Blend in New Athletes to the Team
Second-year teams will see many new student athletes of various shooting skill levels. It is important to be prepared to manage this new influx of excited athletes and their parents.
- Invite new shooters to the range before the season starts to familiar them with the range.
- Walk your new athletes through the range and demonstrate what you expect at each event.
- Use captains and squad leaders to help blend in new athletes by having them teach the skills they have learned.
- Allow each coach to work with a small group focusing on:
- Gun fit
- Dominant eye
- Stance and balance
- Line of sight
- Hard and soft focus
- Trigger squeeze
- Proper ear and eye protection
- New athletes need your attention at all times! Be aware and remind them of safety at all times.
- Celebrate and use positive reinforcement with all of your athletes but especially new shooters. They will need a lot of coaching at first but it’s important to remember that they look up to you and will respect what you say.
- Make it as easy and fun for the new shooters to hit the targets. Start with them at the patterning board so they can see where they are hitting the target.
- Set the target thrower for straight a ways and slow down the targets. This will help your new shooters pick up the basics quicker if they can break a few targets right away.
- It can be intimidating joining a new team so encourage your new shooters to practice often and ask questions.
- Encourage your existing team members to introduce themselves to their new teammates.