Will a ShotKam really help me?
I’m a big fan of the ShotKam as one of the best self-diagnostic tools available to the shotgun shooter, but its value depends on how you utilize the information the device provides. The ShotKam is a high-tech camera that automatically takes a short video of every shot. It attaches to the underside of your barrel and detects the movement of the gun to initiate recording. To set up the ShotKam, you “zero in” the reticle using a smartphone or tablet. The reticle is the dot or crosshair in the ShotKam videos that reflect your gun’s bore trajectory. The device will continuously “buffer” video images until the gun is fired. Sensing the recoil, it captures the moments before, during and after the shot.
Given the duration of each video, you can observe your hold point, break point, impact of the shot on the clay target, and the manner in which the gun moved to and through the break point. Using the frame-by-frame playback, you can also see the shot cloud and its proximity to the target.
The ShotKam is a fantastic learning tool for the shooter as a complement to regular lessons; however, as mentioned earlier, its value to the shooter depends on how the information is used. For example, because a video clip is a two-dimensional image on a flat screen, judging distance and lead is difficult. While some shooters use the ShotKam to understand where they missed on a particular target, the real value of the ShotKam emerges when you use the video information to critique your consistency of execution on consecutive target pairs. Inconsistencies in your hold points, break points, line-of-gun movement to the break points, and the manner in which you achieve lead (sustained lead, pull-away, etc.) can reveal the root causes of inconsistency and provide a path for your practice. Paired with the assistance of an instructor, a ShotKam can provide the two of you with valuable information to propel your game forward.