Junior Development Squad (JDS)


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JDS Camp September 2017 – Palmerston North

Report by JDS member Sarah 

Day 1 - 2nd September

We met at the range, ready to start our third camp of the year.  We got straight into it with most of us getting a crash course in 3P for the first time. We began with prone and sighting in our rifles to the target. For some of us it was remembering how many clicks to wind up and finding that we were way off target. Oops.  Battling the cold Manawatu weather, we continued onto the kneeling component of 3P. This foreign position looked uncomfortable and awkward to some of the younger members but they got straight into it. 

That afternoon we welcomed sports psychologist Gary Hermannson and he went through the process of why expectations put pressure on us to perform and that we can't let it ruin our results. Through the skill of visualisation we had to find our happy place and push all our negative thoughts out and just think positively. We really valued Gary coming and speaking to us and giving us any other perspective on how pressure can affect us in many ways. 

We then went and practiced shooting some more and updated our diaries with what we had learnt and the new adjustments we had made.

That night we headed for somewhere warm, and we were welcomed by Jon and Helen to their home. There we had our JDS special of chicken, coleslaw and hot chips which filled us up for another big day of shooting ahead of us tomorrow. We discussed YOG and Oceania and what we had to look forward to in the next couple of months. 

Day 2 - 3rd September

We had an explanation of the gear check procedure by Jackie from TSNZ, to find out if our gear would be able to pass in Australia. Thankfully only small adjustments such as buttons were moved and rubbing jackets because they were too stiff in areas. We really valued Jackie and Bruce for coming and explaining the ISSF rules and the requirements and expectations of ISSF matches.

Then everyone competed in a finals match for 3P kneeling, some members were just naturals, and shooting like they had done it before.  Owen and Jess practiced changing through positions.  We watched how it was done and the short amount of time that they get to change their rifles and position in a finals situation. Also how easy it is to forget to undo, move or tighten things while getting organised.  A slight slip of words by Lachie led to our “JDS Daddy”  (Jono) receiving a Father’s Day card and chocolates which he was very enthused about, as well as a loving hug from his “son.”

I just want to say a huge thank you to the other members of the squad, because we learn from each other and bounce ideas off one another. Thanks for making it another fun camp. 

To our “JDS mum,” Kelly thank you for all the organising and effort that goes into making sure the camps run smoothly and efficiently and making sure no one goes hungry, it’s really appreciated. 

To the coaches Jonno, Helen, Dave and Owen, thank you for providing us with the knowledge and skills for us to be able grow as shooters and develop the skills that we need to succeed with our future shooting career. 

A massive thank you to TSNZ for your support and helping us to grow. We would also like to thank RR&G for allowing us to use their range and facilities over the weekend

See you at the next camp! 



Target Shooting NZ's Junior Development Squad aims to prepare young shooters for the demands of competitive shooting both nationally and internationally.

The Squad consists of up to 12 shooters aged between 13 and 21 years.

JDS members are coached in Air Rifle, 50m Prone and 3P.
Note that Juniors currently shooting only Indoor will need to move into at least one of  these Outdoor areas to be eligible for the JDS. 

TSNZ has JDS equipment the members can lease, and as well as having ongoing access to their Coaches, the JDS Squad can attend up to four weekend training camps a year.  At times keen older shooters are also invited to join these training camps.

Applications are taken in November/December each year.  

If you want more details email  jds.tsnz@gmail.com




If you're 13-21 years old and want to take your Outdoor, 3P or Air Rifle shooting to the next level, you can click here to email the JDS Manager for information.





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2017 JDS Squad
Back - Dave Sheely (Coach), Matt Little, Wiko du Toit, Sarah Reesby, Lachie McNair, Jessica Riddle, Kelly Burdon (Manager), Helen Freiman (Coach)
Front:  Owen Bennett (Coach), Kate Campbell, Chalm Davey, Jessica Burgess-Smith, Summer O'Dwyer, Meggy Reesby, Jon Phillipps (Coach)



The first Junior Development Squad Camp of 2017 took place in Palmerston North on the weekend of 17th-19th March.   

Report by JDS Member, Jess

This camp we welcomed five new and enthusiastic members to the squad, when we met with the coaches in Palmerston North for three days of training.

It was a full-on camp, with people shooting 50m, 3P and Air Rifle. We started off with 50m on the Friday, where the coaches helped us to build on our positions and work on our technique.

On Saturday, we split into two groups. Some worked on their 50m and 3P at the outdoor range and the others went to the air range. The new recruits were set up in their gear and taught the position, the others trained for finals. One of the practice finals ended with three sets of tiebreakers for the gold medal. Well done to the two girls for hanging in there and holding your composure with the over-enthusiastic audience. 

Sunday brought us all together at the air range, where we were kept busy with match training, position exercises and final practice. The coaches also ran several theory sessions throughout the weekend, covering wind reading, sight elements and goal setting.

