Have you ever seen a target where one section is completely shot out? Sure you have, and possibly it has been our target. Most hunters, even us at Boneshed Archery find ourselves shooting at the same spot over and over on the target which in turn put wear and tear on it at a greater speed. Although it may seem like a simple concept consider shooting at more than the marked “vitals” on the target. Here are some ways to practice accuracy and keep it interesting:
Slow it Down: The object to practice is not speed but rather repetition so that in the event that you actually have to perform, competition or hunting, your mind and muscles will be trained to take its time to line up the shot and do it well. Remember take time to breath. Concentrate on what you are doing at each step: Notching the arrow, drawing back, anchoring, lining up the sights, and releasing. Take your time during practice with each shot.
Pick a Spot: As you start you time of practice with a bow. Pick different spots on the target to shoot at. If your target has an outline of a deer: Aim for the head, Aim for the back leg, Aim for the tail, or Aim for the front leg. Note: this is not meant for sighting in your bow but rather practice. Shoot two or three arrows in each location.
Sticker it Up: Stickers are cheap, new targets are not. At most stores you can by a pack of stickers (bright orange works well) for a couple of dollars. Place a sticker or two on your target, not on the vitals, to practice where to aim. The sticker will give you a good reference point as to where your arrow is ending up and the adjustments that you need to make.
Close on the Vitals: This is a great way to close out your practice session, shooting the vitals on the target. One it is fun, and by this time you should be hitting them! If your target has the outline of a deer, look at the whole picture when you are aiming. This should help with when you are in your stand or hunting spot and a deer comes into range, you are already used to the outline as a whole.
Keep in mind the accuracy comes with time. There will be lost arrows, missed shots, and messed up targets, so remember HAVE FUN!