Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Shooting positions

Here in the UK visually impaired shooters do two types of shooting, both from the standing position, one where the rifle is supported by a stand with a spring in it (the spring is to allow the rifle to still move freely) and the other is where the shooter entirely supports the weight of the rifle (the normal standing position sighted shooters would do). Currently only the free standing position is recognised internationally out of these two types we do.

However there are other positions which visually impaired shooters do in international competitions. These are to take the place of 3 position and prone, but they are done from the sitting position because the author of the IBSA rules believes there are issues surrounding the size of prone tables which are used to bring shooters up to the correct height for the target. While I have some dislike for this option, as I feel shooting for the disabled should really only have minimal alterations where the alterations are necessary, I feel that unless there is a chance of this being widely adopted we may do best to fit in with what others are doing.

When I go over to Slovakia for the European championships I have agreed to do the 3 position and prone as well as the standing, although the standing is the only discipline I have done up to now. I hope by taking part in these other disciplines I will be able to find out much about those disciplines and may be introduce others to the 3 position and prone in this country. If sufficient interest was shown may be others will be able to participate in international competitions in the future.

So as to find out about how these positions are done, I asked the competition organiser for photos of how 3 position and prone are done. Unfortunately I haven't been able to get the chance to try out the positions for myself since receiving the photos, but I sent a copy of them to some of the visually impaired shooters in Aberdeen and they have given it a quick go. If their feedback is anything to go on, they are really enjoying it and there is talk that it may be made available for people to try at this year's Scottish championships. All this talk is getting me wanting to have a go at these positions, but I must remember that it is the standing where I will be competitive and so most of my effort must go into training for that.

I know there may be others who want to have a go, unfortunately I am unsure that I have permission to publish those photos on the internet, but if you look at the IBSA rules then you will probably get a fairly detailed view of what is needed. When I have a go at these positions I will get some photos taken and put them online, however I cannot say how good my position will be in 3 position and prone due to my lack of experience in those disciplines.

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