Still wondering how fitness is important to this shooting sport? At the 2008 Area 1 Championship, we got a solid demonstration of why having a broad, general, inclusive fitness program is an important part of any well rounded shooting program.
Stage designer Chuck Anderson threw us a curve ball on stage 9 in the form of a Breaching Technologies, Inc. Ram Breaching Door. Check out the vid – a few comments follow the jump…
Many many thanks to Mitch Mora (HoMiE on the Benoverse) for driving the camera, and allowing me onto the stage to film this clip… Mitch was one of the ROs on this stage – these guys did a great job of keeping this stage flowing…
Ok, yeah, I know the saying is “Into the breech…”, but, hey, I’m not above a little pun, ya know?
I’m not a professional tactical operator. I’m sure that’s obvious to the operators in the audience… heh heh. There are probably a vast number of technical improvements available to the technique I demonstrate in the video – in fact, feel free to post ‘em as comments, if you like. But, some basic mechanics, and some knowledge about how the door works go a long way toward getting you through – it allowed me to win the stage, anyhow!
So… what kind of fitness exercises would help in negotiating this obstacle? Oh man… bunches. The ones that jumped out at me, off the top of my head – kettlebell swings, medicine ball work for rotational strength, speed and balance, wall ball, Olympic and powerlifting lifts to build leg, hip flexor, and shoulder strength, heavy bag work (punches, kicks), and the list goes on…. Long time domain aerobic exercise, like running or biking, will generally not build the type of athletic ability required to break through the plastic door pin.
Now… technique is definitely important, and can overcome some shortfalls in physical ability. Poor technique will rob your power, and even big guys were shrugged off by this door if they used poor technique. So, setting up in an athletic stance, grounding yourself firmly, and applying power through the ram to the right point on the door are all important things. Just lifting weights in the gym will not make you better at those aspects – practice workout techniques that also build flexibility, accuracy, balance, agility, and speed, and you’ll be well prepared for these sorts of challenges.
BTW – sorry about the sound quality – I’ll try to do a little better with future vodcasts like this, to get the sound a little more even!