I’ve recently taken up archery.
It’s always been something I’ve been interested in, probably since I first saw Disney’s Robin Hood as a girl. Before now, I’ve only used handmade bows (i.e. sticks and string) and toy ones with little plastic arrows with suckers on the end. Other than that, I’ve only admired archery from afar, through various fictional characters in books, film and mythology.
I’ve always meant to learn archery on my own, but like so many ideas and wishes, it was one that sat on the cluttered back burner in my mind, probably destined to be a might-have-been dream. At least it would have been, had not my boyfriend Ryan discovered my not-so-secret desire to learn archery and insist I practice with him. Thus began my training with the recurve bow.
Why a recurve, you ask? Why not the more modern compound bow, one that would be easier to draw and with a handy sight for more accurate shooting? Well, because the recurve bow is awesome. It appeals to my sense of tradition and what I have always considered to be archery in my mind. All the fictional characters I admire use recurve bows (often ones they’ve made themselves) with a few exceptions (the modern Green Arrow – though he did learn with a recurve – and Hawkeye from the Avengers.). It just feels right that I should use one too.
I like the challenge as well. I’ve had to build up strength (something I’m still working on) to be able to draw the 40lb bow fully and being able to consistently hit the target(s) in a tight shooting pattern is something that requires a lot of practice. But I enjoy the smooth motion of it, the concentration, and the satisfying “thunk” sound the arrows make when they hit the target.
That being said, I don’t think I’m ready for any competitions yet. I frequently miss the target and defy physics by making my arrows bounce off the target or skid across it in ways that really shouldn’t be possible. I do think, however, that I am improving, bit by bit. And I am thoroughly enjoying the process. It’s just one of the many things I have to thank my boyfriend for. We have fun times practicing.
So that’s one dream and skill I am pursuing. What is something you would like to learn but have put on the back burner, or something you have always wanted to try and have only recently started? I’d love to hear about them!