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yellowfin

Youth participation?

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I've been curious about this for quite some time, and now that I have a little son who is 2 I notice it every time I shoot.  Among us in the competitive shooting community, how much do you observe people having their kids shoot with them?  I know it's a bit of a cliche, but in the case of our preferred pastime it's literally true that our kids are our future and we have to fill the ranks from somewhere.  I'm working on a project about this.  In fact, I have a survey if anyone would be so kind as to complete and add to it. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/SLC8BTZ  .  I'm very eager to see your thoughts on this so I can make a good report for the project and see what recommendations I can make and if a positive increase can be made.

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Completed your survey.  Have two children (12 and 6).  The oldest does compete in Steel Challenge and has shot USPSA.  The youngest is a little too small and young for competition but he and I do practice shooting.

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Did the survey.

 

Mine's 8.  Just getting started with rimfire rifle in Steel Challenge.  He's shot rimfire pistols before, but not quite ready yet.  He may shoot PCC in a couple years.

 

I don't think the matches themselves are a limiting factor.  Lots of majors in my area do reduced cost or free entry for juniors.  There's at least a few juniors at any match I attend.

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It took my kids 30 minutes to realize they totally disliked shooting competitions. Standing around in the weather, doing nothing basically for 4 to 6 hours to shoot for 2 minutes total was a completely unacceptable return on their time investment. Especially compared to every single other of their activities.

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32 minutes ago, rowdyb said:

It took my kids 30 minutes to realize they totally disliked shooting competitions. Standing around in the weather, doing nothing basically for 4 to 6 hours to shoot for 2 minutes total was a completely unacceptable return on their time investment. Especially compared to every single other of their activities.

Unrelated but I'm 28 and this bothers me too haha. 

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I dont have kids, but I would encourage them to participate at least a few times to see if they like it or not. 

I wouldn't take them to a match until I've seen them in practice do everything without mom (hopefully my wife likes guns in this scenario) or dads help. And maybe go practice with someone else to have them RO my offspring since it wont always be me on the timer. 

If they do everything safely, start with steel challenge or a shorter USPSA match to get their feet wet so they aren't in the sun for 8hrs. I dont think I would have a specific age at which they could do this, when they and I am comfortable/responsible with handling the gun without me right there. No turning around and looking for help on a jam or ULSC etc...Also if that means they want to start in the low ready or something not holster work I'd ask the MD to let them do that and bag at the end. 

 

FWIW...I've seen adults older than me who I wouldn't practice with based on their handling skills at a match, so its really mentally dependent, not physical age.

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My son shoots with me along with my 17 year old grand daughter. She loves multigun, USPSA, & Steel challenge. When she first got interested a few years ago in shooting we started her with a .22 pistol progressed to 9mm.

 

She is very competitive, and got frustrated with the iron sight pistol. Tried PCC, built her a light weight one, and she loved it and has never looked back. Now shoots, pcc, rifle, pistol, and shotgun very well and competes with us. Has turned into a very good shooter.

 

My grandsons who are 5 & 8 both shoot .22's when they visit in a very safe environment. Can't wait for the oldest to visit next time & try SC. I put together a .22 pistol & rifle just for them. 

 

My advice is to find what they like not necessarily your likes are.

 

gerritm

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22 hours ago, rowdyb said:

It took my kids 30 minutes to realize they totally disliked shooting competitions. Standing around in the weather, doing nothing basically for 4 to 6 hours to shoot for 2 minutes total was a completely unacceptable return on their time investment. Especially compared to every single other of their activities.

If they’ve got time to stand and do nothing they’ve got time to paste and reset!  Ok. Partially kidding there. But same boat. My kid isn’t down with the hurry up and wait p

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Nathanb said:

If they’ve got time to stand and do nothing they’ve got time to paste and reset!  Ok. Partially kidding there. But same boat. My kid isn’t down with the hurry up and wait p

pasting and setting is doing nothing. and they did it the same as anyone else. if it isn't shooting, it's "nothing".

Edited by rowdyb

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On 7/15/2019 at 1:19 PM, rowdyb said:

It took my kids 30 minutes to realize they totally disliked shooting competitions. Standing around in the weather, doing nothing basically for 4 to 6 hours to shoot for 2 minutes total was a completely unacceptable return on their time investment. Especially compared to every single other of their activities.

+1 for my kids (9 and 10 yrs), but I'm the opposite and just like being out of the house/office!

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My son just turned 13 but I got him into steels at 10 and USPSA at 12....now he shoots both with me.

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