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Discussion Starter #1
So I'm not sure how to coach a student to stop rushing her shot. She did great through elementary school, went to Nationals last year and now this year she is starting to develop a bad rushing habit. I've tried 3 yrd blind shooting, telling her not to release until I tell her to, trying to slow her cadence down. She is starting to fling them without even anchoring sometimes. I've done all I know to do. I'm determined it's all up to her to get things straight in her own head now. Any other suggestions?

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Let's talk shot process.

What do YOU think it should be? What does SHE think it should be?

Then what do YOU think it actually is? What does SHE think it actually is?

Together -- figure out the difference between the desired process and the actual process. Use that information to get her to focus on the shot process. Forget about score for a moment and count good shots as those in which she executed the shot desired shot process well.
 

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Blank bale is probably the best way to go about it. Force her to shoot with no target and artificially show her shot down on there. It should carry over on target if the exercise is repeated enough.
 

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slowly spelling A-R-C-H-E-R-Y (or a name, pet, fun word) during the shot process. Start easy, where we say 'good' when the shot breaks between the 'ery'.
works well for both anticipation or just setting a cadence.

Use it with our JOAD kids often enough.
 

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Can she hold at the blank bale?
 

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So I'm not sure how to coach a student to stop rushing her shot. She did great through elementary school, went to Nationals last year and now this year she is starting to develop a bad rushing habit. I've tried 3 yrd blind shooting, telling her not to release until I tell her to, trying to slow her cadence down. She is starting to fling them without even anchoring sometimes. I've done all I know to do. I'm determined it's all up to her to get things straight in her own head now. Any other suggestions?

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It sounds like the usual symptoms of command-shooting/commanding the release. "Snap shooting" in particular is the evidence you're describing that makes me think that - what that is is an effort to try to time the release. Namely, let go/punch the trigger the moment the hand contacts the face. When it fails, as it always does, the symptom of firing before coming to anchor is a common result.

Unfortunately, a complete overhaul of the shot process is probably going to be needed. Namely, my suggestion would be to introduce the surprise shot. Or if she's shooting fingers, the clicker....

lee.
 

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How old is she?
You know teen age girls often rebel against authority and coaches. This may not be whats going on , but consider it
 

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Blank bale is probably the best way to go about it. Force her to shoot with no target and artificially show her shot down on there. It should carry over on target if the exercise is repeated enough.
Please don't condemn the poor girl to the blank boss.... What Mac referred to with teenage rebellion is much more sure to happen if she gets belt-buckled to a blank bale, just as what happens even with adult archers too :).

As I said, she's probably command-releasing so any effort to time the shot will just make the problem worse. Eg. the spelling of A-R-C... suggested above is like the one I was exposed to when I was first shooting and suffering (unknowingly) the effects of command-shooting: "coach-says-now"/release. Almost 20 years of torture ensued after that... :).

Anyway, like I said the surprise shot is probably the best medicine based on the description of what she's doing....

lee.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks guys. I'm going back to the old faithful string bow for now. Having her go through the shot process with it and focusing on her breathing. No target and no bow for about a week. Just the string bow. Then I will probably blank bale for a little bit just to see if she goes right back to it as soon as the grip is in her hand. She isn't rebelling. She is actually very open to accept coaching. She says it just feels like she can't hold it any longer. We will work through it, and I'm sure it won't be easy.

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Have you been tracking here scores. Have they gone up, down or no change? What type of release is she using?
 

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Let's talk shot process.

What do YOU think it should be? What does SHE think it should be?

Then what do YOU think it actually is? What does SHE think it actually is?

Together -- figure out the difference between the desired process and the actual process. Use that information to get her to focus on the shot process. Forget about score for a moment and count good shots as those in which she executed the shot desired shot process well.
Yes, commination and understanding.

Blank bale is probably the best way to go about it. Force her to shoot with no target and artificially show her shot down on there. It should carry over on target if the exercise is repeated enough.
I really hate the word Force...

Have you been tracking here scores. Have they gone up, down or no change? What type of release is she using?
Pretty sure NASP is a fingers/tab thing.
 

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Is she using too much draw weight? Too high draw weight will cause you to want to release early because your hold becomes less stable with longer time. This can build on itself until you’re releasing way early.
 

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I would suggest the opposite of blank bale shooting.
Have her draw and hold on a target.... hold for 10 seconds ON target. Then let down.

This WILL get a little boring, and will test her endurance, so don’t make her do this too long.

The idea is to train that it is OK to be on target and not instantly shoot.
She simply can NOT rush the shot doing this, or execute this drill before getting to full draw.
Watch her form as she does this (it will make more sense to her if she sees you are looking to make sure everything is going correctly vs. just telling her to slow down). After several reps, have her repeat the drill, but fire SOME of the reps. If you see anything wrong, tell her to let back down. If all looks good, tell her she can let the arrow go.
This is slightly different than just telling her to wait. We are looking to reward good behavior (form), not just restrict her.
For me, this works well for shooters using sights, but I suspect this could work well for NASP shooters as well (probably not so much for recurve shooters).


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"...She says it just feels like she can't hold it any longer..."

Have you tried lowering draw weight?
 

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My advice is not going to help, but I've been through it and it ain't pretty.

She's being 100% truthful to you. When you get target panic (yes, I said the evil words) your subconscious takes over command of your fingers and it simply goes. Every technique I tried, every training exercise someone offered, even putting my finger behind the trigger, all went out the window when you put a target in front of me. Her brain is telling her fingers to let it go before she gets on the target. Her brain doesn't want her to miss. She has no control over it, no matter what you try. It's all subconscious.

I tried blank baling-perfect execution. I tried counting to 10 with my eyes closed - worked fine. I tried holding off target-could do it all day until I tried to move back on the x. Then I made the mistakes. I tried making the release hotter, until I punched myself in the nose, I tried colder until I pulled the darn rig completely off target trying to get the trigger to break. The worst idea was a release that some company made that had a drop pin in it so you had to pull the trigger sloowly or it wouldn't go offer. I about blew my shoulder off with that one!

The only way to continue shooting was to remove the disconnect between the pin, the target, and the trigger. I had to get rid of any trigger release and learn to shoot a hinge, both for hunting and targets. Even now, 15 years later, if I pick up a trigger, the first shot is great, 2,3 maybe 4th get a little jumpy. By the 5th or 6th shot I'm punching the devil out of it.

I honestly don't know what to tell you with her since she shoots fingers, but I'm telling you if you can't break the disconnect in her brain or target/release/bam it's gone, then she'll eventually quit. Maybe a good coach with some experience with TP?
 

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My son developed the same bad habit in his second year of NASP. I spent a couple days doing similar things to what you described in your post, but what has seemed to work the best is slowing walking him thru the shot process and then having him let down or shoot on command. It took a few days but issues appear to be gone. It has been about a month since he stopped with the rushed shoot.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks for all the input. We did the string bow focusing on her breathing for a couple of days. She shot her best score in practice bit is still rushing a bit. We will continue to try these suggestions. Thanks again!!

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