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Main Boards => The Shooters FORM Board => Topic started by: Jock Whisky on January 13, 2019, 10:16:49 PM

Title: Thoughts on Jim Casto's routine and practice
Post by: Jock Whisky on January 13, 2019, 10:16:49 PM
I started Jim Casto Jr’s target panic exercises recently and after a few days it started me thinking. Whenever I observe people practising I see them address the target, draw, anchor, aim and release. It doesn’t matter whether it’s warming up for a 3D shoot or alone on a practice range or practising at an indoor range. Everyone shoots the arrow. What I have never to my recollection seen is someone practising what I have begun to call “control”. Practising control is what I’ve been doing for the last few days with Jim’s exercises.
I live in British Columbia and every year we hold the BC Summer Games. Archery is usually a part of the event. The coach in our club was asked for help by a young lady that wanted to compete. He agreed but on the condition that she would be practising form and not be shooting an arrow for three weeks. If I remember correctly he coached her to a gold medal. I have also heard that when a Korean archer starts he or she doesn’t get to shoot an arrow for quite a while. (correct me if I’m wrong here).
Whenever I practised in the past I always shot the arrow. What I’ve unwittingly taught my mind and body is that if I draw the bow I’m going to shoot the arrow. And that is what I end up doing. I even do it when I tell myself that I’m going to draw, anchor, aim and then let down. Invariably after a second or two at anchor the arrow is on its way, whether I want it to be or not. It takes me many shots, and unbelievable will power to cancel one shot. My shooting has improved over the last few years and I usually hit or come close to what I was shooting at. This improvement started when I went right back to basics, started to work on a good shot sequence and it’s not too bad. But it could be better. The ability to stop the shot if everything is not right is lacking.
So what I’m thinking of doing in future practice sessions after I’ve completed Jim’s program is incorporating some of his program into my practice sessions. Draw, anchor, aim etc but not only practice actually shooting an arrow but practice controlling whether or not I actually drop the string. And not just when things begin to go sideways, but as a regular part of the practice routine.
I think what I’m saying is that this could be a piece of a good practice routine that is missing.  I’d appreciate some other opinions on this.
Title: Re: Thoughts on Jim Casto's routine and practice
Post by: McDave on January 13, 2019, 11:38:49 PM
In the classic book, Zen in the Art of Archery, a European professor goes to Japan for a while, perhaps to teach, I forget.  While there, he decides to take up archery, and goes to a Zen master for instruction.  For the first year, I believe, or at least a long period of time, he learns to draw the bow before he takes his first shot.  As you say, there’s probably something to it.
Title: Re: Thoughts on Jim Casto's routine and practice
Post by: katman on January 14, 2019, 07:04:26 AM
Short answer yes.

Also in Kidwell's book 'Instinctive Archery Insights' he has 2 drills that helped me more than anything. Draw hold let down and draw get on target, come off target, get on target etc. without letting the shot go. Whenever I feel the urge to release creep in I run these drills.
Title: Re: Thoughts on Jim Casto's routine and practice
Post by: David Mitchell on January 14, 2019, 10:03:01 AM
Jock, I agree totally with what you are saying.  I am also on Jim's program--I call it my detox regimen.  I am now at day 51 which I plan to do today.  Isn't it interesting that in those cultures with long archery histories they begin new shooters with the same approach Jim's program incorporates--a lot of work on form and focus without releasing an arrow?  We get in a big hurry to shoot.  I have said that if I were to start a person new to archery, I would insist that they begin by going through Jim's program.  Incidentally, I am having great results.  I have never, from day 1, found the routine boring but have rather enjoyed every day's exercises.  One aspect Jim has incorporated into it is having you aim from the start ("immerse yourself in aiming")--not just look at a blank bale.  I think if aiming is not introduced until later it may create some new tension in the shot sequence.
Title: Re: Thoughts on Jim Casto's routine and practice
Post by: McDave on January 14, 2019, 12:57:24 PM
What Jim’s program to eliminate target panic, which I am in the beginning stages of, seems to have in common with all the other programs I’ve tried or read about, is that the goal is to establish control over each step in the shot process. His program deals more with the steps leading up to the shot than the others do. I believe this is a good plan, because if he can reliably and repeatedly get you into a relaxed position at anchor at full draw, with back tension, already aiming, then there is very little more that you can to mess up the shot before it is released.  And if you figure out a way to mess it up in a tournament or other high pressure situation anyway, then you can return to the drills until you regain control. Or better, just learn to let the shot down when you get that twinge of nervousness that tells you that everything is not okay.
Title: Re: Thoughts on Jim Casto's routine and practice
Post by: Cody2306 on March 26, 2019, 07:42:04 PM
Where can I find Jim Castro’s tp cure.. lol


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Title: Re: Thoughts on Jim Casto's routine and practice
Post by: David Mitchell on March 26, 2019, 09:14:14 PM
Cody, Jim will probably check this thread soon as he keeps up with requests.  He has had well over 500 requests for the program to date.  I'll check back soon and see if he has responded.  If not I can forward the program to you.  You can email me at dmitchell43@suddenlink.net if you wish.
Title: Re: Thoughts on Jim Casto's routine and practice
Post by: Cody2306 on March 26, 2019, 09:19:47 PM
He has contacted me thanks guys


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