Long range shooting tips.

cmeier117

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Well I got my new sight set-up and sighted in out to 60 yards. I was shocked at how well I shot as I have not shot passed 40 yards before. All my 5 shot groups at 60 were at least an 8 inch group; with my last group at about 4 inches. I know this isn't great but it is a great improvement for me. Anyway I got my sight tape on my Trident Hunter sight and am going to see what I can do out a little further tonight. Any tips on form, shooting, breathing etc... for shooting further distances or just tightening up closer groups. Even if it is something really basic, let me know. I am newer to bow shooting and am self taught so it might surprise you what I didn't know a few months ago. Any input is much appreciated.
 

Above Timber

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I will be interested to see what is posted here. I know that every little imperfection in your form is only magnified out past 40 yrds. I was once told not to let my bow down until you hear the arrow hit the target, and you need to really watch the hand torque on your release. Shooting with an open bow hand has helped me with the torque on the bow. You can take that for what it is worth.
 
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cmeier117

cmeier117

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I will be interested to see what is posted here. I know that every little imperfection in your form is only magnified out past 40 yrds. I was once told not to let my bow down until you hear the arrow hit the target, and you need to really watch the hand torque on your release. Shooting with an open bow hand has helped me with the torque on the bow. You can take that for what it is worth.
That is one thing my father in-law told me when I started shooting. I had a death grip on that bow. I now shoot more relaxed and made a big difference.
 

AZCoues

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I like a pre-shot routine, similar to a pre-putt or pre-freethrow routine you see pro golfers or basketball players do. I try do go through the same mental checklist in my head for those long range shots, settle my breathing and as Above Timber stated, hold that follow through until you hear the "smack" of the target.
 

HellsCanyon

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Consistent hand position on the grip with relaxed grip, consistent anchor point, gentle consistent release, aim small (I shoot all .010 pins, biggest factor that tightened up my groups!), and follow through (don't drop your bow arm and don't move your head to try and peak to see where the shot is going). I'm not a great shot but consistently put together 4-5" groups at 60 yards. One thing that I consistently noticed is I could change my grip position a little and really modify where my pins were hitting. This was due to the weight of my arrow quiver and the quiver not being very close to the riser. Created a bit of torque that would alter my shots. Really taught me to be consistent with every little thing.

Also, if you can practice at 70+ yards, DO IT! Last year I was practicing out to 70 yards when it wasn't windy and it made 50 yds a literal chip shot. Stretch your practice out there as far as you can reasonably and safely go. This is all what really helped me.

Mike
 

pronghorn

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Keep focused on the center of the target and trust your float. Your sight pin will float, but if you remain focused on the center of the target your sight will return to center. I would also recommend a mind trick that has helped a lot of novice archers in the past, when you release the arrow the bow has no idea how far the arrow is going to travel. Male the same good quality, smooth shot at 30 yards that you make at 80 yards.
 
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cmeier117

cmeier117

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Thanks guys these are all great tips and some of these things I haven't heard of before. Last night the wind prevented me from getting out past 60 yards and my groups weren't great but I finished up with a 3 inch 5 shot group at 40 and it seemed like it was 20 yards! I will say that I lost an arrow and this was from me showing my dad how the slider worked on my sight and I had it turned down to 100 yards. I then proceeded to get distracted and shoot an arrow from 50 yards... Lets just say I was shocked for a second when my arrow flew 2 feet over my target!! Haha... got to love rookie mistakes.
 

RosinBag

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I shoot tournament archery for half of the year and I will disagree with having to keep your bow arm up until the arrow hits the target. If you watch the top end pro's, which all have videos on you tube, none of them keep their arm up long or any at times. Once the shot is released, your bow arm is done affecting it unless it was moving at the time the shot was released. The arrow is off the string in thousandths of a second. Think of how fast a drop away moves out of the way, and even that has time to spare. If your new, it is a good habit to get into, but it is not as important as people believe.

