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Jake Di Vita

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About Jake Di Vita

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    A lifetime of training for just 10 seconds.
  • Birthday 11/07/1984

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    Fenton, Michigan
  • Real Name
    Jake Di Vita

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  1. Crash Log

    There's a lot to unpack here. On the face this seems weird that you can execute a visual process (shot calling) by feel instead of vision. I think this is true but it's not something that you try to do. It's a consequence of thousands of hours of work. You don't just go from seeing nothing to shot calling nirvana. The literal aspect of shot calling, meaning what you actually see the sights do, provides more input than just visual. When you're really seeing what's going on in front of you with the gun, you're able to develop kind of a neurological road map where you'll intuitively know how the gun is performing by how it feels because you'll have the data bank of what you're feeling means visually from the thousands of reps you have seen in the past. In my view, the only way you can learn to call shots by feel is to call tens of thousands of shots by vision and connect what you're seeing to what you're feeling at the same time. In other words, keep focusing on vision and there's a good chance this is what your shot calling will morph into when you master it, as Ben and JJ clearly have.
  2. A Few Dry Fire Thoughts, Add Yours

    What do you mean when you say this? To me, motivation means that you want to do something. Wanting to do something is good, but the nature of the beast is sometimes you will be less motivated than other times and sometimes you will have no motivation for an extended period. If you depend on motivation, there's a high likelihood of faltering here. Discipline means you will do something regardless of how you feel whether you want to or not and death is the only thing that's going to stop you. Motivation requires inspiration. Discipline only requires a decision.
  3. Shot Reload Shot Times

    It's very simple. A 1.2 reload in a match is going to feel way different to someone who's best reload in practice is 1.1 than it is to someone who's best reload in practice is .6. And that principle is true for any skill that gets used in USPSA. You aren't practicing a .6 reload because you want to do a .6 reload in the match. You're practicing a .6 reload to extend your comfort zone and hopefully learn something that you might not have learned had you never pushed that pace. No one is saying do hyper fast draws and reloads to the point of exclusion of skills that make up a higher representation of your match score. Do both. Always try to expand your ability. Don't ever think a skill is good enough. Of course we want to eliminate weaknesses, but we also want to bolster strengths. Is it actually useless to train draws and reloads at the limit of your ability to function, or is the benefit just not in your face obvious from the outside so it gets easy to overlook? Even if the only benefit were fractions of a second, shaving a tenth here or 5 hundredths there is no a fools errand in a sport where hundredths of a second can be the difference between winning and losing. This is even more true in Open where you see the highest form of speed and accuracy that exists. Not everything you practice is going to have a gigantic impact on your scores, but many tiny improvements over time will add up just as well.
  4. A Few Dry Fire Thoughts, Add Yours

    Yes. Tons of them. It doesn't just sound good on the surface. I know many people like that who are highly successful. If you have discipline, you don't need motivation. You will just do what you know needs to be done without any extra fluff on the side. People who rely on motivation or inspiration to get things done always run out at some point. The very nature of discipline means it is inexhaustible. Like Husker said, wrestling is a great example of this. Another great example is new years weight loss resolutions. The gyms are filled with motivated people in early January. That doesn't last long. The motivation fades and the undisciplined go right back to their couches. People who need motivation almost never do as well as people who slog through the work everyday no matter how unmotivated they are.
  5. It's gonna take a bit for me to unpack this, but I've been wanting to consolidate my thoughts on this for awhile and you guys get to suffer through it. Everyone is going to be a little different but ultimately there is a mechanically ideal way for every person to manage recoil. Some things like exact arm position, extension, tension, weight distribution, lean, etc will be most of the variance between people. Some principles that do seem to ring true from the leverage point of view is it is generally better for pressure on the gun to be as close to the bore axis as possible while also inward towards the bore axis, and to have friction on the gun as far forward toward the end of the barrel as is reasonable. If you could squeeze the gun right at the tip of the barrel, that's the theoretical maximum amount of leverage you can have on the gun as far as I can figure. Obviously we can't do that, but that's the same principle that drives people to slide their support hand forward under the trigger guard/cam their wrist forward and get as high on the beavertail as possible. This is also why thumb "rests" can be an effective tool for recoil management...high forward pressure with plenty of friction. Where most people fall short is they place their hands in a good position, but don't use that position to apply pressure where it will most benefit them. Ideal grip pressure is going to be another individual variable, but in general it's usually safe to say grip harder than you think is necessary. More importantly, I want grip pressure to follow the same guidelines as grip position: high, forward, inward towards the barrel axis. Leverage, friction, and pressure is the holy trinity of recoil management. The downside of this is it's very difficult to learn how to not push the gun all over the place and crunch shots with all this pressure and squeezing coming from different directions. It's also quite difficult/hard on your body to force yourself to do consistently in practice, especially if you're dry firing every day like you should be. Again, this is my general guideline for maximizing recoil management, I'm not saying this is what everyone should do. There are plenty of people that decide to let recoil happen and still put up extremely good scores. After all that, the reason why I think this is valuable is the idea that more recoil management gives you a higher ceiling for speed and accuracy than less recoil management, and my practice data confirms this is true for me. You'll have to decide for yourself what you want your grip and stance to accomplish, and it's critical to log long term data to see if you're happy with the results. Just a couple thoughts. I'm exhausted so sorry if I explained it poorly.
  6. A Few Dry Fire Thoughts, Add Yours

    Discipline is a million times more valuable than motivation.
  7. Crash Log

    Cool. Good stuff. Since you are on the fence about it and it is so close, I would say skip Space City and work the dot til April 1, then go full back to Limited. That gives you almost 4 weeks to readjust, which I think you'll find to be more than enough. I think the two things you focus on for the next 2 months with the dot is shot calling and shooting on the move. I think the dot is uniquely valuable to those two skills and you'll probably get the most out of your time if you practice with a bias towards them. The month you'd have before Texas State Open would then be spent applying what you learned to irons. Just my suggestion.
  8. Crash Log

