Shooters Forum

Contribute to Trad Gang
Become a Trad Gang Sponsor

Author Topic: Target panic, comparison of methods  (Read 590 times)

Online McDave

  • Contributing Member
  • Trad Bowhunter
  • ****
  • Posts: 4948
Target panic, comparison of methods
« on: February 24, 2019, 07:35:25 PM »
I started this out as a response to Firstlight's post on Jim Ploen's method, but it was getting so slanted towards Jim Casto's  method that it was turning into a hyjack of Firstlight's post, so I have rewritten it as a stand-alone post.

I have read several articles by Jim Ploen, and besides being a champion shot of his day, he was a deep thinker.  I used his method, from the article Firstlight copied, to conquer my target panic to the extent that I could reliably come to full draw and hold.  However, when I returned my focus to the target the nervousness returned, and I wasn't able to aim and release accurately.  I guess you could say that I was never able to blow out the candle.  However, I shot pretty well, and won my age group in a few tournaments. 

I was beginning to think that this was as good as it was going to get, when I read Jim Casto's article.  The difference between Jim's method and all the others is that he starts right out doing exactly what you need and want to do: come to full draw and aim at the target, relaxed and in full control.  He accomplishes this by a regimen of drawing, holding, aiming, and then letting down without shooting.

Most of us are able to draw and aim if we don't shoot.  Maybe there are some who can't do that, and I’m not sure Jim's program could help them.  But for those of us who can, his program starts with something we can do, and uses that to help us accomplish something we can't do.  The funny thing is, we always knew we could draw and hold without shooting, but weren't able to use that information to solve the problem of not being to aim and shoot.  Jim Casto bridges this gap by changing the paradigm in our brain that tells us that if we draw to shoot we will feel nervous and rush the shot.  We didn't always feel nervous and rush the shot; we had to learn that too.  Now we have to unlearn that and substitute a relaxed, confident feeling at full draw for the nervous, rushed feeling we have been feeling for as long as we have had target panic.  What Jim Casto's method does is to take something we know we can do: hold at full draw without shooting, and through many repetitions, translate it into a relaxed confident feeling at full draw that we expect to feel every time we draw the bow, with or without the intention of shooting it.

I was skeptical when I started shooting arrows under his plan, because the old nervous feeling returned, and it seemed like his plan wasn't working.  However, the difference was that I knew the nervous feeling wasn't right, and I shouldn't shoot an arrow while feeling that way.  Instead, I would let down the arrow.  I have also found that I can continue to hold at full draw, and after a few seconds the nervous feeling will go away.  If i start shaking and jerking while waiting, then I just let the shot down anyway.  Jim's secret is replacing an old ingrained bad habit with a new ingrained good habit through repetition.  I'm about 2/3 of the way through his program, and I can tell that it is working for me.

Jim Casto's plan, Jim Ploen's plan, Jay Kidwell's plan, or Joel Turner's plan, all approach this problem from slightly different directions, and all have worked for different people.  I would encourage all of you who have target panic not to give up.  If you seek, you will find a method that works for you.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2019, 08:03:13 PM by McDave »
TGMM Family of the Bow

Would someone please make up my mind for me?

Offline Mark R

  • Trad Bowhunter
  • **
  • Posts: 337
Re: Target panic, comparison of methods
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2019, 06:44:22 PM »
Well said McDave  :thumbsup:

Users currently browsing this topic:

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Contact Us | Trad © | User Agreement

Copyright 2003 thru 2018 ~ Trad ©