How many of you use plinking as Stress Relief?


April 15, 2008, 01:52 AM
How many of you go out and let off some steam at the range?
I know it makes me feel better to go blow through some ammo after "one of those days"

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April 15, 2008, 01:55 AM
i do. i'll either go the the local indoor range and practice a bit with my CCW if the weather is lousy or if its possible, i'll go shoot trap. shooting trap is a wonderful stress reliever. scoring a 25/25 makes all the rest of the world go away. :)


April 15, 2008, 02:36 AM
I don't know if I'd call it "letting off steam"...

I've heard it referred to as Zen with lots of noise. For me, it's a kind of meditation, and a competition with myself.

So, it's a pleasant diversion. That is a form of stress relief, as is watching a movie.

But I don't show up angry and feel less so when I pack up to leave.

(Anger isn't conducive to good marksmanship... :) )

April 15, 2008, 02:46 AM
well the kind of shooting I'm talking about isn't exactly based on marksmanship. I like to load up the clip on my sks and let them all fly as rapidly as i can.

April 15, 2008, 03:09 AM
Maybe I'll have to try that some time.

My dad told me about a trip he took to Japan. They had rooms you could rent for a half hour (no, not that kind of room...) which were filled with cheap porcelains & glass.

They gave you a bat and let you have at the contents of the room in private.

Then they cleaned up the mess and set it up for the next customer.

Their clientele consisted of Japanese businessmen, primarily.

The closest I've come to "let 'er rip" is knocking a row of 7 cans over as fast as I could put the laser dot on them...

Of course, to let off steam I suppose I have to build up some stress first... ;)

chris in va
April 15, 2008, 03:25 AM
I used to be able to do that. Until my finances took a dive. Now I'm lucky to let off a few mags of 22.

But I'll admit, bump firing my Saiga always brings a smile.

April 15, 2008, 03:28 AM
The porcelin sounds like great fun. I always have my parents save any glass jars or bottles so I can shoot them (and pick up the remnants) out on our property.
I'm currently in college so stress is not hard to find.

Actually this site is great, whenever i get a minute I start reading threads and space out whatever else is bothering me.

April 15, 2008, 09:22 AM
Yes, I use target shooting as stress relief. By concentrating my focus on shooting, it keeps me from thinking about sources of stress in my life. Similar to meditation in many respects, but with a score at the end. :)

April 15, 2008, 09:25 AM
it's totally Zen.
There's noise?


April 15, 2008, 09:25 AM
Yes, I use target shooting as stress relief. By concentrating my focus on shooting, it keeps me from thinking about sources of stress in my life. Similar to meditation in many respects, but with a score at the end.

You bet, same here. I get almost the same effect from reloading a couple of boxes of plinkers for the range.

Sato Ord
April 15, 2008, 09:28 AM
Only every chance I get!

April 15, 2008, 09:30 AM
Cathartic, yes. Stress relief, meh. Maybe in the overall effect.

relax, breathe, hold, squeeze, follow though - repeat

April 15, 2008, 09:36 AM
I shoot in my basement daily and try to make it to the range once a week.


April 15, 2008, 09:57 AM
Abosolutely....I even find myself heading out to the range just to talk if Im not going to shoot. College plus 35hr work week generates more than enough stress for me.

April 15, 2008, 10:06 AM
I look on a trip to the local indoor range as a mental health exercise. A certain amount of Zen-like concentration/meditation, and the effect of the office just goes away...

April 15, 2008, 10:20 AM
Shooting, reloading, and casting have a requirement of total concentration. Doing any of these while distracted or preoccupied, can be dangerous, so all my worries fade from the scene as I begin. Also why both my reloading bench AND casting area face blank walls with no other distractions.
Stress relief? I suppose, the same as richer business men play golf or polo, the same as us working class slobs play poker and barbeque, sure.

April 15, 2008, 11:01 AM
There are the zen sessions with the scoped single-shot or long-barrelled revolver and there are the scream therapy sessions with the WASR-10, Mini-14, and Tec-22... and the long-barrelled revolver as well.

Almost as satisfying as demolition derby and flat-track!

Rich K
April 15, 2008, 12:34 PM
Oh yes. During breaks between semesters, to relieve stress, 8 members of my nursing class go to the local range- indoor during bad weather, outdoor during good, and blast away. The ladies are learning a valuable skill, and the guys are blowing off stress. Necco wafers and pop cans, beware.

April 15, 2008, 01:12 PM
I was thinking about this on the way home from my last trip to the range. It has been a rough winter for many reasons...probably for many of us...and last Friday was particularly stressful. I just felt sort of in melt-down mode. I lit a cigar, drove to the range, and fired off a box through the snubby. Before I began I concentrated on breathing and getting myself focused, forcing myself to relax. Money is tight, and I'm not going to waste the cost of range time and a box of ammo. I did some pretty good shooting...and felt a lot more together afterwards. I wondered if anyone else gets that "therepeutic" effect.

