Competitive shooting is an exhilarating sport that tests precision, control and focus. Whether you’re a seasoned shooter or new to the competition circuit, proper preparation is key to performing at your best.

At AimHi Family Firearms Center, we’re committed to helping you excel in a variety of shooting scenarios. Here’s how you can prepare for your next competition — we list a few of the Ohio region’s most popular events — and how AimHi can support your journey every step of the way.

Understanding Competitive Shooting Styles

Before diving into competition, shooters should understand the different styles of competition, as each requires distinct skills, approaches and equipment.

Precision Shooting

Often seen in Olympic events, this style focuses on hitting static targets with high accuracy from various distances. Disciplines include bullseye shooting and 10-meter air rifle.

Action Shooting

This style tests both speed and accuracy, with competitors moving through different stages and engaging multiple targets as quickly as possible. Popular formats include IPSC, USPSA and 3-Gun competitions.

Clay Shooting

Involving moving clay targets, this type of shooting event tests your tracking and timing skills. Variants such as Skeet, Trap and Sporting Clays offer diverse challenges.

Long-Range Shooting

For those who love precision over long distances, disciplines such as Benchrest or F-Class shooting focus on hitting targets several hundred yards away.

Essential Preparation Steps

Training and Practice

  • Frequent visits to the range are vital. Focus on the fundamentals — stance, grip, sight alignment and trigger control.
  • Try to practice under conditions that mimic those you’ll face during competitions, such as shooting at different times of day or in various weather conditions.

Equipment Check

  • Ensure your firearm is competition-ready with appropriate modifications and accessories completed before you arrive at your event.
  • Choose quality ammunition suited for your firearm and competition. Consistency in your ammo can significantly influence your scoring.

Mental Preparation

  • Imagine yourself succeeding at the competition. Visualize not just success but handling potential challenges calmly.
  • Develop routines that help you maintain concentration over the course of the competition day.

How AimHi Can Sharpen Your Competitive Edge

At AimHi Family Firearms Center, we offer comprehensive support to competitive shooters through expert private instruction and tailored training programs at our air-conditioned/heated indoor range. Here’s what we can do for you:

Private Instruction

Our certified instructors provide one-on-one coaching, focusing on your specific needs and helping you master various shooting disciplines. Whether you need to refine your technique or learn advanced strategies, our personalized coaching is designed to enhance your skills.

Group Classes

Participate in classes that cover a range of skills and shooting styles. These sessions are great for learning in a structured, group setting, allowing you to share experiences and tips with fellow shooters.

Equipment & Gear Consultation Our staff can advise you on the best equipment for your needs, from firearms to custom modifications, making sure you have the best tools to showcase your skills. Check out AimHi’s online store or visit us at the shop to browse our extensive inventory of firearms and accessories.

2024 Competitive Shooting Events in Ohio

At AimHi Family Firearms Center, we’re available to ensure your competition preparation produces results, with personal guidance and a first-class facility.  Try your hand at competitive shooting at one of the following events hosted at AimHi:

  1. AimHi Bullseye League: Our Bullseye League is based on the 600-point, NRA-style bullseye competition. Rimfire and Centerfire firearms are allowed, and the matches run for 10 consecutive weeks. Competitors can choose to shoot either Monday evenings or Wednesday mornings (or both!) during each series. Ask a sales associate for details next time you are in.

  2. GSSF Indoor League: Each series of the Glock Sport Shooting Foundation Indoor League runs on the third Saturday of the month, for three straight months. We run three series per year, with the next on starting May 18. Details, dates, and course-of-fire can be found on our GSSF page. This is a fun, relaxed league, with the possibility of winning a FREE Glock! If you would like to participate, but don’t own a Glock, you can still participate in our AimHi League, on the same dates, which mirrors the Glock match.

In addition, you can check out some of the Ohio region’s most popular upcoming shooting events below and consider partnering with AimHi before your next shoot!

  1. CMP National Matches at Camp Perry, July 11–Aug. 10, 2024 (Port Clinton, OH): Camp Perry is home to the Civilian Marksmanship Program Headquarters and houses several outdoor and indoor ranges. National Matches are renowned and feature a variety of competitions, including the Rimfire Sporter Match, National Smallbore Matches, Air Gun Nationals, High-Power Rifle Championship, NM Air Gun Events and more. The event hosts the National Trophy matches, which are prestigious events with a long history.

  2. Camp Perry Open May 31–June 3, 2024 (Port Clinton, OH): Hosted by the CMP, this event includes competitions in air rifle and air pistol. It attracts shooters of various ages and sill levels, offering a more accessible entry point for newer shooters.

  3. Scholastic Shooting Sports Foundation National Championships, July 13–20 (Marengo, OH): Held at the Caridnal Shooting Center, this event is one of the largest youth shooting competitions in the U.S. It features the Scholastic Clay Target Program and the Scholastic Action Shooting Program, engaging young shooters in a team environment.

  4. NRA National Matches at Camp Atterbury (Edinburgh, IN): Located roughly 3 ½ hours from AimHi Family Firearms Center, this event features matches with multiple phases, such as Precision Pistol, Smallbore Prone, Smallbore 3-Position, High-Power OTC, High-Power Mid-Range and High-Power Long-Range. These matches cater to serious competitors looking to challenge their shooting skills across different disciplines. Dates include:

    National Pistol Championships: July 21–25, 2024
    National Smallbore Conventional Championship: July 27–Aug. 4, 2024
    National High-Power Championships: Aug. 5–19, 2024