Once you know how to shoot a ‘10’, then you must be able to repeat it ‘easily’. For this, you need to shoot dry and live for a minimum of 300 shots per day.
The present World No. 1 in Air pistol shooting, shoots anything between 300 to 500 shots (live & dry). When you watch them shoot, you feel they shoot ‘10’s so easily and marvel at their consistency. This is not achieved overnight but after years of working hard. Practising the same technique for shooting a ‘10’ again and again, hundreds and thousands times.
This hard work takes a heavy toll over their bodies leading to injuries. In order to minimise injuries, these shooters follow a strict physical fitness schedule which strengthens the specific muscle groups required for shooting longs spells.
In order to keep their mind and body fit, they also follow a proper diet and take breaks to mentally rejuvenate themselves. This aspect of their training is called as ‘recovery’. Recovery is crucial for improving performance in all sports.
Sometimes a coach plays the role of a physical fitness trainer, psychologist, nutritionist besides handling the technical aspect of training. However, it is not uncommon to find top level shooters having a support staff who specialise in psychology, nutrition, physical fitness, and motivation.
Merely shooting 300 to 500 shots with no proper planning and holistic training is a sure shot recipe for ‘burn out’. Burnout is a term used for athletes who have their careers ‘cut short’ due to physical or mental burn out.
While physical burn out is easy to understand since it is related to physical injuries, mental burnout results from a lack of motivation or ‘will’ to continue training. In a mental burnout situation, the athlete loses his desire for winning. This is where a motivational expert steps in to redress the situation.
From the above, you can see that reaching the top is hard work and when you reach the top, to continue staying on top is also hard work.