Look at the Target
There seems to be a tendency for newer shooters (as well as some very experienced shooters) to occasionally look at their shotgun’s barrel just as they get ready to pull the trigger, thus losing sight of the target. This usually makes them shoot behind the target.
I firmly believe that if you see the target, you can hit it, but you must really see it. Many years ago I was told by Roman Warren, an excellent skeet and trap shooter, to try and read the writing on the target. This hint made me really look at the target.
Of course, hitting the target only happens if you do everything else correctly, too: feet in the correct position, hold and look points correct, and being truly ready to see the target when you call for it. You also have to have confidence in your skill. You gain confidence through practice and more practice, both physical and mental.
One of the things I do to make sure that I see the target is hold a little lower than I believe I need to so that the barrel doesn’t get in the way of my seeing the target. This may not work for everyone, but if you’re having a problem seeing the target because the barrel gets in your way, give it a try; it works for me.
Barry Hartmann is an NSSA Master Level and NRA Certified shotgun instructor who can help you improve your skills at American Skeet and wingshooting. To contact Barry, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or give him a call at (918)803-2393.