History of Shooting Sports

 ISSF World Shooting Championship Changwon 2018 August 31 ~ September 15, 2018(16 days)
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History of Shooting Sports

Early History

Aiming at targets in order to test one's skill started with archery even further than 1300s when guns invented.

The guns were used for war at first, and then people designed shooting sports; however, it still remains unknown when the target practice(shooting) exactly started because the early history of guns is not clear. The early history of guns mostly deals with rifle shots. According to the official record, shooting matches initiated in Eichstatt, Bavaria Germany in 1477, and the shooters matched their skill at a distance of 200 miles with flintlocks.

A swiss drawing originated in 1504 shows a scene of a modern rifle shooting competition- the shooters, surrounded by fences, aimed at the distant target from the roofed shooting range.

There was a little hut next to each target; the markers stayed inside the hut during the shooting and got out to count the marks, then informed the judges and shooter of the marks with a flagpole or just a pole. The judge and the scorekeeper sat next to a table under the roof. Flags were fluttering in the wind, and there were bleachers. Wooden targets made in 1540 are kept in German Museum.

These targets were made for wedding ceremonies, and guests hit the target and there were mementos to give out according to the score the guests earned. The rifle target practice became popular in the 16th century, especially in Germanic countries. Elaborately-decorated German Firing Mechanism, rifle barrels with a groove inside, as well as exquisite gunsights were newly invented in the late 16th century. These instruments are considered to appear for the target practicein those days.

The Change of Shooting in Korea

While the start of shooting sports in Korea traces back to the 1950s, the shooting not as sports started in the late 16th century when firearms were introduced. However, it cannot be said that the shooting activities including competitions in those days were well organized or had any specific rules.

Based on a written record, the shooting matches in Korea began at Royal Military Academy in the late Joseon Dynasty. It is expected that the matches in those days were pretty simple compared to the matches that have been held on a large scale with specific rules in these days; in the past, shooters contended for superiority by aiming at the target with a rifle in prone, standing, or kneeling positions.

Republic of Korea was officially recognized as one of leading nations in shooting sports in February, 1955 when the Korea Shooting Association (Forerunner of Korea Shooting Federation) was established after the restoration of Korean independence.

Korea became the best Asian nation in the shooting sports by earning the first place in the 2nd Asian Shooting Championship in 1971 based on its overall score; after that, the shooting sport in Korea has been remarkably improved in terms of the athletic facility and the technique.

The World Shooting Championship has over 110 years of a history and takes place every four years; there were 1,518 participants and 71 nations in the 42nd World Shooting Championship held in Taereung International Shooting Range from September 24, 1978 to October, 5 in Korea, and the Republic of Korea was the first nation in Asia to host the event.

Since 1955, shooting teams have been established on a national scale; currently, 520 teams and 3,800 athletes are registered, and there are approximately 5,000 members of the shooting society.