Take the Mystery Out of Missing with Xero S1

Missing has always just been a part of life for a clay shooter. A part of life that has been, frankly, infuriating. How many times have we stood there, after we’ve pulled the trigger, watching an intact clay spinning into the horizon, scratching our head, asking “How on earth did I miss that?” Or worse yet, having one or two misses, going on tilt, and ultimately crumbling on the line as zeros start adding up.

We’ve all been there. No shooter is immune, because every shooter — novice to expert — will eventually miss.  

So we go back to the range and start shooting … and shooting … and shooting. We spend countless hours and shells trying to figure out what’s going on when we miss. Many times, the most we can figure out is our wallets are a little lighter and our shooting isn’t much better, if at all.

And historically that’s always been the accepted cost of trapshooting; if you want to limit your misses, you need to keep shooting until you figure it out. Unfortunately, between the shells, clays and rounds, shooting expenses add up quickly. 

Not anymore.

The Garmin Xero S1 Trapshooting Trainer has quickly become the best tool for fewer missed shots and faster progression. The revolutionary piece of technology is helping people take the mystery out of missing by providing a never-before-seen look at your shot for both hits, and more importantly, misses – to the inch. It’s taken the mystery out of missing.

Any coach will tell you: Knowing that you missed isn’t as important as understanding why you missed. Once you understand that, you can use the information to correct your approach.

To get a sense of how Xero S1 can help coaches and students with their shooting performance, we spoke with Randy Knight, who was a first adopter of the Xero S1 technology. He and his wife Teresa coach Clemson University’s trap team.

Over the past two months, Knight has used Xero S1 with professional shooters, novices and upland enthusiasts.

Garmin: What has surprised you the most about your own shooting when using Xero S1?

Randy Knight: In the time that I have used it, the ability of Xero S1 to show me how solid my breaks were has surprised me the most. I’ve begun to have more centered breaks by using the S1 system. The immediate feedback that Xero S1 provides may be one of my favorite features. It gives me another reason to practice and challenges me to make more solid hits.

G: In your experience, what is the most common reason people miss in trap at beginning, intermediate and expert levels?

RK: At all levels of experience, most targets are missed because shooters are not focusing on the target or checking their barrel. The Xero S1 trainer can provide multiple areas of feedback, acquisition time, break distance, hit tendencies, etc., to help shooters narrow down then reasons for missing targets.

G: How has Xero S1 made it easier for people to understand a miss and improve upon it?

RK: Xero S1 allows the shooter to see where and how far off the miss was from the target. Before Xero S1, we only knew we missed and had to estimate how much we needed to adjust our shot. Shooters had to rely on the accuracy of the person standing behind them to call the miss correctly. This process was as accurate as the person over their shoulder. It takes thousands of rounds for someone to stand behind you and be able to tell where you are shooting, and if they feed you the wrong information, it can put you completely behind.

G: Spending time with coaches like you offers one of the best ways for people to improve their shooting and limit misses. Would you recommend a coach who is managing several students to use Xero S1?

RK: Yes. A coach with multiple students can improve their coaching with the use of Xero S1 because the system provides visual reinforcement to their verbal coaching. Over the course of my career, I’ve noticed students tend to respond positively to visual input, which S1 provides. Students using Xero S1 will have accurate feedback on their shooting, providing a tremendous advantage in competitive shooting. Seeing and knowing where they are actually shooting will allow them to improve their shooting skills. In competition, the knowledge they gain will allow them to adjust their shooting if they miss because they will know what their picture of the shot should be.

G: The free Xero app houses the historical data over hundreds of rounds. How important is it for students to understand their performance over 10, 20, 30 rounds in order to make corrections with their shooting?   

RK: Xero S1 trend information provides the shooter with evidence of areas of weakness and strength.  Shooters may use the information to keenly focus on repeating areas of weakness and pinpoint their training there for improvement. Essentially, shooters can now xero (pun intended) in on hits to work towards every shot being a “smash.”

G: As people use Xero S1, they are surprised at how a clay can slip through a pattern. Using gun profiles, you can make adjustments.

RK: Clays slipping through a pattern is not a common problem the shooter uses the correct choke and shell. The correct choke and shell selection will eliminate targets slipping through the pattern. By using Xero S1 to fine-tune reaction time and by paying attention to the quality of breaks, shooters will see an increase in their scores. 

G: How do you see this unit being used for competitive teams to improve their shooting?

RK: Collegiate and high school teams can benefit from using Xero S1 because it helps them to refine the quality of their hitsthrough the break factor function. The Xero S1 system provides a method to fine-tune their focus on shots, which is critical for improvement. In competition, a break is a break and is reflected on the score sheet as a hit. Shooters who break 99/100 or 100/100 may still fine-tune their “hits” and the break factor provides that information for them. 

G: How do you think Xero S1 will affect the sport of trapshooting?

RK: I believe Xero S1 has the potential to change the sport of trapshooting by helping the new shooter to become more proficient quicker. In addition, it provides a method for the more experienced shooter to fine-tune their shooting and turn their weaknesses into strengths with this targeted training. Shooters no longer have to “guess” where their shot missed – Xero S1 takes the guesswork out of shooting. The system provides the shooter with a visual display showing the shooter exactly where the shot was in relation to the clay.

In any sport, missing has been part of the game.

NBA Hall of Famer Michael Jordan, for example, missed more than 12,000 shots during his career, and he was just better than 49 percent accurate from the floor. He didn’t have Xero technology to tell him the angle and speed of his shot, reaction of his release or how many inches he missed the rim. If he did, how much more could he have accomplished?

With the Xero S1 Trapshooting Trainer, trap shooters do have that technology. The ball is in their court.

To find out more about the Xero S1 Trapshooting Trainer, visit https://www.garmin.com/en-US/.