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    Archery Rules – The Rules You Need To Know

    Archery is a great sport that is a lot of fun and offers a challenge both physically and mentally.  As with any sport there are general archery rules or guidelines that must be followed in order to promote safety, fairness, and a good challenge.  In the sport of archery there are many different variations of rules depending on the type of shooting you are doing. Types of shoots include: Compettitive, 3D archery, Tournaments, Club shoots etc.

    There are however, general archery rules that stay the same no matter where you go or what type of shoot you are participating in.  These rules focus around the safety aspect of archery and must be followed in order to prevent injury to both yourself and others.  The following is a list of common archery rules:

    Never Dry-Fire a Bow

    This is a very important rule that if not followed could result in serious injury to yourself and to your bow equipment.  The act of dry firing a bow is shooting your bow without an arrow.  This may seem strange but the arrow provides the bow just enough resistance to keep it from overloading the limbs, cams/wheels, bow string and other components.  It is not uncommon for th bow string to snap, and limbs to break or crack when a dry-fire occurs.

    Never Fire a Bow when People are Area of Target

    This is an obvious rule that if not followed could end up in serious injury and even death.  One of the potential scenarios of archery is arrow deflection.  This happens when the arrow grazes or barely hits the target or other objects in its path.  The arrow can be deflected left, right, up or down.  This can make for a disaster should there be a person in the near vicinity of the target.

    Never Release an Arrow into the Sky (Sky Firing)

    Although this type of practice is seen in movies such as the lord of the Rings, this practice is not okay and should never be done.  Shooting an arrow into the sky can be very dangerous as it is unknown as to where the arrow will land or what or who it will hit.  Arrows are very light and can be carried by the wind off its course which adds to the dangerous aspect of this type of practice.

    Check Your Arrows after a Bad Shot

    The most common type of arrow used in archery today are carbon, the reason for this is due to their strength, resilience to damage and bending, and the increased straightness. It is important to make sure that if you miss the target or animal and your arrow hits or scrapes along the ground or other hard object or if you get a deflection off of an object that you check your arrow for missing pieces, stress cracks, chips or any other type of damage to your arrow.  The reason for this is that because the arrows are made of carbon fibers, they have the potential to shatter into a million pieces upon firing if there is damage to its structure.  This can cause massive injury to your face, arms and hands.

    Check your Bow String before Shooting

    Your bow string holds a lot of weight and is put under a ton of stress every time it is pulled back.  This along with age and outdoor elements causes your bow string to break down and degrade.  It is important that every time before you begin a shoot that you check your bow string for frayed, broken, separated or damaged strands.  Failure to catch any of these can result in your bow string snapping while at full draw causing damage to your equipment and possible serious injury to yourself and other standing near by.

    These are just a few of the general archery rules that if followed will help to greatly reduce the chances of injury to yourself or others and will also reduce the chances of damage to your archery equipment.

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    An Introduction to The Sport of Archery

    Bows come in all shapes, sizes and colors but they all work on the same principle of potential and kinetic energy. When the bow is drawn the limbs are pulled inward creating energy that is stored in the limbs of the bow as potential energy. When the string is released the stored energy from the limbs are transferred to the arrow in the form of kinetic energy.

    The compound bow is one of the most popular bows that archers use this is because it offers more accuracy, speed and distance than other bows. The compound bow also offers something called let off. This is where at full draw the weight that is needed to draw the bow is dropped by 60%-80% so the archer can hold the string back without having to fight a great amount of weight

    The crossbow comes in as a close second to the compound bow for popularity. The crossbow is actually very close to a gun without the fire power. A crossbow takes the least amount of skill to operate as the string can be pulled back and locked into position and then fired using a trigger when the time arises. Crossbows because they have smaller limbs usually have a draw weight of 150+ pounds. This is a perfect transition bow for the avid gun hunter.

    In today’s archery world speed is a huge marketing topic for a bow, the speed of any given bow is called the IBO speed. This is calculated by using a 350grain arrow at 60lb draw weight and a 30inch draw length. The speed of a bow is greatly affected by these three issues (draw weight, draw length, weight of the arrow).

    Two common ways to shoot a bow are with what is called a release and fingers. Shooting with a release makes drawing a bow fairly simple because it puts less stress on your finger joints as well as providing a smooth release that will undoubtedly increasing the accuracy of the arrow.

    Shooting fingers is tougher in that your fingers are holding the weight of the drawn string and when the string is released from your fingers it tends to rotate the string around causing a loss of accuracy.

    When it comes to shooting a bow there are a couple of things you have to watch for so as to avoid serious injury.

    1. Before shooting an arrow you must make sure to look it over for any potential cracks or splinters that may be in the shaft. Shooting an arrow with a crack or splintered area could end up shattering into a million pieces and more often than not end up embedding themselves into your arm.

    2. Never under ANY circumstances shoot a bow which does not have an arrow loaded into it. Doing this will most definitely crack the limbs causing the bow to potentially shoot pieces of bow back in your face. Even if in the event that you’re lucky enough not to get injured your bow will be rendered useless.

    3. When shooting in wooded areas make sure that branches and twigs don’t get under the string. If this happens when the string is released and wraps back around the cam if there is a branch under the string it could get caught and cause the string to fall off the cam track.

    4. Not all arrows are compatible with your bow, if you shoot an arrow that is not stiff enough then when the arrow is shot it will bend too much and the arrow could shatter causing bodily harm.

    5. Never under any circumstance shoot straight into the air. You never know where the wind will take it or will it will land and you could seriously injure somebody.

    Today there are two main types of shooting in the sport of archery and those are competitive shooting and hunting.

    With competitive shooting the archers goal is to shoot arrows at a given target aiming at the bull’s-eye of the target or as close as possible so as to beat the other competitors. In competitions accuracy is everything, even being off on your shot by a quarter inch could be disastrous, due to this the equipment needed for this type of shooting has to be very precise and accurate and therefore the price of competition shooting equipment is a little more than hunting.

    Hunting has been around since the dawn of time and simply involves the archer shooting at animals for the purpose of food This type of archery needs less accurate equipment than target shooting as the as you are not trying to shoot for quarter sized bullseys.

    Aside from the accuracy difference of the equipment hunting also requires the use of broadheads which are razor sharp blades the screw on to the front of the arrow. The reason for this is because the biggest goal when hunting is taking the animal down as quickly and painlessly as possible.

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