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Missing Barns and Telling Yarns
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm hoping to travel down to AL in the Fall for the SEST. As such, my main goal is to not embarrass myself! So can anyone give me an idea what kind of distances people shoot at these tournaments? I'm probably hanging out at about 10 yards max, and even there my accuracy is so-so. Should I keep focusing on that distance and tighten up my groups, or stretch it out more? I'm hoping to put together a little training routine once Spring hits to get in tournament/hunting shape.

Please share any thoughts, past experiences at tournaments, and tips you have for improving accuracy. What does a normal shooting session look like for you (if/when you are focusing on accuracy?) I normally just go outside and try to crush cans, but I know I need to modify that if I'm going to achieve better accuracy.

Thanks SSF!
 

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Good for you. You'll love it. If you've never been to a competition before you'll be amazed. You'll actually have people to talk to about slingshots without getting that look. You know the one!

I'm sure more better info will follow, but here's my experience. I've been to ECST a few times and Swamp Stomp once. I didn't plan to shoot the competition the first time I went, figuring I would just embarrass myself! But after hanging out for a while and being made to feel so welcome, I ended up doing it anyway. I guess the point there is don't worry about being embarrassed. As you've learned from hanging out here, You'll get nothing but encouragement.

As for the competition itself. What surprised me the first time was the variety of distances you need to shoot. So YES, practice at different distances. At ECST there was 10 meter, and I think 25 meter paper targets. And the woods course has you shooting every which way. Up, down, short, long, and really long. I'm sure SEST will have some variation of that. And get used to shooting the Spanish Knock Down target sizes. I'm sure they'll be a part of the competition. Since it sounds like you probably don't have the targets themselves ( I don't ). Just print out or make paper versions to get used to shooting the sizes. I'm sure there's info about the competition elements somewhere.

Good luck if you go!
 

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Hey I hope you do. I think that one is a certainty for me this year. SEST in Steele.

Never been to a tournament... but my plan is to have fun, sleep as little as possible, have fun... eat food and sit around a fire.

Hit as much as possible... miss as little as possible.

Head home steppin' and fetchin'
Like my head's on fire and my tails catchin'...

Because my wife may not go and no dogs allowed (I hear).

I also think if Kawkan comes he picks and grins a little on the uke. I will spare y'all the "splendor" of my singing. But I will swap lies around a fire any time.
 

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Missing Barns and Telling Yarns
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hey I hope you do. I think that one is a certainty for me this year. SEST in Steele.

Never been to a tournament... but my plan is to have fun, sleep as little as possible, have fun... eat food and sit around a fire.

Hit as much as possible... miss as little as possible.

Head home steppin' and fetchin'
Like my head's on fire and my tails catchin'...

Because my wife may not go and no dogs allowed (I hear).

I also think if Kawkan comes he picks and grins a little on the uke. I will spare y'all the "splendor" of my singing. But I will swap lies around a fire any time.
Yeah, I think that sounds like the right attitude! I've got to see how the work schedule and school schedule line up, but that's the right time of year for me. I'd like to do the ECST as well, but it's gonna be too hectic that time of year...
 
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Go if you get a chance. Don't worry about being embarrassed by your shooting skills, you won't be.
I see folks on the forum say I would go to a tournament but I'm not good enough. Our friend Tag shot in his first tournament with only about two weeks experience shooting. I did not have much more experience. No embarrassment. The great thing getting to meet everybody and talking slingshots.

If you want to improve your shooting before hand, practice on smaller targets. Try to practice shooting in front of people. If you can't shoot in front of an audience, video yourself and post them on the forum. Somehow you need to get used to knowing people are watching.
 

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SEST has a few different parts. The main ones being the World Cup format from 10m and the other being the woods course.

I would suggest, get the info for the Slingshot World Cup format and then practice shooting at those targets. For the woods course, a hike is in order. Go stump shooting! Just pick out a target (safely) and try and hit it. Pine cones are sweet! Very your distance and elevation for maximum results.

That should get you started. For more tournament minded practice, start recording your self shooting. It's amazing how much more difficult it is to shoot with the camera on.

After that join some of the Facebook groups that have live streaming comps. Tournament shooting is about more that just being good with a slingshot. It's about being good when it counts in front of a bunch of people.

Or don't do any of it and come any way!! You'll still have a great time and meet some of the best peeps around.
 

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Here is what I do: stand sideways to the target with your feet slightly spread out for stability, but nevertheless aligned;

- Use a fixed anchor point to ensure similar draw weights for every shot (like in archery), aim along the bands and the aiming notch (or sights), and hold your breath just prior to every shot for maximum stability (the latter technique is also used by firearm shooters);

- Ensure a correct pouch release technique: steel ammo held inside the pouch placed between the thumb and index finger, where the inner section between the end of the thumb and the central thumb joint should rest on the top of the ammo placed inside the pouch center, which in turn should be placed over the second outer joint of the perpendicularly oriented index finger relative to the thumb /(technical...ouch!). This technique has proven itself to be reliable for me, with good accuracy potential at 10 meters.

- Ensure that you have a flat ammo trajectory as far as possible, with bands that are calibrated for the ammo size you intend to use: I would opt for the 8 mm size, particularly if greater distances than 10 meters are involved. Excessively heavy bands will make you shaky once you get tired. A 5 x 2 cm pouch is fine for 8 mm ammo, which hits with authority with the right band set.

- Practice mainly using paper targets to see where you hit, and what groups you have after each series of shots: analyze "bad" shots immediately after releasing the pouch to understand what may have gone wrong.

- Avoid using floating anchor points until you master the fixed anchor point shooting technique as well as possible.

My 5 cents worth...I'm too far away to attend such a fun event.
 

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Missing Barns and Telling Yarns
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Great tips guys! I'm not too concerned with setting the course on fire, but I did want to improve. I know part of that is practicing with a little more intention and focus. Thanks!
 
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