    Why would you take the dot off for JJ's class? I feel like you haven't put in enough hours behind the dot for it to have taught you very much yet. It's still only February. If I were you I would keep working with the dot at least until April or May (I don't know your match schedule obviously). It won't be as hard as you think to switch back to irons. You've taken quite a few classes now haven't you? Remember the class isn't what makes you better. Applying what you learned from the class in practice is. You can obviously do whatever you want, but as someone that's been helping you from afar for awhile, I think your time, money, and effort would be much better spent in practice rather than instruction at this point. You already possess most of the knowledge you need, now it's just a matter of experience and training age....hours behind the gun. What does your major match schedule look like this year?
  9. Moving to Carry Optic

    I don't really experience it this way. I think if you're maximizing the efficiency of grip and stance the dot settles up really fast. When I'm shooting at my best it's almost like the dot snaps back to the target and looks fully still to me by the time the next shot fires, even though the split may be in the low teens. To your point, waiting for it to be still would be bad, but I think the goal should be to force the dot to be still the instant it is back on target. I feel like that's a better direction to go rather than settling for the dot being blurry on closer targets. Don't get me wrong, it's certainly not bad to have the skill to hit what you want with a lot of dot movement. There are bound to be times where the setup of the position requires compromising your recoil management but probably not a lot of them in a given match.
  10. Knocking down the bite on a PT agressive grip

    Don't worry, your IT guy hands will toughen up over time and it doesn't even take that long to build calluses. Don't let a little discomfort distract you. It's just skin, it'll grow back.
  11. Grip technique and strength

    They can be useful for some people. I prefer to develop hand strength more as a by product of training. Between deadlifting, oly lifting, pull ups, climbing rope/rock climbing, and dryfire my hands get plenty of work. Unlike with captains of crush, the benefit of the training goes beyond the hands while still having enough stimulus to force them to get strong. My general advice for a shooter would be to focus on squeezing hard in dry fire and dry fire every single day with that focus for a few months. This will build some strength, but primarily it's going to get the neurological system more efficient at applying force in the way you decide to with the gun. Ultimately all the grip strength in the world doesn't matter if you aren't applying it effectively. After that if the shooter still feels like grip strength is holding them back in some way, they can look at captains of crush or some of the other things I outlined that I like to do.
  12. Critique My Reloads

    That's going to be true of anyone who is trying to improve. I screw up all the time and I've been a GM for over 10 years. If you aren't making mistakes in practice you aren't challenging yourself. If you don't challenge yourself you don't get better. Reloading has always been a large part of my dry fire even when shooting open because I think general gun handling skills are so critical and it's one of the fundamental things you do with a gun. I can't think of any conditions that would have me as a coach say "ok your reloads are good enough, focus on something else." I think the fundamental actions of shooting must always be a focus of practice. There are very few dryfire drills I do that don't have a draw and reload in them. It's something I have to work on every single day.
  13. Moving to Carry Optic

    The better you are the less time you need. People with a well developed index can change between irons and a dot in as little as half a dryfire session. If you're newer to the dot and/or are younger in training age it can take some time because you need to initially develop the ability to be keenly aware of where the gun will be pointed. The goal is to be able to draw or look at anything and have the gun appear with the dot rock steady in the center of the glass at exactly the place on the target where you want it to be with no adjustment. As you improve at this, you'll notice you won't need to find the dot anymore. It will just go where you want it to go. What helped me early on was to point in at the target, take a mental snap shot of what I felt about my body position, then try to recreate that body position precisely on the next draw. When you extend to the target and are not aimed exactly where you want to be, take note of the error and try to correct it on the next rep. A common series of events will happen where you'll be off, then you'll over correct, then you'll under correct, then you'll find the sweet spot. Once you're there see how many times you can do it before you're off again. I've found this to be a valuable strategy in dryfire.
  14. Using wrist wraps for lifting

    Yeah for sure. I'm definitely not saying don't wrap your wrists. I'm saying don't settle for only wrapping when you can work on correcting the cause of the problem. I have a whole series of mobilization exercises I use specifically for the front rack that I make everyone I teach go through before doing work sets. Takes about 15-20 minutes, but it makes a profound difference both in the short term and long term if done consistently. The weight may be totally on your shoulders when standing, but at the bottom of the squat (unless you have a superbly upright torso) is where the weight of the bar will shift to the wrists. Forward inclination of the torso at the bottom of the squat effectively lowers the elbows even more and makes the movement real harsh on the wrist.
  15. Using wrist wraps for lifting

    Got a picture of your front rack position? Your pain is more than likely caused by either crappy front rack flexibility (which is shockingly common in men) or crappy bar position (also very common). As soon as your elbow/upper arm is pointing downwards from horizontal, you're immediately vastly increasing the load the wrist has to support. A proper front rack puts no stress on the wrist whatsoever because the bar is fully supported by your shoulders. All the hands do in this situation is keep the bar tight to your neck to ensure the weight is in line with the frontal plane (the plane that bisects your body front to back). Common flexibility issues that cause front rack wrist pain are elbows that don't have full range flexion, tight shoulders or lats that prevent the elbow from being raised high enough to create a proper shelf on the shoulder for the bar to sit, and wrist extension flexibility although I hardly see this. I'd highly recommend you try to sort out any/all of these flexibility issues rather than relying solely on the compression support of wrist wraps. A good place to start for learning how to mobilize this position would be to youtube search kelly starrett front rack mobility.