On behalf of the JDS I would like to say thank you to our wonderful manager Kelly, for organising everything and keeping us on time and well fed. The JDS special of roast chicken, coleslaw and hot chips is always a treat after a long day. A huge thank you to the amazing coaches, Jonno and Helen, with the assistance of Owen. You pulled off being in multiple places at once and always kept us busy. Your guidance will go a long way. We would also like to thank RR&G and MSRA for allowing us to use your ranges and facilities  over the weekend. And thank you to TSNZ for your support and helping us grow as shooters.

An important part of these camps to me is also the other squad members, as I believe it is important to be surrounded by like mind people as we push each other to be the best we can and achieve our goals, so thanks to my fellow squad members for another fun camp.  I look forward to getting to know you better over the upcoming season.


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JDS Weekend, March 2017, Palmerston North
Back: Jon (Coach), Wiko, Matt, Sarah, Jess, Meaghan, Lachie, Kelly (Manager)
Front: Owen (Coach), Summer, Kate, Chalm, Jess, Helen (Coach)


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At the end of November TSNZ’s Junior Development Squad (JDS) held its last camp for 2016 in Palmerston North.  

The focus for this camp was on 50 metres prone and 3 Position shooting (3P). 

Unfortunately for us Mother Nature chose that weekend to have a hissy fit with a bit of wind and a hearty dollop of rain.  On the upside this meant the squad could learn about shooting in/with the wind and how to read the flags in the rain.

During this camp some of our squad members tried 3P for the first time.  They quickly learnt why a ‘ridiculous’ is a must-have accessory.  By the way, a ridiculous is a handy piece of foam that’s sits between the heel of the boot and derriere to make things ‘comfier’ while kneeling.  

The coaches also ran some theory sessions. Topics covered included how to deal with changing weather conditions, variations of daylight, experimenting with sight sizes to get the best sight picture and when and why to use coloured filters and polarisers.  Sessions on position building were successful and our coaches were very pleased with the results and continued improvement they’re seeing.

We’d like to say a big thank you to the Rod Rifle and Gun Club Manawatu for letting us use their fabulous range and facilities.   I’d also like to thank the person who left a giant plastic bag in the shed at the range. Who would have thought the bag would be the object of  so much entertainment as Jonno used it as an ‘all over jacket’ while he changed the targets. 

A second thanks must go to the fabulous Tracey -  mum of one of our squad members.  She kindly leant us her place to use for a BBQ on Saturday night and blew us away with her dessert making skills – thanks Tracey!

Applications are now open for the next intake to the squad - the application and FAQ are at the top of this page.  

On behalf of the JDS I’d like to thank our hardworking and dedicated coaches for giving up their time to develop the squad’s skills and performance.  Jonno Phillips and Helen Freiman  work tirelessly behind the scenes answering queries and offering advice to our squad members, thank you. Thanks also to Dave Sheely and Owen Bennet who have assisted and shared their knowledge and expertise at the camps throughout the year, your input has been extremely valuable.  And finally, thanks to you - the TSNZ members for your continued support.

Have a safe holiday season and see you in 2017!  Happy shooting everyone!

Kelly Burdon,  JDS Manager

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Target Shooting New Zealand's Junior Development Squad held its third training camp for the year in Auckland at the end of September.

JDS Camp 3 was a dedicated air rifle training camp with all bar one member of the squad in attendance. It was another very productive well planned weekend thanks to Kelly, our manager.  Squad accommodation was organised by Kelly close by and we were at the range within a matter of minutes which is good for Auckland!  Parafed Auckland has a large rental van which was hired for a very reasonable rate, so transport to and from airport and range was no problem.

Our weekend consisted of  matches, finals training and final matches, as well as a number of theory sessions and discussion including E target operation, match rules, position building / process, position development /alterations, refreshers on sight setup, air rifle maintenance conducted by Nick Dyde,  Designated match and Oceania planning and budgeting and much more.  The New Zealand Paralympic shooting team left for Rio only a few days before the camp and we didn’t have Para-coach Dave Sheely available for this camp, so we were again very grateful to have the services of Owen Bennett in attendance and are pleased to announce that Owen will be assisting the squad again at future camps.

The venue for the camp was Parafed Auckland’s range in Greenlane.  This range stands head and shoulders above any other air range in the country with both manual (paper) and electronic targets available for use.  With 14 mounds, the range provided ample room for the squad and coaches to provide both practical and theory sessions, and has ample kitchen and gear prep areas, space for social time and a BBQ to cook dinner on to boot.

The JDS coaches and squad wishes to extend a huge thanks to Nick Dyde and Julie Wills for their assistance with the weekend, including airport pickups and drop off of the rental van, and to Shooting Stuff who generously covered the cost of the range hire for the two days, this was much appreciated.  Thank you to Rob Berger and Parafed Auckland for making the facility available for our use,  we look forward to visiting their great range again.  It was also great to meet Hamish from Parafed New Zealand who called in to see what we were doing  and was pleased see the range being well utilised and the JDS benefitting from the Auckland facility.  Hamish formerly worked for Sport Manawatu in youth development.

Our next camp will be held in late November in Palmerston North

Jon Phillipps

JDS Coach