Shotgun Instruction


Welcome to the Griffin & Howe Shotgun Academy in Andover NJ. As the oldest shooting school in the United States, we offer a wealth of experience and knowledge to shooters of all ability levels. Our instructors are NSCA-certified and are available to teach private and small group lessons Monday to Sunday from 9am – 5pm.


Many of our clients are novice shooters when they pass through our doors for the first time. Our goal is to provide you with a pathway to shooting sporting clays safely by learning new skills in a relaxed and enjoyable way. We believe that our clients are much more engaged when having a good time, and learning comes naturally.

To begin, our staff will guide you through an eye-dominance test, how to correctly stand and mount your shotgun safely, and how to hold, carry, load and break the gun so that you are completely comfortable handing it before setting foot on our sporting clay course. From there, we will bring you to a variety of stations on the course where our instructors will cover the basic shooting fundamentals.

Our team are truly passionate about the sport and thrive on sharing their knowledge and enjoyment with you. Our focus will be on teaching you how to use your instinct and your eyes to guide the gun by way of visual management. By the end of your first lesson, we hope to give you an understanding of safe handling of your firearm, the relationship between eye, gun and target, and the basic fundamentals: break point, foot position, muzzle hold and visual pickup point.

The techniques we teach are both visual and repeatable - as you practice and begin to feel more comfortable behind the gun, we will guide you through understanding where to put the eyes at the visual pick up point, moving with the bird at the correct speed, and how to apply the lead to faster and tougher birds. Each lesson is a step forward in skill development so you can identify and feel proud of your progress.

For those who have shot before and are looking to improve their technique, or if you have a particular interest in pursuing driven bird shooting, skeet or trap, we can tailor your lesson towards your goals.


If you’re not ready to commit to a private lesson or looking for a taster of what we offer, we run several courses each year. Our ‘Introduction to Shotgun’ class is specifically designed for new shooters or those that have little experience with a shotgun to come and learn more about shooting sporting clays.

Beginning in the classroom, we will cover a thorough firearm safety briefing to give you confidence in safe gun handling, an eye dominance test, the importance of a properly fitted gun, and how to obtain the correct mount. Once all students are comfortable and all questions are answered, we will put your new-found knowledge to the test and take you out to our Sporting Clay course, where we will guide you through appropriate target presentations and encourage skill development. We end the class by summarizing the day’s activities, providing a brief overview of individual progress, and offering recommendations on further courses or proceeding to the next level.

$550 per person. Cartridges and clays will be billed upon usage. Must be 16 or over - those under 18 must have a parent present during the program.

Dress code: No blue jeans, t-shirts or open toed shoes please. Golf attire and shorts are acceptable (shorts can be worn from May 1st to September 30th.)

Gun Fitting

Shotguns are not a one-size-fits-all purchase, and every shooter can benefit from a gun that complements their movements and measurements. There are many things that make us unique – from the height of our cheekbones to the length of our neck, or from the width of your shoulders to the length of your arms. A badly fitting gun doesn’t just cause your shooting to suffer – it could also lead to bruising and injury on your jawbone and shoulder. A shotgun that isn’t the right size for you can also encourage bad habits in your mount and stance.

Using a fully adjustable ‘try-gun’, we will alter the stock dimensions, trigger pull and lengths to your exact requirements until you are happy with the result and fit. There are some quick fixes we can provide if necessary, such as slip-on butt extensions, adjustable combs or temporary comb raisers. If you are looking for a more bespoke solution, we will take the complete set of your individual measurements and pass them to our gunsmithing department. Our gunsmiths will then alter the cast, stock length, trigger and rim on your own gun so that you have a complete custom fit.

Driven Bird Preparation

Driven Bird Instruction

Are you looking to improve your technique for a driven bird hunt? We can make your next shoot more successful with tailored instruction using our simulated driven grouse, partridge and pheasant layouts. Book a lesson with us to practice with the load you will be shooting, and take advantage of our sporting clay stations that feature high incoming and high fast crossing positions. Our NSCA instructors can identify and correct any bad habits, as well as improve your form and swing so that you can focus on achieving more downed birds.


