An quick experiment with archery technique

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Iodo
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An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Iodo » Sat Jan 19, 2019 8:46 pm

Some of you might know I do target archery at my local club, I shoot recurve barebow and very rarely get chance to practice anything different to the standard targets and distance's (e.g. 20, 30, 40 yds)

A few days ago I was at the indoor range late in the evening, there was no one else there so I decided to try something a bit different. My usual method is to use sighting arrows and a reference point which relies on shooting from the same place every time, which would have limited use for a dwarven fells-ward. What I tried instead was putting up different targets and shooting from different places/distances around the room and I was quite pleased with what I could achieve. I wouldn't go anywhere near as far as calling it instinctive but every arrow I shot was from a different place/distance (up to 30 yds) at a different target and all my arrows were, at least, on or very close to the target I aimed at. It wasn't close to the accuracy I can achieve using my normal technique but it was still far better than I thought it would be, and that surprised me :mrgreen:

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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby TaylorSteiner » Sat Jan 19, 2019 9:54 pm

Very nice. It's always great when we pull stuff off that we didn't expect. Well done :lol:
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Greg » Sat Jan 19, 2019 10:14 pm

That's a good practice method. If you're able to, varying the ranges kicks it up a notch!
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Elleth » Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:54 pm

Interesting! Very well done!

... if your range allows it, an instinctive-method training I've read and found very useful is remarkably simple:

just start crazy-close, where you can't possibly miss, and put a good half dozen arrows or more into your target.
Then just keep backing up through the session, making sure to stay just at the edge of where you can reliably put the arrows where you want them.

Getting a feel for range just sort of falls out naturally from doing it.

It's a technique pretty dependent on already having consistent form, but it's a great warmup.
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Iodo » Sun Jan 20, 2019 8:30 am

Thank you all for the good comments :P

Elleth wrote:Interesting! Very well done!

... if your range allows it, an instinctive-method training I've read and found very useful is remarkably simple:

just start crazy-close, where you can't possibly miss, and put a good half dozen arrows or more into your target.
Then just keep backing up through the session, making sure to stay just at the edge of where you can reliably put the arrows where you want them.

Getting a feel for range just sort of falls out naturally from doing it.

It's a technique pretty dependent on already having consistent form, but it's a great warmup.


That sounds interesting Elleth, I'll try that :mrgreen:

I'm not sure how well the other club members would take to thinks like this, but it's a common understanding that if your the only person there you can do what you want, so I think I'll have to limit things like this for late in the evening. Normally I can also practice in the backyard archery range but that's out of use at the moment because it's in my grandparents yard (it's longer), there on a cruise ship in the Caribbean and my targets are locked in there garage :sad:

It's just a shame I can't carry a bow with my kit, this will have to remain an "If a could..." scenario and I may as well try to learn the skills anyway :P
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Elleth » Sun Jan 20, 2019 3:18 pm

I'm curious about the culture at your archery range: do they usually go for pure target shooting? Do they use modern or traditional bows? Sights?

One place I think "Ranger archery" differs from both target and hunting archery is that "good enough and fast" usually trumps "precise but slow." Plus the odd positions and angles hunters deal with, of course.

I'd *think* that at an archery club it wouldn't be hard to find a group of people who also thought that our take on the game was fun. But I imagine that's local culture as well.
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Iodo » Sun Jan 20, 2019 4:57 pm

Elleth wrote:I'm curious about the culture at your archery range: do they usually go for pure target shooting? Do they use modern or traditional bows? Sights?

I'd *think* that at an archery club it wouldn't be hard to find a group of people who also thought that our take on the game was fun. But I imagine that's local culture as well.

Yeah, local culture is a thing, my club is very tournament orientated, there are a lot of archers who count score every round, even during practice, and the common opinion, not shared by everyone but by most, is that there's a 'right' way to do something (what target you shoot at/with which type of bow/at what distance etc...) and anything else is considered incorrect

Most people shoot recurve freestyle (with a sight) or compound, however there's a growing number of barebow/traditional archers like myself and quite a few longbow archers. The majority is recurve freestyle because that's what they teach on the club beginners course which everyone has to do in order to join. I didn't get on very well with a sight, I don't know why, but on my last beginners session the instructor said "That's a good round for you, what did you do different?" and when I told him I'd took the sight off the bow he just looked at me in a funny way. I haven't used a sight since :P

Elleth wrote:One place I think "Ranger archery" differs from both target and hunting archery is that "good enough and fast" usually trumps "precise but slow." Plus the odd positions and angles hunters deal with, of course.

