Welcome to the the beginning of the end. I laugh as a number of teams we begin work with in September, and then end up losing out on playdowns, decide that they do not need to practice anymore and they can re-focus in September next year!! I shake my head. Any junior team out there should celebrate in the fact that they have almost four months to take a big jump in their development. This is definitely the easiest time to ‘redo your swing'; if it’s good enough for Tiger after his Major wins, then it should make sense in the development of a junior curling athlete.
This is definitely the time to get the video and computer out on the ice and check out how you look (we use a system called Dartfish, www.dartfish.com). I have assigned a couple of our junior teams the task of coming to their next practice with a description of what they want their slide to look like long term; as well as what they want that slide to creat in terms of shooting ability. One athlete then mentioned “Can I just bring a picture of Brad Gushue??”. It is that type of mental picture I would like a number of our junior and adult athletes to have.
I have used the saying on a number of occasions what looks good in our sport usually is good. That is pretty much the cornerstone of video analysis in our sport – a curling slide needs to be extremely uncomplicated. I have also reminded teams to look at the top players in our game as the majority have some very common practices in how they deliver the stone. Again…it is very uncomplicated. We search for a slide that is more like 2+2=4…..some of us though have developed a slide not unlike a complex calculus equation!
So let’s take this time period of the year….the end for some of you, and make it the beginning. I want this season to become the busiest time of the year in terms of development.
Yours in curling,