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Goal Setting

lpskierlpskier Posts: 2,698 Mega Baller
In the past, I have set tangible goals for a season, usually all relative to scores. For example: First 35 of the season by June 15; or, [email protected] in Regionals. I find that goals like this are often unattainable for various reasons, many of which are beyond my control. So, for example, if I am running [email protected] regularly in practice by Regionals (which is never the case), if I fail to run [email protected] in Regionals because it is raining or because I am injured, I have failed to make that goal. Or as actually happened this past year, not only did I not run [email protected] in Regionals (I think I had [email protected]), I think one or two at 38 won it. In other words, not only did I not reach the goal I set for myself, none of my competitors did either. I understand the advantages of setting a good, great and awesome goal levels, but there should be some positive reinforcement of achieving some of the goals, and in slalom, at least the way I have been doing it, attaining a goal becomes just a random act, serendipity if you will.

Among the goal setters on this Forum, is there a consensus about how to define and set goals? Is it better to set a goal in terms of sets skied, for example, rather than in scores achieved? What goals do you set and how is a goal defined relative to how you realistically expect to ski over a season. For example, if your PB is [email protected] and hasn't improved for three years, do you set a goal to run four? Three again? [email protected]? Not blow your start at Nationals? Is there a better time to set goals than now, a good two or three months away from the season, and should goals be revisited or adjusted mid season?

As I am at the goal setting time of year again, I am interested in the thoughts of the serious competitors among us. Thanks!
John Wilkins- Si non pro sanguine quem ludus ne. #iskiconnelly
Texas6

Comments

  • 6balls6balls Posts: 5,327 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited February 2013
    I think about it in terms of practice and if I'm running the snot out of something in practice, the tournament has a chance to take care of itself. With PB now in 39 both practice and tourney, I want more consistent or more total #'s successful 38's for practice goal #1.

    When I was only getting thru 38 a couple times per season, it was unreasonable to expect I smoke it in a tourney. At that time I wanted to run virtually every 35 off and if it's a 6 round weekend...run it in all 6 rounds giving me 6 cracks at 38. With 6 cracks, especially if it was a tail 35...even being inconsistent at 38 MAYBE I've got a shot.

    Two seasons ago ran 11 of 12 tourney 35's and didn't get out 38 in a tourney. Was not disappointed...I did what I needed to do to have a chance.

    Last season 8 of 9 tourney 35's, got out of the 38 and around 3 ball at 39 in a tourney. I had way more successful 38's in practice to count on, though...so it was more reasonable.

    This season thinking similarly. Don't miss 35's, run even more 38's in practice. If this occurs hopefully get out of TWO tourney 38's in different tourneys...though this isn't the goal...my goal is to give myself the chances and have a reasonable expectation of success based on better practice skiing thru 38's.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • ForrestGumpForrestGump Posts: 6,097
    Setting a goal is only a good thing if you intend to do what it takes to meet that goal. How many people say "My goal is [email protected] this year." But then go out and keep hammering away at it rather than taking a step back and working on the base mechanics at longer lines and even slower speeds.
    Shane "Crash" Hill

    Texas6HortonWishSteven_Haines
  • MattPMattP Posts: 6,094 Mega Baller
  • Texas6Texas6 Posts: 2,197
    edited February 2013
    Achievable goals and milestones are critical to success in my opinion. For me, I would like more two set practice days this year rather than numerous one set days. I would loke to solicit more professional coaching. I would like to actually enter some tournaments rather than practicing all season for a tournament or two that I never enter. I would like my 32's to be automatic and my 35 complete. I would like to help as many non-skiers as I can learn to enjoy skiing as much as I do. I think I get almost as much out of teaching as I do skiing.. I would like to figure out how to better support "In His Wakes" which I find to be one of the best donations of my time, my boat, and my gas, all year, every single year. I would simply like to erase my mind and ski more
    Daryn Dean - Lakes of Katy, TX
    ***Robbed out of Hundreds of Panda Worthy Posts***
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 5,327 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    I agree with @shane. In practice although I want more successful practice 38's you will only see me try a couple in a practice set, sometimes just one. No sense beating myself up there. Go back and work the snot out of 35...some days just groove the 32 time after time making habits. I believe this will get me the goal of a higher number of successful practice 38's.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • The_MSThe_MS Posts: 5,528 Member of the BallOfSpray Hall Of Fame
    @6balls I saw Jay leach go from struggle at 38 to getting midway down 41 in a very short period of time. I asked him how he did it and he said that in order to run 38, you have to practice running it as much as possible. He said he would never stop at 2-3 tries and just keep doing it over and over until he got the feel for what it takes to run it.
    Shut up and ski
    JohnCox
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 5,327 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @MS, I don't have the patience to end up in the water that often or miss that many passes...makes it "no fun" for me. My body also is not what it used to be so taking too many "hits" from the boat is a no-go.
    Last year ran SO many more successful 38's than ever before. Overall percentage not where I would want it but big progress...with a shot or two per set at 38. I think it helped to drop out my 28 opener and start at 32 off as well.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • The_MSThe_MS Posts: 5,528 Member of the BallOfSpray Hall Of Fame
    I think a good mix of working over 35 and 38 is the way to go but 38 is totally different then 35 and that is why you see a wall of skiers stuck at [email protected] I think the same hold true for the skiers that get their way through [email protected] or 58K and then they have to deal with 22off. Some are afraid of the 22 bump and do not practice 22 enough to get a strong feel for what short line will start to feel like.
    Shut up and ski
  • skirayskiray Posts: 173 Baller
    Not sure if this works for others, but I build my goals around the fundamentals that I think I need:

