We visit Katy Poulsom in Surrey for a training session on her Marksman Shooting Simulator -practice clays, game & running boar!

credit: Archant

Simulation is widely used in the sort of jobs where it pays to master the skills in question prior to attempting them in a “real life” situation – for example, pilots, astronauts and surgeons will all use simulation extensively in their training.

Improving the shooting experience for first-timers

The shooting industry has been a little slower on the simulation uptake. True, it is not a dangerous sport by any stretch of the imagination, and the worst thing that tends to happen to newbies is the pain caused by excessive recoil and the frustration at missing target after target; however, a tool that makes their first foray into shooting less painful and more successful should be hailed from the rooftops if our aim is to encourage more people to the sport.

The simulator works with your own gun, or one supplied by Katy, and is exactly like shooting the real thing, minus the recoil. For newcomers, it’s a chance to work on the mount, stance, movement and lead picture, without the added worry of handling a live firearm for the first time, or getting kicked about by the recoil before you know how to hold the gun correctly. It has the potential to make the first trip out to the clay ground a successful, fun affair, as opposed to a painful, disheartening one.

Fine-tuning performance for experienced shooters

The simulator is far from a tool reserved for novice. In fact, its primary function, especially when combined with Katy Poulsom’s incredible coaching skills, is to analyse, improve and perfect the performance of more experienced shooters, whether their discipline of choice is Skeet, Trap or Sporting.

Katy is an ISSF coach and works closely with the GB Olympic Skeet shooters to improve their performance. The simulator allows Katy and the shooter to see, on a graph, exactly what happened during the shot, right down to the tiniest movement that would be hard if not impossible to spot with the naked eye. You can watch and analyse your mount, the line you took, which technique you used (maintained lead, pull-away etc) and whether you were in front, behind or spot on... you can even see if you stopped the gun as you took the shot.

This is all very helpful in itself, but combined with Katy’s expertise, we can vouch for it being an invaluable training tool. You can see exactly how you missed, have Katy explain why and how to rectify the issue, and finally, you can see the difference in your shot sequence when you try again and get it right!

Practising live quarry shooting on the simulator

The final use for this wonder tool is practising live quarry shooting prior to trying it for the first time, or after the long closed-season to get your eye in before that first day in the field. The possibilities are endless... from grouse to pigeons, pheasants to partridge, boar to deer and everything in between, whatever you have coming up, the simulator has a programme for you to practice with and iron out any issues before heading out in the field. We practiced high driven pheasants and driven grouse, along with some lower pheasant and ducks. A great confidence booster and an ideal way to get your eye in before the new season.

Visit the website for more info and to book a session!