This week on the podcast, I talk about the idea that there is no such thing as a perfect match. First, as a competitor: you’ll never have a match without flaws, and that’s fine. Second, as a match attendee: there will always be something imperfect about the match, and all you can do is let it go and shoot the challenge in front of you.
This summer, one of the changes I’m making to my practice is to live fire at least one evening a week. Last year, I would live fire every weekend I wasn’t shooting a match, which was two practice sessions most months. This new schedule gives me four a month, with as many as six if I go on the weekends. This is much more in line with the typical practice schedule for someone who wants to be competitive at the GM level. The First Practice Last Friday, June 22nd, was the second week of this new routine. It had been … Read More
It’s Friday night. You’re shooting a match tomorrow. And you’re scared of something. Whatever it is, you can’t fix it before tomorrow. But, if you really dig deep and figure out what’s got you scared, you can fix it before it happens the next time. Maybe you’re just generally nervous about the match. You’ve shot matches before so it’s not the first timer’s jitters, but you just can’t shake the feeling that you’re anxious. You’ve packed your bag, you’ve chamber checked all the ammo, the guns are spotless, the magazines are already loaded. The car is packed, the coffee is … Read More
I’ve been thinking a lot recently about the concept of the initiative. The initiative is the idea that, in a two-sided conflict, it is better to be the one acting first and forcing your opponent to react. You set the tone, you drive the tempo, you set the priorities. This lets you choose things advantageous to you while your opponent has to react to limit the damage to them of your choices. In chess, each player makes one move at a time. You move, he moves, you move, he moves. If you are spending every one of your turns reacting … Read More
When I look back at 2016 and try to distill the actual lessons I learned specific to shooting, the one that most stands out to me is the value of repeatability. In matches, consistency is key. Stage wins are largely irrelevant to match wins. You can take second or third on every stage and win the match because the guy who wins half the stages drops out of the top ten on the others because of his risky plans. I know this. But somehow I never made the connection to practice. My practice was very unstructured. I never consciously planned … Read More