On Target: Shooting Arrows Without Arms
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On Target: Shooting Arrows Without Arms

August 10, 2019

– [Voiceover] The first
thing I googled was how to teach a guy without
arms to shoot a bow. And there’s nothing out there like that. Because it’s such a rare thing. (intense violin music) (bow shooting and striking) My name is Matt Stutzman,
I’m from Fairfield, Iowa. And I’m a professional archerer. – Well, that’s how I shoot, there you go. In 1982, I was born as you see me right now, without any arms. I never see not having
arms as a limitation. It’s amazing how your body,
when it’s missing something, your other limbs take off and
kind of pick up the slack. So for me, my feet are my hands. Everything that I have in
my life, I do with my toes. It’s pretty rare that I don’t
use my feet for something. My phone, for example,
how I pick up my phone, I’d actually grab it
with my foot and flip it and catch it and be like hello. When I got started shooting,
it took me about two weeks from looking at a bow till
shooting probably my first arrow. Because I had to figure out how to hold it with this toe or this toe
or this foot or that foot. I had to kinda think
outside the box and come up with some creative ways of shooting. I actually hold the bow with my right foot but I will pretend it’s
somebody’s right arm in my mind. And then I have a release
aid that goes over my right shoulder and I actually
hook that onto the string. And when I sit up, I push
my foot away from my chest which draws the bow, at
this point, I’m aiming. I don’t see a guy without arms shooting. I see somebody with arms shooting and I guess it’s just how I imagine it. (bow releasing and striking) So I did repetitions, I sat in a chair for eight hours a day, six days a week. Time, kind of, slows way down. You forget who’s around you, you forget what you’re doing almost
and you’re so focused on one thing, shot and shot
and shot and shot and shot. That’s all I did, this
bow right here probably has a million arrows shot through it. At the end of the day, ya
know, it helps you become good. A couple medals or trophies
that stand out to me is my paralymics silver
medal, I also have the Guinness world record for the
longest accurate archery shot. And I shot an arrow and hit
a target from 310 yards away. I want my kids to see that no matter what the challenge is you can overcome it. You just have to put your
head down and push through and figure out a way to be successful. Figure out a way to just, ya know, be a good person while
you do all that stuff. At the end of the day I just want to be the best in the world, I
don’t care if you have arms, you don’t have arms, I
don’t care if you were the Michael Jordan of the sport and you’re an able-bodied archer. I just want to beat you ’cause I want to be known as the
best archer in the world. (arrow releasing and striking) (upbeat techno music)

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  2. Stutzman is one of the best professional archers I’ve seen. Even with his disability, it has not hindered his ability to practice archery and being one of the world’s best archers. I was impressed when i watched his game.

  3. It kind of makes sense that someone with no arms can make the longest archery shot, he has to use his feet and feet are much stronger than arms.

  4. He has to be the best. I was working at North Greenwich at the same time he was on and I watched him. It was one of those moments that change the way you think. It was an incredible sight.

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