With just over a week left until the opening of my hunting season, I’m now putting the finishing touches on my 2010 preseason preparations. And the most important of those right now is practicing with my bow. This certainly isn’t the beginning of my practice, as I’ve practiced with my bow more this year than ever before. But even so, the practice can’t stop just before the season or once the season has started. With my consistent practice over the course of the year I’ve extended my effective range by about 20 yards and I feel more confident in my shot than ever before. But as we’re getting closer to the season, I’ve been trying out some creative variations on my practice routine to help better prepare me for hunting situations. Take a look at these different exercises that will better help you practice for real life hunting situations and try them out next time you practice!

  • Draw back your bow and force yourself to hold it back for a minute or longer before firing. This is a situation that often can occur while hunting, as I’m sure many of you have experienced, and it’s always a good idea to prepare for the worst and feel comfortable shooting under those circumstances. Strengthen those muscles now, so that you’re not shaking even more with a buck down range!
  • Try shooting with your body at odd angles and  positions. In real hunting situations you almost never have the perfect standing shot, so obviously  practicing in odd ways will better prepare you and your muscles for when that kind of situation arises . I practice sitting, standing against trees, bending down, leaning back, turning completely behind me, crouching and kneeling.
  • Try firing from unknown distances and different angles. Its nice to practice at paced off distances of 20, 30, 40 yards, etc,  but thats not always what happens when you’re hunting. I’ll try and shoot from all sorts of random distances and angles, just trying to estimate the distance by eye.
  • This is preached a lot, but make sure to practice while wearing your actual hunting gear and all of your layers. It makes a big difference. It’s better to notice a problem now, rather than when that Booner walks in front of you.
  • Practice immediately after running or working out in order to get practice controlling your heart beat. If you havent seen it yet, check out my video about this!
  • Practice at longer ranges than you actually plan on shooting at a deer. Get comfortable shooting at 50, 60 or 70 yards and then that 30 yard shot at a buck will be a piece of cake.

You guys have any other good ways to prepare for real life hunting situations with your bow? Share them in the comments!