Target shooters' coordination abilities and technical mastery combined excelling model

Фотографии: 

Postgraduate V.A. Pogodin1
Dr. Hab., Professor G.N. Ponomarev2
1Vologda State University, Vologda
2Saint Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg

 

Keywords: target shooting, technical mastery, specific coordination abilities, technical competence.

Background. Generally, shooting skills are considered as a sequence of gun control elements including coming-to-ready, breathing, aiming and trigger pulling aspects [1, 2, 6, 7]. Technical component of training is to be designed to help master the skills and actions critical for the shooting technique success so as every shooting element was performed automatically and perfectly. Every action is to be performed by the shooter in a strict and certain succession, with the technical mastery being attained by specific gun handling and shooting skills training practices [5].

Individual technical performance is normally rated by the relevant visual control and instrumental control methods. Expert examinations of the individual shooting sequences may provide valuable and accurate data to rate the individual performance. It should be noted, however, that in this sport discipline actions are strictly limited by the target shooting standards with special guns being applied, and some actions of the shooter (for instance, trigger pulling by forefinger) are so short in amplitudes that can hardly be traced by an observer.

Instrumental methods designed to rate the technical performance are based on certain biomechanics of the performance technique being measured. The biomechanical data provide the means, for instance, to read some like the body/ body part positioning specifics of the performance technique. Modern target shooting sport is highly demanding to the motor skills/ shooting techniques giving a top priority to the athlete’s ability to harmonise timing, positioning, pacing and amplitudes of the shooting sequence elements secured by the due movement/ muscle group tension controls to handle the relevant static/ dynamic workloads.

The available theoretical and practical literature gives some reference study data confirming the individual coordination abilities being in certain correlation with the technical skills [3]. This is the reason why the training systems are to be designed to develop the coordination abilities in harmony with the technical skills excelling process. It may be pertinent to note in this context that knowing shooter’s coordination abilities, one can always have an idea of his/her technical skills.

Based on the above theoretical analysis, we identified the following shooter’s coordination abilities pivotal for the shooting technique:

Positioning feel that is critical for the bodily position control including the weight control and fluctuation control abilities that are critical for the due coming-to-ready sequence in particular and the shooting process success on the whole;

Musculoskeletal  feel highly important for the due muscular tension control as a basis for the static balancing skills to secure the relevant movements of the bodily parts (e.g. smooth trigger pulling action) when almost every muscle group of the shooter is involved and strained; and

Timing feel that allows the shooter duly harmonise and repeat with certain time intervals the breathing control cycles, control movement sequence rhythm and pace of the shooting sequence.

Objective of the study was to test benefits of the training model of the shooting technique excelling practices being reasonably combined with the specific coordination ability excelling ones.

Methods and structure of the study. The educational tests were performed at “Yunost” CYSS of Vologda town in the period of December 2014 to May 2015 and timed to the regular shooters’ training process. Subject to the experimental model tests were 14-17 year-olds (n=24) qualified at least Class II Athletes by VP-4 Standard Test and split up into Study and Reference Groups. Both of the groups were formed based on the prior tests of specific coordination abilities. The total sample of the qualifiers upon the prior tests was split up by the coordination ability rates (based on the certain qualification criteria) followed by the two groups basically equal in the primary coordination abilities being formed, the classification being supported by the statistical data analysis.

Training process of the Reference Group was designed in line with the standard education and training program now applied at “Yunost” CYSS and designed based on the Standard Athletic Training Program by A.A. Nasonova [4]. The Study Group was trained at the precompetitive stage as provided by the coordination abilities and technical mastery combined excelling model of our own design, with the precompetitive stage being classified into certain micro-cycles within the relevant meso-cycles. Every micro-cycle was designed to harmonically develop the target-shooting-specific coordination abilities including positioning feel, musculoskeletal feel and timing feel in combination with the relevant technical skills. The shooters performed the gun handling and shooting practices geared to develop the critical positioning, musculoskeletal control and timing feels.

In the educational monitoring process we fixed a few technical performance rates including drifts of the mean hit point (MHP) per each shooting session to rate the performance stability. In addition, we applied a few coordination ability rating methods including goniometry, chronometry and dynamometry.

Study results and discussion. The educational monitoring data prior to the model testing experiment showed that the shooters tended to involuntarily adjust the ready position 13 times on average in the standard AR-4 test (air rifle, 40 shots); and it means that the position was adjusted every three shots that was interpreted as indicative of the poor shooting skills. Upon completion of the model testing experiment, the Study Group showed the mean hit point (MHP) drift rate improvement by 10 points versus only 1 point (to 12 points) improvement in the Reference Group.

Prior to and after the model testing experiment, both of the groups were tested using the following 12 tests to rate the specific coordination abilities referred to herein as positioning feel, musculoskeletal feel and timing feel.

The first test group including 5 tests (Tests 1 to 5 on Figure 1 hereunder) was designed to rate the musculoskeletal feel. In Test 1, the subjects were required to press a dynamometer with the lead hand 3 times with standard strength and without visual control. In Test 2, the subjects pressed the dynamometer with the dominant hand with the result being fixed on their own and reported to the analyst. In Test 3 they pressed the dynamometer with the dominant hand with the strength set 5 kg higher than in Test 2. In Test 4 they pressed the dynamometer while responding a simple question. In Test 5 they pressed the dynamometer with a standard strength walking round in a small circle. An idea of the above tests was to obtain the wrist dynamometry data and percentage deviations from the standard values. Each of the above five tests was designed to rate the strength applied on the move and classified by a few relevant groups of muscles.

