How Does Scoring Work In Shooting?
There are several different types of gun shooting events, all of which have similar scoring methodology. From precision pistol shooting to high powered rifle shooting, the same basic principle applies; the more accurate the player is with their shots, the more points the player will subsequently receive. The exact number of points awarded to the player may differ between different levels of play, but the way of measuring this will always be the same.
Additionally, some events require shots to be fired from different lengths from the target (10m, 25m, 50m, etc). In these cases, differing amounts of points can be rewarded for players who were more accurate from farther distances. For example, a center ring shot from 10m may be worth the same amount of points as an outer ring shot from 50m. Having said this, most events are deemed "stagnant" meaning that all players will shoot from the same distance in each round.
Accuracy is essential in determining a player's score in all shooting events. Because of this fact, shooting federations utilize a ringed target board that awards different amounts of points depending on where the shot blasted through the target. These rings act as levels of accuracy, allowing players to receive points even if they miss the exact target.
Players are taught to aim for the center of the target (often marked with an "X"), and fire a predetermined amount of rounds/bullets to the target. For pistol shooting, the player usually has 5-10 total shots on a single target, while rifle shooting can grant the player up to 20 shots. After the player has fired their allotted amount of shots, the player must turn in their target to an official, who will then add up every shot and give the player a total score for the round. In some professional events, the score may be calculated as the player shoots, but this is usually not the case.
In rounds where players hit all of their shots clearly within a given scoring section, there is usually no need to take into account the purity of the shot, as it is apparent where each bullet entered the target. However, it is quite common for shots to pass through the target between 2 different target lines. Whenever this happens, the rules official must carefully inspect the shot/shots in question to determine whether the lower value or higher value will be calculated. This type of careful evaluation is usually called measuring a shot's purity.
For large scale events, determining the value of shots that are on the cusp of 2 different targets can be measured using an AI overlay of the target. This type of technology gives an unbiased estimate of exactly where the bullet entered the target, encouraging a more accurate scoring system.
Of course, in smaller events, this type of decision making is left up to the rules official and their expertise. Some scoring officials may lean toward granting the upper value, while others may do the opposite. Ultimately, scoring consistency is all that is required for the majority of shooting competition.