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  • michaelwhapples1Michael Whapples from Leicestershire is blind and shoots air rifle.  In 2011 he was the first British shooter ever to compete at the Open European Shooting Championships for the Vision Impaired, held at Nitra, Slovakia. 

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  • MattSkelhon1Matt Skelhon shot to fame when he grabbed gold at the Bejiing Paralympic Games and proved it was no fluke by claiming silver and bronze at London 2012.

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  • vicmorris1Vic Morris lives in south Wales and is paralysed from the neck down as the result of an accident.  With the aid of an 'equaliser' device invented by his coach, John Kelman, Vic shoots pistol and rifle. 
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  • stewartnangle1Stewart Nangle, a Lancastrian, is pictured shooting .22 pistol.  What the photograph does not show is that at the time one of his legs was fitted with a metal frame that was bolted into the bones. 
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  • peterbreheny1Peter Breheny from Derbyshire shoots benchrest rifle.  He has Kennedy's Disease, a progressive wasting condition that has weakened his limbs. 
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  • Di CoatesDeanna (Di) Coates lives in Hampshire, shoots air rifle from a wheelchair, and is one of our most successful disabled international athletes. 
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  • scoutwithprosthesis1This young Scout was born without a left hand.  When he took an interest in shooting, which is very popular in the Scout movement, Hampshire Scouts helped his local club to find a solution. 
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This is: Smallbore Rifle & Pistol shooting

The world of smallbore target shooting covers a very large number of disciplines that can be broadly categorised by the type of gun (rifle or pistol) or by calibre (.22 rimfire or .177 airgun).  Whether one is shooting .22 rifle, air rifle, .22 pistol or air pistol, there are quite a few different options available for competitions, with different courses of fire shot at various distances.  Set out below is a summary of all the options. 

The national governing body for all these smallbore disciplines is the National Small-bore Rifle Association (NSRA).  Almost all smallbore disciplines are fully accessible to those who are less-able or disabled, thanks to the NSRA's dispensation scheme

For an excellent detailed explanation of smallbore rifle shooting visit the SmallBoreRifle website.

There is separate and more detailed information about Air Pistol and Air Rifle shooting in this section of the site. 

What can you shoot with?

  • .177 Air Pistols    
  • .22 Pistols
  • .177 Air Rifles    
  • .22 Rifles
  • .177 Multi-shot Air Pistols  
  • .22 Multi-shot Rifles
  • .177 Sporter Air Rifles   
  • .22 Lightweight Sport Rifles
  • Field Target Air Rifles   

.177 rifles and pistols are airguns firing pellets.
.22 rifles and pistols are firearms firing rimfire cartridges.

How far away is the target?

  • 6 yards
  • 10 metres
  • 15 yards
  • 20 yards
  • 25 yards
  • 25 metres
  • 50 yards
  • 50 metres
  • 100 yards 
  • Variable distances from 7 to 55 yards for Field Target
  • For Running Target it has to be shot whilst it is moving across a gap of 2 metres in 2.5 or 5 seconds

 How many shots have to be fired?

10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 or 120 shots “to count”, plus some sighting-in shots at the beginning.

How long does a shoot take?

60 seconds, 90 seconds, 10 minutes, 20 minutes, 1hr 15mins, 1hr 45mins, 2hrs 15mins, or 3hrs 45mins, depending on the course of fire. 

Rapid-fire Pistol involves firing six sets of 5 shots at 5 targets, two sets each in 8 seconds, 6 seconds and 4 seconds.

What position can you shoot in?

Prone (lying down), standing, kneeling or sitting (on the ground, at a table, or in a wheelchair).

The premier event is .22 rifle shooting at prone + standing + kneeling – Great Britain has won Olympic gold medals for it.

Where can you do it?

On an indoor range in a pub, school hall, Scout hut, village hall or purpose-built range.

Outdoors on a formal range or in woodlands and fields for Field Target.

Would you like to be in a team?

Shooters can compete as individuals, in pairs, or in teams of three, four, five, eight, ten or twenty.

Where does it happen?

  • Shooting clubs  
  • Social clubs 
  • Pubs (Bell Target)
  • Village halls (Bell Target)
  • Schools    
  • Universities
  • Cadet units   
  • Scout groups
  • Regional centres   
  • National Shooting Centre at Bisley, Surrey

What competitions are there?

Club competitions
Inter-club leagues
County championships
Inter-county leagues
Open meetings
National postal championships
Home Countries championship meetings
British championship meetings

Most competitions are in classes or divisions, so shooters compete against people at the same level. 

Some matches are done by post, others are shot shoulder-to-shoulder, lasting for a day, a weekend, or a whole week, with anything from a few dozen to 1,000 shooters gathering together.

What are the age limits?

There aren’t any! 

  • Children can take up the sport as soon as they can understand the safety rules and how to aim. 
  • There are Junior categories for under 14s, under 16s, under 18s and under 21s.
  • Veterans competitions are open to those over 60, over 65 or over 70.
  • Shooters can carry on for as long as they can get to the range; some are still enjoying it in their 90s.

How much does it cost?

If you use your club’s equipment, just the price of your pellets or ammunition, and membership subscriptions – probably around the cost of one pint or a cappuccino a week.

If you buy your own equipment and enter lots of competitions – as much as you want to spend.

Small-bore Target Shooting covers:

50-metre .22 Pistol
Air Pistol
Air Rifle
Bell Target
Bench-rest Pistol
Bench-rest Rifle
Field Target Airgun
Lightweight Sport Rifle
Prone Air Rifle (an additional option for disabled)
Prone Rifle (short range and long range)
Rapid-fire Pistol
Running Target
Sport Pistol (Air)
Sporter Air Rifle (standing and three-positions)
Three-positions Rifle

Hot News!

DSP Videos

Videos on disabled target shooting now on Vimeo and YouTube. You are invited to contribute your videos.

Please Do Our Surveys!

survey Information about people and facilities is vital to our work (and funding). YOU can help by completing our People and Clubs/Grounds Surveys.

£250,000 for Clubs!

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Read about the huge increase in Sport England investment in grass-roots target shooting. 

International Development

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Read about how we are hoping to expand the range of international competitions open to disabled shooters, and let us know if you can help.  

Helpful Stuff

Vision for Shooters

For most shooters, being able to see well enough to aim accurately is the key to our sport. Our Vision Section has lots of information to help all shooters who have vision problems, great or small.

Funding Guidance & Information

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Need information on funding for any aspect of disabled target shooting?  Check out the extensive Funding section on this site. 

Advice for Clubs

EFDS Inclusion Hub is a free on-line resource created by the English Federation of Disability Sport for clubs that wish to become more disabled-friendly and include more disabled people in their activities.
More information

Disability Awareness

For those encountering people who have various types of disabilities, we offer a round-up of some on-line advice and videos that may help to put everyone at their ease.