Target and clay pigeon shooting aren’t typically seen as being as physically demanding as game shooting. After all, stalking birds in boggy marshes and fields can be quite tiring. But actually, now that the game season is over, it might be worth considering taking up other kinds of shooting to stay active.
Here are five reasons why going to a shooting range could benefit your health:
1. Shooting conditions your arms, hands and shoulders.
A firm grip of a gun works the muscles in your hands, forearms and shoulders. When factoring in recoil from your shots, shooting really tests your entire body, as it fights to keep you stable and counter that release of force.
2. Shooting strengthens your core.
Holding your body perfectly still in the correct posture for a shot also works your abdominal and back muscles. The movement of your arms and body to track a clay pigeon target, for example, isn’t too dissimilar to working with a medicine ball to work your abdominal muscles in the gym. Plus, it’s arguably much more fun.
3. Shooting improves your balance and coordination and works your legs.
Even while standing still, your body burns a surprising amount of calories. On a shoot though, your legs are working that little bit harder to keep you balanced and push back against your gun’s recoil. With enough practice, this will boost your balance and stability over time: good balance being rated a key trait of successful shooters.
4. It gives you bursts of adrenaline.
There’s nothing quite like the excitement of shooting a firearm, and your body is likely to be responding by releasing adrenaline. Adrenaline helps enhance the release of glucose from glycogen, effectively burning the body’s natural fuel.
5. Shooting, like most sports, promotes mental well-being.
The demands on your concentration at the shooting range are obvious. But what’s not so obvious is the way this concentration gives your mind a break from the thought-patterns associated with stress, anxiety and other mental health conditions. Shooting requires you to focus on the present moment and listen to your body, some of the very techniques used in mindfulness training.
Sport also boost confidence and self-esteem, builds friendships, and gets us active. All of these factors combine to produce better health and well-being as well improving our ability to sleep. Sport England has a large collection of reports linking sporting activity with psychological health and well-being available here.
Now you have five good excuses to get down to the shooting range, make sure you’re insured when you do so. At Gunplan, our insurance is specifically designed to offer gun owners the options they need for their particular discipline. From theft and accidental damage to Personal Liability, Personal Accident and competition fee reimbursements, you can choose the cover you need to give you peace of mind.