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Competitive Equity

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My local club was hosting its first Level 2 match last weekend (Western States Single Stack and Revolver) and I ended up on the squad with the very well known shooters. One of them is a junior lady who ended up 6th overall and a high lady (easy to figure out who it is). She is 17 and pretty short, I would say 4' 10" or so (and a great shooter). 

 

On stage 5, there was an array of three targets on the ground that were shot at arms' length distance, but over a picket fence with hard-cover edge at the top. It wasn't particularly tall, but it was sufficiently tall that this lady had an issue shooting over it so she asked about something to stand on to get competitive equity. The RO said he didn't have anything (not sure he would allow it if he did) so she figured she could shoot (barely-ish) if she stood on the fault line. Some of the other guys on the squad (friends) were joking that it was a payback for all the low ports...

 

As a matter of rules, what is the correct procedure here? "Competitive equity" shows up in rules in completely different context (mid-match changes to a stage) so I'm not sure it would apply at all. The only rule I see is 1.1.6 that talks about allowing for reasonable differences in competitor's build. However, I didn't find anything that would either prohibit stages like this, or permit additional props (not talking about special accommodations for disabled competitors or penalties in lieu of course requirements, that wasn't the case here). Also, at what point does "reasonable" become "unreasonable?" (both as a matter of rules and as a practical matter). 

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As far as I can find, USPSA rules have no way to account for competitor's height, except for "non-shooting challenges", as in 1.1.6.

I think shooting over a barrier is a shooting challenge.

 

IPSC rules have one related point for the height of windows and ports:

2.2.7 Windows and Ports – Must be placed at a height reachable by most competitors, with a sturdy platform being available for use by others, if requested, without penalty.

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2 hours ago, IVC said:

My local club was hosting its first Level 2 match last weekend (Western States Single Stack and Revolver) and I ended up on the squad with the very well known shooters. One of them is a junior lady who ended up 6th overall and a high lady (easy to figure out who it is). She is 17 and pretty short, I would say 4' 10" or so (and a great shooter). 

 

On stage 5, there was an array of three targets on the ground that were shot at arms' length distance, but over a picket fence with hard-cover edge at the top. It wasn't particularly tall, but it was sufficiently tall that this lady had an issue shooting over it so she asked about something to stand on to get competitive equity. The RO said he didn't have anything (not sure he would allow it if he did) so she figured she could shoot (barely-ish) if she stood on the fault line. Some of the other guys on the squad (friends) were joking that it was a payback for all the low ports...

 

As a matter of rules, what is the correct procedure here? "Competitive equity" shows up in rules in completely different context (mid-match changes to a stage) so I'm not sure it would apply at all. The only rule I see is 1.1.6 that talks about allowing for reasonable differences in competitor's build. However, I didn't find anything that would either prohibit stages like this, or permit additional props (not talking about special accommodations for disabled competitors or penalties in lieu of course requirements, that wasn't the case here). Also, at what point does "reasonable" become "unreasonable?" (both as a matter of rules and as a practical matter). 

 

Competitive equity means everyone has to solve the same problem, not that everyone will have their personal shortcomings catered to.

 

I would have told her "shoot it as is or take a DNS"

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36 minutes ago, SGT_Schultz said:

 

Competitive equity means everyone has to solve the same problem, not that everyone will have their personal shortcomings catered to.

 

I would have told her "shoot it as is or take a DNS"

Only problem is horse has left the barn as far as allowing platforms for shorter shooters. Many matches follow the IPSC viewpoint of providing them.

  But I would say she was just trying to gain an advantage on the stage. Gamers end up near the top and on magazine covers for a reason

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1 hour ago, Sarge said:

Only problem is horse has left the barn as far as allowing platforms for shorter shooters. Many matches follow the IPSC viewpoint of providing them.

  But I would say she was just trying to gain an advantage on the stage. Gamers end up near the top and on magazine covers for a reason

 

I am pretty sure you are not referring to this shooter in question, are you? Certainly you are not calling her a gamer, correct? Having shot with this girl, I know from first hand experience she is not a gamer. She is just small in height. She and her sister are really good shooters who deserve recognition for all of their hard work. In essence, they are the future of our sport. 

