Practice at Home
Ways you can Practice while staying at home
Team, in our current situation where we may not be able to go outside to practice I wanted to give you some tips you could do while at home.
The best way to improve your shooting is to shoot a lot and to work on your technique and mental game. Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to get to a range. Fortunately, there are drills you can do at home that will sharpen your skills between trips.
First and always, make sure your gun is unloaded and please don't have ammunition near your gun when inside, also please get permission from your parents first, draw the curtains so you don’t frighten the neighbors, and spend 15 minutes a night doing these drills. You’ll notice the difference next time you do shoot.
Gun mount and swing
Requires a small Maglite flashlight to see where you are pointing. You can practice your mount and swing when inside by following the lines where walls meet the ceiling for example.
Be Aware of Body Position (Stance):
Since you are pointing and not aiming the shotgun, your body position is very important. You want to be relaxed and comfortable in a boxer’s stance with your led leg slightly bent and your rear leg straight, and a slight bend at the waist, leaning forward a bit into the shotgun. This allows you to control the recoil and easily rotate at the waist to track the clay bird.
We refer to this as "Nose over toes" at practice.
Make a masked off square and practice your stance and foot position for both skeet and trap. Visualize to be at different positions and stations.
Some easy tips on how to make sure your gun is properly fit.
Below are several ways of preparing for practices and competitions mentally. It is important to keep a good attitude and think constructively about performances at practice and competitions, as well as learn to focus mentally and shut out distractions. Incorporating these suggestions into home and team practices can help prepare your mind for the stress of competition and for achieving the goals you have set for yourself.
Pre Shot Routine:
Developing a pre shot routine to help your mind focus and shut out distractions can help improve your ability to compete and shoot well under pressure. A pre shot routine varies from person to person and can be anything you want it to be; a word, a phrase, a verse, stretching, etc. It is up to you to decide on what will help to focus your mind on the task at hand; it is also up to you to practice getting your mind focused when you use your pre shot routine. When doing any of the at home drills, practice working your pre shot routine into them so that you are more accustomed to it when you go to live fire practices and competitions.
A shooter’s journal is a tool used by Olympic shooters to help them record their progress and thoughts, from both practices and competitions. When using the journal, record your pre shot routine, the goals you have for this season, when and how long you practiced any of the home drills, what weather conditions were at practices and competitions, your scores, and your personal thoughts. It is important that entries in the journal are constructive and positive. Reading over negative thoughts before a practice or competition will in turn cause you to think negatively; all too often, what we think becomes reality. So get in the habit of viewing your practices and performances constructively and write these thoughts down in the journal.
When you are unable to physically practice, or right before you mount your shotgun and call for a target, get in the habit of visualizing yourself at competition. Throw in as many details as you can to make it life like; the weather, the sounds, the smells. Visualize yourself seeing the target emerge, its flight path, etc. See yourself using the correct technique, locking onto and busting the target. Even visualize the tiny pieces falling to the ground, or the target being turned to powder! Remember that what we think and feel have a direct impact on what we do, so visualize yourself positively, performing techniques correctly at practice or competitions, as part of your mental training.
I've found searching for "ShotKam" videos on youTube for stations / views of the barrel are very helpful to establish the correct leads needed to help with visualization. This will be unique for each shooter how they perceive it which is where your shooters Journal