Learn From The Best by Robert R. Comal

only had time to review one product this month, but it is a good one, the newest DVD from Paul Giambrone III on “The Mental Game & Skeet Doubles.” Paul is the only skeet shooter to have ever posted a perfect 100% average in Doubles for an entire season. He accomplished this amazing feat during the 2009 season. Paul also holds the current long–run record in skeet Doubles — 952 straight. That record began in 2008, ran through 2009 and ended in 2010. He has also garnered a number of national and world skeet titles, as well as many year–end High Average awards. Paul is an NSSA certified Master Level Instructor with many years of instruction under his belt and more than 20 years experience in the game of skeet.

The Mental Game and Skeet Doubles with Paul Giambrone III

“The Mental Game & Skeet Doubles” With Paul Giambrone III

Sunrise Productions, makers of excellent instructional shooting DVDs, has once again teamed with one of the nation’s leading shooters and has produced The Mental Game & Skeet Doubles with Paul Giambrone III. Paul’s first instructional DVD on skeet, Your Perfect Foundation for Skeet, received a very positive response from viewers. This newest DVD continues with Paul’s instruction to help elevate your mental game and your Doubles shooting.

The DVD opens with Bruce Scott, President and Founder of Sunrise Productions, introducing the DVD to viewers and relating some of Paul’s accomplishments. Next, Paul welcomes viewers and begins reviewing some of the basic information taught on his first DVD, such as form and stance on the station, the importance of eye dominance and hold and break points on the field for Doubles. This DVD was filmed at the beautiful Dallas Gun Club in Lewisville, Texas, recognized as one of the premier clay–target shooting facilities in the country.

Paul points out to viewers that, both in private lessons and on this DVD, he does not start out instructing Doubles shooting on true pairs. He uses following pairs of targets so the viewer can see the progression and timing of taking the first target in the proper place in its flight path, allowing proper eye shift to acquire and, therefore, shoot the second target. As I watched this video, I thought, “What a simple and easy way to get shooters to learn how to properly move their eyes to the second target. I wish I’d thought of that.”

At Station 1, Paul stresses to viewers the importance of practicing perfect Doubles technique on Stations 1, 2, 6 and 7 before progressing onto Stations 3, 4 and 5, where taking Doubles targets is a little harder. He also reminds viewers to make sure they always have their eye and ear protection when taking to the field.

With the use of camera angles over his shoulder, alongside Paul and with Sunrise Productions’ proprietary EYE–Cam®, the home viewer can see exactly what Paul sees as he breaks his targets at the prescribed break points. There are helpful graphics all along to provide viewers a better understanding of what Paul’s break and hold points are all about.

At Station 2, Paul continues his instruction, once again emphasizing the importance of eye shift and proper hold and break points. He demonstrates catching the first target — High 2 — at his prescribed two–thirds point on the field. With the use of a following pair versus a true pair, the eye–shift timing is much better demonstrated.

Paul often uses a belt buckle to demonstrate good stance and position. At Station 3, Paul explains to the viewer he positions his belt buckle for the Doubles at this station slightly closer to the center stake instead of in the low–house window, as he normally would when taking a standard High 3. Paul explains to viewers this is done to limit his swing so it does not extend past the center stake. Doing so would decrease his chances of catching the second target from the low house in the proper position for good Doubles technique.

Paul advises the same for left–handed shooters. Where normally they would have their belt buckle facing in the direction of the high–house window, he advises them to turn more to the left so their belt buckle would face more in the direction of Station 2. For the same reason as he directed right–handed shooters to do this, he wants to limit the barrel swing to not extend beyond the center stake.

Before Paul takes any targets at Station 4, he explains to viewers that, even though some shooters may be very interested in the precise lead necessary to break a target on the skeet field, knowing the exact number of feet and inches is not as important as keeping your eyes locked on the target and letting your subconscious do the work. I know in my personal Doubles efforts I have often found myself trying to get the barrel in what appeared to be the precise spot necessary, but many of the times I tried that on Doubles I wasted so much time my target was far across the field and dropping, making the shot much harder than it needed to be.

Paul explains to viewers he does not show the following pair here because he has found at Station 4 following pairs are not very beneficial. Additionally, Paul insists by the time you reach Station 4 in your practice sessions you should have taken many pairs at Stations 1, 2 and 3, perfecting your technique. Instead, he uses true pairs when teaching at Station 4.

Paul’s shot plan at Station 4, as with the previous stations in the DVD, includes turning his belt buckle closer to the center stake, making sure he takes the first target at the two–thirds marker on the field. He makes the proper eye shift to acquire the second bird, attains lead and triggers the shot.

One thing Paul stresses to viewers about Doubles on Station 4 is the shooter can no longer afford to trigger the first shot at or beyond the center stake as he may have gotten away with on previous stations. The reason is the second target at Station 4 is always an outgoing bird. That’s why I have trouble on Station 4 Doubles! The outgoing bird — if you take the first bird too far out — requires that you make a very deliberate swing to get back to it. All of which is not very conducive to a consistent Doubles technique.

Paul continues to Station 7, explaining he wants to make sure viewers receive proper technique instruction on Stations 7 and 6 before starting instruction on the low–house first pair at Station 4. At Stations 6 and 5, Paul restates everything he stated before on previous stations having to do with form, hold point, break point of the first bird, eye shift and acquiring and triggering on the second bird. The EYE–Cam® captures Paul’s complete move, from initial acquiring of the first bird, the break of the first bird, moving the gun slightly down and out of the way, then acquiring and firing on the second bird. This view directly over Paul’s barrel really tells the story, even though it happens in real time. It’s a very good learning tool for viewers at home.

Finally, Paul speaks to viewers in a relaxed atmosphere in the Dallas Gun Club clubhouse about the mental game involved in skeet. He introduces the viewer to his personal mental coach, Bob Palmer. Paul and Bob discuss many common topics concerning the mental game, topics such as: that mysterious yet coveted state of mind called “being in the zone;” having a bad day; gamesmanship; and other interesting subjects. In the last segment, Paul and Bruce Scott are on the skeet range with Paul fielding questions as he shoots a round of skeet. Bruce asks some common, yet good questions of Paul, such as: What position on the squad does he like to shoot in? How do you fight back anxiousness on a particular station that might give you trouble, like High 2? How do you deal with misses? Paul gives very detailed and excellent answers to Bruce’s questions, answers that will certainly help the viewer as he/she listens.

Paul finishes the round perfect, of course, and Bruce closes the DVD with a summary of what Paul has just taught the home viewers. A few closing words in praise of the DVD sponsors — Kolar and HI–VIZ Shooting Systems — and there you have it. After watching The Mental Game & Skeet Doubles with Paul Giambrone III, I’m sure my Doubles game will improve significantly. After you watch it, I’m sure yours will, too.