Air Riflery

David Jimenez, Sports Writer

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There are a variety of sports played around the world.  For instance, there’s the popular sports, such as football, soccer, and baseball. There are also numerous sports that don’t receive the same recognition.  Air Riflery is an example of this. Although air riflery isn’t as well known as other sports, there are many technical things about it.  

Like all sports, air riflery has a history.  According to Aceros de Hispania, the air gun was initially made by an Italian gunsmith Girandoni Bartolomeo for the Austrian Army in 1780.  By using the same mechanics as blow pipes, air guns are believed to be evolved from it. To add on, air rifles were far superior to the common weapons used in battle due to the fact that they didn’t produce any black smoke, and it could be used in all weather conditions because lighting a fuse wasn’t required to fire it.  Air rifles were feared so much that any enemy soldier who was captured with one was eliminated on the spot. Additionally, because of their high cost and dangerous setup, air rifles were mainly used by nobility for hunting and sports. Air rifles were silent, deadly, and had a good rate of fire so they were favorable when it came to hunting.  Eventually, this sport fell under the shooting category for events including the olympics. Shooting was one of the nine competitive sports to take part in the first modern Olympic games In 1896, Athens, Greece and has been in the modern Olympics since 1984. Air rifles are even making a comeback because new technology is making the guns more powerful and optimal for the sport to be played.

The way the sport is played is with the competitor standing ten meters away from the target.  There are three positions the competitor needs to shoot from, prone, kneeling, and standing. They have twenty shots per position to hit as many targets as possible.  The targets are usually electronic scoring targets but can sometimes be paper or clay targets depending on the gun and the competition. The scoring is one through ten, with ten being the bullseye.  Just like any other sport, there are some skill sets which can be a help to you while playing. These skills may include things such as precision or basic knowledge of the sport. By playing the sport you can also acquire certain skills and attributes such as focus, discipline, and respect.

The way an air rifle works is by using compressed air to fire the pellets.  With the ability to injure people, there are strict rules and precautions made for air rifles and the user.  These rules can be as simple as wearing safety glasses or only having the air gun loaded when permitted. There are also rules which require common sense. For instance, only being able to fire the gun during a preparation period or when it’s your turn on the firing line.  

In conclusion, air riflery is a sport played worldwide and has an interesting history.  With the increase in upgrades for air guns, air riflery may even become more popular.

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