Agreed, plenty of times someone at the club has quietly said to me "you know you shoot to fast, you'd be much better if you slowed down a bit" and there probably right, although If I got use to slow I may never be able to speed up? It's never been my intention to get a high score, just to enjoy myself.

The other thing that bugs me is people who know your into LOTR who find out you do archery and automatically think you can shoot like Legolas does in the movies, I mean, I don't think anyone can shoot like that? :mrgreen:
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Elleth » Sun Jan 20, 2019 6:04 pm

I didn't get on very well with a sight, I don't know why, but on my last beginners session the instructor said "That's a good round for you, what did you do different?" and when I told him I'd took the sight off the bow he just looked at me in a funny way. I haven't used a sight since


Ha! That's great!

For ages I found I shot better instinctively, but didn't know why. And since I didn't know what I was doing, I didn't feel at all confident I could reliably reproduce it. It was frustrating as heck! Then finally I figured out what I'd been doing all along:

viewtopic.php?f=4&t=2679&p=40362#p40362

Dunno if that helps you, but it was an eye-opener for me. :mrgreen:

The other thing that bugs me is people who know your into LOTR who find out you do archery and automatically think you can shoot like Legolas does in the movies, I mean, I don't think anyone can shoot like that?


After FOTR released, I and a friend's daughter were playing around with some of the trick-shots. I actually got halfway decent with the double-arrow thing. There's a trick to it, and obviously it's nowhere near as accurate, but you can still pretty reliably put a couple arrows at once into the width of a torso at short range.

... that said, since it's two arrows coming off the same string, they each hit half as hard.

So... tradeoffs.
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Ruinar Hrafnakveðja » Sun Jan 20, 2019 7:56 pm

Fantastic job Iodo! Such a great way to test your skills in a more realistic environment. I always prefer doing archery at clubs or ranges when there aren't many people around, It really allows you to practice the skills that you want. Plus no limits on how many arrows you can shoot! I always prefer to empty a quiver into a target rather than having to leave half (or more!) of my arrows in my quiver every round :)

But I'm curious, why do you say you can't carry a bow as part of your kit? (Perhaps I missed an earlier post of yours?)
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Iodo » Sun Jan 20, 2019 8:20 pm

Elleth wrote:For ages I found I shot better instinctively, but didn't know why. And since I didn't know what I was doing, I didn't feel at all confident I could reliably reproduce it. It was frustrating as heck! Then finally I figured out what I'd been doing all along:

http://middleearthrangers.org/forum/vie ... 362#p40362

Dunno if that helps you, but it was an eye-opener for me. :mrgreen:

That threads amazing, thanks for the link :P That's exactly what I was doing, the problem I had was how unnatural not looking at the arrow point felt, I guess the technique I usually use is called gap-shooting

Elleth wrote:After FOTR released, I and a friend's daughter were playing around with some of the trick-shots. I actually got halfway decent with the double-arrow thing. There's a trick to it, and obviously it's nowhere near as accurate, but you can still pretty reliably put a couple arrows at once into the width of a torso at short range.

... that said, since it's two arrows coming off the same string, they each hit half as hard.

So... tradeoffs.

Yep, I've tried two, and three arrows at once, it works but your totally right, half the impact force. And since the arrows can only go in the same place you can only hit one target, use twice the arrows and reduce your armor penetration by a factor of two. Not useful, but looks very cool :mrgreen:

Ruinar Hrafnakveðja wrote:Fantastic job Iodo! Such a great way to test your skills in a more realistic environment. I always prefer doing archery at clubs or ranges when there aren't many people around, It really allows you to practice the skills that you want. Plus no limits on how many arrows you can shoot! I always prefer to empty a quiver into a target rather than having to leave half (or more!) of my arrows in my quiver every round :)

But I'm curious, why do you say you can't carry a bow as part of your kit? (Perhaps I missed an earlier post of yours?)