April 15, 2008, 01:27 PM
Fellas. You don't know what stress is.

April 15, 2008, 02:43 PM
Fellas. You don't know what stress is.

With all due respect for whatever you are going through...I do.

April 15, 2008, 11:24 PM
Friend of mine and I were just talking about this. I talked him into coming to the range with me last weekend, he hadn't been shooting in about 11 years, been going through a lot of stress lately so I brought him along to the small bore range. Brought my .22's with me and my .45-70 just because. We spent about 2 and a half hours there, blew through a box of 500 rounds. I didn't shoot much, rather just hung back offered him advice, BS'd with my buddy the range officer.

On the ride back to his place he was sitting in the passenger seat when he looked at me and simply said "That was very relaxing and more fun then I remembered" It made me think, I never really looked at it for stress relief, more of an activity that get's me out of the flourescent lighting, into the fresh air and moving around. A good activity. But as I started to think, I do kind of feel better after a shooting session. More relaxed and just a better outlook on everything. Hard to describe really

April 15, 2008, 11:43 PM
I use shooting as stress relief regularly. I used to "have to" go out at least 3 times a week, but now it's down to one, but nothing is better for me than blowing away a stack of bricks with the .357 mag, some precision shots with the 30-06, or toasting 3 or 4 boxes of clays with a buddy to ease the workday stress.

April 15, 2008, 11:50 PM
If a couple of bricks of .38's and the range fee didn't equal a tank of gas - I'd be shooting at least once a week. For medicinal purposes.

April 16, 2008, 12:14 AM
Shooting does relax me and so does reloading. I have fun on both ends!:D

April 16, 2008, 12:15 AM
I worked my way through PTSD shooting paper... most Dr's didn't think it was a good idea for a guy suffering from nightmares and depression to be shooting for stress relief, but it helped alot. It also brought the wife and I another thing to do together and became a bigger hobby of hers than mine.

April 16, 2008, 12:25 AM
Before every test I take my bag of .22s to the range with a bulk pack. There have been times when I stayed all day and others when I only spent a couple of hours. For me it is being able to regain focus. It also helps me study for finals to be so tuned in I become a sponge.

April 16, 2008, 01:41 AM
Fellas. You don't know what stress is.
Read your Jeppesen manuals. Check your fuel.

if you're that stressed about flying, you're in the wrong job. i'd kill to have a flying job, stress or no. wait 'til you lose your medical after you've bet your future on a flying job, then tell me about stress. own your own business, then tell me about stress. until then, go shooting! it helps relieve stress.


April 16, 2008, 01:42 AM
it works well for me.

April 16, 2008, 01:51 AM
Even after 50 rounds, I am as calm as a Hindu cow.

April 16, 2008, 09:17 AM
With all due respect for whatever you are going through...I do.

Yes. I don't doubt that. Too bad we can't order up some suds and shoot the breeze.

No I don't fly for a living. It actually helps me "decompress". As does shooting; it being a martial skill and all. You would think they would be supportive in an activity that focuses the mind and the body. Worrywarts are just an annoying fact of life I guess. The worst thing about them is that when they mean well they tend to make things worse.:rolleyes:

April 16, 2008, 09:39 AM
It is a terrific way to decompress, absolutely. I get in the flow of the thing and the stress just disappears.


April 16, 2008, 10:33 AM
Definitely. A round of sporting clays or a couple of hundred rounds at the pistol range works wonders.

Bud Tugly
April 16, 2008, 11:50 AM
I own 80 acres of forest land just 10 minutes from my house. There's a natural sand berm there where I have my own private shooting range.

I save up plastic milk jugs and metal coffee cans and go out there regularly to blow holes in them with my .22, shotguns, and pellet rifle. Great relaxing fun and the clean-up is much easier than using glass jars and bottles.

April 16, 2008, 04:44 PM
I manage a partnership that owns 87 acres in North Idaho (see link):

I haven't done any shooting there but would love to. I'm a city boy and don't really know the etiquette of shooting on your own land without pissing off or scaring the neighbors. Any advice?

April 16, 2008, 04:49 PM
yes i do this alot. i believe its my stress reliever.(not that i have too much stress working behind a desk looking at forums. lol) but i feel soo relieved when i leave the range,

April 16, 2008, 05:33 PM
For years I've advocated a little "12 gauge therapy" to blow off a little stress. Sometimes it's even nice to have a gun that's NOT recoil reduced. ;)

April 16, 2008, 07:46 PM
I actually did that today. I set up two targets and ran through some drawing drills. Some one-handed draws, double taps, shooting while stepping across my attacker. I find it very relaxing to up my defensive shooting skills on some fake bad guys. I only wish I had some .270 Win shells to go through. Rifle shooting makes me calm myself a lot. To get off that perfectly aimed shot at 100 yards I have to focus on both my breathing and my heart rate.

