MACK S. February – Like many other sports, during or before a special event, you may play games at practice. Here’s what you may not know…. it’s a coach’s way to trick you into pushing yourself harder while letting you have some fun. We practice our grouping by shooting balloons, our aim by shooting exact places on a target, or even our speed with who could shoot the fastest while still keeping good accuracy and grouping.
Last season, for one of our final practices of the year, we had games such as having to shoot each corner of the target and then dead center, we also had to shoot everyone else’s ballon to survive where even two of our coaches joined in on the game. We most recently did a “fun” practice before our school’s winter break and after our team’s first major tournament.
My coaches also tend to have music playing in the background as we do these games, and let’s say there have been many dance parties and dance breaks occurring at practice when this happens. They say they do it to help us learn to stay focused even with distractions around us, but I disagree, I think they just want to dance.
I have to say that the “shooting balloons” game was my favorite because you had to be quick, and many would flinch at the sounds of so many popping balloons. I also liked it because it was fun shooting balloons as fast as you could while moving to different places to get the best shot.
This Valentine’s day my coaches, including my mom, have put together a game or practice theme called “Shot Though the Heart”. What they’re planning is near the end of practice they will tape colored paper hearts to the targets in random areas and the goal is to get an arrow in the heart for a piece of candy.
If you get the tightest grouping overall you get a big stuffed animal. It’s a big, green teddy bear named “Jon Bear Jovi”, in dedication to the singer Jon Bon Jovi and his song “Shot Through the Heart”. The bear’s coloring also fits our mascot which is the “Greenwave”. The second and third tightest grouping will get the smaller stuffed animals like a frog, fox, or puppy with cute little Valentine’s sayings. Along with that, we will be challenged to get an arrow in every color of the target.
All while that is happening one of the coaches will be in charge of music and songs that go with the theme. Songs like “Shot Through the Heart” by Jon Bon Jovi, “Hit Me With Your Best Shot” by Pat Benatar, ”One Shot at Love” by LL Cool J, “Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)” by Cher, and many more. I honestly can’t wait for this upcoming practice, and I’m determined to win the frog stuffie.
Wish me luck and have a great day!
~Mack S. is a 2023 student contributor~