When the wheels fall off
Sporting Shooter|December 2020
Losing form on a day’s shooting can be infuriating, especially if you’ve been shooting like a god up to that point. Simon O’Leary looks at some common causes and how to remedy them
SIMON O'LEARY

The wheels on the bus go round and round, or so they say, but sadly sometimes they fall off! “Last week I couldn’t miss,” you say. “I dropped birds left, right and centre!” So what happened? What caused this almighty shift, propelling the proverbial wheel off into the imaginary wilderness, while you, the shooter, stood dazed and confused?

My personal take on this sudden regression of skill relates to a number of factors. But, I hear you cry, surely it’s only due to pointing the gun in the wrong place? If only life were that simple!

A day in the field can be hindered even prior to your arrival. A night of lost sleep, work issues plaguing the mind, matters of the heart, etc, etc. The list of possibilities is endless, but if the head is not in the game, the game is well and truly over (quite literally, in fact, and unscathed!).

When wielding a shotgun, the harder you push, the more it will resist. Targets will seem tougher and further out of reach; a feeling of failure descends and the wheels have now detached. It’s a tough call to suggest a complete cure for such a situation, but you know you can shoot, you’ve done it before, so why not today?

Don’t look up!

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