Hindsight is 20/20 – A New Archery Parent Highlight – International Wiring

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Hindsight is 20/20, is more like, wish someone had told me how to do this.  Recently upon completing a World Archery registration for the archer, the payment screen required a wire transfer of funds to a bank internationally to the archery club.  This archery parent, following the direction of the bank online customer service from the last international transaction which froze the accounts. It was suggested that it would be best to go into my local branch.  No worries, this will be easy.  Well, this is the story of what may be something like being on the watch list.  Hindsight is 20/20.

The first mistake was listening to the other parent.  The suggestion was to go to our local grocery store that does transfers for only $8, instead of the bank at $35 to $45 per wire.  That is worth the savings to this very tightly budgeted archery family.  After, ensuring the western union wire could wire to the bank of the country that needed the tournament funds was confirmed, paperwork was filled out.  The manager of that location had not only never done a bank transfer, but never an international transfer.  After 20 minutes, a line of people waiting for customer service, and still on hold with the Western Union, this archery parent gave up.  Going to the bank to ensure it was done correctly was more important than saving the extra dollars.  However, frustration was glowing from the body.

After completing grocery shopping, with milk and colds in the car on a warm day, this parent was still rushed and frustrated.  Waiting in line at the bank to have the transfer done, everything was in hand and ready.  Showing the teller the paperwork and requesting the wire transfer of $116.38, she ran my card and then told me that they could not do the wire transfer, it had to be done by appointment.  Well, that is new. Explaining that it needed to be done today (as an email was just sent requesting payment), an “appointment” was set up.  Then she asked this parent to have a seat.  Well, wasn’t interested in sitting. (Hindsight – sit next time.) She went into the back where the name of the country was mentioned and other words muttered.

The gentleman then went to the manager, where another serious conversation was being done quietly while staring at this parent.  From there it was just continued frustration.  The first assistant manager tried to just talk about promotions and sale services, which the reply was, can we just do the wire transfer?  Then the manager joins us to explain they have questions.  Which was further frustrating, as this manager opened the archers checking account with this parent not too long ago.  Reminding him of the time and all the work done and go ahead and ask the questions so that the wire could be done.   So, two men sitting in front of this archery parent to wire $116.38 apparently had them on high alert.  After circling fake friendly conversation, and NO questions ever asked…

They finally realized they were wrong, fees were waived, this parent did apologize for the frustration that had nothing to do with them. However, there was never rudeness or anything hostile. The manager just ensured next time to come to him and it would be no problem.    Finally able to walk out smiling, shock the head, and feeling confused, drove home.

Hindsight is 20/20.  Never go into a bank to wire funds to an international country wire frustrated.  Understand, that the world is not safe.  It is better safe than sorry.  Honestly, still a little hot under the collar for the reason that this manager should have remembered the work we had done together.  In fairness, much of the banking is done online.   Are you a future parent of an international archer? Might be worth trip to the bank to talk to the manager.  This goes back to relationships.  Apparently, the bank is part of the team now, add them in when the time is coming for international tournaments.  It was an important reminder to take a breath, recenter, and not to allow the life to have effects on others unless it brings joy.

 

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The Hungry Archer … Feeding the Passion

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Hunger is something most understand.  Hun*gry – having a strong desire or craving.  One would suspect, most of us read the children’s book called, The Hungry Caterpillar, to our youngsters.  (If not, Youtube has fun readings.) This fun book takes us on a journey of a caterpillar becoming a butterfly.  Eating his way through each day of the week, each day with a greater hunger than the last as he grows and grows into a transformed butterfly.  On the next the last day, that caterpillar consumes an enormous amount of food.  This book is similar to the hunger that it requires in the belly of a young archer to reach towards dreams and goals.

The archer’s coach from that first day is Alanna Dunaway of Willowcreek Archery.  This lady is second to none in our book.  The J.O.A.D. program embodies the archers with love, support, joy, and encouragement.  Never has there been a time that she is not available or supporting the archer(s).  It was her words to the archer at the last tournament that sparked this blog, what she shared will be shared at the end.  She sees a hunger and fed it constantly.

The wee little archer is much like the day one and two of the book.  At this age or beginning of archery, it is about learning to shoot and finding success by consistency and the arrows moving closer and closer to the center of the target.  This is the time that should be fun and games.  It must be encouraging.  This is the time that learning is at the highest rate, for the archer and you.  It is important to be engaged, watch, learn and encourage.  Listen to the coaches and comments.  This is when they are excited and as a parent the learning curve together is fun.

