(music playing) Mmm, this is good data. Oh hi! As most do know, archery is a very diverse field. There’s sport, there’s recreation, and there’s history and so on. The problem is that people outside the sport don’t really understand what archery is about. And they place value on peripheral things. This is why you get these really strange arguments how Olympic archers are pansies. And real archers are real men like Byron Ferguson or Howard Hill, or Lars Andersen. And by extension athletes know nothing about archery, because they use sights and stabilisers and stuff, that real archers wouldn’t use. If we are going to quantify how good an archer is, you’ve got to put it into context. For a target archer, there is only one thing that we use as an metric – our score. That is literally the only thing we are aiming for. There are other elements, that come with good form and technique, but at the end of the day, it’s about score. Archers are ranked based on their score. You can track an archers progress through their personal best and score progression, and their highs and lows. But it’s all about score. It’s the only way to compare yourself to other archers. When it comes down to the goal of archery, it doesn’t mean much if you can’t hit the target. The problem is that many observers will think that sport archery is slow and boring. And the huge followings of the viral archers like Lars Andersen are better examples of archery, and what archery should be. And therefore they are better archers. You see this a lot in the comments. “Oh, you’re jealous, because you’re not as good.” “And he’ll beat you anyday!” In what? Lars is an example of an person, who is very good at what he does. But, it’s not what I do. And I can’t compare with him, because we measure our ability in different ways. Because many commenters don’t understand the sport and competition aspect of archery, the idea of a score doesn’t really mean anything. And in fact, they probably don’t know how scoring works. So here’s a list of things that people often value more than score – Since we mentioned Lars Andersen, let’s talk about speed. Speed shooting is something that people do. albeit not very organised into a competitive format. It’s understandable that someone might want to see how fast they can shoot. Speed is a competitive element in many challenges and sports. However, it’s not really something, that is really useful in archery. Because speed often comes at the cost of accuracy. Shooting faster doesn’t mean you’re a better archer. It just means you are a faster archer. To make things more deceiving, people value speed with no regard to any other parameters that legitimise field shooting. If people are serious about turning speed shooting into a competition, you need to set common parameters for shooters to compare themselves against. That means you need to set the equipment requirements, the draw weight requirements, the distance to be shot at, the minimal requirements for hitting a target, and so on. If all you care about is speed, then you can just grab a 15pound bow and pull it half way and just drop arrows into the ground. A target archer doesn’t care about speed. They’ve got 40 seconds to shoot an arrow. The format and the equipment doesn’t lend itself to speed shooting. So it’s a comparison you can’t make. A target shooter is aiming for score. A speed shooter is testing how many arrows he can shoot in a set time. There is currently no format that requires both. Another thing that is overvalued is draw weight. I’ve already done a video on draw weight egos, but This is so common especially among young archers, that it deserves mentioning again. Shooting a heavier draw weight does not make you a better archer. It’s not an accomplishment. Especially if you don’t shoot anywhere near as accurately, or you don’t score as high. it’s literally just a number. And if you want to impress people with bigger numbers, do weight lifting. Unfortunately for you, archery does not have a discipline to see who can draw the heaviest bow. Something I see used as a measuring stick is distance, as in some bows can shoot further than others, or some people can shoot further than others. This actually is a discipline in world archery. It’s called flight archery. And the goal is to see who can shoot the furthest arrow. However these are sorted into classifications, and the records are held by bows specially designed for this competition. As far as target archery is concerned, we don’t really care, as long as we can make 70m, we’re fine. Finally, there’s style. Some forms of archery don’t look as cool as others. That’s actually a good point. It’s repetitive, it can be boring to watch, especially if you’re not into the whole admiring form and technique. So I get why some people place a lot of value into things like trick shooting. And legitimately – why not? It’s creative, it’s challenging, it’s fun. But it’s also not a competition. There aren’t many, if any professional trick shooting archers who go around and exhibit their skills. We don’t have a format, where we award points in the same way as gymnastics. When you think about it, a lot of these criteria could be turned into competitive formats. You could do a speed shooting competition. Or a coolest trick shot competition. However there simply isn’t enough out there to validate these as legitimate competitions that people actually want to compete in. The point, however, is that archery at its heart is about hitting a target. Modern competitions quantify this by using a point system. Nothing else is judged. If you come into archery, because you’ve been pulled in by the awesomest people like Byron Ferguson or Lars Andersen, understand, that as target archers we also think that Lars is very cool. However, we’re not jealous. We’re not any more jealous of him than a cyclist is jealous of a Moto GP racer. So my question for you today is – What are some of the things you’ve seen people rate in archery? This is NU Sensei, bringing you another archery annoyance.