Sport Shooting: What Matters Most

 

 

WUHAN (CHN) - Every soldier solemnly swears by it. Treat your weapon with respect as your life can depend on it. Idem ditto if that soldier is a competitor in sport shooting. Here also, your success at the competition depends on how you treat your rifle or pistol. Hence, the importance of preparing and cleaning your weapon after and prior to each competition. The Military Games in Wuhan are no exception. CISM Media had a chat with some competitors while they were taking care of their most important instrument to practice their beloved sport.

 “Cleaning your weapon is so important,” says Juho Kurki from Finland. “You can shoot about three to five thousand shots with the same barrel. So, if you don’t clean it properly, it won’t last long.” Juho has been practicing sport shooting since his youth. “I got into the sport when I was fifteen years old. It’s a fun sport and what’s more it’s also a great community of friends worldwide. It’s both a physical and a mental discipline. You need to be concentrated on your target and that appeals to me.” Practicing sport shooting influenced Juho’s career path. “It’s one of the reasons I enlisted in the military. I can practice my sport a lot and it’s also a part of my job.”

 

 

Remy Eiffes from Luxemburg is a veteran at the CISM Military Games. “This is my sixth edition,” he proudly says. “But unfortunately, my last one,” he sadly adds. “The next edition I will be retired from the army.”

 He also stresses the importance of a clean riffle. “Cleaning your weapon is even more important than the competition itself,” he confirms. “You can compare it with an expensive car. If you don’t care for its maintenance, the motor will stop running.”

 Remy’s choice of being a sport shooter is the result of his career choice. “Being in the army I was fascinated by the sport. At home I practice in a civilian club also. It’s a demanding sport regarding to reflexes and endurance. Outsiders think that laying down or kneeling to shoot is a piece of cake, but it’s not. Moreover, you need to be concentrated the full 100%.”

 As a sport shooter your balance between physical and mental preparation has to be perfect. “Especially in the high caliber range,” explains Remy. “Those weapons are heavier and need fine precision.”

 

 

Quite often it’s a mental game as well. “When your shot misses the target, you need to put that instant failure quickly behind you and focus on the next shot. It’s always with the last shot that you win or lose. If another shooter who’s leading suddenly also makes a mistake, then you might be in the lead again. Hence, the importance to keep your cool at all times.”

 When Remy enters the shooting stand, he has his own ritual. “I concentrate on the target and completely focus on my weapon and nothing else matters that particular moment.”

 For Remy sport shooting is the ideal sport. “I always tell other shooters, that you can practice the sport in a competitive way for a long time, even when you get older. That’s an advantage compared for instance with athletics. This is where the idea of CISM works for the fully 100%. In sport shooting at CISM competitions, for many years in a row, you meet the same persons, you make real friends as many countries participate. It’s also one of the purposes of CISM. Not only to stage competitions for high-level athletes, but also to bond and make friendships and prevent wars, as CISM adagio so accurately says: Friendship through sport!”

 

(Source: CISM Media and Communication Department – Journalist:  Christian Pierre - Pictures: Christian Pierre)

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