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Thread: Aiming at the target with a recurve

  1. #1

    Aiming at the target with a recurve

    Just wanted some advice on how to aim at the target using a recurve bow. Should I use the tip of the arrow as a reference point or some point on the bow? Some background on me, I started off in archery with an Olympic-style recuve with Sur-loc sight and stabilizer, then went to a Hoyt Vicxen compound bow, and now, just for fun, I just got a Samick SHB one-piece recurve 58 inches, 30 lb draw. I've been shooting the Samick for a week now and my arrows are all over the place. Thanks.



  2. #2
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    sp -

    START by setting up fairly close to the target (5-10 yds) and focusing on the very center of the "X" in the x-ring. (Don't try to burn a hole in, as range fires can be nasty...)

    Assuming you remember your shooting form from the OR - YES, IT'S EXACTLY THE SAME, and you've switched to side of face anchor, keep shooting and see if your arrows begin finding the center of the target after a few full sessions.

    IF after a few weeks if that, you don't see any improvement, then we can start to discuss more formal aiming methods. Some folks take to the instinctive stuff better/quicker than others, I would have started you off that way, before you went to the OR.

    Viper1 out.
    “Simple and innocent, however, as it (the bow) appears, and capable as it is of being a trusty friend and ally, a bow is at the same time a watchful enemy, ready to take advantage of the smallest slight.”

  3. #3
    Thanks Viper 1, your awesome. I use the middle finger to the corner of my mouth as an anchor. I'll work at the 5-10 yd target for now.

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    I might catch some technical grief for my suggestion, but, there doesn't necessarily have to be a change in anchor. I started out and still do shoot primarily instinctive/gap. At first, it was with a typical side of face anchor. I later developed the Oly style under chin anchor to accommodate sight shooting for that venue.

    Since, I find the under chin most useful for shooting without sights. Yes, at the short ranges, my arrow tip is of little use for reference, but at longer distances, it's right where I need it. Actually, trying to use the arrow tip on short range always tripped me up anyway.

    Another useful aspect of keeping the Oly style anchor is that I gain better use of all my bow - string alignment and riser directly in front. These references actually prove more useful at all ranges. The riser is not a bad gap reference once you learn how to use it for such. String alignment brings added consistency.

    For grins, I have tried the old side of face again. It feels very unnatural and tires my draw arm very fast. I feel that form actually is not as mechanically efficient. The draw feels out and away from the line of force and requires added effort to maintain consistent holding force.

  5. #5
    Thanks Sanford, I will keep in mind the importance of string alignment. Thanks for the info.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Viper1 View Post

    Assuming you remember your shooting form from the OR -............

    Viper1 out.
    Quote Originally Posted by Viper1 View Post
    .................before you went to the OR.

    Viper1 out.
    What is "OR" ??????????????
    "...If you can find humor in anything, even poverty, you can survive it" Bill Cosby

    "I am thankful for laughter, except when milk comes out of my nose." Woody Allen


  7. #7
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    Don't know if "southpaw" plans on just punching paper or to also shoot under bowhunting conditions. If he plans to bowhunt, the so-called "Oly anchor" will be very inhibiting.

  8. #8
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    ti -

    Sorry for the jargon. OR is just shorthand for Olympic Recurve. It's basically what we used to call "target bows" in the old days. Typically a longer recurve set up with a sight, one or more stabilizers, etc. The point to Southpaw was that, believe it or not,the fundamentals are exactly the same with any type of bow. The only difference between target shooting and bowhunting on Internet forums, is that when shooting an OR, due to the accuracy requirements, all the BS stops.

    Viper1 out.
    “Simple and innocent, however, as it (the bow) appears, and capable as it is of being a trusty friend and ally, a bow is at the same time a watchful enemy, ready to take advantage of the smallest slight.”

  9. #9
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    Just read a post by Limbwalker that stated something like "aiming is a very over-rated aspect of archery". He went on to state that form is where it's at. Without consistent form the rest does not matter. He added a rifle shooting analogy that made a lot of sense also. It was that even with a match rifle if the ammo was loaded with different amounts of powder, different primers, different bullets etc. even the best shooter in the world could not hit squat and that aiming was fruitless without consistent ammo........same with archery, consistant arrows, release, draw length, etc. all make for consistant shooting - then it's just a matter of moving the group to the middle.

  10. #10
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    Badda bing, badda bang, badda boom.

    It's funny, that with "trad" and "bowhunting" types the discussion is always on "aiming" or the method of aiming, while the guys who are actually hitting things on a more regular basis don't talk about it as much. Aiming is probably less then 10% of the entire shot process. A critical 10% for sure, but most of the time, poor aiming isn't why we miss.

    Viper1 out.
    “Simple and innocent, however, as it (the bow) appears, and capable as it is of being a trusty friend and ally, a bow is at the same time a watchful enemy, ready to take advantage of the smallest slight.”

