Tactical athletes must maintain a high level of performance under no vision conditions.
When visual cues are removed, there is a shift to increased dependence on the auditory, vestibular, and somatosensory systems for situational awareness.
Maintaining communication with your team in these situations typically involves verbal (auditory system) and tactile (somatosensory system) cues.
To maintain control of your movement in no vision conditions your vestibular and somatosensory systems must step up.
Unfortunately, most people train a high level of dependence on their vision for control of movement. While that isn’t ideal for anyone, it is especially dangerous for tactical athletes who frequently operate under low to no vision conditions.
Owning the night involves moving with speed and precision with little to no visual cues.
Training this is simple – decrease dependence of your visual system for control of your movement.
This doesn’t mean start doing all your exercises with your eyes closed. While that is certainly part of a progression to work towards, I recommend starting by loading the demands on your visual system first.
Training movement with a divided focus is a great place to start as it increases the demand for your visual system and trains your vestibular and somatosensory systems to run at a higher level in the background.
Alternating lunges are a movement pattern I typically start with, and I add divided focus with that movement. You want to set two specific targets to have visual focus on and jump back and forth between them with your eyes while maintaining speed and precision of alternating lunges.
You can progress this to movement with an overhead target, which further trains to decrease your dependence on visual cues as it reduces peripheral vision of your footwork.
If you want to own the night, train to decrease your visual dependence for control of movement.
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