When It’s Working

When my roping feels good, everything is in sync. The ground, the cattle, the ropes, the draw—everything feels good and I’m not even thinking about it. But that’s when I need to really reflect on what it is that feels good. I need to look at what I’m doing right in my position, my swing, my horse.

When It’s Not

Sometimes, nothing feels right. We’re drawing bad, my horse feels off, my swing, everything. That is when I have to go back to square one—back to the critical fundamentals of my roping where I can regain my confidence and find success.

Keeping It Simple

Everybody I talk to, even guys who rope great, they all know what their perfect run looks and feels like. When things are going wrong, you can come back to what you know you can do well—your blueprint. If you can return to those fundamentals, you can rebuild your roping from there. You think about it consciously, and that slows your times down because you’re not reacting. But in a slump, you just need to get one caught, and you have another place to start from.

WHERE IT COMES FROM

I build that blueprint in the practice pen, day in and day out. I started developing it as a kid, roping with my family and focusing on what felt right and what felt wrong in the practice pen. Now, when I practice, I want to know what I’m doing that’s working and what I’m doing that isn’t. I don’t ever accept that something feels good and I’m reacting. I want to know why my swing feels good, what position my horse is in that’s making my shots easier and where my body is in the saddle to make my horse work that way. That way, it’s no guessing game when I’m struggling and I need to lean on my foundation to fight my way out of a slump. 

{ Vital Stats }

Age: 36

Rope: NXT or NV4 HM by Classic Rope

Partner: Brandon Webb

NFR Qualifications: 5

World Titles: 2

Home: Durant, Oklahoma

EARNINGS: $984,406

Read More with Kollin VonAhn:

A Finalist’s Mental Approach with Kollin VonAhn

Aaron Tsinigine and Kollin VonAhn Split 2015 World Title

Luke Brown and Kollin VonAhn Win the Cheyenne Frontier Days

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