Are you planning to attend your first driven bird hunt and not sure where to start? We can help! Driven bird hunts can range from organized tower shoots held at well-run shooting preserves to formal "jacket and tie" affairs. Shooters move from peg to peg, with everyone having an opportunity to shoot birds on each flight path.

Driven shoots usually have strict rules, such as the use of break-action shotguns only, use of paper wad cartridges or a special dress code. These shoots are never inexpensive, and shooters planning to participate need to know what to expect. Good fitting equipment and practice will make the event much more rewarding, so if you need guidance our experienced team at Griffin & Howe can outfit you with the correct shooting clothes.

NSCA Instructor Certification

Our Head Shooting Instructor Kevin Sterk offers the NSCA Level 1 and Level 2 instruction certification programs at Griffin & Howe, as well as training for scholastic and recreational instruction in shooting sports.

NSCA Level 1

In the Level 1 course, our goal is to provide beginning instructors with the knowledge and ability to teach the fundamentals. They should be able to instruct a shooter on such basics as setting up foot and body position for proper balance, setting up hand and shotgun position to move with the target, how to use the eyes to acquire a target, understanding why a target was missed, and why all this is important. This course will prepare instructors to work with beginning shooters or anyone who needs to improve their fundamental skills.




NSCA Level 2

The Level 2 course is where instructors move up from teaching to becoming a coach. We start to work on the mental game of perception versus reality, encouraging instructors to get on the same page as the shooters to help them overcome their problems. We teach positive reinforcement and progressive training, allowing instructors to help their students visualize breaking targets so we can empower the subconscious and make the right things happen.

Scholastic and Recreational instructors learn many of the same skills as those taking the Level 1 NSCA course, and training is designed to qualify an individual as an instructor to work with youth and beginning shooters in a safe and recreational manner.

NJFW Live Fire Portion

We are proud to offer regular Live Fire sessions at Griffin & Howe Shooting Academy, as part of the New Jersey Fish & Wildlife Hunter Education program. For more information on how to schedule your Live Fire test, visit the NJFW website.

Off Site Instruction

Are you looking to plan a unique private event? Let us bring the magic of Griffin & Howe to you! We can provide instructors for your corporate event, as well as consultation on setting up target presentations, course design and safety.

 We also offer trial days with certain firearms – we can help you arrange a showcase or demo for brands such as Beretta, Rizzini, Caesar Guerini, Syren, Fausti, Purdey, Blaser and more.

Pickup and delivery services are also available for servicing and appraisal; send your collection to us for repairs, cleaning, engraving of ovals and more at our world class gunsmithing department.
Contact Us

Instructional Videos

Take a look at our new series of instructional videos over on the Griffin & Howe blog, where our head instructor Kevin Sterk provides a demonstration of the various shooting fundamentals.

Visit the Blog


Please note our lesson pricing is per hour, not per student. Each lesson can have up to four attendees.

 · Shotgun Instruction - $200 per hour 
 · 10 Hour Lesson Package - $1,800 (package discount of $180 per hour) 
 · Half-Day Instruction - $750 
 · Full-Day Instruction - $1,500 
 · Gun Fit (please note this takes approximately 2 hours) - $450 per gun 

 There is an additional charge for all ammunition and clay targets. Rentals are available for $37.50 per lesson. 

 Dress code: No blue jeans, t-shirts or open toed shoes please. Golf attire and shorts are acceptable (shorts can be worn from May 1st to September 30th.) 


To find out more about what we have to offer or to book a lesson, contact us on 973-398-2670 or email Please note we do not accept walk ins, lessons must be booked in advance. Our dress code is golf attire; no blue jeans or t-shirts please.


Receive weekly updates about the latest news, events, products and more at Griffin & Howe
crossmenu linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram