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Old 29th July 2016, 10:42 PM
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Default heart pounding a nightmare

hi all, I,m just after some advice really,

ok I,ve been shooting the nwfta gp,s and have to say its been a great learning curve into the sport with some really helpful people I,ve met along the way, now I,ve always been into fitness all my life until I retired from my sport, but have always kept myself fit and now at the tender age of 52 have fell in love with FT, it keeps me busy after work and at the weekends practicing BUT over the past couple of weeks I have noticed on my sitting shots that it takes me about 10 lanes to settle my heart beat down by which time the damage to my score has been done,
I find when range finding and shooting the first couple of lanes my heartbeat is making my bloody scope bounce up and down, the crosshairs are not moving left to right just up and down to the beat of my heart, now I don't normally suffer from being nervous but on the comps do seem to feel a bit tense due to being eager to get going,
since noticing this is happening it seems to have gotten worse or is this just me noticing it more ??
I range find on 50mag then shoot on 35mag so to try and stop this I started changing my breathing, nice deep breath then release, hold and pull the trigger if I,m not ready then breath again and release and pull the trigger, now believe me I,ve watched everything on the net to try and compensate this up and down to the heartbeat but NOTHING has helped so far,
I then decided to buy a glove and this might sound daft but it has made no difference at all the pulse seems to be in my knee when sitting down,,, yes it seems to be everywhere bump bump,,,,,,bump bump,,,,,bump bump,,,,you get where I,m coming from,,,,
now is this due to the way I,m set up or is it just something I,m going to have to just get on with,, I have asked some people and they sometimes get the same but not as severe, its cracking me up because the more conscious about it I am the worse it gets,,
now after say 10 lanes it totally calms down and I start to shoot well,, how can I go about sorting this out ( no ganja please)lol, also could it be I,m gripping the rifle to hard ??, I just don't know , or should I get something to stick on my knee to try and absorb this pulse ?? I,m at my wits end what to do,,by the way when practicing I still get it but no-where near as bad,
when looking through the scope its very steady then the rifle bumps to my heartbeat,,it really is a pain and I didn,t suffer from nerves in my previous sport which was a high octane contact sport

any advice on what to try and do to sort this out would truly be appreciated

many thanks all

Evo
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  #2  
Old 29th July 2016, 11:09 PM
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My shakes on my first national were so bad i could barely load a pellet I still get them now and then. I sent the first shot off by clipping the trigger in Norway. Cost me another top 10 along with the cross shot lane (another fave of mine learnt from Hungary)

It's unlikely to be your knee, and more likely to be your chest or arm contact on the butt. If you use a hook try just moving it about to see if it's contacting the chest or the inside of the arm where there's an artery.

Things like being too hot or dehydrated won't help either. Some basic fitness will also help.

Sometimes you just have to accept that it's along for the ride and work through it. Controlling the heartbeat is the stuff of bond novels and once your adrenalin kicks in and the beta waves are pinging you could end up winding yourself up even more. Once over the hill it's very hard to climb back and the expert coaches are not even universally convinced you can. Better to put yourself into a good state to start with.

Best thing i've found is to completely concentrate on your shooting technique and routine. If you accept you can't change it then the only thing left is to make sure you can maximise what you can change. Even vocalising your shot routine (which may see odd) can help. Get it right and you will shoot better, but it's a hard trick to master. The more your mind is occupied with what you are doing the less it's occupied with it's reactions.

Try and turn it into a positive. See if you can pay attention to what it's telling you. In a weak position like standing you can be all over the place, but in a strong position like sitting you should be able to relax and still stay on target. If you can't and you're struggling to then something may need working on. That's completely normal for a new shooter. But see if can keep your mental eyes open for what isn't right, and then make a note and then work on that in practice. Give yourself a pat on the back and enjoy the rest of the shoot.

One thing that will increase stress is thinking about your score, or what it means to you. Instead think about what you are doing and occupy the thinking part of your brain with that leaving far less room for the worrying part to play in.
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Old 29th July 2016, 11:18 PM
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many thanks Rob,, it can be annoying but I,ll try a few things whilst practicing certainly like adjusting the butt hook , talking of being hot the last three gp,s have been my worst scores and I,ve been sweating cobs because of the heat so that might explain something,, think I,ll have to sort out a thinner jacket ,and a bit more breathable because the heat at the last few comps has been super hot

thank again for your reply,

cheers Bob
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Old 30th July 2016, 04:21 AM
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Daft question but are you using a knee pad? Also as Rob said it sounds like "nerves" and we all get it but it's about how you deal with it. I find that I have to take a Me V Target approach to my shooting and block out everything else like how well my partner is doing etc.
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Old 30th July 2016, 06:01 AM
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The reason I got into shooting was my doctor told me to get a hobby.
Distraction is a very useful tool and when you have mastered that tool , it can be used for many different situations.
My Advice would be to stop trying to fix it.
You have already diagnosed yourself by saying the more you think about it the worse it gets and after the damage is done it goes away.
Just do the basics exercise for breath control , avoid too much caffeine for a couple of days before a shoot and don't eat loads of sugar filled foods before a shoot.
Find a focal point like Rob said technique or maybe focus on trying to read the wind, the harder you try to beat this the closer it will get to the forefront of your mind.
It will take a while trust me but one day you'll notice that it's not happening any more , then you will understand what I mean about the "tool" .
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Old 30th July 2016, 06:27 AM
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Hi EVO,
these guys have said everything I was thinking... but more eloquently
I'm a newbie (9 months) so I can only say what I have found works... no science or anything

In this hot weather I'm shooting minus my coat, for the first time... even with my naturally really low blood pressure I'm needing to practice dealing with my heart beat. Mine is from the butt hook.
As RobF said, I find the rythym of the bounce, and time the shot as the bounce points the crosshairs where I want them.
To do this I relax so the 50 mag is roughly on the target by position before I aim.
I do use a knee pad too, I have the habit of holding my knee below the pad, rather than the hamster of my rifle. This steadies my leg and prevents issues holding the gun too tightly.
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Old 30th July 2016, 06:38 AM
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Default High mag

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emma View Post
Hi EVO,
these guys have said everything I was thinking... but more eloquently
I'm a newbie (9 months) so I can only say what I have found works... no science or anything

In this hot weather I'm shooting minus my coat, for the first time... even with my naturally really low blood pressure I'm needing to practice dealing with my heart beat. Mine is from the butt hook.
As RobF said, I find the rythym of the bounce, and time the shot as the bounce points the crosshairs where I want them.
To do this I relax so the 50 mag is roughly on the target by position before I aim.
I do use a knee pad too, I have the habit of holding my knee below the pad, rather than the hamster of my rifle. This steadies my leg and prevents issues holding the gun too tightly.
Another novice error is to try and make the target as big as possible , try a few shots on 25 mag !!!
Removing your coat will give you very close contact with the butt of the rifle ,so your heart beat will appear to be increased.
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Old 30th July 2016, 07:36 AM
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One thing I would add is taking a deep breath and holding it can actually elevate your heart rate over a few shallow breaths beforehand. Also holding breath demands muscle effort.

But I still get nervous now and then. Normally I take longest to settle if I'm not missing.
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Old 30th July 2016, 08:29 AM
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many thanks for the replies, its given me food for thought,

one thing that does stick out most in the replies is caffeine ,, I,m terrible for drinking tea, no sugar though so will have to start drinking decaf,,or water,

I,ll also check the breathing technique and see how that goes,, oh and Emma I,ll get a kneepad also, well it will have to be a pillow in my knee to stop this thing lol,

thanks for the excellent tips and I,ll be on them right away

cheers All and will let ya all know how its going

atb Evo
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Old 30th July 2016, 08:38 AM
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I noticed that eating certain foods can trigger my heart to beat faster, I got to watch what I eat before shooting, but some people can eat a full English and shoot brilliantly .
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