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Shooting sports in general have been contested at every Summer Olympics Games since the first modern Olympic Games of 1896, barring two editions (1904 and 1928). Men's shooting was one of only nine events at the first ever Games but it has seen a massive evolution since. After all, there was a time when live pigeons were used as the moving targets!
Things began to change only around 1907 when the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) came into existence. With them came the standardization and rules that such a dangerous sport definitely requires.
Ever since, the number of events within this sport has dramatically increased. These include the 10m rifle, skeet shooting, etc. This year's Games had 15 shooting events including both men's and women's categories. Broadly, the events can be separated into Rifle and Pistol, and Shotgun events. The former involve athletes shooting at stationary targets and the latter involve them shooting at moving clay targets. Depending on the event, athletes are required to shoot from standing, kneeling or prone (lying down) positions.
There is a range officer who is responsible for safety in such events; their every command must be heeded to prevent disqualification.
Though there are many events in this shooting sport, here we'll focus more on the 10m rifle event and the skeet shooting events. In the former athletes must shoot over a distance of 10m from a standing position with a 4.5mm calibre air rifle. The course on fire is an unlimited number of sighter shots followed by 60 competition shots for men and 40 for women. The competition is won by whoever accumulates the highest aggregate score as per the scoring system.
Skeet shooting achieved Olympic status in 1968. In this discipline, the shooter must hold his gun so that the butt of the firearm is at mid-torso level until the target appears. A round of Olympic skeet requires shooters to shoot at doubles right through.
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