As the archer progresses, much like day three and four in the story, the hunger to improve and learn and perfect grows.  Tournaments are being weaved into the archer’s schedule.  As a parent, this is the time to learn about what is needed on the field.  Knowing the rules, the scoring of the tournaments help greatly.  Knowing what the archer needs to know on the field, what should be in the quiver and basic tools to take.  This is when as a parent it is essential to start watching the stress levels, learn from other parents and figure out what helps the archer and what makes things worse.  Learning the archer’s personality under stress and success helps greatly.

By the time at caterpillar is on day five, there again, the hunger and the appetite required even more fuel.  At this point, there is a shift in needs, as travel begins to be added to the schedule.  Budgets and finances are added.  In hindsight, the advice would be to start saving, sooner.  Travel stretches not only the archer but also the parent.  This is ensuring rules and schedules are known.  That there is a solid plan.  Nothing really prepares an archer and parents for the first “big” tournament.  Plan and simple, it will be overwhelming.  Ensuring every adventure has some fun, not too much pressure and time to learn more about your archer and the game can really grow an appetite.

This is the inevitable day 6 of the journey for the hungry caterpillar.  This is the day the poor thing consumes masses and masses of food.  To the point of exhaustion. This is the when the podium has been under the feet consistently and international travel or more national travel is added.  This is when archery is no longer a game or sport, it is becoming a career or lifestyle.  It is the drive to make the teams offered and scores that are equal to the top professional of the sport.  It is the drive to beat the professionals’ scores.  The archer has always been score driven.  The podium was always the icing.

So, what did Alanna say to the archer?  She texted him and reminded him to stay hungry for the next days shooting.  It was the final day of medal rounds.  She said that his reply to her was that he was STARVING.  Yap, still hungry. This is day seven when less was consumed because the caterpillar was now big.  This is the internal focus and mental work that goes into working to the top of any goal or dream in life.

If your archer is hungry, feed that passion.  Feed the hunger.  cropped-images.jpg

Social Media and The Archery Part II

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The last blog was kinda a bummer because it shows that it doesn’t take much for kids being kids to do harm to the future with social media.  Thankfully, there is a flipside to social media. It can do amazing things to assist the archer in the future. There are some great ideas and ways to drastically grow an athlete through social media.  There are about six messy pages of notes and thought it would be easiest to just give a list of idea and tool that were found from social media pages of the NCAA, Dartmouth, Athletic Business, Team USA, and Recruit Look.

On social media, there should be a separate athletes page on all accounts.  Social Media should be treated and used wisely with these type suggestions:

  • Every day is a job interview.
  • Have pride in who and what you represent.
  • Every tweet, post, like, and share is a reflection of who you are.
  • Give thanks.
  • Support others.
  • Share news and humor.
  • Engage in discussions with those you admire.
  • Post anything consistent with your personal branding.
  • Be original, be yourself.
  • Be inspirational.
  • NEVER POST WHEN YOU ARE UPSET
  • Should reflect you as a person.
  • Keep posts short.
  • Ask Questions
  • Be visual
  • Establish a brand and tone.
  • Think twice or three times before posting.
  • Be positive.

Here is what is important to remember as the young archers progress and want to use social media.  It is being watched.  Nothing can ever be truly deleted.  Online social media is not a place where one can say or do whatever without percussions.  The internet is permanent.  Worse than a tattoo.  The good news, is they are watching.  The best part about social media is that it connects us together.  It allows conversation and relationships to grow that can assist the future.  Have fun.  Let the “freak factor” fly.

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Shoot Straight.  Next blog:  The Hungry Archer.

 

 

 

 

 

Social Media and the Archer Part 1

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We no longer live in the days of “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” attitude.  Social media sights can destroy lives in the time it takes to push the enter button on a computer.  The youth of the world seems to lack the understanding of how powerful of a tool it can be both in creating and destroying reputations and the future.  Having spent a couple hours researching sites, there is a clearing picture of what should and should not be done on social media.  The sites that were visited are NCAA, Dartmouth, Team USA, Recruit Look, Athletic Businesses.  It can, also, absolutely be an amazing tool to build and quickly grow an athlete.

