There are a few things that you should always take into consideration when you are bow hunting with your compound archery bow. If this is your first time hitting the field then you should know that shooting at a live animal is much different then shooting at a target in your backyard. It is also nothing like shooting practice at your local range. If you are perched atop your tree stand, or you are getting yourself ready to take a shot out of your hunting blind, there is another element that you must consider. If you have never shot at a live animal then your adrenaline will no doubt be pumping at full blast. You have to remember that there is a great deal of responsibility that is involved in harvesting an animal.
You have to be ready to make the shot where it counts when the pressure is on. As mentioned earlier, this is not your backyard target shoot; there is an animal’s life that is on the line. It is your duty to make sure that you use your archery bow properly to ensure that the animal does not suffer. One of the first things that I always ask the shooter is that they always keep angles in the back of their minds the moment that they hit the field. Being able to assess trajectory is a completely different ballgame when you are shooting up a slope from your hunting blind, or you are shooting downwards from your tree stand. Most people only practice from straight/flat ground so you need to make sure that you know how to hit those angles.
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, you want to make sure that you are prepared for the “buck fever” that will happen when the time comes. I have always tried this simple technique when I am practicing that helps me to simulate the nerves. It is best done if you are practicing with a friend of yours. What I suggest is that once you are getting towards the end of your practice session, you place a small wager on the outcome of the last 10 shots. I have done this many times before where the bet is for something as straightforward as lunch and many other times it is as simple as who drives to the range/hunting trip the next time. If you want to add a little more “struggle” to the challenge then you can either make it timed, or horse-esq. This will help you make the shot when you are out in the field. When the time comes, you can be sure that your heart will be racing.
As with many other aspects of this sport, you can avoid many of these pitfalls if you just make sure that your form is always on point. The shot should come as second nature to you when you are out in the field. If you fidget or hesitate then you will not take your best shot. There should be no doubt in your mind that your arrow is headed exactly where you intended it to go. I know that there are many other things that I may have missed, but these are the two that transcend from the first time shooter, all the way to the seasoned veteran. That feeling of accomplishment just doesn’t go away. It is for this reason that you need to make sure that you remain consistent, focus on accuracy, and keep your cool when shooting your archery bow. Click on archery bows to learn more!