The Mental Game?

tony08

New member
Having recently read Alan Wills' blog I got thinking about how archers view the mental side of the sport.

Wills felt he needed a "a do-or-die mentality - put everything in until your fingers bleed".

On the other hand I've read stuff about the "zone", which appears to be a calm, collected (almost ego-less state) in which the arrow seems to almost shoot itself.

What do archers here think. Which is the best approach?
 


andrew.paterson

New member
Which is the best approach?
Which ever one you "believe in". If you mentally believe in what you are doing whole heartedly then those undermining gremlins can't get in.

In many sports there are wolrd champions that are full-on in your face, and others that are calm and collected.
 


simon m

New member
Ironman
If I go to the club field felling good about my archery & shoot on handicap..more or less.

If I go feeling like I don't really care/less motivated.......I shoot better than handicap 9/10 times.

If I go feeling supremely confident........I generally come away disappointed with my scores. But this might be an expectation thing, feeling supremely confident may mean I expect a handicap smashing score..??



I have shot part of a round that felt like a zen state the first three dozen at the tri-counties at 100yards just felt like I was floating along.......I shot a six gold end for 100yrds in that mindset.

Also a large part of my 580 at 100yrds for a York Last Sunday Seemed to be "easy"......
 


phil_r_58

Supporter
Supporter
Ironman
We all have different personalities ....... END OF.

Some shoot with an aggressive "I'm going to nail that spot"
Some shoot with a passive "Relax, hold on spot, oh, the shots gone"
Most shoot somewhere between the two.

My coach, a world champion, and once national coach(EFAA), had a flowchart he gave us, to follow, and identify the things we need to do in the mental checklist. One of the final branches breaks off into Aggressive/Passive styles. There is a difference in the mental needs between the two.

I don't want to get into the other threads about a particular coach, but a good coach, (like mine), will identify each archers personal "ON" buttons, and work with each individual archer to make sure they are identified and pressed at the right time. You cannot say each archer must shoot to a pre determined program. You end up with the course of mediocrity with that. You stifle the aggressive, or put too much pressure on the passive.

Well IMHO anyway

I have wondered if I scanned this old preparation checklist and posted it if anyone would want it. It is about 20 years old, once used by trainee world & European champions, and produced by one. It formed part of a little hand written booklet he made, before the days of MS word! and even BBC micro. :scratchch
 


addo

New member
I have wondered if I scanned this old preparation checklist and posted it if anyone would want it.
I would most certainly want to have a look at it.I've been on a very steep learning curve,since i started archery.I'm up to speed on equipment,form(nearly),etiquete,etc.but have completley neglected the mental side of things.I've been working on it for a few weeks and anything that assists with this would be well recieved.I have no coach and the only help i have concerning this matter is a book....Understanding Winning Archery

I'm of the opinion at the moment that if you sort the mind,the body will follow
 


darthTer

Active member
Supporter
Ironman
American Shoot
On the other hand I've read stuff about the "zone", which appears to be a calm, collected (almost ego-less state) in which the arrow seems to almost shoot itself.

What do archers here think. Which is the best approach?
The best approach is the one that works for you!!!

As for "the zone", that too is completely personal. My personal "Zone" may be cool, calm & collected where as Alan Wills feel his is more an aggressive, all out attack. I believe that "the zone" is a mind set where the individual can perform to the best of their abilities - There is no right/wrong or best/worst.

A good coach should be able to identify each persons "zone" and how best to get them and keep them there.
 


phil_r_58

Supporter
Supporter
Ironman
I would most certainly want to have a look at it.I've been on a very steep learning curve,since i started archery.I'm up to speed on equipment,form(nearly),etiquete,etc.but have completley neglected the mental side of things.I've been working on it for a few weeks and anything that assists with this would be well recieved.I have no coach and the only help i have concerning this matter is a book....Understanding Winning Archery

I'm of the opinion at the moment that if you sort the mind,the body will follow
My coach would disagree, Mind, body and equipment are in a circle, break one link, the circle breaks, make one more important than the other, it goes pear shaped, like the shooting when you neglect one part!
 


addo

New member
My coach would disagree, Mind, body and equipment are in a circle, break one link, the circle breaks, make one more important than the other, it goes pear shaped, like the shooting when you neglect one part!
See what i mean....if i think about it,i don't have a clue :thumbsup:
 


Read L Basham

If you want to know everything that's useful about the mental game, read 'With winning in mind' by Lanny Basham (Or anything else he's written in magazines, etc).
It covers evreything from goal setting, through mental rehearsal to changing your self-image & loads more.
Also check out his website Welcome to Mental Management Systems. Mental Management services and products for mental control before and during competition.

That reminds me... I should really read that book again!

Hope this helps.
 


Paul120

New member
We all have different personalities ....... END OF.
Correct,

Not of it's right and none of it's wrong, whatever floats your boat.

The crime is to get sidetracked by somebody with a point of veiw that doesn't suit you.

perhaps this is what has happend to Alan. A coach should understand this.

One thing I have witnessed though;

There are some good archers out there that have in an attempt to improve their mental game who fallen apart because they think it's the golden bullet thats going to bring success and forget it's not worth a jot unless you practice..pracitice and practice shooting arrows and have a form good enough to win in the first place.

when I practice more it's funny how my mental side improves at the same time.

Seb coe thinks that most of sports psycology is mumbo jumbo too.
 


Sparks

New member
If you want to know everything that's useful about the mental game, read 'With winning in mind' by Lanny Basham
Seconded, not just because it's an excellent work, but also because it makes the point that several sports have the same kind of mental game - so while Lanny is a famous target shooter, his stuff is applicable to archery as well. Right now, I'm working my way through Every shot must have a purpose by Pia Nilsson, which I'd also heartily recommend to anyone in shooting (and I'd guess in archery as well) even through it's written for golf.
 


tony08

New member
Some shoot with an aggressive "I'm going to nail that spot"
Some shoot with a passive "Relax, hold on spot, oh, the shots gone"
Most shoot somewhere between the two.
At least there's plenty of scope to accommodate all types.

I also agree that "Mind, body and equipment are in a circle". Each as important as the other.

Good comments on this thread.

Thanks
 


english_archer

New member
Ironman
I have wondered if I scanned this old preparation checklist and posted it if anyone would want it. It is about 20 years old, once used by trainee world & European champions, and produced by one. It formed part of a little hand written booklet he made, before the days of MS word! and even BBC micro. :scratchch
Hey Phil count me in I would love a copy If your coach is the guy I think it is I may just have to bribe him with :cake: the mental system I use works up to a point but I need more focus. The 3 circles sounds very like what I use but Ive got a feeling he may be a bit more indepth:beer:
 


Huffy

New member
Sounds good Phil.
I too would like a copy please. It may be a idea to put in the drop box if have too great a demand.

Best wishes, Mark
 


Toxophilus_Archer

New member
Going into the zone is not a thing that just occurs read anything by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi one of the foremost exponents of the zone. For true insight into the so called mental game which shows how everything comes together read something on existential psychology e.g Existential Psychology and Sport by Mark Nesti.
:kyudo:
 


tony08

New member
Going into the zone is not a thing that just occurs read anything by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi one of the foremost exponents of the zone. For true insight into the so called mental game which shows how everything comes together read something on existential psychology e.g Existential Psychology and Sport by Mark Nesti.
:kyudo:
I found this quote on Wiki: "To achieve a flow state, a balance must be struck between the challenge of the task and the skill of the performer. If the task is too easy or too difficult, flow cannot occur."
Pretty much agrees with what ppl here have noted.
 


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