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Shooting Sports, Women in

Sports shooting arose from target practice, which was developed to hone hunting, self-defense, and military skills. Similar to the evolution of many sports, shooting was seen as a masculine activity, thus making it difficult for women to initially participate. Yet women have proven themselves to be outstanding shooters since the late 1800s, as past newspaper accounts have documented. Today, women around the globe excel in all levels of competition, including the Olympic games.

Women first participated in the Olympics in 1968, competing alongside men in open events. At the 1976 Olympic Games, American Margaret Thompson Murdock became the first female shooter to win an Olympic medal, the silver, in the 50m rifle 3 position event, and in 1992, Chinese shooter Shan Zhang won the gold in ...

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