Google the term “Sport Specialization” and you will find a number of articles written recently. After reading many of them it got me thinking about my favorite sport and how it may pertains to high trap and skeet athletes. One thing we do every year at registration is ask our athletes if they are playing another spring sport. We do this primarily because it helps me understand their schedule and needs but I also request the information so I can keep tabs on what my athletes are doing.
Participating in multiple sports is a POSITIVE thing!
As the Head Coach you should be encouraging your athletes to participate in more than just trap shooting. The last thing we want to do as coaches is burn our kids out on one single sport. Encouraging your athletes to participate in other activities will keep their minds active and their drive alive. I am constantly on the hunt for problem solvers, kids that I think have the skills to learn new techniques and apply them without frustration. I have been very impressed with my multi sport athletes because I feel like they have picked up bits and pieces from all of their coaches along the way.
Trap vs Skeet
Why does it just have to be one or the other? Ya, I get it that they generally use different shotguns, chokes, and shot size but who cares? Skeet shooting has been that next challenge for many of my top trap shooters. While skeet does require a different skill set, it’s the little techniques that make standard trap shooters better. Skeet teaches you to be more fluent with better motion and variable stance. While your athletes may think you are crazy it is fun to watch how they carry those skills back onto the trap field.
The Best Coaches
Look around and you will find that some of the most successful coaches in the world had multi sport athletes. In talking with our local football coach he to agree’s that kids who spread themselves around are better athletes. It’s important to train and use different muscles in different situations. Last year I received a number of compliments from parents regarding the captains I selected. The parents saw 6 boys who were respectful, kind, and aggressive leaders. What they didn’t know is that 3 of those boys were also on the high school wrestling team and were used to taking on individual challenges.
Help grow our kids into great adults by supplying them with as tools as we can. Participating in more than just shooting sports WILL have a positive effect on your athletes!