Bow and Archery (Part 2): How to shoot a Recurve Bow

After reading Part 1: Set up your Recurve Bow, now we turn in to part 2:

How to shoot a Recurve Bow

Start from basic, you can easily follow this guide:

And there are some points you have to take notes:

Anchor point

Anchor point is an important thing in studying how to shoot with a Recurve bow and arrow. Your anchor point affects your draw length, release-aid alignment, finger placement against the jaw or cheekbone and also what you see through your peep sight. When I draw the bow, the string comes down my face, crosses my chin and that is my anchor point. One by one has different anchor point, it’s personal. The thing is that you have to figure out the anchor point for yourself. Unless you have a qualified archery coach helping you, the best you can do is go with what is typical and what tends to work for most. With this in mind, you may only need to change your style a bit to find the anchor point that work best for you. When you think you have found it, work some more to convince yourself that it is as good as it can get.

I highlight anchor point because without using it, your archery cannot be perfect. I had experienced it before when testing to shoot with anchor point and shoot without anchor point. And it shows me an instinct result.

With anchor point Without anchor point
– The arrows go straight, consistent- The arrows pin target stably – The arrows go oblique- The arrows pin target unstably

Aim small, miss small

aimingThere is a common conception in archery: People believe that if beginners have a big target, they have more chance to hit it. They may be right in that aspect, they do have more chance to hit the target if it is bigger. But at the same time, it will bring large gap between the arrows. And you really don’t want that, do you?

When setting off, some people have a big target for about 60 cm in diameter. Imagine when shooting, you take first 3 shots: one on the top, on on the right side and one on the left side. So you get a big triangle shape. But it is not acceptable, especially if you want to get better, you have to narrow the distance between the arrows a lot. What we are trying to do is what people are always scared of. You aim a target about 5 cm in diameter. And people might say “Why would you do that? That would be so much hard to hit”. It might be hard to hit the target, but even when you miss, the arrows still get close to each other than they were if you aimed a big target. And it really helps, trust me.

How to focus on a target

Focus on TargetLearning to focus on a target is an issue that many people concern. There are a lot of things to look into but in my opinion, the most important one is concentrating on a point. You have to pick a point whatever you want to aim. It is not just looking at the target, picking a point and shooting, it is more complicated. What you need to do is pick a tiny point on the target, focus solely on that, ignore everything, then give yourself some time about 10-15 seconds just focusing on that point. And you will be more consistent.

For example, when I shoot, you see me aiming at the target face, but actually I just focus on the centre, a spot about 1 cm in diameter and overlook all else. Indeed, my 2 arrows pin accurately on the target.

So all I want to recommend you guys is to learn how to concentrate on a point because the smaller the point you focus on, the decreasing of gap between arrows you have.

Correct stance

In archery, stance is a crucial factor that affects mostly your result. Even if you have a good concentration, an obvious anchor point, you still cannot shoot well without having a correct stance. Do not pass this basic skill of archery and underestimate it.

The first thing you have to do is ensure that your shoulder place and your knee are in a line. You also want to bend your knee slightly; it will keep you in that position, but do not bend too much. That is the first step to have a proper stance.

How to shoot a Recurve Bow: Correct Shooting Stance

The next step is focusing on shooting technique. Firstly, your bow arm has to be as straight as you can. Secondly, your other arm, which draws the arrow, you want it to be up high because you are using your back muscle and your shoulder muscle to pull back. Lastly, you need your back to be straight because if not, you are more likely to injure yourself. So remember: your bow arm straight, your back straight and your arm that pulls the arrow up high. After that, keep your arrow’s pulling arm moving backward as you release.

Practice hard and try to follow the instruction as correct as you can, you will see the difference.

Now you are know everything about Set up and how to shoot a Recurve Bow, let’s start!

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