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Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend #2696253 10/27/11 03:33 AM
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OK, so I know "Target Panic" is more of an archery term, but its the best way I can describe whats going on (I think). My 12yr old all of a sudden has become a horrible shot (30-30, 2x7 scope 150gr rounds, using steady rest). Last year and earlier this year he was shooting as well as that gun/round allowed. Today he couldn't hit a pie plate and was all over the target without any consistency. Thinking maybe the gun, scope or round was off I shot four rounds into a 1" group @ 80yds right on target.

I think he is either having trouble holding steady or is flinching (I think he may of got hit by the scope one time and is now worried about that). I put a blank round into the gun with out him noticing and he did flinch a tiny tiny bit. I've seen flinchers and most of the time their shots are at least some what consistent,; that's why i think he is actually having an problem holding steady. We have gone over the breathing mechanics and trigger pull. I've tried really hard to not over pressure him and to not shake his confidence.

Youth weekend is this weekend and he will be going for his first deer (if I feel confident in his shooting). Do any of you guys have any quick test to determine the issue and a quicker remedy?


Last edited by wgonfan; 10/27/11 03:34 AM.
Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: wgonfan] #2696269 10/27/11 03:37 AM
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Start him from scratch again?

Let him plink around with a 22, and let his confidence build back up...


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: wgonfan] #2696288 10/27/11 03:40 AM
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way to much for me to go into here, try this put him on bench and have him concentrate on watching where the bullet hits each shot, start off with a .22 at 25yds, always have him call his shot before he shoots, then you do it make it a game, then move up and out.


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: 4K outdoors and taxidermy] #2696303 10/27/11 03:46 AM
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Get him a .243 or 7/08 for starters easier to shoot and new gun new confidence smile


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: BMD] #2696314 10/27/11 03:49 AM
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Originally Posted By: BMD
Get him a .243 or 7/08 for starters easier to shoot and new gun new confidence smile


X2 30-30 is allot of gun for a 12 yr old


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: TXW] #2696360 10/27/11 04:03 AM
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X3... I'm sure that is the problem.


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: bjankowski] #2696386 10/27/11 04:12 AM
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get a recoil pad for the gun. my son (12 years old) likes using a 30-06 with 165 grain ammo. it has a pretty good kick. i got a recoil pad and now that is his go to gun for big stuff.





Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: pafree] #2696399 10/27/11 04:17 AM
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try diffrent things, first shoot the gun a few times and act like you loaded it, dont let him see you put nothing in there. It will dry fire and see if he jumps when the trigger is pulled. If everything is good there thats great. If he jumps try the recoil pad or a smaller cal.

make sure his eye is his domint eye, i used to shoot right handed and my left eye was domint, i switched to shooting left handed and shoot 100 times better.


You said he shoot good a few months ago, maybe he is just excited about the deer season coming up.

Best of luck to you and things will work out



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Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: TXW] #2696402 10/27/11 04:19 AM
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Originally Posted By: BMD
Get him a .243 or 7/08 for starters easier to shoot and new gun new confidence smile


thanks for the replies. I do not think the 30-30 is too much gun for him. but I have thought about buying a new one just to kind of reset his confidence.

he's a bigger kid for his age. I started him out with the managed recoil round on the 30-30, then moved to the 150gr. believe it or not, The 150gr 30-30 has less felt recoil than 7mm-08 & .243


from chuckhawks (http://www.chuckhawks.com/recoil_table.htm):
caliber, rifle weight, recoil weight, recoil velocity
30-30 (150gr), 7.5, 10.6, 9.5
7mm-08(140gr), 8.0, 12.6, 10.1
.243 Win. (95gr), 7.25, 11.0, 9.9


Last edited by wgonfan; 10/27/11 04:42 AM.
Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: wgonfan] #2696693 10/27/11 11:18 AM
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Some days one's concentration just isn't what it should be. If he's not into it then move on to something else and come back to it later.

To work on flinching have him sit at the bench. You take the rifle and load with either a live round or a dummy round (previously fired) where he can't see what he's getting. Watch him close on the dummy rounds. If he's flinching, jerking or shying from the gun it will be obvious. Have him work on the mechanics of proper shooting while dry firing.

Give him a dummy round or two and then a live round. Follow up with another dummy round and gradually work up to all live rounds as he improves. Build his confidence by reminding him about what a good job he's done in the past.

