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Balance in Trap, Skeet, and Sporting Clays

Let’s talk about the different clay target games: how their similarities and differences affect stance, weight displacement, and balance.

In trap and skeet, the targets are the constant. Both games are played pre-mounted and most shooters are “in the gun pretty tight.” And because they have the gun pulled firmly into their shoulder, they must move the gun with their body. Their swings come from their knees up.

Shooters who shoot these games typically have a little bit wider stance than sporting shooters, but they have a single balance point just like all successful shotgunners.

As shooters age, their body shapes changes and their ability to maintain balance changes as a result. They typically move the gun more in their hands and arms rather than their body.

In sporting, not so much. Due to the varying angles and elevations that sporting targets are thrown, we find that the less the body moves, the more efficient the brain’s ability to maintain an effective center of balance. And on most shots, that center will have the majority of the shooters’ weight on the front foot. Right-handers will have most of their weight on the left foot, and it’s the opposite for lefties.

The weight displacement from your front foot to back will be 90/10 to 80/20, or somewhere in between. Both heels will be comfortably under the shooter’s armpits with the top of the spine curved slightly forward. This makes the shoulder pocket in a more vertical position and ready to absorb recoil.

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