Since it is best to end with good news, let’s start with the what not to do, and the importance of the what not to do on social media.  This is the difference between building an image and inadvertently destroying it.  Once an archer has started to win state and doing well in national level tournaments social media can start to play a role in the archer’s life. Some of the costly mistakes are due to a lack of education about social media. Here are some of the Don’ts:  it is impermissible (too bad to be allowed) to post any information, photos, or other representations of sexual conduct, inappropriate behavior, items that “could be” demeaning or inflammatory.   Everything posted is public and a post or even a “like” may affect the future.  Employers, colleges, and coaches review social networking.  Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.  all play roles in their future.

Additionally, language, situations, alcohol or drugs, lifestyle controversial and even relationship issues should be left off social media.  Social media is a not a toy, it is a tool. Once you retweet or share something, basically, you own it…it is you.   Jeez, what can they do?  We will get to that, but if a young archer starts to realize that social media is similar to getting a tattoo, it might be better used.  The internet is permanent.  Actually, it is worse than a tattoo, because even those can be removed.  It is not a place where one can say or share without the repercussions.

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It is not that we are asking for a loss of speech or personal freedoms, instead, it is being asked to look to the future.  No matter what the goal, whether it is becoming an archery professional, college graduate or working, how one represents themselves in public, is watched.  The internet is one of the most public places in the world.  There are no deletes or eraser.  Teaching about emotional posting and educating on how to build imaging and branding on social media is important.

In the interest of keeping your interest, part 2 will be posted soon.  Come back and read about social media DO’s and personal branding.

 

Shoot straight.  Please comment, request, share.  This is for all archery parents to learn from and grow together.

 

The Archery Parent “Pitfalls”

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Yes, this archery parent played Pitfall in her youth.  In fact, my sister broke the 10,000 points mark and a photo was taken with her and the score.  A Polaroid camera, of course, was used.  Now that has not one thing to do about archery, other than it fits the blog title. First, there is no former training, unless a college child phycology course counts.  The education is parenting and being involved st a sports parent for 18 years.  There are many pitfalls that cross all sports that can lead to traps and falls.  Archery is a very unique sport, so it quickly complicates and can muddy water for the archer.

These are areas that personally this parent has crawled in and out of or witnessed on the fields.

Over Protecting/Involved Parent

GUILTY.  It definitely helps that the archer is the youngest child.  Experience as a football team mom, travel ball team board member…Stepped into a few situations that are regretful.  A young momma lion is not always easily tamed.  There are lines that need to be protected.  In archery, that line is the competitors’ area line…try to handle situations like you are observing the situation.  In the middle of the competition, all emotions are high and things can escalate quickly.   Trying to ensure the archer is shooting and focusing on the target is the main goal.

Over Coaching Parent

These parents just want to help.  This parent gets it, once again guilty.  There are numerous times that this parent offered baseball tips that were yelled towards the batter’s box.  Archery is a quiet game, it takes little to be seen and heard by the archers.  There is not supposed to be talking on the line…okay, well this is not always followed by the young.  The young archers should be taught to focus on the target.  Constant coaching and suggestions are hard on the archers during competition. Yes, this archery parent has competed in sports, including archery.  Being coached during the shot is not helpful.

“Soccer” Type Parent

Guilty, again!  Archery can’t handle soccer parents.  Archery is a quiet sport.  Think golf.  Soccer is a fast game, adrenaline is needed to keep the game moving fast.  Archery, it is the opposite.   Pacing and fidgeting are not helpful.  Find your zen.

My Child is Amazing Parent

Hoping to not be too guilty of this syndrome.  It is hard not to want to talk about our archer and accomplishments, however, not needed.  Let the archer’s actions on the field say all that needs to be said.  This parent tries to stay humble and thankful in the good and bad.

No one works harder than “my” Archer Parent

Let this be said…THERE IS ALWAYS an archer that is working harder.  There is always an archer that is hungrier.

Not Guilty.

 High-Pressure Parent

This is the parent that uses muscle with words to try to motivate.  It has been heard by a couple parents on the field the archer better get it together or they are done.  That they did not come here for the archer to lose.  Or the cuss words that can fly when the archer is not performing perfectly or the arrow did not hit the center.  The finger shaking, huffy puffy parent to the archer.  There are times to motivate! There are times to shake a finger, but not at an arrow or mistake on the line.

An archery parent can ABSOLUTELY destroy a young archers career.  It has been heard many times that archery parents are the worse, by those in the business of archery.  If we become the tar pits, crocodiles or scorpions in the archers’ path, the journey will be much harder.  No one should have to use a rope to swing over a parent as an obstacle.

 

Shoot Straight.  Visit facebook: https://www.facebook.com/archeryparent/?fref=ts

Comments, ideas, and stories always welcomed.

