Miami firearms training (courtesy stoneheartsgunclub.com)

Ever since the first “Obama surge,” the civilian disarmament industry’s been telling the world that the gun industry’s soaring sales are down to racist, right-wing paranoid OFWG’s stocking-up for armed insurrection [paraphrasing, but only just]. The People of the Gun knew better. In the absence of hard numbers, they clocked the decreasing age, increasing diversity and growing numbers of people hitting the range and came to an obvious conclusion: target shooting is all the rage. The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) now has some data to back-up that impression. [Press release after the jump.] According to a survey commissioned by the industry lobby group, target shooters are “younger, female and urban when compared to established target shooters, or those participating for more than five years . . .Ā 20 percent of all target shooters began participating in the past five years. ” Urban shooters’ market share has grown 13 percent. Winning? Yes. But tell that to gun owners in California . . .

NEWTOWN, Conn. — The face of America’s target shooters is changing. New target shooters–those who have taken up the sport in the last five years–are younger, female and urban when compared to established target shooters, or those participating for more than five years, according to a survey commissioned by the National Shooting Sports FoundationĀ®.

Just how this new segment of target shooters varies from established target shooters can be found in the Analysis of Sport Shooting Participation in the U.S. 2008-2012, the findings of which are based on a survey conducted by Responsive Management, a public opinion research firm specializing in outdoor recreation issues. [Available free to NSSF members. Nick to eyeball ASAP.]

The demographics of new shooters show they are . . .

Younger: 66 percent of new shooters fall into the 18-to-34-year-old category compared to 31 percent in the same age category for established shooters.

Female: 37 percent of new target shooters are female compared to 22 percent of established target shooters.

Urban: 47 percent of new target shooters live in urban/suburban settings versus 34 percent of established target shooters.

The report shows that one-fifth of target shooters in America first started participating in the shooting sports between 2008 and 2012. That means 20 percent of all target shooters began participating in the past five years.

“The landscape of target shooters has shifted,” said Jim Curcuruto, NSSF’s director of research and analysis. “This is data that everyone doing business in our industry should be aware of.”

Mark Damian Duda, executive director of Response Management, pointed out, “While mentoring by family members in a generally rural setting is the traditional pathway for newcomers to participating in target shooting and hunting, the research shows that new shooters today include many who did not follow or have access to the traditional pathway.”

The expansion of younger, female and urban-based participants coincides with the surge in firearms sales that occurred over the same 2008-2012 period.

The report also covers factors related to why new and established target shooters participate, as well as the types of activities they are participating in.

Recommended For You

28 Responses to NSSF: One in Five New Target Shooters Started in the Last Five Years

  1. WTH is with the auto-playing video ads on right column with no F’ing pause or stop even possible? Better stop that crap fast. Firefox v23

    • I was viewing the site on my Android phone last night, and it kept doing something on the page while I was viewing it – the address bar kept appearing. The site prompted me several times to install Candy Crush Saga — wtf?

      The mobile layout also changed completely – that’s when it started.

    • The ad delivery system is the problem, I think — it’s infected with malware and unscrupulous programming. I’ve had repeated bogus popups telling me my Java is outdated and needs to be installed, and it only happens on TTAG when the ads are reloaded.

    • You could download and install a hosts file and block all of the crap. Actually, it’s not so much “install” as find the one that’s already on your computer and just copy the new one over it.

      On my Win XP SP3 it’s at C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc. If you have Linux, it’s /etc/hosts, but you already knew that. Other versions of Win will be similar. I don’t know about Windows Vista, but no sane person uses Windows Vista anyway.

  2. This can’t be right, all gun owners are white crazy red neck rascists who hunt down disadvantaged yoots just turning their lives around. The entire gun rush of 2008 and 2012 was entirely caused by rascists buying up all the guns to add to their giant secret underground rascist bases. What sort of woman would even touch a gun, let alone own one? Proper ladies pee themselves, vomit, and take their rapings with dignity like the Brits do.

    • Bravo!

      I had all those same thoughts … but it would have taken me a week to condense them down like you did. Thank you for saying what many of us are thinking.

  3. I work in the Medical field. A murse in fact. I am surrounded by women young and old. I cannot tell you how many young women I meet that are new gun owners. The younger age group is definably the most surprising… and re-assuring group of gun owners.

    When urban, “never touched a gun before in my life” women go out and purchase a G19 we are doing something right.

  4. O_o

    “One in Five New Target Shooters Started in the Last Five Years” How is that even news? When you hit year six does that make you an established shooter? That’s like saying “New Shooters Started Recently.”

    • “Those who have taken up the sport in the last five years are…” Go back and actually read it. And the 5 years happens to correspond to the Obama administration.

      • ^ This.

        That is the significance. It is really bad new for the civilian disarmament folks who tell us that enthusiasm for firearms is withering away with the “old” people that currently own just about all the firearms.

  5. Four new shooters in this household. We all started in the last two years. Age range 12 to 44. So much for the OFWG misnomer.

  6. Dagnabbit! THAT”S why we OFWGs can’t find any .22 ammo! All them there young whippersnappers is a-buyin’ it up! And all them there uppity females is gittin’ armed! Pretty soon there won’t be anyone we can oppress except anti-gun wussy libs! (OK, no down-side there.)

    NOW what do I do with my newly-constructed 50,000 sq.ft.underground storage bunker?

  7. I have never seen so many new shooters and first-time gun purchasers (especially first pistol purchase) than I have in the past couple of years. Then that skyrocketed after both the election and then Sandy Hook. Used to be going to the range meant seeing the same people and same sorts of people and most were there shooting what they owned to stay in practice, etc. That simply isn’t the case now. EVERY time I go to the range it’s full of people looking for their first pistol, signing up for their first class, or going with a friend who shoots to try it themselves for the first time.

    Despite the narrative to the contrary.

    • We are terribly sorry sir, that is merely “anecdotal evidence”, and we highly biased (oops, that should be “highly trained”) professionals in the news media cannot accept any such evidence that might contradict our personal biases. We must request that you cease posting such comments because they cause us significant cognitive dissonance. NAHNAHNAHNAH WE CAN’T HEAR YOU!

  8. For the record, I check every box in this study except ‘female.’ I’m under 35 (well, I was when I bought my first handgun), I live in an urban/ suburban area, and that first handgun was purchased a little over three years ago.

  9. I really really like that there are more and more women taking charge of their own well-being. Making love with a woman who wants to and enjoys doing so is infinitely preferable to making love to a woman who thinks she has to and tolerates it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *