Spring is here and there is no better time to practice your shooting skills for the next hunting season.

If you are into clay bird shooting, you probably know a thing or two about trap and skeet shooting. But what about 5 stand shooting?

5 stand is quite similar to other disciplines of competitive shooting but requires a great deal of practice to master. As the name suggests, it involves five stands, each with a menu card of a series of clay birds that will be shot at.

The menus are placed on or in front of each stand. The birds are thrown from 6 to 8 throwers. These throwers can be placed straight ahead, right, left, and even behind the shooter at specified yardages. The traps will be set to throw the clay birds at different angles and directions.

And just like in trap and skeet competition, the shooters take turns at each of the five stands, shooting three combinations each and then moving to the next shooting stand. The combinations vary for every shot. For instance, station 6 might make a single throw on the first shot, a double in the next shoot, and another double in the third.

Compared to other types of shooting competitions, 5 stand shooting requires little space. This makes it popular in gun clubs lacking enough space for overland bird clay shooting.

For quite some time, most of the attention has been on trap vs. skeet comparisons, and very few guides have been drawn up to help shooters hone their 5 stand shooting skills. As such, here are some useful five stand shooting tips that will help you shoot like a pro.

6 Five Stand Shooting Tips

1. Holding Your Gun

The primary goal of five stand shooting is to hit the targets with every shot. However, this will never happen if you hold your gun the wrong way.

As a rule of thumb, always make sure that you align your eyes with the front sight of your shotgun and keep your cheekbone on the stock. Holding your gun this way will help you make more accurate shots and absorb the recoil without hurting your face.

2. Stance

stand shooting stanceWhen shooting, always ensure that your front foot is directly aligned with your rear heel and that they both point toward your target. Also, remember to maintain a relatively narrow stance for a faultless swing and a good follow-through.

3. Muzzle Angles

One of the most important, yet neglected, things in shooting competitions is getting the muzzle angle right.

After a clay bird is launched, focus on its relative position as you follow through with the muzzle. For maximum accuracy, always fire at 60 degrees from the pickup point.

4. Aiming

5 stand shootingOne of the most common mistakes 5 stand shooters make is aiming directly at the clay bird when taking their shots.

For the perfect shot, aim a few feet ahead of the target and anticipate a collision. If you directly aim at the clay bird, your shots will always land behind the target. The distance of your lead varies with the distance of the stand from the clay bird and the speed at which the clay is launched.

For instance, imagine that you have a clay bird launched across the kill zone at 50 feet per second. The distance between your stand and the bird is 200 feet, and your shot stream travels at 1,000 feet per second.

With this distance and speed, your shot will approximately take 0.2 seconds to hit the target. In those 0.2 seconds, the clay bird will travel a distance of 10 feet. Therefore, to hit the target, you will have to aim 10 feet ahead of it.

5. Shooting Pairs of Clay Birds

When shooting pairs, decide on which target you’ll shoot first. It’s always a good idea to hit the lower or trailing clay bird first, unless you are super quick. By shooting the lower target first, you can use the gun’s recoil to your advantage as it automatically puts you in position to hit the upper clay bird.

6. Take a Deep Breathe

It may sound simple, but with all the tension during shooting competitions, it can be very hard to stay put and relax. If you are tensed, your muscles will be firm and won’t be able to react quickly and as smoothly, increasing the chances of missing the target.

Improve Your 5 Stand Shooting at Windwalker

Windwalker Farms provide the best learning environment for all types of shooting competitions including 5 stand, trap, and skeet shooting. You will also get to learn the best shooting stance for you, how to hit targets with exemplary precision, and much more!

Even better, you can participate in tons of shotgun competitions to test your shooting skills. Happy shooting!

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