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From Shooting to Building Your Own Game

When we see the obvious mistake, we know where the mistake began, and we attack the root cause which is rarely where the shooter missed the target! Remember that your skill is what you have trained the brain to fill in when it finds itself in familiar circumstances. So, for you to improve, you need someone who can look deeper into your skill sets and first make some sense of why your brain is reacting the way it is and make the right change the first time.

When you really understand skill building and how it occurs and where it is stored and the relationship between the working memory and long-term memory, the first thing that happens is your practice changes from shooting to building a game within yourself. It is the same whether you are performing as a shooter or as a coach because when you are at your best you think less. And you know less about what you are doing, or you would not be at your best.

You probably are also not aware of the subtle things that your brain does when a movement is automatized through deliberate repetition. And it is the one thing that keeps you from being able to think and perform at higher and higher levels.

As a circuit becomes automatized, you become less and less aware of all the little movements that the brain takes care of in getting ready to fire the circuit and make the move. And these subtle movements happen below conscious mediation.

You think see it there, move and merge there, match speed and send it, but long before you even say “pull,” if the circuit is automatized, the brain does a series of small movements so when it is time to act you are already in sync with the target.

But when you are thinking your way through the shot, your brain cannot anticipate when you will be calling “pull,” so it cannot make the necessary subconscious movements that allow for smooth, synchronous movements in the shot.