Watch Dave Cousins shoot, it at times looks like an explosion, but he is amongst the best in the world year in and year out. He has dozens of videos on you tube that will confirm it. His arm moves pretty violently down and away to the left.

Accuracy comes from many things, but consistent shot execution wins out every time. You can have a great hold and sight picture, but poor shot execution will make you miss. Where as not the greatest hold or sight picture with consistent shot execution will still put you in the center. There are dozens of top pro shooter who have made DVD's and most say single most important part, consistent shot execution.
 

J-Daddy

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I shoot tournament archery for half of the year and I will disagree with having to keep your bow arm up until the arrow hits the target. If you watch the top end pro's, which all have videos on you tube, none of them keep their arm up long or any at times. Once the shot is released, your bow arm is done affecting it unless it was moving at the time the shot was released. The arrow is off the string in thousandths of a second. Think of how fast a drop away moves out of the way, and even that has time to spare. If your new, it is a good habit to get into, but it is not as important as people believe.

Watch Dave Cousins shoot, it at times looks like an explosion, but he is amongst the best in the world year in and year out. He has dozens of videos on you tube that will confirm it. His arm moves pretty violently down and away to the left.

Accuracy comes from many things, but consistent shot execution wins out every time. You can have a great hold and sight picture, but poor shot execution will make you miss. Where as not the greatest hold or sight picture with consistent shot execution will still put you in the center. There are dozens of top pro shooter who have made DVD's and most say single most important part, consistent shot execution.
I agree the old "Keep the pin on the target until the arrow hits" saying is WAY over rated...Honestly I don't know how anyone could shoot a back tension release and keep the bow up after the shot breaks...I know when I shoot a back tension release it is an explosion when the shot breaks, the bow tends to jump forward and left with me. Good point about watching Cousins shoot, but watch Levi Morgan or any of the top shooters, you get that same movement, forward and left "for right hand shooters"...
 

RosinBag

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I see all the top pros shoot in person every year at the Outdoor Nationals, J Daddy is spot on with how the bow reacts after the shot breaks. It is actually physically impossible to hold your pin on the target after the shot. If you shoot a dead release, meaning you don't pull through the shot, you could keep your bow arm up, but not your pin on target. Tournament archery practices will translate to more accuracy in hunting situations.
 
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cmeier117

cmeier117

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Rosinbag - You mentioned execute the shot. I may be doing this correctly but I don't think I am a natural shot with God given ability. So act like I don't know what your talking about and walk me through a perfectly executed shot. ;) So others can learn...
 

Brandon Pattison

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http://www.lancasterarchery.com/understanding-winning-archery-book-by-al-henderson.html

This book helped me a lot.

This book is hard to read. Like stated above, have a pre-shot routine and go throught it before each shot. The key is consistancy and be sure to slide your bow hand into the grip exactly the same before you draw the bow. Pay attention to your draw arm's wrist, keep it at the same 'degree'. Center your peep in your pin guard, focus on the pin and don't punch the trigger. Equal weight on each foot. Blah blah blah. :)
 

RosinBag

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Shot execution for me is the portion of the shot process where the arrow is released. I am no expert or teacher. I agree with pre shot routine as many problems with accuracy can be fixed with proper set up to start with. I shoot a Stan Shootoff for target and hunting both. As far as the shot execution goes, once my aim / hold is where I want, shot execution starts for me.

First part is pushing slightly with my my bow hand, while squeezing my shoulder blades together. For my release, I trap the thumb barrel with my thumb. As I am pushing and squeezing my shoulder blades together, this creates tension which will apply enough pressure on the thumb trigger to release the arrow. The tension makes a surprise release when done correctly. I never pull or push on the trigger, it will create target panic. The more consistent you are with the execution, the tighter your groups will become.

I also shoot with a straight bow arm, no bend at all. This creates bone on bone in line support. This will steady your aim. A bent arm is being supported by muscle tension which fatigues faster are harder to repeat shot after shot.

