8 Archery Mistakes: Reasons You’re Bad with a Bow

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Are You Making Any of These Blunders?

Are you a bad shot? (Shutterstock/Wood Water Wall photo)

Archery is a touchy skill. It doesn’t take much to miss the mark. A twist of the wrist here. An inconsistent anchor point there. It’s easy to get out of rhythm.

There are an infinite number of mistakes you can make as an archer. But the two key components of archery are proper form and consistency. Practice good form. Practice practicing good form. The rest will come. But in the meantime, are you making these eight mistakes?

1. Bad Stance

A good stance is important. A consistent stance is even more so. Your stance shouldn’t be too open or too closed. Instead, have a slightly open stance as you draw your bow and look downrange. And remember, use the same stance each time you draw a bow.

2. Inconsistent Anchor Points

Make sure your anchor points are quality ones. And again with consistency, make sure you use the same ones each time. For example, I use four different contact points on my anchor. The kisser button rest on the corner of my mouth. My nose touches the bow string. The fletching touches my bottom lip. And my index finger runs from my ear to my sideburn.

3. Bow Torque

Twisting your bow right or left will throw the shot off. Make sure you keep the bow vertical and torque-free. This will ensure a better shot.

4. Tight Grip

Don’t use a tight grip. A relaxed, slightly open grip is best. This will help prevent bow torque and other problems that could arise from gripping the bow too hard.

5. Faulty Release and Follow Through

Don’t yank or slap the trigger. Slowly release the arrow. Some use back-tension to release the arrow. But I’m not sold that’s a must for accuracy. Ever heard of Levi Morgan? He pulls the trigger. Also, make sure you have a solid release and good follow-through. The bow should slowly tip forward (not sideways or backward) after the shot.

6. Bad Practice Habits

It’s important to practice like you play. That’s what one of my baseball coaches used to tell me. The same goes for archery. Practice each shot like you’re drawn back on a whitetail. Make each shot count. If you aren’t doing this, you’re doing yourself a disservice.

7. Using the Wrong Equipment

Make sure you are shooting a bow that fits. Measure draw length. Use the correct arrows for your draw weight, bow speed, etc. Make sure everything on your bow rig is in sync. Not doing this will reduce accuracy.

8. Lack of Tuning

Bow tuning is crucial. Not doing it will hold you back. Paper tune. French tune. Whatever-type-you-fancy tune. Just do it. You’ll be glad you did. Or you’ll be mad you didn’t. One or the other.

Bonus Read: 10 Off-Season Archery Tips from the Pros

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