Written by: Greg Ellifritz
If you are a shooting instructor, do you demonstrate your shooting drills in front of your class? I strongly believe that you should. If you disagree, you might want to check out an article I recently read:
The article describes how the brain processes information. From the article:
We Take in Information Better When It’s Visual
It’s often said that about half of your brain is directly related to processing visual information. It’s tricky to generalize about the brain because so much of it is doing multiple things, but according to Discover, neurons devoted to visual processing take up around 30% of the cortex. That’s a huge portion of your brain power essentially just for your eyes and the processes in your brain that turn what you see into information.
Vision is not only a power-hungry sense, but it trumps our other senses when it comes to taking in information.
A perfect example of this is an experiment where 54 wine aficionados were asked to taste wine samples. The experimenters dropped odorless, tasteless red dye into white wines to see whether the wine tasters would still know they were white based on the taste and smell. They didn’t. Vision is such a big part of how we interpret the world that it can overwhelm our other senses.
Another surprising finding about vision is that we treat text as images. As you read this paragraph, your brain is interpreting each letter as an image. This makes reading incredibly inefficient when compared to how quickly and easily we can take in information from a picture.
More than just static visuals, we pay special attention to anything we see that’s moving. So pictures and animations are your best friends when it comes to learning.
There are more people who prefer to learn visually than there are who prefer to learn auditorily. As our students are ever more accustomed to watching screens and learning from video, your range demonstrations become even more important. Many students in the “Millennial” generation grow bored with lectures. They seem to lack the attentions span to learn from a lecturing instructor.
In order to reach people, the have to SEE what skills you would like them to learn. Watching and modeling a superior performer allows students to learn information more quickly.
You as the instructor need to be that superior performer. And you need to demonstrate your performance in front of your class if you want students to optimally learn the techniques you are trying to teach. If you don’t do it, students will model the behavior they see other students demonstrating instead. Remediating bad habits is always harder than instilling good habits. SHOW your students what you want them to do!