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What Should Your Post-Shot Routine Look Like?

After you break the first pair, the typical emotional reaction is relief. Wrong.

When you break the first pair, and you break that second bird of the first pair, as you open the gun, the first thing you ought to do is replay visually what you just saw. That becomes a preload for the next pair.

That’s the most wasted part of the routine in tournament shooting. Everybody experiences relief after breaking that first pair as opposed to “that’s exactly how I wanted to see it. Let’s look at it – well, yeah, okay, alright, I’m gonna do that again.” Load the gun, and it’s the same routine over and over again until you’ve shot your four pairs or three pairs or whatever it is.

If a miss should occur, if it’s a dead lost, you open immediately, you replay the dead shot, you look at the lost shot, you replay it, you make a decision, and you replay the correction. Then you load the gun, you’re ready for the next one, you close, address, release, “pull,” boom. Shoot the correction and break the target.

It’s visualizing what just happened immediately after it happened – it’s the most wasted part of consistency in a tournament. It’s also the most wasted part of practice. That’s called the post-shot routine. If it’s a habit, it makes your corrections more instant, and it makes them more correct. Because you’ve done it so many times you don’t have to think your way through it. It’s an automatized process.