Entrenamiento mental para competir
Estimados amigos les mando un articulo que salio en steelchickens, disculpen este en Ingles pues salgo de viaje en un rato y no tuve tiempo de traducirselos. Es de un tirador de California de decendencia Latina, se llama Luis "Lucho" Bernardez
Thoughts on the Mental Game
I think I first started shooting silhouettes in 1996. Like most shooters I started out as a B shooter and slowly worked my way up the classifications. Along the way I did all the usual things that most shooters do to improve. I bought a standard gun. I bought a hunter gun. I bought a better standard gun. I bought a better hunter gun. I bought better scopes. I spent lots of time testing lots of cheap ammo and then just ended up buying the most expensive ammunition I could bare to buy. And I even practiced a little.
So now I am a Master shooter. I now only shoot the hunter gun and on average I shoot about a 32 to a 34. Okay, occasionally I’ll shoot a 35 or a 36. But I’m still trying to get better. The next step along the road that most silhouette shooters is working on the mental aspect of shooting.
I started to look into the mental part of shooting a few years ago and would like to summarize some of the key things I have learned.
When a shooter starts to think about the mental aspect of shooting, the first person they look to is Lanny Bassham. Lanny was a Gold metal winner in the 1976 Olympics. He attributes his win to the improvements he made in his mental training. He went on to write the will know book “With Winning in Mind”. He now has a successful business advising many top athletes on their mental training. So off to Lanny Bassham’s web sight I went. There I found a CD that looked interesting. It was called, “What Every Rifle Shooter Should Know FIRST About the Mental Game” by Troy Bassham. Troy is Lanny’s son and is also a world-class shooter. In this CD Troy talks about many aspects of mental training. But what I found most informative was what he said were the three biggest mental error a shooter could make.
Three biggest mental mistakes in shooting are:
1) Trying to hard
Unlike many sports, in shooting trying harder wont make you better. While your shooting, if you try to hard you tense up, you take to long, and you hold goes to pieces. If you try to little, you get distracted your mind wonders. In shooting you have to try just the right amount. What is the right amount? Well, that is different for each person. And it is only something you can figure out by practicing.
2) Focusing on outcome not process
We all want to hit the target. That is the goal. That is how we are measured. The mechanics of shooting are simple. Figure out what you need to do to hit a target, then repeat that 40 times. In other words, if you do the things needed to make a good shot you will hit the target. So, we need to think about doing what we can to make a good shot. Is my position good, I will follow through, I will relax my arm, I won’t jerk the trigger, and I will follow my shot plan? These are the things that make a good shot.
3) Not following a shot plan
What the heck is a shot plan? A shot plan is a process, (see Mental Mistake #2). It is the list of things we need to do to make a good shot. Both the physical and more importantly, the mental steps we take as we make a good shot.
So, what the heck does a shot plan look like?
I learned what a shot plan was when I attended a shooting clinic taught by three-time Olympian and 1992 Olympic Medalist Bob Foth. The clinic organized by a shooting club near where I live. It was meant mostly for coaches and junior 3P shooter. It cost $200 for two days. I figured I spend lots of money on equipment and ammo, why not spend a little money on something that may actually make me a better shooter.
It was a great clinic. Bob was knowledgeable and well organized. He gave both classroom talks and on the range instruction. He covered many aspects of shooting including position, practice, mental training, and the importance of keeping a shooters log.
He described the importance of a shot plan and showed examples of what one might look like. Often shot plans are tied to ones breathing pattern. They can be illustrated in the following way.
It seems most shot plans are based on your breathing pattern. Breathing is a natural rhythm in all of us. Using our breathing helps focus what you are doing and I think slows your breathing and calms you down. The words you think aren’t really important. But they should be consistent. I tried counting, but would now recommend against this method. I found that if I was breaking the shot on the three count and if the hold didn’t feel right or look good, I would break the shot anyway. Because counting is naturally timed or rhythmic, it was hard to vary that timing. I now feel that words that remind us of something work better. That something is an individual thing. It is something you should work out over time. Maybe you rush a little, so you can think, “slow” down. Or maybe your to tense, so you can think, “relax”.
You may have a three-breath shot plan or a two-breath shot plan or even a four-breath shot plan. That is up to you as well. I started with a three-breath plan but found it took to much time, so I switched to a two-breath plan. It almost doesn’t matter, but it should be consistent. You’ll have to find out what works for you through practice and trial and error.
Another good source of information is on the web at
These are a set of articles from the nationally known rifle and pistol coach, JP O’Connor. He says a lot. What I remember most from his articles are the following three things:
1) Your first hold is your best hold
We have all stood on the line holding and holding. Watching our hold get worse and worse. We have to stop this. Your first hold is your best, so if you don’t get the shot off start again. It is like taking back a bad shot. It’s a “do over”. You have plenty one time in 2:45 minute to start over once or twice.
2) Your hold doesn’t have to be perfect
Actually it can’t and won’t be perfect. It just has to be good. Don’t wait the dot to stop; don’t try to make the dot stop moving. The dot will never stop moving. Many people pick a spot on the animal to shoot. If the dot is near the spot or moving towards it, take the shot. Waiting for the perfect shot leads to missing your best hold.
3) You must be psychologically prepared to take the shot before you are on the target.
How many of us have had a great hold on the animal and seen the dot dancing around inside the animal and said to our selves “Man that’s a great hold”. Then you go to break the shot and the hold is gone. The problem is that we were not psychologically ready to take the shot. Physically we were ready, the hold was great. But, in our heads we were not ready and getting ready or deciding to take the shot took to much time and we lost our best hold.
I would like to add one other thing that all three of these coaches talked about. That is our self-image. Our self-image is the way we see our selves and in this case the way we our selves shooting. We need to be confident in our abilities and have a positive out look. As Troy Bassham put it, the first thing most shooters talk about when they get off the line is what ever they did wrong. They say, “I missed my tenth animal”, or “I jerked the trigger on the fourth shot”. However, great shooters talk about their good shots, “I got nine animals in a row”. Great shooter talk about what they need to do to get better. They don’t talk about how bad they shot. Talking about the good things improves our confidence and self-image. Talking about our bad shots or what we did wrong reinforces a bad self-image.
Well I hope this helps some of you. I know that if I started over knowing what I know now. I would not spend as much money on equipment. I’d buy a case of ammo and practice more. I’d practice the physical aspects and the mental aspects of shooting, I’d have a shot plan from the start, and I’d talk about my great hits instead of my horrible misses.
Good Luck and Good Practice;
Luis “Lucho” Bernardez
este quizas es uno de los aportes mas valiosos que he leido, me va a servir de sobre manera.
Muchisimas gracias por la info. Creo que a más de no nos va a ser de bastante utilidad.
Me llamó mucho la atencion la parte final en la que se menciona que es mejor hablar de los aspectos positivos y dejar los negativos aún cuando fallemos en nuestros tiros.
Las Aguilas andan solas ... pero vuelan alto.
excelente articulo sr. tony tello saludos de parte de la raza tiradora de s. l. p."EL HOMBRE QUE SE LEVANTA ES AUN MAS FUERTE QUE EL QUE NO HA CAIDO"
Muy buen articulo, Tony. Gracias.
Leerlo confirma lo que siempre he sospechado que me detiene: Trying too hard. Trato de alcanzar perfeccion y me acelero. Tiro mucho mejor cuando me vale m..., en eventos normales, que cuando tiro en estatales o nacionales y trato de meterle mas ganas.
Saludos para ti y familia,
Excelente Sr. Tello!. Muy interesante...Occuli et unguibus aeque victrix
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