Participating at a match is a great way to become involved in shooting. You get to meet other shooters and observe their techniques. Also, you'll see all sorts of different equipment which you may want to adopt. Furthermore, if you're interested, you can give in to your competitive spirit and do your best shooting! Regardless, matches are alot of fun and you should give it some consideration.
Recently, I overheard a new club member say that he wasn't good enough to compete an upcoming club match. The resounding response from all the shooters in the room was that everyone is good enough to join in. Shooting is a closed sport where you compete against only one person: yourself. As a result, you only have to be concerned with your own technique and performance. Nobody else in the range exists. (Tip: don't look at anyone else's target.) Furthermore, each match is a learning experience. They get better each time. Lastly, most matches are structured into divisions, so each shooter competes against people of similar talent. If you are thinking of participating at a match, then get out there and do it!
Here are some upcoming matches of note. I've recently split them off into two categories. The first category is for "Shoulder to Shoulder" Matches: you show up and shoot beside other shooters. Postal Matches are slightly different: during a specified time, shooters from around the world send in targets or scores to a central location and the scores are compiled. These matches rely on the Honour System and offer a great way to compete without having to travel.
If you would like to have info on your match (ISSF / SFC / NRA) precision - regional, national or international), please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can also use my online form in the Mail Room.
For more information on the actual ISSF matches, click here, to read about the details in Olympic Shooting Sports.