The second test group including 3 tests (Tests 6 to 8 on Figure 1 hereunder) was designed to rate the positioning feel. In Test 6, the subjects were requested to raise their arm exactly at 90° angle [to the trunk]. In Test 7, the subjects were offered to make an elementary move, rate it and report the error to the analyst. In Test 8, the subjects exercised the movements 5° higher or lower than in the previous attempt. An idea of the above tests was to measure the angular deviation of the raised hand from the standard value in percent. This group of tests made it possible to rate the subjects’ body (and body parts) positioning skills.

The third test group including 4 tests (Tests 9 to 12 on Figure 1 hereunder) was designed to rate the timing feel by measuring a deviation of the actual time interval from the standard one. In Test 9, the subjects were requested to measure a standard time interval. In Test 10, they simulated the trigger pulling movement. In Test 11, they simulated the ready position holding the gun on the target for 15 seconds. And Test 12 was designed to repeat the previous test 2 seconds faster. The third test group made it possible to rate biomechanics of the shooting sequence including the total time per shot and times of the shooting phases. Given on Figure 1 hereunder are the average test rates of both of the groups.

 Figure 1. Average test rates of the Study and Reference Groups after the model testing experiment (deviation in %)

As demonstrated by the above Figure, the Study Group was generally more successful in the tests showing the relatively small deviations from the standard values, and this may be interpreted as the better progress in developing the specific coordination qualities. We measured the deviations from the standard values in percentage terms to rate imbalances of the positioning, musculoskeletal and timing feels, so the lower was the test rate, the better was the performance and progress.

Table 1. Study Group versus the Reference Group test data differences rated by the Mann-Whitney U-test after the model testing experiment

Study Group versus the Reference Group test data differences rated by the Mann-Whitney U-test after the model testing experiment:

Musculoskeletal feel tests

 

Test 1

Test 2

Test 3

Test 4

Test 5

Test 2.1

Test 2.2

Test 2.3

MY index

25.5

13.5

12

33.5

38.5

26.5

44

Positioning feel tests

 

Test 6

Test 7

Test 8

MY index

39

41

38

Timing feel tests

 

 

 

Test 9

Test 10

Test 11

Test 12

Test 9.1

Test 9.2

Test 9.3

MY index

31

39,5

63

4,5

49

34

Ucritical = 31 at p≤0.01; and Ucritical = 42 at p≤0.05

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Statistically significant differences of the Study Group versus the Reference Group test data were rated by the Mann-Whitney index: see the above Table 1. As verified by the Table, the tests rates of both of the groups showed statistically significant differences in most of the tests.

Conclusion. The training model testing experiment demonstrated benefits of the model giving the top priority to the combined coordination ability and technical mastery excelling practices.

References

  1. Zolotarev I.B. Pulevaya strelba. Uchebno-metod. posobie [Bullet shooting: teaching]. Shooting Union of Russia publ., 2011, 313 p.
  2. Korkh A.Y. Sportivnaya strelba [Sport Shooting]. Moscow: Fizicheskaya kultura i sport publ., 1987, 255 p.
  3. Lyakh V.I. Koordinatsionnye sposobnosti: diagnostika i razvitie [Coordination abilities: diagnostics and development]. Moscow: Divizion publ., 2006, 290 p.
  4. Nasonova A.A. Pulevaya strelba: primernaya programma sportivnoy podgotovki dlya detsko-yunosheskikh sportivnykh shkol, spetsializirovannykh detsko-yunosheskikh shkol olimpiyskogo rezerva, uchilishch olimpiyskogo rezerva, shkol vysshego sportivnogo masterstva [Bullet shooting: sample program for youth sport schools, specialized youth schools of Olympic reserve, Olympic reserve colleges, top mastery schools]. Moscow: Sovetskiy sport publ., 2005, 204 p.
  5. Pugachev A.V., Kublanov M.M. Fazy vystrela v strelbe iz pnevmaticheskoy vintovki [Air rifle shot phases]. Teoriya i praktika fiz. kultury, 2005, no. 2, pp. 18-20.
  6. Sabirova I.A., Kublanov M.M. Osnovy tekhniki strelby [Fundamentals of shooting technique]. Voronezh: VSU publ., 2005, 134 p.
  7. Shilin Y.N., Nasonova A.A. Sportivnaya pulevaya strelba [Sports bullet shooting]. Moscow: Divizion publ., 2012, 316 p.

Corresponding author: vital-pogodin2008@yandex.ru

Abstract

Individual technical mastery in target shooting is largely dependent on the shooter's skills in the gun control aspects including coming-to-ready, breathing, aiming and trigger pulling elements. In addition, the overall target shooting success is much dependent on a variety of specific individual coordination abilities that may be described as the musculoskeletal, timing and positioning feels. This is the reason for the modern shooters’ training systems giving an increasingly high priority to the shooting technique excelling practices being reasonably combined with the specific coordination ability developing ones. Objective of the study was to provide experimental evidence to prove practical benefits of the combined skill excelling model designed to improve the competitive shooters’ coordination abilities with technical mastery. Subject to the model tests were 14-17 year-olds (n=24) qualified at least Class II Athletes by AR-4 (air rifle, 40 shots) Standard Test and split up into Study and Reference Groups. The Study Group was trained at the precompetitive stage as provided by the coordination abilities and technical mastery combined excelling model of our own design. The tests and study data demonstrated benefits of the shooters’ training model giving the top priority to the combined coordination ability and technical mastery excelling practices.