Archery Shooting Tips (Contents)
by Karen Butler
The weather has started to break, the snow and ice have melted and that means that 3-d season is soon approaching. What does that mean for us, the target archer? It means time to get that 3-d equipment ready to start shooting foam, and fast!!
Anyone that is an avid 3-d shooter loves it when the weather starts warming and the days start getting longer because it means more time outside to fling arrows and practice for our favorite thing! A lot of folks have been shooting indoor and will continue to shoot indoor for a couple of more months and that is great but when your true archery passion lies in 3-d shooting it is just a matter of time before indoor starts to get boring and you long on being outside with your shooting buddies judging yardage and trying to make the best shot possible.
I started working on my bow this past week getting it ready to 3-d, actually I started on my arrows first. I always check my arrows and make sure all the vanes are still in good shape and attached ok. Nothing hurts more than to get that yardage pegged, make what you think is a perfect shot and have a fletching come loose during the shot and that arrow takes a nose dive either into a 5 or into the ground. So please, please check all those fletchings, redoing arrows is not that hard, I always fletch my own, that way if something goes wrong I can only blame myself...
Once the arrows were done then the bow work started, I turned my pounds back up as I had been shooting this bow for indoor and got the chronograph out to check speed. Now that I am shooting in women's open class my max speed is 280 fps which I am proud to say I have finally gotten a bow that is capable of shooting that speed!! I worked on the poundage until I was shooting 282 fps over the chrono we are using and am comfortable with the poundage. I shot my bow through paper and it has a slight high tear but that is ok, I have good arrow flight and can hit where I am aiming so I won't worry with that!!
I always wonder how everyone sights their bows in. I know lots of folks have a computer program that takes some bow specs and arrow weight and bow speed and can spit out a sight tape. That is cool but I don't have that so I guess I do it the old fashioned way. I start at twenty yards and get it right and make a mark on my blank sight tape. Then I back up to 30, 40 and 50 and do the same then come back and get my 25,35 and 45. It may take some time to get it right but it is very satisfying to do that and when you walk up to the stake and make a shot on an animal and it is all right it just makes you all warm and fuzzy inside!!
Always make sure all your bolts are tight too, I had my rest to fall off one night at indoor.....that sucked but I should have been paying attention to my equipment and checking everything to make sure it was tight.
Another tip on arrow building, I have learned how to make all my arrows weigh the same or very close. Before I would just make them and shoot them, sometimes I would have quite a bit of difference in the weight, maybe up to five grains between arrows. Now I weigh them all and take the heaviest arrow and hold it out, then I take all the others and weigh them and add glue to the tip till they all weigh pretty close to the same. I use hot melt glue so you can put your arrow on the scale and then just cut small pieces of glue and put it on the scale till you get the weight where you want it. Then just take your tip out and melt the glue chips into the tip and you are ready to go!!!
Not all things are controlable in archery but some of them can be and this is what we can do to help ourselves every bit we can!!
by Todd Butler
In order to become an effective marksman, whether with the bow or the firearm it is essential that the shooter know which of their eyes is dominant. At times a right handed shooter will have a dominant left eye and vice versa. It is very simple to determine and for some shooters will significantly change their shooting skills.
So you have determined that you are right handed and left eye dominant or vise versa. What now? There are several ways to deal with this situation.
by Karen Butler
Are you a new shooter or an experienced shooter who has reached a plateau? If so, then you probably need a coach…one coach. Beginner shooters definitely need a coach to teach them the basics up front. You will save yourself time and money (if you’re like me and think if you throw more money into your equipment you will get better) to invest up front to learn proper form. I met a lady at our Test Flight in Vegas who was teaching herself to shoot, I was very proud of her, but she could not get any better, and it was because she had not learned any basics. I spent a few minutes with her, she was so eager to learn and had a very natural ability, but she needs a coach to reinforce those basics at least until she has some muscle memory of her shot. Shooters that have reached a plateau have one of two or a combination of both problems: Form and/or Mental Attitude. Adding a coach to your routine will combat both these challenges.
So why a coach? The great thing about shooting sports is everyone wants help, if you shoot in a league or at a group event, I’m sure you have experienced multiple people telling you to change your grip, your stance, the way you pull your trigger, etc…I know I have. These helpful souls may be doing more harm to our shot than good, because they cause us to focus on the item they are trying to correct and piece meal our shot sequence together – plus, we don’t know the qualifications of their “expert” advice. A coach will focus our attention where it is needed and improve our shot.
Many times you can hire a coach or recruit someone in your league/group who has a strong shot and is willing to share their expertise with you. You’ll notice I recommend one coach. This is where our helpful neighbors try to sneak into play. Trust me, as your shot improves, everyone will want to be connected with you to share in the thrill of higher scores! The hardest thing I have ever had to do was to tell my friends, “Thanks for trying to help, but I have a coach and he has me working on something else this week.” That answer became my standard answer to everyone who was not my coach, but wanted to help. Now, that doesn’t mean that they aren’t on to something about your shot you could improve, so you need to take note of what they said and inform your coach. Your coach can take a look at it and act accordingly.
Not only does a coach help us with our form, a coach also helps us with our mental attitude. Many of our shooting problems wind up being as much or more mental than physical; however, when we focus on improving our physical shot our mental game is improved because we have more confidence in our abilities. At Shoot Like A Girl, that is our primary goal, to empower women to participate in shooting sports with confidence. So if you’re a new shooter or an experienced shooter who has hit a wall, get a coach, continue to practice and let us know how your shot improves!