Practice! Practice! Practice! And More Practice!
Like it or not we only improve our skills, regardless of what they are, with Practice and this especially applies when we are trying something new or different to what we have been previously using and are used to, what we consider is the “Norm”, what in fact, we are comfortable with.
It is common during a lesson when I change the way a pupil mounts their gun or alter their stance that they turn and say “That Feels Very Odd”, and of course it will do, because it is “Different” to what their Brain has become comfortable with and considers the norm. Just because it feels right, it doesn’t always mean it is right.
It takes time to develop new skills and invariably the “Learning Curve” means we often get worse before we get better as the new technique becomes the “Norm” and embeds itself in the Brains comfort zone.
You should never be afraid to change something. It is better to miss a target in ten different places than ten times in the same place – at least you are trying and all the time that you are trying something different, you are learning. There is definitely no such thing in Shooting as a quick fix and patience when practicing is the true virtue.
The most important thing is to set aside some separate time at your Club range to just “Practice”, you can’t combine it with your Social or Competitive Shooting and you must resist the temptation to ask other shooters where you missed. To accurately evaluate your shot, they must be in the correct position, close to you, looking over your shoulder at where the gun is in relation to the target when you pull the trigger – not beside you or maybe two or three yards behind you. What other shooters (not in the correct position) see is a paradox, not what really happened. Fellow shooters tend to look at your targets, not at what you are physically doing.
They will only look at your set up when you have missed – and then see that the gun is behind the target because you have completed the shot and already stopped the gun. That’s why 99 percent of shooters just tell friends “You Missed That Behind” and not “You Missed That Because”.
Inconsistency and low confidence caused by poor technique can be overcome with the assistance of a good Qualified Instructor. Find one, book a lesson and please listen to what you are told. It takes many years to become a professional shotgun coach and to see the faults that occur in the three to five seconds it takes to execute a shot.
It amazes me how many shooters pay for a lesson and then revert back to their old habits because it feels more comfortable.
If you are going to take a lesson it is normally because you felt you are doing something wrong, so don’t be so arrogant as to assume that you know better than the Instructor giving you the lesson.