Congratulations to all our shooters who competed in this weekends National Championships. Susan, Laura and Paula Cunningham Took gold,silver and bronze medals in the Women's match. Well done Ladies!
Mark G, Patrick, Shane and Paul took part in the Men's match. Paul's rifle stock came undone and caused him grief. Patrick and Mark G both hit scores in the high 490's, which would have been somewhat below their target scores. Shane made a welcome return to the competition circut and hopefully we will see him on the line again next week at our match in Wilkinstown!
Mark C and I excelled in the AP 60 match! Donal Lynch, however, qualified for the final in 8th place and through classic shooting aided by very vocal support from his clubmates and fans managed to move up into 7th place. Well done 'you boy you'!
Thanks to UCD for hosting and all who competed and assisted in running the event.
Now lets start working on National Cahmpionships 2011.
Looking back over what I posted last time, I would like to move the process on a little further if I may.
Last time I spoke about developing a relaxed position through breathing and inducing relaxation while exhaling. In those drills I suggested that one becomes aware of ones self and surroundings while focusing on the current feelings of harmony and tranquility and gently achieving stability and balance with eyes closed. This time, I want to suggest a variation of the previous drill. By all means, repeat the previous drill to achieve a state of balance and once this has been attained, we are going to add to it because the shooting position will require some modification in order to achieve balance while providing stable support to the firearm.
In this drill, I suggest that you alter your position somewhat to mimic the desired shooting position you wish to train in, be it prone, kneeling or standing. So, if it is the prone position then adopt the prone position, if kneeling, then the kneeling position and if standing, then the standing position. This new position, because of the shift in your centre of balance, will cause you to be aware of new forces coming in to play with your stability. Like the previous drill, I want you to create a relaxed and balanced position by keeping ones eyes closed and concentrating on your breathing and relaxation process as outlined previously.
All of these drills must be carried out initially without kit and without the firearm ( these will be added later). As in the previous session the goal that is sought is the establishment of the most stable and relaxed simple shooting position. I call it a 'simple shooting position' because it is not complicated by kit and firearm.
What I want you to think about is how your body is preparing to adapt itself to support the weight of the equipment and how your body is going to build up its endurance to be able sustain this stable, relaxed and comfortable position throughout the match. So take time to practice these drills so that you can establish your stable position without any load factor. When this is achieved, we will come back and offer some ideas about how to gently increase the load!
These are just some of my thoughts on this matter and I always invite comments, observations and more ideas, please don't be shy, I won't wring your neck! So don't be too lazy to .......
Colm Brereton, fresh from his recent win in the UCD Summer league, shot an impressive 553 / 600 to win the men's match. Jim O'Hagan takes silver with 547 / 600 and Mike Dunne of DURC, Bronze with 534 / 600. In the Ladies Match the Cunningham sisters secured the medals with Susan in Gold position with a score of 383 ex 400, Paula in Silver and Laura in Bronze, both with scores of 380 ex 400.
In the air pistol match Gold goes to Joe Conroy from the Fermoy Club, while Silver and Bronze are taken by UCD, by Luke McMullan and John Lancaster respectively.
Congratulations and best wishes are extended to Mark Guildea and Emma Brereton, both from the Wilkinstown Club who took part in their first competition.
Special Thanks are extended to Jimmy Byrne, Marina Cunningham, Pat O'Hagan and Mark Casey for Admin support.
"I am the little red rooster too lazy to crow today" but not too lazy to share some thoughts from the barn about target shooting. Target shooting at its simplest is the mastery of three basic skills, aiming, trigger and position. The later, position is the most important. So a few ideas on position might be a good place to start these pickings.
Position must be / should be:
Comfortable: That means 'Comfortable', relaxed, warm, fed and watered, at ease, content, safe and at peace with yourself and with the world. That kind of feeling you have late at night in your cot before you nod off to sleep. And of course happy! so go on give yourself a big smile when you read this adn see how good it makes you feel.
Stable: That means that you are balanced in the position and that you have found your body's equilibrium. This can be measured in terms of your lateral sway. The more comfortable you can become, the more relaxed, the more at peace, the more cosy you can become then the more balanced you will become and therefore more stable.
Look again at the words we are using and consider the ideas behind them. 'Comfortable'....'Relaxed'.....'Warm'.....'At ease'....'Safe'...'Content'....'At Peace'.....'Happy'...... These words refer, in the most part, to states of mind. From this it is easy to undersatnd shooting as a mind game. Control, develop, create and generate the proper physical environment which will nurture and support the correct mind set and you will be well on your way to developing, establishing and re-establishing your position which will be comfortable, stable and happy!
The easiest way to learn a new skill and to develop an existing one is to move from simple drills to the more involved. Can I suggest some for example. Find a still quiet place and sit up or stand up straight but relaxed, feet apart and eyes closed. Breath in deeply through your nose and exhale slowly through you mouth. Do this a few times and as you exhale tell yourself gently to relax and as you do so let the tension fall from your head, shoulders to the floor. Enjoy the feelings of relaxation. As you become more relaxed, still with your eyes closed, be aware of yourself and your surroundings. Empty your mind of all concerns and focus only on what you senses are telling you about your body and your surroundings, because in this moment that is all that is real and is all that matters. Be aware too of any movement in you body and in your mind consider what small adjustment you might make to correct this movement. Continue this exercise for a few moments. Practice this relaxation a few times each day and let me know how you get on. And most of all at all times be happy in what you are doing.
Some ideas now back to you......your choice.....Where to now?
And me...... well ............... I'm the little red rooster too lazy to .............!