About Target Shooting
Underwater Target Shooting, a fascinating and fun sporting discipline, first saw the light of day in the mid-1980s. It can be staged in a swimming pool or in open waters, even though swimming pools are preferred due to ease-of-use and visibility considerations. Not a lot of equipment is needed: diving mask, snorkel, a pair of fins, diving or snorkelling suit, weightbelt, a pair of gloves, mass-produced speargun (elastic or hydro-pneumatic), a silhouette and, of course, a target. Like all sports, Target Shooting has undergone changes over time, especially its rules. Underwater Target Shooting as we now know it is the result of almost twenty years of development. There was a single speciality to begin with, consisting of striking a single target with as many spears as possible in a single dive in apnoea. Now the discipline is split up into three specialities: Precision, Biathlon and Relay.
The Precision event consists of 10 shots fired at a fixed target in two rounds of five shots, with a time of five minutes per round. The central target of the five targets affixed to a single sheet is positioned at a height of 80 cm from the floor of the pool and a distance of three meters from the shooting line, beyond which the tip of the speargun cannot extend. Between shots the diver must return to the surface, however the diver can only reload the gun under water. The diver obtaining the most points is the winner.
The Biathlon, the most recent event, consists of firing five shots, but between each shot the diver must swim underwater and return to the starting point. In this speciality the score is not important, the main thing is for each shots to hit a target. The diver with the most hits in the least time is the winner.
As the name suggests, the Relay is a Team event. It involves three divers from the same Club or Nation, sometimes just two. The event consists of 9 shots fired at 9 targets. There is one round only, with a time limit of 4 minutes and 30 seconds. In this case too, just as for the Precision event, the Club or Nation scoring the most points is the winner.
The individual events, namely Precision and Biathlon, are divided into two categories, men and women, while the Relay event is mixed, with men and women competing together.