Instinctive Archery – Shoot a Bow Without Sights
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Instinctive Archery – Shoot a Bow Without Sights

August 10, 2019


There�s an ancient style of archery that�s
been gaining more and more of a following recently. It has been used by medieval archers
in Europe, Native Americans in the Americas and the Ninja of feudal Japan. Instinctive archery is a means of �aiming
by not aiming� that dates back thousands of years. It�s the practice of shooting
a bow: normally a traditional wooden bow, longbow or recurve bow with no attached sights. That means no pin sights, scopes or peep sights. Recently, more and more archers are getting
back into this style of traditional archery � nothing but the archer with a bow and
an arrow. It�s gets back to the pure talent, practice and skill of archery from the days
of old. The sense of accomplishment from landing a
50 yard shot exactly where you wanted it without any aid of scopes or sights is amazing. Many
traditional archers will say that it flat out dwarfs that of any target archer with
a pin sight, target stabilizer and whatever other fancy, modern day gear and accessories. There are two main styles considered to be
the most used, and most effective forms of instinctive archery, Gap shooting and purely
instinctive archery � a �see it and shoot it� approach. While there are some archers (or purists)
that will argue that gap shooting is not instinctive archery, many others will agree that these
are just different types of instinctive archery � each having their own specific uses. I consider gap shooting to be instinctive
archery as it is what most people who�ve never held a bow literally instinctively do
when they try to shoot. Ask any kid to shoot a bow, they�ll usually close one eye while
instinctively lining up the arrow with the target. So to me, if that�s what people really do
instinctively go to � it�s a real part of instinctive archery. One way to think about it is that gap shooting
is conscious aiming, while the see and shoot method is subconscious aiming. There are times when you�ll want to use
gap shooting, and it will out shoot any �see and shoot� instinctive archer. But there
are other situations in which this is completely reversed and see and shoot will have more
accuracy. When you�re shooting in a straight line,
with little or no obstacles, gap shooting tends to win out. However, when you�re shooting
up or down hills or inclines with trees and brush obscuring your view, see and shoot will
have the advantage. This is because gap shooting makes you great
at discerning range by sight over time with lots of practice, while see and shoot allows
you to quickly and accurately shoot in challenging situations. So Let’s cover the The Basics of Instinctive
Archery Regardless of which method of shooting you�re
using there are some things that you need to do to make either of them work well for
you. It�s much easier to install a good habit than it is to correct and replace a
bad one. So pay attention � especially if you�re
new to archery. If you�re an experienced archer, chances are you�ll have adopted
or been taught some of the following tips, techniques and best practices. The first thing is Your Stance
You�ve probably heard it before, but your stance is very important in any type of archery.
The reason you�ve heard it before it because it�s true. Stand at 90 degrees to the target
(the target should be directly in line with the outside edge of your non-dominant foot). For right handed archers this means the outside
edge of your left foot. You should be sideways facing the target. As you get better and more
comfortable you can vary how far sideways you�re facing, but for now just stick with
the side facing target approach. Make sure your feet are standing at least
shoulder width apart. The next thing is your Shot Sequence One thing that�s very important for both
styles of instinctive shooting is the consistency of your shot sequence. Your shot sequence
is just all of the things that you do leading up to each shot. For Example: checking that your stance is
correct, nocking your arrow on the bowstring, drawing the bow to your anchor point, looking
at the spot on the target that you�re aiming for, releasing the arrow and finally, following
through with the shot. It�s important to develop a shot sequence
that’s exactly the same every time. You must do all of the same things in the same exact
order before every shot. This is important as it gets the shot sequence trained in the
subconscious mind over time � so it becomes second nature to do this with every shot.
The next thing is your Bow Grip The grip of your bow hand should be light,
almost as if the bow is only slightly resting on the top of your hand. No tight gripping
of the bow, get in the habit of checking that you�re only gently supporting the bow as
a part of your shot sequence. Your Draw Hand Grip
Most western archers today shoot what is known as Mediterranean draw, which is using the
index, middle and ring fingers to draw the bowstring back.
There are two main types of the Mediterranean draw:
Some archers shoot split finger � the index finger being above the arrow, while the middle
and ring fingers are below the arrow. While others shoot �three under� � where
all three fingers are under the arrow. For gap shooting you�ll more likely want
to use three under, as it holds the arrow closer to your eye, which makes it easier
to aim and more accurately shoot each arrow. Many people also prefer the three under grip
for see and shoot as well, but you could shoot split finger if it feels more natural and
works better for you. Either way, you should hold the string on
the meat of your fingers: past the fingertips but not so far as it falls into the first
joint of your fingers. If you shoot with the bowstring in the joint of your fingers, your
string release will be jagged and will really throw off your shot. I’ve put up a complete break down of both
gap shooting and the see and shoot styles of instinctive archery on my site. It’ll not only teach you exactly how to shoot
both of these styles, but it also includes practice exercises for both styles of shooting.
It’s got everything that you want to know about instinctive archery, gap shooting and
the see it and shoot it styles of archery. It’s up right now and it’s free, so start
learning both styles of instinctive archery today! You can check it out right now at Archerydude.com/Shoot

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