If victory is your destination, make excellence your governing value and perform the work necessary to become great. There are no shortcuts along that journey.
I looked back over my shoulder as I walked away from the Easton Archery Center of Excellence tonight. The sun had set and, in front of the building, I noticed a memorial structure I had not really noticed until now. It had a metal figure of an archer on top and was silhouetted by a spotlight. I noticed something that look like a quote and I felt compelled to go back. Meanwhile my cohort walked on towards a van, we were headed out for a celebratory dinner. In true Kyle fashion, I was trying to fit in “just one more thing”. It was worth the run back to this beckoning statue. The quote on the statue reads at the top of this post and in the photo below.
We all achieved what we came here for on some level. That is, we all felt unsettled in some way with our current level of performance as coaches. We had each perceived a “gap” that compelled us to take action to put ourselves on a path to “better”. We all were willing to perform the work needed to become better. Our strategy to bridging the “gaps” we perceived in our own coaching was to go to Chula Vista and study with arguably THE best archery coach in the world, Coach Kisik Lee. Not all of us walked away with our Level IV Coach Certification. However, we all walked in the same direction this week – towards victory – which, even once achieved, scoots out in front of you again just out of reach and daring you to follow.
I am am tremendously grateful for the value, richness, laughter and growth that Coach Lee, Dr. Lee, Coach Jim, Coach Linda, Coach Krueger and all 18 of my colleagues contributed to my experience along thIs journey. The relationships I built here this week have already delivered results: joy, laughter, creativity, empathy, support, deep critical thinking. I did achieve victory this time and will go home not only a better archer and better coach, but I will go home a Level IV Coach. There were certainly had no shortcuts this week: 12 hr training days all week plus several hours when we all flew in on Sunday night. You can’t fake your knowledge of NTS in front of Coach Lee. At times, the learning process was “hot”, for sure., but one cannot expect to transform their shape without first walking though the fire of the forge. I truly believe that Coach Lee could be blindfolded and give you accurate feedback on both mental and physical aspects of form; it was an honor to learn from him.
Archers to the line.