It’s important to get in as much archery training as possible before a tournament, regardless of how much free time you have. Even a short session can have a positive impact on your game in the long run.
While archery training is important, it is easy to neglect a specific aspect of your game which could lead to issues during a tournament. Here, we look at some important do’s and dont’s of archery training.
Do try and perfect your timing
In an archery tournament, it’s important to get your timings right. You usually have more time to complete a shot during qualification than in a later match, which can throw some players off their game.
When you are planning your training schedule, make sure you plan a timing routine. If, for example, your next tournament allows 40 seconds in qualification and 20 during the later stages, make sure you practise both scenarios. That way, you’ll be able to keep up with the change of pace once the competition progresses.
Don't train exclusively in good conditions
When you’re competing in an archery competition, you can’t do anything about the conditions. If it’s very windy, you must do everything you can to compensate and hit your target. As you’d expect, you’ll find it much easier to adapt if you have trained in similar conditions.
While the temptation is always there to only train when the conditions are perfect, this can leave you struggling in a competition if the weather takes a turn for the worst. If anything, you should try and seek out poor conditions, so that you’re fully prepared for even the worst weather when it comes to competition time.
Do break down your training sessions
If you’re struggling to find time for training, it can be tempting to try and fit as much as possible into one session. However, this approach has its disadvantages – you may find that some of your competitors have focused more on the fundamentals than you have.
Even if you have limited time, you should still break down your training sessions to focus on specific areas of your game. You should also incorporate warmups and breaks into your schedule so that your archery training sessions have a clear structure.
Don't take your warmup routine for granted
As with the vast majority of sports, warming up properly before taking part in an archery competition is very important. If you don’t do a proper warmup, you could find issues such as fatigue and muscle ache crop up a lot quicker for you than your competitors.
During your training, try out different warmup routines and see which ones have the biggest impact on your game. If you do this often enough and do your best to try new things, you should have the perfect warmup routine nailed down ready for when the next competition starts.
Do incorporate stretching into your warmups
Stretching is a very important part of any warmup routine. Not only does it help you get used to the feeling of shooting an arrow, it also gives your muscles a chance to prepare.
Using stretch bands can be very helpful for this aspect of a warmup routine. They give you the opportunity to stretch your muscles and simulate shooting an arrow without having to worry about accuracy or getting your equipment ready.
Don’t forget to work on your stance
Even if you consider yourself an experienced archer, your stance should be a central component of your training schedule. If you fail to practise this, bad habits could start to creep in, such as slumping shoulders or failing to stand up straight.
When you first start training for a tournament, build up the fundamentals of your stance first. Shoot at a target mat or blank target first, so that you can fully focus on the way you stand. Make sure you focus on squaring your feet so they are shoulder length apart and rotating your hips properly so you have good balance.
Consider specialist insurance
When you are trying to focus on your training regime, the last thing you want is to get caught out without insurance. Most shooting venues and archery clubs now ask for proof of archery insurance before they allow you to shoot there, so considering cover is becoming more and more important.
With insurance you can compete with peace of mind, knowing that you are fully protected should you damage your equipment or pick up an injury. Regardless of what level you compete at, you will be able to find the right cover to suit your needs. If you are going to be competing in other countries, you can even get worldwide cover so you can focus on your training and not worry about something going wrong.