There are tons of good videos out there teaching all the basics. One I think is well done is from Dave Cousins and Liam Grimwood called Perfect Shooting Form. This video starts with the stance and goes through every aspect of shooting.
 

HellsCanyon

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Just because the "pros" shoot some way doesn't mean that everyone can do it like that. While I agree that keeping your bow arm up after the release or following through isn't required, and may be over rated for some, its not a BAD habit to start. Biggest thing for me my first year hunting with a bow was "peeking" as the shot was being released. Sometimes I would drop my bow arm as I'm tripping my release. After I missed a doe for this reason I began concentrating on following through and focusing on having my trigger release being the only muscle movement occuring during the shot. If gravity dictates my bow are drops slightly or anything, then fine. Same with shooting a rifle, you want your natural point of aim to be on target and only movement is trigger finger straight back. This has worked for me and helped me to develop proper muscle memory on the shot to make me more consistent. Its worked for me, though YMMV.

Mike
 

bowhnter7

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While I agree that keeping your bow arm up after the release or following through isn't required,
With the way I shoot when the shot breaks I can guarantee you the bow will not be sitting there and the follow through IS important.

For me the follow through is like the cherry on top of the sunday. It's what tells me everything was perfect and sort of a reward feeling of a good shot. If your pulling (dynamic tension) on the bow and working your shot the bow is going to have a reaction when the shot breaks.

Those guys that have the bow just sitting there after the shot are totally poking the shot......not that that is "bad" I just cant shoot that way.


 

RosinBag

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Hellscanyon, I initially said not a bad way to start shooting. Your problem with peeking is not the same problem as holding bow arm up after the shot. Peeking is a mental problem and in hunting is closer to buck fever.

If you shoot utilizing back tension to trigger your release, your follow through us dynamic. If you shoot a dead release to trigger your shot, you can hold your bow arm up much easier if you choose. Both ways will kill animals, but one is far more accurate than the other.

I make reference to pros and top shooters so people have an understanding of the most accurate forms of shooting. Many will never get the oppurtunity to shoot or see them. For me personally I learned more about how to shoot after just a couple of days of shooting with them. No different than hunting with a guy who hunts and calls well, you learn to do that part better.
 

Lukem

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Beyond making sure that your form is good and you have that same routine just like shooting freethrows (still remember: 3 dribbles while rocking my feet in rhythm to the dribbles, spin the ball in my hand, shoot...) is spend lots of time practicing. I'm by no means a pro, but I'm a pretty decent shot, and people will say things about luck, great bow, God given talent (which I won't discredit any of what God gave me, He's blessed me in so many ways) but more than anything for me has been the hours and hours behind the string. Basketball players aren't just naturally great shots, they practice. Lots. It's been said that Kobe Bryant used to spend 9 hours a day shooting. Some people do have a natural talent for things, it's only a start, the truly great put in the hard work to get there.
 

Jon Boy

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The biggest thing that led to an improvement in my long range accuracy was squeezing the trigger to the point it startles you when the bow goes off. This equates to a proper follow through with out peaking because it surprises you and the arrow is out of the bow before you can peak. The key to all of it is consistency. If you jerk the hell out of your bow every single time the exact same way and sight in that way than ull be fine. However, it is highly unlikely ull be consistent with that method and I dont recommend it. Find what grip, form, and follow through feels most natural to you and practice it exactly the same way every single time. After a while it will become habit. For me it took a long time of switching my grip and form up to one that really just felt right. Some people look at me like im crazy when I anchor with my thumb touching the knot on the back of my head until they see my 60 yard group. Good luck and keep practicing
 

Jared Bloomgren

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I agree with many things above....it comes down to great form, consistent anchor that does not change, lots of practice, and patience. I mostly shoot at 60+ yards and it has improved my success in the field for those longer than average shots....practice makes perfect they say....even if you think you have reached perfect, shoot some more! Beyond that, having confidence in your ability and gear is a must. Knowing your limits is also something to consider.
 
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