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Learn To Shoot a Bow Accurately without Aiming

 
pollinator
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Location: Ohio River Valley, Zone 6b
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So, there are basically 2 ways to hit what you want to with an arrow. You can aim, either looking down the shaft, or with a gizmo; or you can use your instincts to hit the spot you want to. I used to aim. But when I switched from compound bows to traditional bows, It was very fatigue-inducing to hold it at full draw long enough to aim. So I was pondering the problem when I read an article in Field and Stream about aiming without aiming. It's instinctive shooting. You look where you want the arrow to go and let your body calculate the elevation and windage. Through practice and experience, you can get very small groups on target from random distances and even with obstructions. And the shot is eventually loosed as soon as you focus on the target.

My weekly practice looks like this:
Shooting while standing normally, thumb indexed on chin. 3 shots each at 5 ft distance intervals at my straw target
Shooting while standing normally, thumb indexed on chin. 3 shots each at 5 ft distance intervals at my straw target with a tree branch in the way
Shooting while turned at the waist to shoot behind me, thumb indexed on chin in different location. 3 shots each at 5 ft distance intervals at my straw target
Shooting while kneeling, bow tilted 45 degrees to avoid ground interference, arrow resting on top of bow, 3 shots each in 12 ft intervals with or without obstructions

Ground on range is lumpy as is natural. Uneven footing is common in the forest, practice for it. Greatest distance is 45 yards. Because of my practice regimen I get 3 inch groups out to 20 yards, 6 inch out to 30, and 1 ft at 45. I often strike my own previously fired arrows.
 
pollinator
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Looks like a very good regimen. I know that that method of aiming (It was described to me as "point shooting") works with firearms, with tons of practice, so I have no doubt it would work with a bow. Although that is more self defense than hunting orientated for sure.

Do you feel like you would use this method "cold turkey" (a pun!) to take game? By that I mean with no warm up/practice before hand. Or if that was the situation would you aim in the traditional sense?
 
Ryan Hobbs
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Dan Fish wrote:Looks like a very good regimen. I know that that method of aiming (It was described to me as "point shooting") works with firearms, with tons of practice, so I have no doubt it would work with a bow. Although that is more self defense than hunting orientated for sure.

Do you feel like you would use this method "cold turkey" (a pun!) to take game? By that I mean with no warm up/practice before hand. Or if that was the situation would you aim in the traditional sense?



I'd practice ahead, I never warm up because the game isn't going to let you warm up. When I'm confident in the use of a new bow, then I use it to hunt. I can't use guns, I have really bad PTSD, and because I was hospitalized for it, I don't have access to them. So I also use a bow for self defense, and in such situations you have to shoot fast and well without a warm up. But if you have good posture and enough strength in your string hand's shoulder, you're unlikely to hurt yourself shooting a bow even if you don't warm up. I also have a sword and spear for self defense and I practice with them weekly using Roland Warzecha tutorials on youtube.

One of my dream hunts is to take a bear with a spear, and the other is to take a bear with a knife. The spear is not the safer of the two. The knife is just really ballsy, because you have to kill the bear in its den. In its den, it can't move freely and swipe you, so you have a serious advantage because you're smaller and can move freely. It is actually a traditional way to hunt bears among the Ainu people of Japan and Russia. I just have old fashioned goals. I want to test myself. See what heights I can achieve. That goes along with my ways of hunting, and my way of life. My dream job is hunter-gatherer.
 
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