Your archery kit questions answered
Archery GB’s Paralympic Technician Kieran Carr is on hand to answer your questions about kit maintenance and improvements. If you’d like to share your kit stories or ask Kieran for advice, please get in touch with us on social media @ArcheryGB
Kieran’s role at Archery GB’s Lilleshall headquarters involves finding solutions to help improve the archery experience for the Paralympic squad. He says: “I’ve been asked by many members about what they can do to enhance their archery knowledge and better themselves and their kit during this Covid-19 lockdown period, and as kit is very much my department, I have tried to answer a couple of frequently asked questions. If you’d like some advice, please send me your questions via our Twitter and Facebook pages.”
Q: How can I be sure that my arrows are perfectly matched?
Answer: Generally speaking arrows are not perfectly matched. This is mainly for two reasons: it is incredibly time consuming to do and the correct kit to do it with is hugely expensive or commercially unavailable. In any case, ‘perfect’ is probably the wrong word as you cannot purchase perfectly matched shafts. They all have tolerances; therefore there is no guarantee they are the same. So what we can do is accept this fact and get our arrows into one of the following groups. Dependent on your level of equipment, the size of your tolerances may need to change:
Group 1) Competition set: Weigh all your arrows and place them in order from heaviest to lightest on a table. Under each you should place a piece of paper with the weight written on. Now pick the eight (at least) whose weight is closest together and call them your competition set.
Group 2) Practice set: Use the remainder of your arrows as a practice set. These should be used in practice only and your competition set should be used in competition only, with the exception of checking your sight marks!
Keeping your arrows like this ensures you do not ‘wear down’ your competition set too quickly. If you decide to buy a new set of arrows, retire your old competition set and place them in your practice set and repeat this process with your new set.
Q: I had my bow tuned by someone else and it isn’t shooting properly. Why?
Answer: Put simply, your bow can only be tuned to you, by you. Everyone is unique and therefore our bows must be tuned to our own technique discrepancies. There are similarities between tuning for different people but there are also huge differences. One thing to remember with tuning is it should not be a long process and if you feel like you’re going around in circles, stop, and get some coaching on your technique as this will be more beneficial to your score in the long run. As a very good friend of mine once told me: “Your bow can be tuned on an Olympic practice field but you cannot learn to shoot there”.
Please get in touch on social media @ArcheryGB with more questions for Kieran.