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by southpaw2000 View Post
    Thanks Viper 1, your awesome. I use the middle finger to the corner of my mouth as an anchor. I'll work at the 5-10 yd target for now.
    I learned the hard way to shoot and fortunately had some help from those that grew up with recurves. One thing I'd like to offer of my own experience is the anchor. I used the same anchor you do, and until I learned to add to it with a more solid point of awareness behind my jawline so that it is creeping from my mouth.

    Aloha...

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    Quote Originally Posted by WindWalker View Post
    If he plans to bowhunt, the so-called "Oly anchor" will be very inhibiting.
    Why is that? It inhibits what for those who are accurate using it?

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    Why is that? It inhibits what for those who are accurate using it?
    Bowhunt much...with a recurve or longbow?

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    Quote Originally Posted by WindWalker View Post
    Bowhunt much...with a recurve or longbow?
    Nope. What's that official hunting anchor, again?

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    It can depend on the type of Recurve and even type of Anchor, I recently made the switch from Longbow to Recurve, The Pro-accent I use for IFAA Bowhunter div on marked Field rounds, with elevated rest and 3 under I tend to gap off the arrow more, that skinny carbon is kinda floating out there like a pin sight lol

    The Tradtec Pinnicale I shoot Split finger (as per Fita 3D rules) and I tend to shoot by overall sight picture on unmarked 3D's, framing the whole riser\arrow against the 3D I get a feel for the sight picture more like I did with the Longbow.

    There is a number of ways to aim and it's best to try them all and see what's working best for you, once learnt it's just a matter of progaming the info into the subconscious and then learning to focus 100% on the spot you want to hit, even with gap it much better left to the subconscious to do the calulations

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    What's that official hunting anchor, again?
    Don't think official, think conducive.

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    Quote Originally Posted by WindWalker View Post
    Don't think official, think conducive.
    Ok, so what's the "very inhibitive" aspect of anchoring with index finger along the underside of the jawbone over anchoring to the side of it or maybe on top of it? Since everyone's head structure is the same, I'm sure everyone would want to use the most conducive and universal anchor. There just seems to be some holes in that statement you pulled out of the air. Can you pull some more for filler?

  18. #18
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    Ok, back on topic here......If you want to aim off the arrow point, put the point on the center of the target and shoot a group. (Make sure you have a big backstop and/or start at close range-first shots from 10-20 yards will likley be high). Now rotate the target 180 degrees, aim point on at the holes that the first group created. If you do your part, the second group should be right in the middle. Basically an inverse of the first group. Once you figure out where to hold you should be able to shoot predictable shots.

  19. #19
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    Now rotate the target 180 degrees, aim point on at the holes that the first group created.
    What if you can't rotate the target and/or see the small holes?

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    Use your imagination..............somet imes I think you could find fault with a gift.

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    sometimes I think you could find fault with a gift.
    I consider the question to be totally legitimate. You provided a method; what is the alternative if your proposed method is not possible?

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    I would say the alternative to not being able to rotate a target face or to see the small holes in the paper at 10 -20 yards is to not be shooting a bow. No need at that level of disability. Speaking of holes in things....

  23. #23
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    I would say the alternative to not being able to rotate a target face or to see the small holes in the paper at 10 -20 yards is to not be shooting a bow. No need at that level of disability. Speaking of holes in things....
    That is based an assumption that everyone is tuning on a standard target, has their own target butt, that the target has a replaceable paper face, and that the only holes in the target are few and only made by the individual.

    If not convenient or possible, what are the alternatives?

  24. #24
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    I understand where centershot is coming from.

    Ok shoot for spot as CS suggests, use an arrow as a ruler to see how far above the group impacted then move ruler to (i.e reverse) the spot to show how far under the spot you need to aim, you can even put one of those sticky flo dots on your gap point on the face to help you learn a little faster

    Another option if your shooting marked distances while learning gaps, is to use something on the Bow, with my Reucrve I used plate of Spig rest held at arms length to set the gap point, it's a little crude but enough to work out some rough gaps till you settle into how the bow shoots, shooting Field rounds is a very fast and a good way to learn a Bow and Gaps, the target face size and distance is known so it's just a matter of working in out where on the face you need to hold the arrow point.

    Once all this stuff is ingrained you will aquire sight picture on marked and unmarked targets without any problems. For me these methods are much faster learning than trying to instinctive shoot 1000's of arrows till you subconscious finds a pattern, then you have to keep shooting 1000's of arrows to maintain reasonable accuracy (I used to shoot instinctive).

    For me Gap\Split is just a matter of doing once a week a few marked distance walkback practice sessions to just focus on the Gaps store them back into the subconscious and I'm good to go, I can also pick up and and pretty much learn a differnt Bow within a doz shots.

  25. #25
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    I agree with Centershot and steve I sometimes use a bright orange ball and place it under the spot where I need to aim to learn the gap for that yardage.

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