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Pre-Stage Ritual for Mental Focus


anonymouscuban
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Hey all,

 

I was wondering if any of you have a pre-stage ritual. Something you always do just before you're going to shoot a stage to clear your mind and get mental focus.

 

I have a very busy mind and focusing has always been an issue for me. When I played baseball, I had a ritual that I would go through while on deck and as I entered the batter's box to get focused. This is my 2nd year shooting USPSA and, although I am finding it easier to focus, I still struggle at times. One of the things I am doing now is to close my eyes and visualize the stage while I'm on deck. I also tried pantomiming shooting the stage from behind the line as the shooter ahead of me is actively running the stage. I saw JJ Ricaza do this on a few Instagram videos. Did this on a couple of stages at yesterday's match and seemed to help a bit. 

 

Curious to see if any of you have a ritual and what it is. 

 

Thanks. 

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I stop resetting/ ROing/ scorekeeping when I’m in the hole. Go to my cart, mags on belt, coat off, powered ears off, right glasses. When I’m up next, step into the start position and finger gun my plan during reset. Then stand in the start position staring at the first target until Make ready. At make ready, draw and sight picture at first target, then load, etc.

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3 hours ago, Mcfoto said:

I stop resetting/ ROing/ scorekeeping when I’m in the hole. Go to my cart, mags on belt, coat off, powered ears off, right glasses. When I’m up next, step into the start position and finger gun my plan during reset. Then stand in the start position staring at the first target until Make ready. At make ready, draw and sight picture at first target, then load, etc.

Thanks for sharing. I think one thing I can do is make what I do during make ready part of the ritual. Silly now that I think about that I haven't. I don't always do the same thing. I will usually draw to a sight picture but sometimes I will add a transition or two. I may just draw and get sight picture on first target always. Eliminate the transitions. 

 

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On Deck...

I vape a crap out and drink water

 

Next Shooter..

I watch the next shooter right before me, doesn't matter what division

 

Load and Make Ready...

I draw, get a sight picture and DA shoot, twice. I grab and kiss my mag (habit from pcc.. good fortune / jam free stage) and load. I grip my pistol in the holster and raise the other hand, closed fist to visualize the stage a la JJ. From start position, I grab my pistol twice, simulating my draw. Finally a big sigh.

 

That's my 'NBA free throw' ritual 

 

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once on deck.. walk back to range cart / bag

quit helping / socializing / talking
turn off ear pro
drink water
get a fresh stick of shooting gum
dry hands - re-apply dry-hand stuff
check mags are loaded
quit watching - face away and visualize whole stage a few times - and step through stage facing away.
get a good last walkthrough once RO calls range is clear -- looking at landmarks / index points
rehearse first few steps until RO calls make ready

 

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Those are all good points and once you have all that in mind, STOP THINKING ABOUT THE STAGE!

To do that I have a mantra that I repeat mentally (eyes open or closed as necessary for you) until I hear the "Make Ready" command

Smooth

Safety

Sight Picture

Trigger Control

Center Hit

 

When you hear "Make Ready"

Wiggle your toes

Roll your shoulders if necessary

Inhale and exhale slowly while making ready

Breathe normally and inhale at "Are You Ready"

Very small slow exhale at "Stand By"

Run the program, observe and correct only if necessary

 

Nolan

Edited by Nolan
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  • 2 weeks later...

I think there is a tremendous benefit to a "pre-shot routine".  When i used to play competitive golf, I am many others had a pre shot routine.  Its important to get your mind in the same place every single time before you execute.  Only you can decide what that is.  For me I liked to focus on things that actually had nothing to do with swinging a golf club, alignment, wind, temps, yardage, etc....and let the swing happen.  Not sure if this translates directly to shooting but it certainly helps.  Oh and I agree with others, when I am on deck I completely shut off outside distractions and try to get in the zone.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 months later...

I’m chronically anxious and stage planning and pre-run always gets me all excited.

Brain is always running a million miles an hour. Usually this causes me to make crucial mistakes on a stage.

I always mentally go through the stage multiple multiple times to make sure it’s memorized. But sometimes if I’m not sure it’s in there I get nervous and then I can’t relax.

 

I’ve got a long way to go with the mental preparation.

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