9 November 2014

One of those moments

I had one of "those" moments today. I have recently taken up archery, after hubby urged me to give it a go. He used to shoot when he was a schoolboy and always wanted to try again. There is a good club here and he joined it a few months ago, and suggested I come along to try one day. I did, and was instantly hooked.

I've been shooting recurve since I started, using the club's equipment. However, when I got to shooting this morning, the head coach beckoned me over and set me up with a compound bow: he thought that it might sort out my laterality problem: I am strongly left-handed but my right eye is dominant, which has been making aiming on the recurve tricky because I keep trying to sight with my right eye (I've been closing my right eye but my left eye is significantly weaker). The other option was wearing a patch!

Getting set up for compound shooting is much more complicated. The bow itself looks like a spider web, with three strings, two pulleys (cams) and much shorter limbs. There's also a heap of equipment: front sight, rear sight (peep), stabiliser, and string release. I was shooting without the stabiliser (I was happy about that because the bow itself is pretty heavy and I found that it made my shoulder tired!) and it took some doing just to get everything sorted and draw it. But once the cams turned over and the string let off (the cams take up to 85% of the draw power once they turn over), and I sighted and released, the power of the thing just blew me away!

I was shooting from 5m just to get the feel of it and the arrows were at least 20cm deep into the target. And it was astonishingly accurate: the sights helped but it also felt incredibly natural to draw and shoot. My first grouping with it had all six arrows touching and I nearly hit one with another one. It felt like someone had handed me the moon....

I have felt a little bit dazed all day, actually. I can't quite believe what happened this morning. In fact, I'm not sure what happened but it felt good!

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