Pay attention for better exits

Pay attention in the door

Knowing where to look and pay attention in the doorOne successful method of learning how to fly tension free formations out the door actually starts  before the exit is even launched. When working with new teams or individuals, most everyone understands what their individual job is in an effort to present themselves to the relative wind. We can even take this a step further as most people have a good understanding of where the formation is supposed to be presented relative to the line of flight.

But why do many exits come out with so much tension that it feels like the team is in a losing battle in a wrestling match against Hulk Hogan? One of the main reasons this occurs is that all team members are not fully in tune to where they need to be looking or where they need to be paying attention when they are in the door prior to exit.

All the forces of the prop blast, relative wind, and acceleration wants to tear a linked formation apart. Tension builds up in a formation when team members are flying in the wrong direction simply by putting energy in the wrong direction or by looking out away from the common center of the formation.

So let's take a step back and identify the tools we have at our disposal to increase both our exit skills, along with our ability to fly formations tension free right out the door.

When we are taking out a linked 4 way formation (or 8, 16, etc), we want to have our attention towards our opposites when we line up in the door in preparation for the exit count.

"Hey Hammo, do you mean I should be looking at my opposite in the eyes in my exit stance?"

The short answer is "NO"

When we are in our exit stance prior to the count being given, we have to assume different stances depending on our exit position to present to the relative wind. With that being said, sometimes our stances places us in a position where it is literally impossible to establish any type of direct eye contact with our opposites. So what can be done?

When taking your position in the door, consciously turn or tilt your head towards your opposite so that you are already looking towards the common center-point of the formation. There are exit positions where you may not be able to tilt your head towards your opposite because you are head jamming; yet, you shift your eyes where your attention is now focused towards your opposite and in the correct direction.

These small changes in itself will help you be conscious to fly towards the common center of the formation and relieve tension throughout the formation. You will also be able to transition to the next formation quicker as your energy will be moving in the right direction when the formation is keyed.

So next time, pay a little bit of attention when you take up your exit position in the door, and you will soon find that your exits and hill transitions become easier and more efficient to execute.


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