Air gun shooting can be a relaxing hobby or a highly competitive sport, and is also an official Olympic event for both men and women.
Air guns are the perfect way to teach your family marksmanship and correct gun handling – training that neatly carries over to firearms use. High quality, single-shot spring-piston air guns are ideal for this because they look and feel just like modern firearms.
Air guns are quiet, modestly powered, extraordinarily accurate mechanical works of art. Shooting at home allows you to practice often, without having to travel to distant firearms ranges or hunting grounds. You can shoot indoors or out, day or night, during any weather, the entire year. The low discharge sound, low power and negligible recoil, except with certain magnum air guns, makes air gun shooting pleasant and flinch-free. The soft discharge sound means no earplugs are needed. Most target air guns have a maximum range of about 400 yards, and the pellets are so light and their energy so low that the only precaution that need be taken is simple eye protection. The right air gun can be used to teach the elements of marksmanship which carry over nearly perfectly to firearms shooting.
It is not surprising that target shooting with air guns is so popular. All skill sports require frequent practice. The top-grade precision air guns are now considered to be the world’s most accurate guns, bar none. While Americans often think of airgun shooting as primarily a youth program leading to adult firearm events, they are now recognizing that serious airgun competition is an end in itself and something in which members of all ages can participate. In addition to target shooting, many shooting clubs have started hunting-style metallic silhouette and “running target” programs for air rifles and pistols. The NRA has established 15 levels of marksmanship awards in their 25-ft airgun shooting programs. Target shooters can also compete with other air gun shooters via postal matches, and in-person at hundreds of airgun matches at the local, state, national and international level.
The low cost and safety of airgun shooting, along with the ability to set up a safe range almost anywhere, has also led to the use of air guns for hunter safety programs. Hunters are enjoying using the the new breed of “magnum” hunting air rifles with 30 to 50-yard range.
Consider using an air gun for pest control. With a proper high-powered air gun you can reduce harmful pests in areas where a firearm would be unsafe or not permitted. Suburbanites, farmers and gardeners appreciate the adult use of air guns in the selective control of crop predators such as woodchucks, opossum and even raccoons. Air guns may be used to control destructive rodents like rats and as well as other vermin.
Air guns are not subject to the U.S. Gun control Act of 1968 and many other firearm laws. There are little or no purchase or ownership problems in most areas. Some cities and communities do treat air guns as firearms so it’s always a good idea to check with your police department for the local regulations. Normally, you can ship, mail, and take target air guns across state and even international borders, although magnum hunting air rifles above 12 ft-lbs of muzzle energy may be treated as firearms in some countries.