 

My question is, how did she gain an advantage over the other shooters being short and thereby needing some kind of prop or platform? Are you saying that she was able to shoot the stage BETTER than the other shooters because of said prop/platform?

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2 minutes ago, Nevadazielmeister said:

 

I am pretty sure you are not referring to this shooter in question, are you? Certainly you are not calling her a gamer, correct? Having shot with this girl, I know from first hand experience she is not a gamer. She is just small in height. She and her sister are really good shooters who deserve recognition for all of their hard work. In essence, they are the future of our sport. 

 

My question is, how did she gain an advantage over the other shooters being short and thereby needing some kind of prop or platform? Are you saying that she was able to shoot the stage BETTER than the other shooters because of said prop/platform?

If the shoe fits..........

  I doubt she gained an advantage from using a platform but if she could actually shoot it without then that wasn’t a disadvantage either. And the guys joking about it being payback for the low ports were not wrong. she definitely had a distinct advantage in those cases. All super short shooters have far more advantages than extremely tall shooters in typical COF’s. Rarely do you see a shooter tall enough to shoot over a wall.

 

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Apparently, she managed it standing on a fault line. That was probably not much worse then getting up on a platform to shoot.

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5 hours ago, IVC said:

My local club was hosting its first Level 2 match last weekend (Western States Single Stack and Revolver) and I ended up on the squad with the very well known shooters. One of them is a junior lady who ended up 6th overall and a high lady (easy to figure out who it is). She is 17 and pretty short, I would say 4' 10" or so (and a great shooter). 

 

On stage 5, there was an array of three targets on the ground that were shot at arms' length distance, but over a picket fence with hard-cover edge at the top. It wasn't particularly tall, but it was sufficiently tall that this lady had an issue shooting over it so she asked about something to stand on to get competitive equity. The RO said he didn't have anything (not sure he would allow it if he did) so she figured she could shoot (barely-ish) if she stood on the fault line. Some of the other guys on the squad (friends) were joking that it was a payback for all the low ports...

 

As a matter of rules, what is the correct procedure here? "Competitive equity" shows up in rules in completely different context (mid-match changes to a stage) so I'm not sure it would apply at all. The only rule I see is 1.1.6 that talks about allowing for reasonable differences in competitor's build. However, I didn't find anything that would either prohibit stages like this, or permit additional props (not talking about special accommodations for disabled competitors or penalties in lieu of course requirements, that wasn't the case here). Also, at what point does "reasonable" become "unreasonable?" (both as a matter of rules and as a practical matter). 

 

 

So she was apparently able to shoot the stage standing on the fault line, correct?  If so no additional props were needed.  If she could in no way see the targets as presented then i (if I was RM)  would have allowed a box or something for her to stand on, if it was just hard, then no box.  (I have seen this done at majors in the past too)

 

Stages will never be truly equitable, but that is one of the allures of USPSA IMO.  Be a lefty for a while and you will understand haha.

 

Also, gaming ain't a crime, and if you can game a stage do it

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33 minutes ago, Nevadazielmeister said:

 

So if the shooter is better than you, they must be a gamer? Is that it?

Not at all, I’m just not a fan boy of people. Kids or adults. In any regard. Shooters are better than me because I don’t practice and I’m fine with that. I even game a stage now and then but I don’t bitch about low ports to see if the RM will make them raise it for me.

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1 hour ago, Nevadazielmeister said:

 

So if the shooter is better than you, they must be a gamer? Is that it?

 

Well I would take that as a given. 😉Taking into account my (low) level of skills and abilities, you're all gamers to me. 🤯

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11 minutes ago, Zincwarrior said:

 

Well I would take that as a given. 😉Taking into account my (low) level of skills and abilities, you're all gamers to me. 🤯

😂👍

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Chapter 2 is not terribly specific on providing platforms in cases like this.  However, I think you can find useful guidance on the topic in 2.1.1 and 2.1.6.  Tall people can, even if it's horribly uncomfortable, get all the way to the ground.  Short people can only go so high.  It's a judgement issue and may need to be final called by the RM for consistency.

