Basic Tips for Shooting FITASC

Contributed by Bill Ducci, Brays Island Property Owner

shooting clay instructor holding shotgun

While I am sure no expert at shooting FITASC, I have shot a good amount of it over the last 15 years and have learned a few things along the way that may help some beginners get off on the right foot. As always, professional help from a certified FITASC or shooting clays instructor is recommended!

“Show Me” Targets and “Having a Plan”

It is amazing to me how when a shooter calls for their show me targets that many are lackadaisical. Sure, they are looking at the target, but they are not making a plan. There is a reason you can see two show me targets. The first target is to give you a basic idea of the target trajectory and speed. BEFORE I call for the second of the same target, I begin to formulate my plan:

  • Where am I going to look to pick up the target? (What is my visual pickup point?)
  • What method will I use on that target? (Sustained, pull through, cut-off, etc.)
  • What is my intended break point?
  • Where should my feet be pointed to best get to that break point?
  • What part of the target am I going to focus on for each presentation?
  • Where will my muzzle be pointed when I assume my ready position for that target?

After I answer all those questions in my head, I adjust to what I think is correct and mentally shoot the target on the second show me.  If it felt good, great. If not, I make an adjustment to my plan.

pointing shotgun at target

“Move, Mount, Shoot” vs. “Mount, Move, Shoot”

This is a big one for new FITASC shooters.  They are in such a hurry to get to their “comfortable place,” which is having the gun in their face. Wrong! Once that gun is in your face, your ability to both see the target and read where it’s going are impeded.

In general, when the gun hits your cheek, you must pull the trigger. No measuring. No checking “site pictures.”  When shooting a fast crosser, get in synch. The muzzle is tracking the target because your body is turning before you even begin to mount. The mount is slow and not completed until it is time to pull the trigger.  New FITASC shooters are puzzled. “You move so slowly but break the target so quickly!” This is exactly the result you can expect if you do everything else correctly.

When it’s time to shoot your next FITASC target, review your plan.  Where am I going to look to pick up the target?  What method am I going to use to break it? (Sustained, pull through, cut-off, etc.) What is my break point? Are my feet correct for that break point? Where am I going to start my muzzle?

Then, the last four things:

  • Adjust your eye focus to the correct distance to see the target clearly at the visual pick up point.
  • Focus on the leading edge of the target.
  • Move slowly.
  • PULL!

Check out other posts on our blog for more trap shooting tips and a history of FITASC and its rules.