A major component of bow hunting that is often disregarded by hunters (me included); is the amount of practice that should go along with it. For most of us, in today’s world, time is at a premium. This means less practice, missed shots, and less meat in the freezer (and I hate that!). Not for lack of interest, but for lack of hours in the day.
While preparing for an upcoming sheep hunt, I was struggling with how to get more practice into my already hectic work and family schedule. But, after a little thought, I solved my problem.
First, let me say that this is not about getting in loads of shooting! It is about the ability to shoot a little, a lot more often.
What I have learned to be the key (for me); is to MAKE IT SIMPLE. By this I mean, make the process and effort of shooting your bow, simple. To elaborate:
At my house, we have a small balcony off of our master bedroom. I keep my bow next to my bed. Yes, you heard that right. Next to my bed! I have a path cut out through the woods. I shoot over the yard, over the driveway, through the woods, and into my target. I have an additional target, which is closer providing for a nice downward angle. Every morning when I wake up, I step out onto the balcony and shoot 8 arrows. It takes less than 3 minutes!
When I return home in the evening, I stop in the driveway, run down and grab my arrows. Then, I walk in the house, give the wife a pat on the fanny, beg for a hug from my son, go up into my bedroom, and shoot the 8 arrows again. There’s another 3 minutes or so. This allows me to shoot EVERY day 2X, with little effort and little time commitment. Some days, I may only get one round in, but hey, that’s better than none!
For you, this may be something a bit different. If simple is to shoot off the front porch, or out the back door, then store your bow there. Or, if simple is shooting out the bathroom window? Keep your bow in the bathroom! Whatever it takes to make it simple.
The point is; if it’s a time consuming, cumbersome process, to get your gear, setup, shoot, pick up, etc., you just won’t get it done.
Now, if you can’t shoot on your property, or live in a tight neighborhood, then keep your bow in your vehicle. On the way to work, at lunch, or on the way home from work, plan an extra 10 minutes to stop by the range. 5 or 10 arrows are better than none. Got a “honey-do” list this weekend. That’s OK. Stop at the range on the way to Home Depot. There was a HUGE line at the check-out counter, so it took longer than anticipated (wink, wink, nudge, nudge).
No range close by? Hell, just stop in a field somewhere along your travel route. Keep a small target in your trunk. Just shoot in the opposite direction of the road 🙂 – Where there is a will, there is a way. That is up to you to determine.
So keep it simple…..in arms reach. Trust me. It will pay dividends for when that moment of truth arrives.