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2 hours ago, Sarge said:

Not at all, I’m just not a fan boy of people. Kids or adults. In any regard. Shooters are better than me because I don’t practice and I’m fine with that. I even game a stage now and then but I don’t bitch about low ports to see if the RM will make them raise it for me.

 

Probably because no matter how tall you are, you can reach the ground.

 

Short people can't magically become taller.

 

If a barrier that people have to shoot over requires short people (but not anyone other than really short people) to come completely up to it and balance on a fault line so that they can barely reach and shoot the targets, that's a bad stage prop and design.  And yes, our sport does allow for accommodations given that---though it is generally a good idea for the RM to think about those in advance, and have clearly (and easily) defined criteria for usage of such accommodations.  

 

Or better yet, put a wide step up there in the first place, that doesn't require balancing, that everyone can use.  Tall people don't have to use it, short people can use it but don't have to worry about balance problems.

 

Claiming "gamer" and equating that to "attempting to gain an advantage" in a derogatory manner not only doesn't fit this situation and shooter, but ignores the fact that our sport recognizes that accommodations sometimes need to be made.

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1 minute ago, Thomas H said:

 

Probably because no matter how tall you are, you can reach the ground.

BUT FOR AVERAGE HEIGHT SHOOTERS WHO ARE NOT 15 YEARS OLD THIS OFTEN REQUIRES GETTING ON THE GROUND THE LAST STEP SINCE GETTING UP ON THE CLOCKS IS A DEAL BREAKER. THAT SIGNIFICANTLY DISADVANTAGES THEM COMPARED TO A KID OR SHORT FIT SHOOTER.

 

If a barrier that people have to shoot over requires short people (but not anyone other than really short people) to come completely up to it and balance on a fault line so that they can barely reach and shoot the targets, that's a bad stage prop and design.    

I DON'T THINK THAT WAS THE CASE. SHE STOOD ON THE FAULT LINE. PERIOD. IF SHE IS GOOD ENOUGH TO FINISH THAT WELL SHE IS FULLY CAPABLE OF STANDING ON A FAULT LINE. HELL, EVEN I CAN STAND ON A FAULT LINE.

 

 

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34 minutes ago, Sarge said:

BUT FOR AVERAGE HEIGHT SHOOTERS WHO ARE NOT 15 YEARS OLD THIS OFTEN REQUIRES GETTING ON THE GROUND THE LAST STEP SINCE GETTING UP ON THE CLOCKS IS A DEAL BREAKER. THAT SIGNIFICANTLY DISADVANTAGES THEM COMPARED TO A KID OR SHORT FIT SHOOTER

I'm over 6', and almost 60 years old. I don't have any problem getting off the ground on the clock. I did it twice at 2019 limited nationals.

 

for sure, practical shooting rewards shooters who practice, and who stay in reasonable shape. That's the idea.

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1 hour ago, Schutzenmeister said:

It's a judgement issue and may need to be final called by the RM for consistency.

That's part of the question - what are the options? 

 

Is it even within the rules to provide a prop (some sort of a step) to one shooter and one shooter only? The other shooters could then complain that the change violated competitive equity for them and try to toss the stage. What are the realistic options to resolve an issue like this? (I understand that because she was able to stand on the fault line and tiptoe into shooting position it ended up not being an issue, but what if she couldn't have.) 

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3 hours ago, RJH said:

So she was apparently able to shoot the stage standing on the fault line, correct?  If so no additional props were needed.  If she could in no way see the targets as presented then i (if I was RM)  would have allowed a box or something for her to stand on, if it was just hard, then no box.  (I have seen this done at majors in the past too)

Yes, she ended up being able to do it, but how would the extra box fit into the rules without others being able to raise the issue and try to toss the stage?

 

What I'm trying to figure out here is both "rules as written" and what happens in practice at higher level matches when similar situations arise...

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17 minutes ago, IVC said:

That's part of the question - what are the options? 

 

Is it even within the rules to provide a prop (some sort of a step) to one shooter and one shooter only? The other shooters could then complain that the change violated competitive equity for them and try to toss the stage. What are the realistic options to resolve an issue like this? (I understand that because she was able to stand on the fault line and tiptoe into shooting position it ended up not being an issue, but what if she couldn't have.) 