Setting Archery Practice Time

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Time is something there is never enough of available in the world.  Time is precious and often planned to fit into boxes on a calendar.  As parents, there is never enough time and often sitting at practice time becomes frustrating and burdensome.  The past five years, (well, 18 years as a sports parent) my time continued to dwindle year after year, as the archer’s needs and requirements as he progressed.

There are a few different mindsets that have had this archery parent limit practice for the archer. When he first started, living in southern California on a small farm, setting up a target at home was easy.  The weather allowed the practice to be done year-round at home, for about a year. Then indoor season, required an indoor facility.  Often, the weekends included practice time.  Then tournament time started to increase, which increased practice time needs.

It was pressed into this brain, that training always ends on a good note.  Having spent all of the younger years competing in the equestrian world (and softball), the horse trainer always insisted that training ends on something that worked.  The archer from the get-go was striving for perfection.  It was easy to recognize, that it was important to ensure the archer could leave any JOAD or lesson with the time needed to complete what was needed.  Sometimes it was waiting to finish scoring rounds, others were to ensure that the arrow hit to center, or form changes were solidified in muscle memory.

There are times to set limits.  There were times when another event was requiring a set time frame.  On the days that time was limited and set, the archer was told and it was needed to end on time.  On those days, around 15 minutes prior to the time needed to depart, the archer was reminded.  As the archer grew older, it was a set time.  It was no longer the responsibility of this archery parent to help teach time management anymore.  There were times the archer had to leave upset because there was a time limit.  That is just another life lesson.

The archer has always put hours daily into archery.  The archer often put in too many hours that would be frustrating as a parent.  School and homework time where times when limits were set or if the day was growing close to the end.  There were time limits set when this parent saw pain or extreme fatigue.  Injury and pain have accompanied in the years of training and as strengthening has increased.   Paying attention to the levels of pain are important.  Limits must be set if an injury is a possibility.  Or even the dreaded, locking the bow up to ensure rest needed.  This has been a rare occurrence.

Archery was never limited as a punishment.  There were plenty of ways to discipline, and this family never punished by taking away physical activities.  Setting limits are part of life.  There are times to limit and there are times to let problems be solved and let “form” practices be set in stone.  This was also true for the oldest in the extensive youth baseball, travel baseball and football years.  Especially as team sports, letting the team down was not an option for punishment purposes.

There are times to insist on practice…but that is another blog for another day!

 

Love this photo… Shoot Straight.

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“Pro” Tips – 6+ Things Every Archer/Parent Should Learn How to Do

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“Pro” tips – it is an inside joke from a tournament years ago.  As a young rascal, on the 3D field, the archer stepped up his game and decided to start shooting the Pro Division for the opportunity to walk alongside the top archers.   “Pro” tips became a joke when the archer gave advice…and it has stuck, now with a laugh.  He will say, “Pro tips by JC.”

Today, this archery parent is struggling to remember the amazing idea that came in the middle of the night.  Should have written it down, even though it was repeated several times in the hopes it would stick.  Instead, the archer was asked, “What five things should every archer know to deal with bow issues on the field?”  6+ were given.  (This is for a compound bow.)

  1.  Know how to tie a D-loop  – A quick search on youtube resulted in 24,700 videos on this topic.
  2.  Know how to check cam timing – youtube has 406,000 potential videos.
  3. Know how to adjust and tie in a peep – Youtube only a mere 2,170 video.  Have an extra peep and material to tie in…they can come out and move.  Also mark the string where the peep goes, makes for easy checking and fixing.
  4. Know how to check arrows –  23,400 videos.  Know the archer knows how to spin them on the palm of his hand –  know how to do a quick refletching of the arrow.
  5. Know how to tune the bow rest – 116,000 video options
  6. Know how to adjust sight –  866,000 video…holy moly!

The 6+ tip is “just know how to tune your whole bow.”

This archery parent does not know how to do all of this!  This was taught to the archer by coaches and the home base shops.  There were many extra hours after practice and lessons that the archer was in with the coaches and staff learning.  There is never harm in watching the quick fixes and asking questions.   What was learned by this archery parent was studying form, listening to the coach teaching.  Taking the time to read arrows and possible problems on the target.  With that said, time will be taken to watch a few of these videos to learn.  Picking up a bow was the most valuable tool to help the archer.

Shoot Straight

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Share, ask, vent….we all need each other to survive being an archery parent.