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In Trap Shooting, you shoot at clay targets moving away from you at predictable angles.


Trapshooting was originally developed, in part, to augment bird hunting and to provide a method of practice for bird hunters. Originally competitors used live pigeons which was extremely abundant at the time. Birds were placed under hats or in traps which were then released. Around the 1830s American Competitors started developing artificial targets for the trap competition. First glass balls containing feathers were used, but soon clay targets would be developed and become the standard for the sport.


  1. Hearing Protection – proper ear protection protects the shooter from going deaf.
  2. Eye Protection – Shooting glasses are shot-proof, protecting your eyes from target shards, ricocheting pellets.
  3. Shell Pouch or Vest – A simple pouch has two pockets: the top one for live shells, the bottom pocket to hold the empty cartridges. The empty hull pocket unzips at the bottom to make it easier to put your cartridges in the trash or another container. A vest has some padding on the shoulder and pockets for choke tubes and glasses.
  4. Gloves– Shooting gloves protect the shooter from burning their hand when the barrels begin to heat up from firing rounds.
  5. Shotgun – The beautiful thing about trap is that you can use most any shotgun. You will want a 12 or 20 gauge so there’s enough shot downrange to break a target moving away from you, but other than that, you only need a gun that’s capable of firing one shot at a time.
  6. Ammunition
  7. Chokes– Choke tubes allow shooters to vary the spread of their shot pattern to properly engage targets near and far.

The Basics

A round of trap includes 25 targets, where each shooter in a squad fires at 5 targets from each of 5 shooting positions. A full squad is 5 shooters. Each person fires at one target from their position, then the next shooter, then the next. When all shooters have fired once from their station, the process repeats four more times. After the last shooter fires their fifth shot, the squad rotates positions with each shooter moving one position to the right. The shooter on the far right circles back to the first, and now vacant, position on the far left. The cycle repeats until all shooters have fired at five targets from each of the five shooting positions. When finished, every shooter will have attempted shots at 25 targets. While a round of trap is 25 single shots, a competition will usually be 100 or 200 rounds. You’ll have breaks between rounds and you’ll most likely shoot from different fields.

How To Get Started

Step 1: Join TSRA

Step 2: Contact TSRA Directors below

Paul DeRidder
Shotgun Director

Harold Carter
1st Vice President