By Mark Kenyon:
Do you want to be more accurate with your bow? Don’t we all?
There are plenty of ways to tweak your equipment, adjust your form, and improve your mechanics. But are you paying attention to how you’re actually practicing? If not, you should be.
Here’s one very simple change in how you practice that can drastically improve your archery accuracy.
Most whitetail hunters have a max range of somewhere around 40 yards with their bows. With that # in mind, I’d recommend the next time you head out to practice with your bow that you take 10 steps back to 50 yards. Start practicing 10 yards farther out than your typical max range, 50 yards in this case and I guarantee that you’ll begin to improve. If your max range was 30, stretch to 40. Maybe you already feel comfortable out to 50, well then it’s time to start practicing at 60.
The key here is practicing at longer ranges than normal. When shooting at a longer range the small mistakes that you might be making in form or shot execution will be exaggerated. A small torque on your riser will send your arrow far off the mark, much more so than if you did the same thing at 20. So why is this a good thing?
Because it forces you to focus even more. It forces you to take more time, pay attention to the details, and iron out these wrinkles. The longer you practice at these ranges, the easier those long range shots will become. But the real noticeable difference will show up when you move back down to the ranges of 20, 30 or 40 yards – that you’d typically shoot at while hunting. Now after practicing at 50 yards, that 20 yard shot will feel like a piece of cake.
Simple, But Effective
It’s a simple piece of advice, and one that we’ve mentioned before. But it’s important. For these remaining couple months leading up to hunting season, start practicing 10 or 20 yards farther back than you usually do. Just do it. It’ll be more challenging, it’ll be a little frustrating, and you might lose an arrow or two. But in the long run, your accuracy will noticeably improve (especially at the shorter ranges you’re used to) and you’ll have that much better of a chance at making the shot when the moment of truth arrives.
So next time you pick up your bow, take a few steps back. No excuses, just give it a shot. I promise you’ll be glad you did.