Written by: Alex Davis

January 27


Sporting Clays vs. Trap Shooting: What Is the Difference?

While somewhat similar, both sporting clays shooting and trap shooting are two different activities that you can enjoy with your shotgun.

In this article, we will go over the major differences between these two styles of shooting and competition, as well as some of the similarities.

Keep on reading to learn all about sporting clays shooting and trap shooting!

What Is the Difference Between Sporting Clays and Trap Shooting?

The biggest difference between sporting clays and trap shooting lies in how the targets are thrown, as well as where they are shot.

Sporting clays shooting is designed to replicate hunting scenarios, so targets are thrown in different paths and in different numbers.

Trap shooting, however, will throw targets from a single location of a trap shooting range and one at a time.

#1 Sporting Clays Shooting

Because sporting clays shooting was intended to replicate real-life hunting scenarios, shooters will work through a course with various trap houses that launch targets.

These targets can be thrown by themselves, in pairs, or in triples. They are thrown at different speeds and heights as well, in order to prepare a shooter for any type of shooting scenario and allow them to react.

#2 Trap Shooting

Trap shooting is done from fixed shooting positions, and all targets are launched by a trap thrower from a single trap house.

While the angle at which the target is launched can vary, most of the shots will be more similar to each other.

Because only one shot is allowed at each clay target, most shooters will use a single or double-barrel trap shotgun such as an over-under.

To learn more about this shotgun shooting discipline, read this comprehensive guide about trap shooting basics


Alex Davis

Expert Contributor

Alex Davis is an outdoor enthusiast with an exceptional background in hunting, military, shooting, climbing, camping and overall outdoor activities. He did his military service in the Israeli army and proved himself as a force to be reckoned with. Moreover, Alex chose to be an outdoorsman to express himself because this is the area that inspires him the most in life. He strongly believes that nature provides a lot of opportunity for self-reflection and introspection where you dissect your life, push your limits, and come to find that you’re capable of a lot more than you thought.

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