Good luck.



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Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: LandPirate] #2696695 10/27/11 11:20 AM
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Just think bolt gun with crisp trigger would help up


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: 4K outdoors and taxidermy] #2696730 10/27/11 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted By: 4K outdoors and taxidermy
start off with a .22 at 25yds, always have him call his shot before he shoots, then you do it make it a game, then move up and out.


this ^^
My daughter went thru something this past year, hormones, or something. but anyhow, her shots just went all over the place. so I did the empty cartridge thing, no flinch really, started back to basics with the .22, made a game about outshooting the ol man, and now she's all over the 10 spot!

good luck, and be sure to let him know, if he does not get it where your comfortable, he wont be shooting



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Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: TreeBass] #2696749 10/27/11 11:54 AM
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I don't know about that last part TB that is just more pressure, thinking he has enough if he is spraying bullets, reminding he won't be hunting will just add to that!


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: BMD] #2696762 10/27/11 12:03 PM
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Originally Posted By: BMD
Just think bolt gun with crisp trigger would help up

X2 Trigger pull on that 30-30 is usually not to crisp.



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Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: stxranchman] #2696791 10/27/11 12:15 PM
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BMD, I understand where your coming from, but I don't think its too much pressure to lay out the standards or expectations.

They need to understand that if they cant shoot a target, no way will you allow them to shoot at a living animal.

Like I said, my daughter shot two deer last year, then started just plain missing the target at the range. When she saw the bucks on the cam a few months ago, it motivated her.

She understood that if she didn't shoot to my satisfaction, she wasnt shooting. Each kid is different, and some things will work for some, but not others.

The last thing you want to do is set them up for a miss, bad habits or worse yet a wounded animal in the woods.



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Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: TreeBass] #2696795 10/27/11 12:18 PM
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Good go either way I guess, would try without added pressure then if it didn't work might try it adding motivation cheers


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: BMD] #2696872 10/27/11 12:55 PM
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30-30 is a bit much I would think.. I shot a model 94 that I bought awhile back and it kicked more than my .308.. or get him some big safety glasses so he doesnt get scope ringed. I know when I was that age I couldnt hit jack with a big gun like that, I was worried about the kick.



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Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: wgonfan] #2696894 10/27/11 01:04 PM
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My grandson did the same thing, I started him all over again back to basic with a 22.


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: dgilbert] #2696906 10/27/11 01:08 PM
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Target panic is a curse and we should not speak it's name out loud. I'm sure your son does not have it. One good thing is the excitement of shooting at actual game will take his mind off of shooting somewhat.


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: Adraper] #2697688 10/27/11 05:48 PM
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I agree with the rest of the comments. My son is small for a 12 year old and he was flinching when he started shooting his 20 gauge. So we went back to the 22 and started over from the top with the basics. My Daddy taught me the BRASS approach and that is what I teach my son.

He is getting a 243 this Xmas so it ought to be interesting on how he acts with it. I was told if he can shoot a 20 gauge a 243 will be nothing for him to shoot.


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: add147] #2697717 10/27/11 05:58 PM
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Mine did it and I just told him to quit letting the gun whip his tail. He bowed up and got over it. It is in the mind. Just take him and let him shoot a few rounds and get the scared out. It will be fine. Should have seen me the first time I shot a big gun. Im sure it was funny to those around me, but it sure wasnt very manly. confused2



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Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: add147] #2697724 10/27/11 06:00 PM
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.243 or .270 for sure...i love these rounds...great for anyone..and any game in texas. I start all the youngens on a .243 single shot..if you wana keep him with the 30-30 let him dry fire it a few times before he actually shoots..easiest way to get use to a trigger


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: Navasot] #2697763 10/27/11 06:10 PM
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Way better options than .270, want long action .280 or get the perfect 7mm/08


Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: BMD] #2697814 10/27/11 06:28 PM
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I started Josh at age 7 with a 223 with 60 grain Nosler Partitions. Now, I had the 300 out the window as well, in case something went wrong. By 9 he was using my old 243. At 11 he bought his own 308 and this year at 13 he saved up and got a Winchester 70 in 7mm-08. Start small and it wont take long before your son will be an old pro.



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Re: Help! Son has developed "target panic". - youth hunt this weekend [Re: A.B.] #2697833 10/27/11 06:36 PM
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Josh has a sweet rig up


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