2nd 41
April 16, 2008, 07:53 PM
Shooting does relax me

I tell friends & family shooting is relaxing.

April 16, 2008, 08:03 PM
I am still not sure which is more relaxing...emptying the brass or filling it back up. Through the week, I will setup and reload a few hundred rounds in the evenings. Weekends are range time.

Although, I also use chainsaws as stress relief. Is this normal?:)

April 16, 2008, 08:10 PM
I'm much more relaxed emptying my brass by mowing down steel plates than I am filling them back up at the reloading bench. although as they say, a bad day at either beats my best day at work!


3rd Generation American
April 16, 2008, 08:14 PM
At least 2 times a week I go to the local indoor range, it has lowered my blood pressure to the point that I now take only 1 pill to keep it down.
I usually go through 100 to 200 rounds of .45 in my M&P. Feels good and the concentration to make one big hole in that target helps me forget my problems.

April 16, 2008, 08:26 PM
At least 2 times a week I go to the local indoor range, it has lowered my blood pressure to the point that I now take only 1 pill to keep it down.

NOW we're getting somewhere! If we could devise a clinical study to prove the positive effects of range shooting on stress and blood pressure...hmmm

April 16, 2008, 09:00 PM
At least 2 times a week I go to the local indoor range, it has lowered my blood pressure to the point that I now take only 1 pill to keep it down.

NOW we're getting somewhere! If we could devise a clinical study to prove the positive effects of range shooting on stress and blood pressure...hmmm

Great idea! Where do I sign up?:)

April 16, 2008, 09:06 PM
I call it a session with my shrink

April 16, 2008, 09:07 PM
Great idea! Where do I sign up?

I'll get back to you on that...Man - if we had good clinical evidence of the benefits of frequent shooting - we could all get a note from our doctors precribing more range time!

April 16, 2008, 09:13 PM
After two hours on a conference call with a bunch of people who know nothing about the call's topic... I like to dump a few mag loads from the S12. very effective stress relief!

April 16, 2008, 09:41 PM
I go to the range for the QUIET.

the concentration, the packing of ammo, loading mags, setting up targets, how much lighter my range bag feels without the ammo that I have just put downrange.

the cleaning and prepping for next trip

a lot cheaper than a shrink and much better than drugs.

all stress is left on the range.

April 16, 2008, 09:46 PM
Mid-week while alone on the range in the middle of the day I get very Zen with the breathing and trigger control.

I find it very relaxing and Therapeutic.

April 16, 2008, 10:09 PM
I find shooting (a happy paradox) both invigorating and relaxing. Not relaxing as in "limp," but feel more supple and calm afterward. (However, I've never gone shooting feeling esp. angry or upset -- if I'm on my way to the range, it usually means I'm happy, if nothing else, for the chance to get to the range ;))

However, in the "stress relief" category more properly, I also really enjoy using toy guns for off-the-cuff plinking at (say) cans across the room, I bought some cheap airsoft guns for a bachelor party last year, and as a result have a gun that's very close in size to a Kel-Tec P11 and several hundred plastic rounds for it; I enjoy the ultra-short range, ultra-cheap target practice that this allows. Transferrable skill? Eh, I at least try to use it also as an exercise in good gun handling (finger off trigger until ready to fire, paying *attention* to my background even when I know the airsoft pellet won't dent the wall or break a window, never mind do damage beyond, exercising good trigger control, etc.), so it's not completely wasted, and I hope not destructive of habits elsewhere.

The range between "toy" and "real gun" is sometimes blurry, too -- pellet guns may not be centerfire, but they can be both high-precision and destructive / dangerous / powerful.


April 16, 2008, 10:15 PM
I don't really go for the "unleash Hell" brand of theraputic shooting.

Lately, I've been setting up a makeshift range in my basement and plinking pennies with a pellet rifle. I find it more relaxing to force myself to focus and concentrate, rather than emptying a magazine as fast as I can. Plus, its cool to see what a pellet will do to a penny (and no, its not illegal. Once money is yours, you can do basically whatever you want with it).

I'm really rusty. I used to be able to plink thumb tacks, but now I can barely hit pennies consistently. Its coming back to me, though.

April 16, 2008, 10:36 PM
I've heard it referred to as Zen with lots of noise.

Yeah, that's the way it is for me. Once I am at the range, I am totally focussed on grip, sight picture, trigger control, etc. I am not too good at the "sit quietly and breathe in and out" kind of meditation. But when I am at the range, I am totally focused, and the rest of the stuff in my life sort of fades away.