 

something like this happened at nationals a few years ago. they made a box available for ALL shooters, not just the short ones. Of course only a couple of very small people used it, but everyone had the option. The key is anticipating these things in advance so everyone has the same opportunity. If you only offer the box to the shooter who complained about it, you may be screwing over the other small shooters who just dealt with it.
 

That makes sense to me. for sure, using a box is still going to be slower than being tall and being able to shoot over a barrier without getting too close to it, but it at least makes sure that a smaller person can safely see the sights on the target. 

 

mrs moto is about 5'3" . it's not that unusual for us to have to fix stuff at local matches because she can't get the sights between her and the target. Sure, you can 1-hand point-shoot something, but that should be a choice, not forced.

Edited by motosapiens

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1 hour ago, Sarge said:

 

 

I can't quote Sarge correctly because he put his answers in my quote.  Anywhere, here's what he said:

"BUT FOR AVERAGE HEIGHT SHOOTERS WHO ARE NOT 15 YEARS OLD THIS OFTEN REQUIRES GETTING ON THE GROUND THE LAST STEP SINCE GETTING UP ON THE CLOCKS IS A DEAL BREAKER. THAT SIGNIFICANTLY DISADVANTAGES THEM COMPARED TO A KID OR SHORT FIT SHOOTER."


"Can't do it" and "it is harder because you aren't fit" are two separate things.  Everyone can drop to the ground and get up.  (It might take more work for older people, but we can still do it.)  Short people can't magically become taller.  The two cases aren't remotely the same.

 

"I DON'T THINK THAT WAS THE CASE. SHE STOOD ON THE FAULT LINE. PERIOD. IF SHE IS GOOD ENOUGH TO FINISH THAT WELL SHE IS FULLY CAPABLE OF STANDING ON A FAULT LINE. HELL, EVEN I CAN STAND ON A FAULT LINE."

 

You are using a "well, since she's good, she can deal with it" argument?  That's a little different. "Hey, since you are so good, we'll just make this part harder for you.  No complaining, you gamer."

 

That's not how it works.  "I can stand on a fault line" doesn't have anything to do with the situation at hand. 

 

Fixing the stage so this wouldn't be a problem would have been easy enough to do in the first place.  As someone said, having a step there available to all would have been a simple fix.  We even have a rule about it:

 

  1. 2.1.6  Obstacles Natural or created obstacles in a course of fire should reasonably allow for variations in competitors’ height and physical build and should be constructed to provide reasonable safety for all competitors, Match Officials and spectators.

 

Pretty sure that "hey, you, since you are good we'll just make you run to the front and balance on the fault lines like no one else has to do because you are short" doesn't follow that rule.

 

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2 minutes ago, Thomas H said:

Short people can't magically become taller. 

Ever seen a Tom Cruise movie? That's a magical way to make them taller... 🙂 

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For an on-the-fly fix after the match is on the ground, I've used boxes on several occasions. Put carpet on it for traction and place it off to the side. Any shooter, tall or short (God hates them, BTW :lol: ) can opt to place it in position before they shoot. 

 

BEFORE it's built, putting in vertical ports give a more consistent view through the barrier(s).

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2 hours ago, IVC said:

Ever seen a Tom Cruise movie? That's a magical way to make them taller... 🙂 

 

<off-topic> Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher was just beyond ridiculous.</off-topic>

 

:)

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2 hours ago, Thomas H said:

...

 

Fixing the stage so this wouldn't be a problem would have been easy enough to do in the first place.  As someone said, having a step there available to all would have been a simple fix.  We even have a rule about it:

 

  1. 2.1.6  Obstacles Natural or created obstacles in a course of fire should reasonably allow for variations in competitors’ height and physical build and should be constructed to provide reasonable safety for all competitors, Match Officials and spectators.

 

...

 

 

It seems that you just forgot about, or ignored, the difference between Obstacles and Barriers.

 

Obstacle     Something within a course of fire, either constructed or naturally occurring, which much be negotiated by the competitor while completing the course of fire.

Barrier    A wall or other range prop which helps define a course of fire. Typically, these are “vision barriers” as well either by construction or rule.

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