Shooting a compound bow past 40 yards was once frowned upon. How times have changed. Advancements in bow performance and technology have shooters around the globe extending their shooting range. Why? Aside from being fun, practicing long-range shooting makes closer hunting shots easier. In addition, those of us who pursue critters on the open western landscape have found that extending effective range puts more antlers on the wall and more steaks on the grill.
While bow performance and technology have come a long way they won’t do you any good if you shoot with poor form. As you increase your distance from a target, even the slightest mistakes in form become magnified. So, even if you never plan on shooting at a deer from farther than 30 yards away, follow these tips to practice at long range and tighten your groups at every range.
1) STANCEDo whatever is comfortable, but be sure you develop a stance that promotes a solid shooting platform. Get your feet too far apart and you will be unbalanced forward or backward. Place your feet too close together and you will feel very unstable left or right. Have a solid base for your stance and PRACTICE. Try to simulate actual hunting position shots. Rather than flat ground and walking backwards… get in a tree, turn around, bend your knees, take a knee, every possible opportunity that arises in situations.
Find a bow that feels good, first.
Once you achieve full draw, the bow should feel like it’s pushing into the palm. Now, relax your grip. Most archers, especially when they start increasing shot distance, want to put more grip on the handle. Remember, everything is magnified at longer distances, so you want to keep a very open grip, putting as little torque on the riser as possible.
Having an anchor point is essential to accuracy. However, there is more to a consistent anchor point than meets the eye. Most assume that a kisser button inserted into the bowstring at the proper point will solve their anchor needs. However, to some, a kisser button is uncomfortable and draws focus away from shot execution. Honestly, finding a consistent anchor point can only be achieved through the process of shooting. The key is finding a comfortable anchor point or two that can be repeated shot after shot.
Looking through a peep sight at a target 100 yards away can be intimidating, especially the first few times you do it. When you get nervous about the distance, you’ll want to hold your breath. Don’t do this.
Holding your breath reduces oxygen flow to the brain, causing you to shake and loose mental focus. Also, your visual acuity starts to decrease after holding your breath for only 8 seconds. Do you need to take deep soothing breaths? No, but don’t cut off the oxygen supply entirely.
There is very little an archer can do to increase his accuracy while aiming. So stop trying to hold your point dead on your target, instead let it float calmly and begin to squeeze at comfortable, optimal, times.
Probably the hardest thing to achieve — an unanticipated release — will boost your accuracy like nothing else, especially at extended distances.
Again, as you move farther from a target, mistakes in form are magnified. Jerking and punching at the trigger may only cause you to miss the mark by a few inches at 30 yards, but step back to 80 yards and you will easily miss a large 16×16 target. So what does the perfect release look like? EASY. CONSISTENT. Just make sure whatever is comfortable for you, you are consistent at doing it EVERY time.
When shooting long distance, you really have time to soak the shot in before the arrow impacts the target. It’s natural to want to drop the bow out of the way immediately after the shot or jerk your head to the left or to the right to better track the arrow. Resist this urge.
It takes lots of practice, but upon the release of your arrow you need to keep aiming until the arrow actually impacts the target. If possible, hold the bow up and try to keep the sight picture the same.
Well, there you have it, seven tips to becoming a long-range SNIPER with your bow and arrow. If you take the time to develop a year-round shooting regimen and heed this advice, you’ll be pounding the 10-ring from distances you never thought possible.
The post 7 Tips for long range accuracy when Bow Hunting: June 2014 appeared first on Bucks of Nebraska.