Local hypnotherapist working with U.S. Olympic shooting team

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PITTSBURGH —

A local man who is a certified hypnotherapist in Pittsburgh has been working with the United States Olympic shooting team.

Dan Vitchoff is accompanying the team to London and said his main focus is the adrenaline and nervous energy that comes along with participating in the Olympic Games.

"Their goal is that they have to shoot, and they have to see the target and stay on the target and perform at [a] very high level. What I want to do is train their brain to go out and do that like it's natural," Vitchoff said.

Vitchoff said he has the team visualize standing on the podium and receiving a medal to keep them "in the zone."

"That's when everything slows down. The body is calm, but your mind is fully awake and fully alert," Vitchoff said.

One member of the team, Pennsylvania native Josh Richmond, said he uses Vitchoff's 33 Method.

"We use certain tones of music along with certain words in a pattern. So I find out my client's structure, the way they use words and the types of words they use, so when I create a program for them, I basically speak the words that their brain does. The brain then responds very heavily. That's the 33 Method of specific tones," Vitchoff said.

Vitchoff said one of his main pieces of equipment is the Original Mind Gym chair. He said it's used to train the mind to visualize the perfect performance.