Thank you :P and yeah, that's the other thing about club ranges, your only allowed to shoot in threes, and even if you can shoot six in the time it takes someone else to shoot three so your not actually holding anyone up, you still get glared at if you shoot more than three???
And why I can't carry a bow with my kit, simple answer, UK weapon law :(
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Ruinar Hrafnakveðja » Sun Jan 20, 2019 9:14 pm

Iodo wrote:And why I can't carry a bow with my kit, simple answer, UK weapon law :(



Oh right! Yes that law always seemed odd to me. Especially when you consider the history of England and the importance of the bow. But I always thought it was just a hunting related law? Or are you worried that if you carry a bow around in the forests they will just assume you were trying to hunt?

I suppose that being in Canada does have some advantages, but I still really want to live in the UK.......at least for a little bit hehehe
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Iodo » Sun Jan 20, 2019 9:45 pm

Ruinar Hrafnakveðja wrote:
Iodo wrote:And why I can't carry a bow with my kit, simple answer, UK weapon law :(



Oh right! Yes that law always seemed odd to me. Especially when you consider the history of England and the importance of the bow. But I always thought it was just a hunting related law? Or are you worried that if you carry a bow around in the forests they will just assume you were trying to hunt?

I suppose that being in Canada does have some advantages, but I still really want to live in the UK.......at least for a little bit hehehe

The standard thing for anything considered by UK law to be an "offensive weapon" is that with in reason you can carry it, if you have a good reason to have it. Which means I can get away with a knife and hatchet for bush-craft use, but the only good reason to have a bow in the woods is hunting, which is against the law so there is no good reason, and that makes having a bow anywhere except on the archery range or when traveling to or from it is illegal

(I'm sure this has been discussed somewhere else, I can't find it to link it so sorry If I'm repeating myself)
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Elleth » Wed Jan 23, 2019 2:44 am

Coincidentally, I just ran across the following in a book I really should be paying more attention to:

... unfortunately, most shooters stop progressing when they become competent with the gap shooting method..... and that's what trips them up.

Imagine a deer hunting situation. It's getting dark. A deer in light cover exposes its rib cage. Is it 20 paces or 30 paces? You're at full draw: can you see the gap? Probably not, yet the difference in 10 paces is 10 inches in gap. Also, your arrow now has a broadhead instead of the field point you're accustomed to seeing in practice. The broadhead is more difficult to pick up in your peripheral vision.

Don't become to dependent on gap shooting. Once you have become proficient, immediately begin concentrating more on the mark and less on the gap...

- Become the Arrow, by Byron Ferguson, p.33


I've nowhere near the expertise to evaluate what he says, but in my very limited experience... it rings true. I've a vague memory of a "gap shooting" period in my development, and it was more...awkward? It felt more precise at the time, but looking back it was overly limiting.
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Iodo » Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:27 am

Fascinating, Thanks Elleth :P

Yes, gap shooting is definitely precise, especially when you've been doing it at a club for more than two years at the same selection of ranges/targets with the same fiber limb bow/aluminium arrows but I know exactly what you mean, it has huge limitations. As soon as I come away from the fixed ranges I'm use to and decide to shoot from a different position I have very little idea where to aim, I think my (late) new years resolution, is going to have to be to start hitting the range late evening when know-ones about to practice "Ranger" archery :mrgreen:
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Re: An quick experiment with archery technique

Postby Iodo » Sun Feb 10, 2019 8:43 pm

Elleth wrote:... if your range allows it, an instinctive-method training I've read and found very useful is remarkably simple:

just start crazy-close, where you can't possibly miss, and put a good half dozen arrows or more into your target.
Then just keep backing up through the session, making sure to stay just at the edge of where you can reliably put the arrows where you want them.

Getting a feel for range just sort of falls out naturally from doing it.

It's a technique pretty dependent on already having consistent form, but it's a great warmup.

Thanks so much for the tip, I tried it today (when the range was empty) and it works amazing :P
So far up to about 18yds I can hit yellow most times but further than that it starts getting random, I guess distance will come with practice? I'm new to this :mrgreen:
Gimli: It's true you don't see many Dwarf-women. And in fact, they are so alike in voice and appearance, that they are often mistaken for Dwarf-men.
Aragorn: It's the beards.

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