By Andrew Liszewski
If you’re a professional shooter, I can’t imagine that practicing by firing off a few rounds at a paper target in an indoor range is all that realistic. And while I’ve come across a lot of high-tech simulators for hand guns over the years, this is the first one I’ve seen that’s specifically designed for rifles and shotguns. The ST-2 Shooting Simulator from Marksman Training Systems allows you to practice shooting at moving targets like live game or clay traps, and uses a virtual ballistics model (co-developed with the British Association for Shooting and Conservation) to provide valuable feedback on your technique.
The simulator can be used with most shotguns and rifles. The camera sensor that registers gun movements and shooting direction can be easily attached to the barrel of your own gun. The shooting direction is calibrated by a single shot at a calibration target. The shooting scenarios include moving and fixed targets. Starting position, trajectory, speed of the targets are parameters that can be altered by the user creating a wide variety of scenarios to practice on. Hit position and the effectiveness of the shot are evaluated according to all contributing factors: ammunition load and weight, range, target size, trajectory and speed.
And if you’re wondering how realistic the ST-2 Shooting Simulator really is, the company’s website claims it’s currently being used by both the Russian and Slovakian clay shooting teams in preparation for the 2008 Olympic games. So needless to say it will be great PR for them if either of those countries ends up with competitors on the podium.