How to Improve Your Archery Skills

Archery: we all want to look gracious while doing it, but we seem to miss our targets whenever we try to shoot. Moreover, while we do manage to shoot, our “technique” still has us flailing around after we release the arrow.

With that in mind, how can you improve your arrow shooting skills? How can you become a better archer and actually hit your targets, for a change? Well, it might take a lot of time and practice – but overall, you might see improvement if you follow the right steps. 

  • Correct Your Stance

Many self-taught archers do not know that the correct stance plays a very important role in the way you shoot with the bow. Unfortunately, not many of these archers actually KNOW what that stance is – so, they simply try to wing it.

You should be facing your target at approximately 45 degrees, with your feet in a parallel position and spread about 18-24 inches apart. Your toes should be facing towards your target, pointing at it – and not at a 90-degree angle as most beginners do.

Keep an open stance as you point at the target. Your bow forearm should be in line with the arrow. The bowstring should also be kept away from your arm and chest – because even if it slightly brushes against your skin, it will veer the arrow to the side. 

  • Make Sure the Bow Is Tuned

In a way, a bow is just like a musical instrument; if it’s not tuned, it won’t work properly. You have to create balance and stability in the tension – so, if it seems as if the bow is lacking in strength, you might have to tune it. It will greatly improve your accuracy when you are shooting an arrow. 

There are many guides out there that will teach you exactly how to tune your bow. However, if you are a beginner and are not completely confident in your tuning skills, you might want to take it to a pro shop. Watch how they do it a couple of times – and before you know it, you’ll learn how to do it yourself.

Particularly if you are a beginner, you should go for bows that have newer, better mechanisms – to make things run more smoothly. You may get a bow with an older system simply because it is cheaper – but there is a high chance that this one will be more difficult to tune. You need to get something that you could easily tune. This way, you won’t end up dropping your archery practice simply because you cannot tune your bow. 

  • Make Sure Your Grip Is Correct

You need to hold your bow with a relaxed hand, but with a closed grip. If your grip is a white-knuckle tight one, then there is a high chance you will compromise the accuracy of your shot. Your entire bow will be tensed, which is why you might end up missing your shot. The bow will only have to lightly touch your thumb to the middle finger or the forefinger in front of your grip.

If you simply cannot master the loose grip, then you might want to try the open bow hand with the addition of a wrist sling. The sling will help tie the bow to your hand – and this way, it cannot fall while you are attempting to shoot. The more you shoot, the more your grip will improve – and eventually, you should be able to do it without the sling. 

  • Your Movement Has to Remain Subtle

Every movement that you make, as small as it may be, may affect the outcome of your shooting. The way you move has is essential, so you will have to control each and every inch of your body. The way in which you breathe, grip, stand – as well as the amount of force that is applied with your hands – are all factors that will have a great impact on the way you shoot.

This is why you need to learn how to be relaxed while you are shooting with the bow. You cannot expect accuracy if you are all stressed out and nervous. Those feelings need to be pushed away if you want to become any better at archery.

One good pointer is to never practice when you are beaten down by stress. Archery doesn’t really mix well with anxiety and stress. Your diet might greatly influence this, so you might want to watch what you eat – or drink – as well. You might not be happy to hear this, but consuming energy drinks, such as coffee, can elevate your stress levels –therefore, this won’t really be very convenient for your practice.

  • Practice Makes Perfect

No one becomes a skilled archer right off the bat; this is achieved only through repetition and consistency. This does not only apply to archery – but to every sport and activity as well. 

It’s like learning to ride a bike: before you learn how to ride in a straight line, you will probably fall a few times in the beginning. But through those fails, you will learn the proper way of riding the bike – and before you know it, you’ll be riding without training wheels and doing miles.

The same thing goes with archery: the more you shoot, the better you will become. It’s the kind of hobby that you will have to commit to if you want to get better. Even if you get the hang of shooting, you should never stop practicing – because practice leads to perfection. 

Final Thoughts

Archery is a skill that might take years and a lot of practice to master. This is why you need to follow the right steps to ensure that your stance, the way you draw and even the way you breathe are correct. As an archer, you need to ensure that accuracy is your top priority.

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