Archery Visualisation – How To Learn And Use It
Many archers struggle with learning visualisation, and don’t know what they should be thinking or how to make it work for them. In this in-depth video I discuss how to really think about visualisation and use it to improve technique and competition performance.
For an overview of the points in the video you can see the breakdown at the bottom of the page.
Many people are afraid of dedicating time to mental imagery because they think they would get more benefit from spending that time shooting. However, this is the wrong way to think about it. When you use imagery correctly, it can act as a multiplier for your time. Using imagery before a training session can make your whole session much more effective; think about turning each 2hr session you have into 3hrs. How much faster could you progress? This is one of the benefits of visualisation.
This is super common, and many people experience this when they’re visualising themselves shooting. They have certain parts of their mental picture go ‘blank’; they might be able to visualise the start of their shot but by the end their mental picture isn’t clear or they find it hard to imagine executing the shot. This is actually a good thing. If parts of your shot are blank when you visualise, it means you haven’t learnt that part of your shot properly. This means you can use visualisation to identify which parts of your shot you need to work on more.
There are many reasons but put simply: visualisation improves every technical and mental aspect of your shooting when done correctly. You can learn new skills and technique more quickly. You can prepare for competitions more thoroughly. You can change your thought patterns to deliver under pressure. Visualisation is the most flexible, impactful tool.
And it’s completely free, so there’s no excuse!
Visualisation is extremely flexible, but there are specific times when it can have an especially big impact. Visualising what you are going to do before a training session is extremely valuable. Visualising your process before each shot and rehearsing your mental approach before each end are two other times where visualisation can have a massive impact on your performance.
In training, you can use visualisation before each shot, and after each shot to rehearse and reinforce what you are doing. By doing this you are tripling the number of arrows you shoot. If you shoot 100 arrows, you will have also mentally ‘shot’ another 200 arrows. How much faster do you think this can help you progress? I’ll tell you now: a lot faster.
Remember what I said before, visualisation is a multiplier; it takes all your current training and multiplies its impact.
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