Informal Practice

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Informal Practice

When we developed Athena, our new Electronic Scoring Target (EST), we knew that clubs were going to spend a far greater amount of time practicing with Athena than they would using Athena in competitions. This is why we re-imagined athlete training using ESTs. “Informal Training” is one of the four new methods of training we invented, the others being Formal Training, Drills, and Games. This is the first of a series of newsletters to better understand these new training options developed for Athena.


The idea behind Informal Training is simple, the athlete can shoot however much they want for however long they want. There are no time limits or restrictions on the number of shots.


We believe athletes should have control over their training. Perhaps they are working on trigger technique and need 60, 70, or 80 shots to improve their skill. Limiting them to some arbitrary number of shots does not help the athlete achieve their goal. With Athena, the athlete decides how many shots they need to shoot that day, not the EST.


In Informal Training the athlete may go back and forth between sighters and record shots, with only record shots counting towards the athlete’s average and aggregate score. When in record mode, there is a timer showing how long the athlete has been shooting. In Rifle, the athlete may choose their position, Prone, Standing, or Kneeling, and may shoot them in any order.


Since athletes have control over the number of shots the aggregate score has a less meaningful value. Instead Athena displays the average 10 shot series score. With the average, Athena also displays the last few 10 shot series. The images below explain the scores you see and what they mean.


There are two ways to create a new Informal Practice session. First, in Orion when you push practice mode to the targets you are setting up a new Informal Practice on each target. Or, on the DoW100 Monitor, if the target is already in practice mode use the “Advanced” menu to “Load New COF” (load a new course of fire).


It is important to understand that Informal Training is not meant to mimic any formal course of fire (that’s reserved for Formal Training and will be covered in a different newsletter). Instead the athlete can shoot however much they need to achieve their personal training goals.