Back work out for improving bow shooting?

cmeier117

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Feb 24, 2012
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Salem, OR
Question for you guys. My dad who is just getting into bow hunting is in the market for a bow. He cannot even pull back my 70 lb bow. I told him we need to look for a 50-60 lb bow and set it at 50 lbs and work his way up to a higher poundage. He is 150# and not weak by any means, but he is working out I am just curious as to some back exercises for increase strength for drawing a bow. I recently got a 60 lb quest bow for him to try and pull back and practice with and he could pull it back but it took everything he had and he was done. So 50 lbs might be pushing it. I have a bowflex and do a lot of rowing and lat excercises and he has free weights at his house. I know a lot of it is form, but wanting some exercises for him to do. Thanks!
 

RosinBag

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Simple....shoot your bow. It is like doing pull ups, do pull ups to get better and stronger at pull ups. Shoot your bow more and the muscles needed will get stronger. I have yet to see a traditional strength exercise translate to bow pulling power.
 

Broken Arrow

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+1 on shooting. Maybe he will only shoot 5 arrows today 6 tomorrow and so on. One thing for everyone draw your bow with the opposite arm. I pulled my back out of alignment because I built my muscles up on one side painful lesson learned.
 

larryschwartz

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cmeier,

A combination of what has been suggested will probably work best for your Dad.

It's true that the best way to strenghten the muscles used to do an activity is to do that activity more, so definitely have him shoot a bow, but one that is a lighter weight than what he is going for. It sounds like he doesn't have the strength in the specific group of muscles that we use to draw and shoot a bow, I'm assuming you are talking about a compound BTW. Having him struggle with a 50# bow as a training device/strengthening tool will do two bad things...1) force him to use the wrong mucsles just get the string back, and 2) build bad form as a result. Get him a lighter weight bow, maybe even 40 - 45# to start out with to build form and start to strengthen the muscles he will be using.

To complement that task specific training have him do exercises that will strengthen his shoulder and back muscles to include that that work the muscles between the shoulder blades and upper back (like seated rowing) and pushups and pullups to work the shoulders in general and the biceps and triceps in particular.

Hope this helps. Also, talking to an actual trainer, like Aron Snyder or Les Welch here on Rokslide, will help you identify which muscle groups are being used and the specific exerices that will help strengthen them.
 

ohhiitznik

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Feb 24, 2012
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Rochester Hills, MI
As a trainer the best way to increasd his strength for that particular activity is to do just that. Shoot his bow constantly. There is no training movement that specifically targets bow muscles as well as shooting a bow can. Simple and easy just get him going now. Sure you can row but it all doesn't correalate as seamlessly as just firing yhe bow and firing it mamy times.
 

Vandal 44

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Jun 3, 2012
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Spokane, Washington
There are a lot of good ideas, one thing I would have your dad do is start swimming. It's a very good full body workout, as well as good cardio. I started training for triathlons, the swimming was the hardest event for me. It took me a month and I am know swimming over a mile three to four days a week. Swimming works the big and small muscles.
 

Tookeymonster

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Mar 1, 2012
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Colorado
as stated above shoot more, but lawnmower pulls will help a great deal with your strength for shooting. Once you can do 3 sets of 7 reps with 100 lbs for each arm you will be amazed on how the most aggressive 70 lb bow will pull back like butter.
 

rye_a

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Apr 23, 2012
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Colorado
If he is looking for something that he can do in front of the TV I would think that using an exercise band or length of surgical tubing with a loop on each end (one over his front thumb, one around his drawing wrist) would simulate the action of drawing.

I personally prefer just shooting a lot.
 
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