CS:GO: Improve by Creating Your Own Practice Routine
Fri 16th Oct 2020 - 1:24pm
There are a lot of things one can improve to also improve his CS:GO abilities. These include, but obviously aren't limited to, practising mechanics, learning from pros, walking around empty maps, theory-crafting and keeping healthy. One often overlooked part, though, is putting yourself in a position to perform well and consistently. This article will deal with exactly this idea, the idea that you can mold yourself into a better player via a routine.
This article will help you be more consistent and to do that you will have to build a healthy routine. What that entails and how you do that, you'll find below.
What is a routine?
Professional players are often much more consistent than us normal folks. Of course, the reason for that is at least partly that they spend a good six to eight hours playing CS:GO, and it doesn't stop there. Most of them play CS:GO in their free time and grind FaceIt or play pugs with their friends and are probably thinking about CS:GO whenever they have time outside of the game. Obviously, this isn't feasible for a majority of people trying to enjoy a good game of CS:GO. It'd be to easy to simply tell you to invest much more time to get much better, as that is too big of a trade-off if you aren't already at the verge of going semi-pro.
This guide will try to help you become more consistent in CS:GO, which includes consistent aim and general performance. To do so, we'll have to use the time you can invest into CS:GO wisely, much like the pros are doing. They aren't spending six hours a day bunnyhopping around empty servers, they're trying to precisely tackle their shortcomings and spend the time they have effectively.
Now, one might ask yourself: "Why? Can't I just grind it out in FaceIt and become a god?" and the answer to that is probably not. I've met many players ranging from Silver to FPL-C and none of them are the same. Some people learn simply by playing pugs and some learn from in-depth theorycrafting and precise intervention. Some people got to FaceIt level 10 without spending more than an hour a day in DM, while some spent multiple hours every day refining their mechanics to barely reach said level 10.
But to make it short, simply ask yourself: How can you expect yourself to always perform the same way when you aren't willing to practice and behave the same way every time? To get into the zone, that sweet spot for nice frags, you shouldn't rely on luck. When you eliminate every possible aspect of your behaviour that might interfere with your performance, you'll find that you'll perform much more consistent.
As always, there isn't a one-for-all answer that will magically make you click heads like there's no tomorrow. You also need to keep in mind that these changes most likely won't take effect the next day but take time to expand their full effect. To get started, write down what you do before you play a game of CS:GO, and in this case, it doesn't really matter if you're pugging it out or are playing in a league. Once you have an overview of what you do before a game of CS:GO, think about if it's really helping you. For example, surfing will help relax and maybe even activate the general feel for the game a bit, but won't get your head into aim-mode or fast-reaction-mode.
Once you've done that, start by looking at what you're missing to be a better player right now: Do the enemies always react faster? Then you need to find a way to become more focused on your current task at hand and always give 100% when you're peeking. Keep in mind, this is an active effort whenever you warm up now! Every time you play retake or deathmatch before a game, you need to focus on reacting fast and always expecting an enemy when you're turning a corner. Write it down as a 10-minute exercise to do before every game. This is exhausting, I know, but it will help you like little other pieces of advice will.
Leetify showing you how you do against certain other groups of players and what you need to improve
Keep analysing your play and try to find a solution to your problem. If it's your aim, practice aim! If it's your movement, practice movement! Let's get more in-depth: What about your peeks? How is your counter-strafing looking? What about your utility usage? Do you always die with three nades left in your inventory? Of course, this is a big problem in a tactical shooter. Track your stats, either with a google spreadsheet or with an app such as leetify to help yourself see what others often oversee. What is your biggest problem? Tackling that before you play a game will do wonders.
Consistency is key
As we've already learned, it makes no sense to expect a consistent performance in CS:GO when you can't consistently prepare the same way. Being disciplined and always working on your faults will get you a long way, but it'll be even better for you if you add a body or in-game exercise that gets your blood pumping and gets you into the zone, something you do right before your next time, between the practice and the game. Either FFA DM to get every aspect of your skills working or a bunch of pushups to activate your body, however, what that is is up to you to find out. If it's in-game, it should be fast-paced and activate every skill relevant in a game of CS:GO and if it's a body exercise, it should get the blood pumping without clouding your brain with after-workout-fog.
To reiterate: Work on your flaws, warm-up and then it's game time!
Outside of the game
Now, chances are good that you aren't the maestro of everything CS:GO. You will most likely meet people who learn faster and who understand the game better than you. There is nothing we can do about your learning speed, however, what we can do is improve your theoretical understanding. Therefore it makes sense to add a day in the week where you either read a Dignitas article about a theoretical aspect of CS:GO or watch the demo of a pro game, focusing on a single pro and looking at how he deals with things inside of the game while taking notes. This will allow you to be open for improvements in your game style and will help you prevent hitting a brick wall on your path to greatness.
It's also important that you're healthy outside of the game to ensure that you'll be able to deliver 100% every time you play. To do so, you need to eat at least healthy-ish, stretch before and after games and exercise at least a little bit if you aren't working in a physical job. I'm not your mom, but many pros and non-pros can vow for the effect it has on your reaction time and skill-building!
At the same time, remove things from your desk and playtime that may distract you. If you get regularly distracted by your friends writing you on steam and you want to change that, you might want to set yourself as offline during your game. If you always get distracted by the pen lying right next to you, it is better to remove it. There is also nothing wrong with sitting the same every time you play, too. If you get regularly called for dinner, maybe try to set up games outside of your dinner time or ask your parents nicely if they cannot distract you during important games (although this mostly counts for league games).
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