December 4, 2023

By Chris Elliott….

Archery is not easy and it’s a journey of discovery for those people who are willing to take the time to learn and perfect shooting techniques and so much more.

So here am I in week 3 trying a different bow and boy did I have a big hiccup with arrows flying past the target and into the far distance so with my gammy knee I then had to walk out of the shade into the heat of the day to look for those arrows which were trying to hide in the grass and other vegetation.  Thank you to those club members who helped find those missing arrows.

What went wrong when in weeks one and two I seem to be hitting the targets if only on the outer area?

Nick Gough our expert instructor made some adjustments to the sight of the bow I was using and said concentrate on getting your anchor right. What’s the Anchor? It’s the position of your arrow drawing hand that needs to be under the chin with the bow string touching your nose.

So is that the solution to my problem? It sure is a key factor in hitting the target and developing a good grouping of the arrows but there is so much more to learn.

That evening I decided to search Youtube for some answers and the first video I watched was Korea v USA – recurve cadet mixed team gold | World Archery Youth Championships 2019 and I was gobsmacked at the distance to the targets they were shooting at but it was good to see the individual’s anchor position.

Now there are different types of bows some with sites and stabilizers or none at all and then there are different types of arrows with different lengths and weights and on one video I saw a guy increasing the weight of his preferred arrows by inserting a section of washing line inside them. Whatever next?

Now there are many archery videos on Youtube and I found this one giving  Archery Tips, 10 Things Beginners Do (And Why You Shouldn’t) which gave me a shock when I realized some of the things I am doing wrong and must learn to correct.

Having had a fair bit of surgery in the last 18 months another task is to recover my body strength and balance so I am starting Chi Gong again and may even try and revisit Tai Chi.

So with all that in mind, I am back on that long archery learning journey which in just a few weeks has opened another interest in my life that will demand a lot of time and patience.  

Photo courtesy of Ian Titterton

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