    Average skiing 6 sets a week March - October. 
    Run 6 successful passes in a row at 22 and 28
    Run 22, 28, 32 off the dock 10 times
    Post a tournament score into 35
    Ron Ray
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,425 Mega Baller
    I think about setting goals that I can control. #1, get my body in condition to ski, #2, work on skiing "right" at all line lengths, #3, practice shortline (-38) more than longer lines (-35 and below). If I do these things, then running more -38s and getting deep into -39 takes care of itself. I am setting line goals also, but these come first. My line goals are to run -38 close to 50%, and to run -39 at least 2x this summer (practice or tourney). But to get there, like @shaneh says, you have to take care of all the things in your control first.

    Haven't had much coaching in the last 3 years or so. Time to refresh. Skiing with Chet in March, Andy in early April. Hope to set a path toward improving my lines and angles, and moving down the line as the summer progresses.
    Jim Ross
  • bbirlewbbirlew Posts: 172 Baller
    If you are serious about improving, Set short (weekly), medium (monthly) and long term (seasonal) goals. Write them down, look at them daily and re-evaluate them as the season progresses.
    Have a purpose for every set. It is way too easy to 'just ski' and not think! That is fun too, but not the path to more balls!
    The_MS
  • lpskierlpskier Posts: 2,698 Mega Baller
    @bbirlew Examples of weekly and monthly goals? @shaneh Assume a high level of commitment.
    John Wilkins- Si non pro sanguine quem ludus ne. #iskiconnelly
  • Texas6Texas6 Posts: 2,197
    @lpskier, it really depends on where you are today, how much you intend to ski, and what elements of your current form need the most work. Do you have anyone you ski with that can coach you on form? etc. Just a little more data could open the board up a bit on what seems realistic
    Daryn Dean - Lakes of Katy, TX
    ***Robbed out of Hundreds of Panda Worthy Posts***
  • Texas6Texas6 Posts: 2,197
    edited February 2013
    @lpskier, sorry I see you mention that above - ill let some of the guys that ski better than I respond to your question
    Daryn Dean - Lakes of Katy, TX
    ***Robbed out of Hundreds of Panda Worthy Posts***
  • lpskierlpskier Posts: 2,698 Mega Baller
    Just to clarify, the topic isn't how should I set my goals or what my goals should be, the topic is to discuss how best to set goals. In other words, theoretically we set goals for a purpose. We set goals ultimately to motivate ourselves to improve by achieving the goals. If we set goals just so we can say "Well, yes, I set some goals and wrote them down," all we have done is waste time and delude ourselves. So if goals are to have a function, how are they best set to maximize that function.
    John Wilkins- Si non pro sanguine quem ludus ne. #iskiconnelly
  • oneskioneski Posts: 102 Baller
    I have just one goal this year for skiing: Qualify for Nationals.

    After taking a 6 year break from the sport I started skiing again last June. I took me a few months to get back into skiing shape, and unfortunately by then the season was just about over. Coming into this year I made my goal to simply qualify for Nationals. Personally, I like the old days when you had to get an EP rating and you knew exactly what bouy count you needed.....Unfortunately, today it's somewhat of a moving target. But the goal is the same.
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    edited February 2013
    I studied mental training techniques in depth early in my racing career and believe mental preparation was the key to winning more than 100 races over the years. It also took me from ugly 26 mph passes through an only slightly less ugly 32 off @ 34 mph in my first year of serious water skiing at age 50.

    This is what I know about goal setting:

    1) For goal setting to be effective, your goals HAVE to be achievable and you must have a clear realistic plan of what you are going to do to achieve each goal.

    2) It's okay to have an overall goal or a long term goal like a season highpoint, but it's the smaller, reasonable and achievable goals that will spur the most progress.

    3) Specific goals are better than vague conceptual goals. "Winning" is not a goal, it's a by-product of others not doing as well as you and how well others do is totally out of your control.

    "Running 38 in a tournament" is a goal but kind of a lousy one. It might be your overall goal, but it's more of a by-product of achieving REAL goals like "finishing your off-side turns tighter to the ball with more angle and in perfectly stacked position" or "keeping your head level throughout the pass" or "changing edges sooner." These are specific goals you can sink your teeth into with video, coaching, drills and visualization work.

    The inescapable truth is that you got where you are by doing what you are doing. What are you going to do differently to get somewhere else? The answer to this question is likely a good goal worthy of writing down and chasing.
    www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
    rokSkoot1123greghayes
  • lpskierlpskier Posts: 2,698 Mega Baller
    @SkiJay Now you are talking. By the way, I used to have an open invitation to ski at your house in Isles. Did D. A. mention anything about the invitation transferring with the property? No? Damn!
    John Wilkins- Si non pro sanguine quem ludus ne. #iskiconnelly
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    @lpskier Oddly enough, he didn't mention it, but I'd be happy to honor his invitation anyway =)
    www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
  • ToddFToddF Posts: 569 Solid Baller
    Ask How?
    How do I get to running 38?
    Improve my off side turn. How do I improve my offside turn?
    Improve my gate. How do I improve my gate?
    Improve my core strength. How do I improve my core strength?

    If you focus on the "How do I get there", you will get there much quicker than focusing on the actual goal.

    SkiJay
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