Developing Concentration Skills

How many times have you heard someone say "I just wasn't concentrating"? And how often was it just after a bad shot?

Everybody wants to make sure they are focussed when they are shooting. This page gives a few hints on how you can improve your ability to concentrate, and how you can put those skills into practice on the line.

Find out about:
Basic concentration skills
Practicing concentration skills
Developing a concentration strategy
Handling Distractions

Basic concentration skills
Focussing Pick what YOU want to concentrate on.
Mind clearing Learn to deal with those internal thoughts that plague you...
Thought stopping Another effective method of dealing with internal distractions
The Black Box Using imagery to remove distractions
  Top of page
 Practicing concentration skills
Some simple rules for practicing concentration skills:
Start small Concentration is difficult. Start small; for exercises, maybe five minutes will be hard to begin with.
Practice often How hard can it be to find three ten-minute slots a week?
Progress from easy to harder Start in relaxed, undisturbed environments; as you get a little practice, try out your preferred methods in more realistic settings, then with bigger distractions.
    Top of page
Concentration strategy
Decide WHEN you need to concentrate Nobody can concentrate all the time; whatever you do, peak concentration is normally only possible for relatively short times. But what you CAN do is choose when those times are. For target archery, full concentration is only critical for about 10 seconds at a time, during each shot.
Decide HOW you will focus attention You need a way of focussing for those few seconds, every shot. You can use cue words or phrases, cue actions, visual cues (like the focussing exercise above), built into a performance routine.
Identify and prepare for distractions If you tried the simple concentration game twice, you probably found it easier to block distractions you had seen before. Have a look at the distractions page for more info.
Practice concentration skills Keep up practice in basic concentration skills to make sure you can switch on concentration and ignore distractions when you need to.
    Top of page
Psych Home

Concentration exercises

Concentration game;
See how well you can block out visual distractions
Number game
  Play a number game to learn to block out audio distractions.
Shape holding
  Use a 'shape holding' exercise to develop concentration combined with body awareness.