Archery seems overwhelming at first; there’s a lot to learn, and you need to stay focused all the time. But we don’t want you to feel discouraged, so make sure to follow along as we uncover these 10 tips if you want to be one step ahead of other beginners.
10 Things Every Beginner Archer Should Know
1. Rent Your Equipment
There’s a lot to explore because bows come in different types. To elaborate, there are crossbows, compound bows, composite bows, recurve bows, and more. Each of these bows is unique, offering some advantages that make it more suitable for some archers than others.
And if you rush into buying your bow, you might end up throwing it away or giving up on the entire pursuit to begin with. This dilemma is why we recommend that beginners try renting different bows at first and picking the one that feels more consistent and easier to shoot with.
Then, once you start to build muscles and make repeatable shots, you can go ahead and buy your first bow! How exciting is that?!
2. Stay Focused While Anchoring
It would help if you were precise with where you pull the string, releasing the arrow from the same spot every time. And you should feel comfortable with it and repeat it at a consistent pace. Otherwise, the arrow hits the target differently with every new anchor point.
Also, keep in mind that this is the only way to avoid missing shots, so you won’t feel like you’re making progress if you don’t fix the anchor point.
3. Loosen Up
We know how intense it can be, but if you observe the most experienced archers, you’ll notice that they’re typically calm. That’s because staying relaxed will help you make better moves.
On the one hand, if your hand is moving at ease, you’ll be able to tighten your grip, and your shots will be more accurate. On the other hand, if it’s shaky, you’ll lose your grip, and your shots won’t be consistent.
We understand you might feel pressured at first, but the faster you can pull it together, the quicker you’ll improve. Also, you have all the time in the world to practice, so take it easy!
4. Be Conscious of Your Body
Your pose and the way you move your body are fundamental. It isn’t just about your arms and hands. You have to move in a way that promotes accuracy and ensures you don’t get hurt while practicing. Moreover, you can follow these tips to get the best result:
- Keep your feet parallel to each other
- Your toes should always point at the target
- Avoid brushing your clothes with the string
- Don’t move your elbow vigorously from the front to the back
- Avoid bending over and slouching
In addition, as your shots become more harmonious, you’ll become more confident to start shooting from a different position. And you’ll gain more control.
5. Pick Lower Draw Weight
Some bows are heavy, so you’re better off starting with a light one at first. This way, you can draw the arrow back smoothly and appropriately manage your shots.
Moreover, you need to take it easy on your muscles because they won’t just grow overnight. Otherwise, if you pick a heavy bow when you aren’t ready for it, it’ll rise or dip. Also, your arrows will be all over the place, and it’ll only bring you down.
6. Choose the Right Clothing
It’s best to stay away from baggy clothes because they can easily catch on the string, causing the arrow to veer. It takes time to learn how to shoot without letting the string touch your clothes, and that isn’t what you should be focusing on as a beginner. This is why we recommend sticking to tighter clothes throughout the beginner phase.
7. Don’t Hesitate to Ask Around
If you’re struggling with anything whatsoever, you can ask anyone around. There are many archers out there who’d be willing to help, especially the more passionate ones.
After all, we were all beginners once, and we know how confusing things can be. So, if you see someone hitting the bullseye every time, don’t hold back, and ask them to help you with whatever you’re having trouble with.
8. Always Observe
Observation makes a huge difference, especially if you don’t feel comfortable walking up to someone and asking them to help. Whenever you find an archer with a better aim, there’s no harm in watching them for a while. Notice how they move and how different their technique is from yours.
9. Adopt the “Follow-Through” Technique
In archery, a “follow-through” is when you keep shooting until you hit the target. Keep your bow fixed, regardless of how tempting it is to move it to the side or up and down. Undoubtedly, you’ll have to put some thought into it at first, but once it becomes a habit, you’ll start seeing progress.
10. Don’t Push Yourself Too Hard
Have fixed practice hours so that you don’t get carried away. Being persistent is good, but you don’t want to overdo it. Instead, keep your session as regular as possible, and don’t put your body under substantial stress to get it right. You’ll get there eventually, but it’s a matter of maintaining consistency.
Needless to say, archery is about practice. Whether it’s the pose, the strength, the accuracy, or otherwise, it all takes time to learn and achieve. We’ve all taken baby steps at first. And as you gain more experience, you’ll get the hang of it. So give it your best shot, and be sure you’ll get it right.