there's no downside.
Last Edit: 17 Feb 2014 13:04 by Nigel-l.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 14:28 #8


  • Posts:338 Thank you received: 51
  • TwoFourThree's Avatar
  • TwoFourThree
  • Forum Member
  • NOW ONLINE
The junior shooters at any club are the future of the club.

A club that cannot attract new members (of any age) has no long term future.

At my club, junior noms are half the regular noms and free at Xmas.
This post may be fact or opinion, it is up to you to decide which.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 19:38 #9


  • Posts:51 Thank you received: 4
  • Fisch's Avatar
  • Fisch
  • New Member
  • OFFLINE
I am a junior who shots at two clubs and one has free membership for junior and the other does nothing for juniors. Also some members have a problem with me shooting, even though I am 16 and have been shooting for years.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 19:57 #10


  • Posts:1742 Thank you received: 512
  • Maitland NSW
  • several's Avatar
  • several
  • Premium Member
  • OFFLINE
Fisch wrote:
I am a junior who shots at two clubs and one has free membership for junior and the other does nothing for juniors. Also some members have a problem with me shooting, even though I am 16 and have been shooting for years.

And I bet the guys with the problem are old Bench Rest shooters.
Ignore them mate, keep at it. Recruit some mates to go shooting with you.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 20:05 #11


  • Posts:51 Thank you received: 4
  • Fisch's Avatar
  • Fisch
  • New Member
  • OFFLINE
And I bet the guys with the problem are old Bench Rest shooters.
Ignore them mate, keep at it. Recruit some mates to go shooting with you.

Yeah it's the old blokes who think they know everything.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 20:08 #12

Junior members and any potential new members need to feel welcome, most people will enjoy the shooting part, but there can be a lot of waiting around as well. Normally one or two club members will do the job of instructing and organizing new shooters, as well as shooting themselves, it is a selfless job and some are very good at it. There is little worse than standing around in an unfamiliar place being ignored. It makes a big difference if a few people say hello and ask if they are being looked after, and introduce themselves.
The other thing with junior members is that the parents will probably drive them to the range, and they need to be welcomed as well, if they sit in the car for a few hours waiting, they wont be back.
Converting juniors into full members is another problem, they seem to drift away in the late teens, due to school exams, jobs, uni, getting a drivers licence, and discovering the opposite sex. Hopefully a few will return to shooting after a while.
I learn something new every day, and forget something else every hour.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 20:09 #13


  • Posts:51 Thank you received: 4
  • Fisch's Avatar
  • Fisch
  • New Member
  • OFFLINE
[/quote]
And I bet the guys with the problem are old Bench Rest shooters.
Ignore them mate, keep at it. Recruit some mates to go shooting with you.[/quote]

Yeah it's the old blokes who think they know everything.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 20:24 #14


  • Posts:308 Thank you received: 42
  • roy cobb's Avatar
  • roy cobb
  • Forum Member
  • OFFLINE
Well you have given me something to think about as I have a grandson who would like to shoot with his pop when he is old enough so now I need to do my home work and see what the local clubs are like for junior shooters and possibly be proactive and work on it before he starts.Thank you for your article and we ALL should work on this for the future of our sport
This isn't rocket science guys ... it's more complicated than that, and it has aspects of the Dark Arts, And this smokeless stuff will not last
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 20:29 #15


  • Posts:3066 Thank you received: 649
  • Send-it's Avatar
  • Send-it
  • Topic Moderator
  • NOW ONLINE
it was also the old blokes who probably founded & built the clubs.
a bit of give and take on all accounts is the best medicine.
young'ns, note; when the oldies are like that its best to look up to them, stroke their ego a bit, maybe ask some logical questions
and absorb as much as they can teach you.
I'm not young, I'm not old, just sitting in the middle seeing both sides. ;)
Life's too short to keep them in the safes on weekends. ;)
Last Edit: 17 Feb 2014 20:32 by Send-it.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 20:45 #16


  • Posts:1742 Thank you received: 512
  • Maitland NSW
  • several's Avatar
  • several
  • Premium Member
  • OFFLINE
Send-it wrote:
it was also the old blokes who probably founded & built the clubs.
a bit of give and take on all accounts is the best medicine.
young'ns, note; when the oldies are like that its best to look up to them, stroke their ego a bit, maybe ask some logical questions
and absorb as much as they can teach you.
I'm not young, I'm not old, just sitting in the middle seeing both sides. ;)

I'm in the young side of the middle also, I remember my first time at the range and if it wasn't for one guy in particular I'd of probably walked out and never went back. Whenever I see someone standing on the line with arm full of gear looking unsure of themselves I always make a point of trying to show them the ropes and what to do, not that I'm an expert on range etiquette but I remember what it's like to be new.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 21:11 #17


  • Posts:299 Thank you received: 68
  • Central QLD
  • Strikey's Avatar
  • Strikey
  • Forum Member
  • OFFLINE
Good on ya, Jared, well written and another photo of you almost smiling :lol: Only 4 months to go before my eldest boy can get his permit fortunately our club is very much about encouraging juniors as they are the future of any club regardless of the sport ;)
R.I.P Padmuri Certus 21/4/02- 6/01/14
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 17 Feb 2014 22:00 #18


  • Posts:571 Thank you received: 152
  • Perth, W.A.
  • sn@abrc's Avatar
  • sn@abrc
  • Forum Member
  • OFFLINE
Needbiggertargets wrote:
Converting juniors into full members is another problem, they seem to drift away in the late teens, due to school exams, jobs, uni, getting a drivers licence, and discovering the opposite sex. Hopefully a few will return to shooting after a while.

We get the same turnover of members, juniors growing up, single blokes starting families, jobs getting in the way of range time etc.

I try and see it in a positive light - yes - they are leaving our club,
But! they have enjoyed themselves, learnt a lot and have a healthy attitude towards firearms,
These "ex" club members are not going to be part of the uneducated "ANTI" mob, and most likely will be shooting again one day.

stephen
all times wasted wots not spent shootin'
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 18 Feb 2014 10:10 #19


  • Posts:119 Thank you received: 21
  • one day ill take up shooting
  • JM Caddy's Avatar
  • JM Caddy
  • New Member
  • OFFLINE
Jared smiling. It does happen. :woohoo:
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Junior Shooting 18 Feb 2014 19:53 #20


  • Posts:45 Thank you received: 35
  • Gustave452's Avatar
  • Gustave452
  • New Member
  • OFFLINE
Thank you everyone who has posted. Junior shooting in my opinion may be the most important part of a club, considering what may come of the future of the sport.
Remember the youth of shooting, is the future of shooting.
"I'm not sleeping... I'm getting my heart rate down" -Me every freakin' shoot.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2
Time to create page: 0.405 seconds

Login Form