Thread: Looking into FT
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Old 6th November 2013, 07:42 AM
skires skires is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 950

I really do appreciate the advice re the bad back. I shot at Far Coley last Sunday and there was a slight slope upbank as you went through the course. So I was sitting and getting back up with my feet higher up. My back on Monday was killing me.

I've done too much waffling on this thread already and I need to just get shooting but I do appreciate the help. To be honest it was my back why I never really took up FT shooting about 20 years ago ( mid 90's ).

I had just got back into airgun shooting and went to a couple of local clubs, which turned out to be FT clubs ( one was in Stoke and the other was Byley ). The guys were quite friendly but everyone was telling me to get into this sitting position with my knees up and my arms folded across the top of my knees. The front of the gun then rested on the top of the front arm ( elbow area ).

This was agony for me. I'd had a lot of trouble with my lower back ( ruptured discs ) and this position was just not possible. What doesn't help, and I posted about this recently on either here or the BBS ... I'm a dwarf ( @ 5' 8" ). My torso length is quite normal but my legs are very short. So my thigh bones are short compared to most. So when I sit and bring my knees up the distance between my knee and my eyes is much greater than for most.

So for a few years I went to these clubs and others ( Millride, Quarnford ) and shot the FT courses all kneeling and standing. Because I wasn't really doing it properly I never really invested in proper FT kit. So I was using sporting guns with a 9x scope. A lot of the targets were over 45 yards so it was always hard work with lots and lots of misses.

In @ 2000ish along came HFT. No sitting. My back had improved a little and prone was a better option as no bending forward putting strain on the lumbar area and my diddy legs were no issue prone. So I've shot HFT since it began.

Several years ago I bought a FT style stock for the 77 ( from someone called Whizzer or something like that ? ) and I used it for HFT. I then bought an old Custom Shop from SCR as it seemed too cheap not to buy. The back is now better but not great. If I abuse it I get periods ( weeks ) of sciatic pain down through my right buttock and right leg. I really wanted to have a proper go at FT.

So finally to your question ( I'm really sorry for such long posts ) ...

I always look at the photos and reports from HFT and FT. I'd noticed that a popular stance is with the front knee up and the gloved left hand rested on that left knee and the gun rested on that glove. So I tried this stance and it seemed not too bad for me as long as I don't push my back too far forward. So I am trying to shoot like this. The back issues always seem worse on my right side. So I can get my left knee up quite a bit ( can't quite get my foot flat ... more of a heel only on floor ). The problem remains with my right leg. That just doesn't want to bring my right knee up at all. I can lift the knee enough so that I can get some contact on the right thigh with my right elbow for some support, but I can feel it pulling through my right buttock and lower back. I can cope with that. I have lots of stretch exercises that I should do more often and a stone off the old belly wouldn't hurt.

So it's like I see a lot of FT shooters shooting but with a bit of a restriction on that right leg. It did make it worse last Sunday with the slope upbank. It meant the back had to bend further forward to get the back upright ( vertical ) and the old back has been telling me about it since.

I hope some of that made sense?

Last edited by skires; 6th November 2013 at 07:54 AM.
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