Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Women & the Shooting Sports

Here are some more interesting statistics on women and sport shooting, courtesy of NSSF's THE RANGE REPORT magazine for shooting range owners. This quarter's issue has an excellent article about women and guns (you can get a PDF of it here):
• According to a 2001 Roper-Starch public opinion survey, 24% of women would accept an invitation to try the target sports.
That translates into a potential market of 24 million women over the age of 16.
• A Gallup Poll released in early January rvealed that one out of every three women say they own a gun. That's barely under the overall mark of 40% for all American adults.

• The 2003 National Sporting Goods Association's annual Sports Participation Survey showed that 4.9 million women participated in target shooting more than once that year. That's just below the 4.4 million women who participated in tennis that same year. And it is more than the number of women who participated in skiing, sailing, figure skating or mountain biking the same year.

• Participation by women in target shooting increased by 1.3% between 1998 and 2003, while other sports like bicycle riding, boating, fishing and swimming suffered losses in female participation during the same period.
I wonder what we as an industry could do if we made a serious, well-funded effort to get even more women in the shooting sports? The NRA programs and the NSSF Step Outside program are good starts, but their hunting focus tends to, IMO, blunt their effectiveness overall.

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