For me - and I don't know if anyone of the rest of your feel this way - but shooting a big bore single action revolver seems to work better for me when I am in that mood (maybe only because I shoot it so much better :)). There is something about the simplicity and elegance of an SA revolver that reinforces the other-worldliness of the meditative zone. When I shoot an auto, it feels like there's a lot metal clanking around, part slamming into each other. With the Blackhawk, it feels like there is a tiny squeeze, and the sights move up and back down again, floating onto the target.

If you like shooting as a form of meditation, it's worth reading Brian Enos's Practical Shooting. I don't follow the sport, but he is (or was) a very hot shooter at one time, and his book is more philosophy than "technique".


April 16, 2008, 11:48 PM
I find that that the stress just melts away after a trip to the range. Afterwards, my mind is pretty much blank and carefree when I leave. I was off at a training course last week, and my work already has me frustrated to the limit. Looking forward to Friday with the 1911 and the shotgun. :)

April 19, 2008, 03:39 PM
when ever i get a chance i go. its the best thing to calm me down. nothing like taking a deep breath between each shot and 50 rounds of .357mag to calm you down.

April 19, 2008, 04:12 PM

Shooting is a big stress reliever in my life and it certainly helps.

April 19, 2008, 05:48 PM
Shooting skeet = stress relief
Shooting trap = stress relief
Shooting Bullseye = stress relief
Shooting Practical Pistol = stress relief
Shooting 3-gun = stress relief
Upland hunting = stress relief

Oh yeah,
Plinking = stress relief

OMG, I must have a LOT of stress in my life. :D

April 19, 2008, 10:24 PM
Shooting is Zen for me.

April 19, 2008, 10:30 PM
Yep, shooting is a great relaxation for me.

It also brings my wife and I closer. We both love it, and I love telling her how good a shot she is... and she loves hearing it. We always walk out from the shooting range kissing, hugging, and admiring each others skill.
Shooting with my brothers was certainly very bonding too.
Can't wait to take my Father shooting!

Yea, shooting is very relaxing to me for sure.

April 19, 2008, 10:34 PM
I forgot to add... my wife is pregnant with our first baby!!!
So no shooting for her now :-( I don't want her exposed to lead etc.

April 19, 2008, 10:37 PM
Congratulations Eric!!

April 19, 2008, 10:48 PM
It is zen, but I enjoy the solitude, the focus and the concentration, and just being alone doing what I enjoy

April 19, 2008, 11:06 PM
nothing better than wrestling with a computer on a CNC machine all day, and coming home to blow apart old keyboards with a shotgun!:evil:

if any of you are like me, you cant shoot when you are stressed or upset, you have to force yourself to calm down, to relax.

Kind of Blued
April 20, 2008, 01:46 AM
I don't really get stressed out in my daily life. I stay pretty busy, so the only time that I have to go shooting is when I have no obligations which could be currently stressing me anyway.

So I guess my answer is "no", but at the same time, I'm happy when I get to go shooting and enjoy myself while doing so.

April 20, 2008, 01:47 AM
I've been doing that for years!!
Some people play golf, some tennis, I shoot!!

Fast Frank
April 20, 2008, 01:56 AM
Pretty much every Monday (My normal day off) I make a trip to the range.

Sometimes it's .22, sometimes it's AR15, sometimes it's pistols...

I think this Monday it will be .50 cal muzzle loader.

I go with friends, and there's no pressure, no problems, no arguments, and no grief for a couple of hours.

Afterwards, we go to a REALLY good BBQ place and pig out on some good food.

It's relaxing, and I enjoy it.

What else could a man ask for?

April 20, 2008, 02:00 AM
It's like any hobby. Just a time to recharge the batteries. SO I guess it falls under stress relief.

April 20, 2008, 03:30 AM
I forgot to add... my wife is pregnant with our first baby!!!
So no shooting for her now :-( I don't want her exposed to lead etc.

Congrats Eric!!!

Thats really responsible of you! Bet you will be great parents!

/ Erik

April 20, 2008, 05:15 AM
i like to plink with one of my svt-40s.:what:

but it does cost a whole lot less with a 22 cal rifle.:D

and yes plinking does release a lot of stress,

i need to go out and buy another case of .22:uhoh:


April 20, 2008, 05:33 AM
I just got back around 2100 MST from plinking with my almost half an AR (AR-7).

April 20, 2008, 06:21 AM
See you guys later! Great weather outside!! Will take my 10/22 and a couple of empty beer cans... :D

April 20, 2008, 03:55 PM
Wow,I thought I was the only one that felt this way.Glad to see I'm not alone.

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