Arrows - Practice as You Will Hunt

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I see it all the time.

Not just in bowhunting - but in hunting in general.

Whatever you are going to do when hunting, do that in practice also! So many times, we hear stories about the big one that got away that is traced back to not doing this!

Never was this more true than in archery. There are so many variables in shooting a bow that any little change can throw you out of whack - and affect your aimpoint, big time.

I have been out of archery for a LONG time and just got back into it this year.

I have a crucial Midwest trip coming up in a few weeks and am really concerned about being able to make a good shot, if one is presented.

One of the things I did early on, after I got a new bow (Bear Attack) was to ditch the field points and the regular nocks.

I am shooting my actual broadheads and Nocturnal brand nocks for all of my practice...

I made a test before doing so, however... I left three arrows with field points and plastic nocks and set up three arrows for hunting and shot them in comparison tests.

I learned two things immediately:

* the two different groups fly altogether differently

* the field point / plastic nock group shoot a lot better than the hunting arrows

I guess it is the broadheads making the difference - but whatever... I have to shoot broadheads and will shoot the illuminated nocks... so that is all I am going to practice with.

In fact, I shot a lot better with the field points - that would give you a false sense of confidence that might be shattered if you used a broadhead and made a bad shot on a deer.

I am shooting from 10 - 30 yards primarily, from an elevated deck behind my house. I do shoot 40 and 50 yards but they do not seem to be real world shots, at least for me.

I am older now - 53 - and the constant practice is not easy, but I am seeing marked improvement each week.

I am not shooting little 1" groups at 20 yards, but I have stopped shooting at the same spot - could not afford any more torn up arrows!

Set your practice up like you are going to hunt - I have a feeling we can all benefit from the uniformity this brings to our shooting!

Have fun - the rut is just about upon us!!!


gatorfan's picture

Great tip!

The only time I use field tips when practicing is when I am shooting just to work on my form and to keep the muscles in tune.

I'd like to expand on your tip a little (I hope you don't mind).  I'm not a tree stand guy so most of my shots are either while on a spot-n-stalk or while sitting in a ground blind.  Of those two, sitting in the blind is most prevalent.  Because of this, I take just about as many practice shots from different sitting positions as I do from a standing position.  If you have never taken a shot from a sitting position, and you ever hunt with a bow while sitting down, you should start practicing.  Even from a small folding stool, you would be surprised how different it is to draw your bow while sitting.

And as a bonus to my bonus...NEVER let the cam rest (or touch) on your leg!!!  I have a 3-year old scar on my shin from making that mistake!  I can laugh now (as you probably are reading this) but when it happened, I was almost in tears.  I was concentrating so hard on my form and keeping the pin steady from a sitting position that I instinctively rested the cam on my leg (as if to steady like you would rest your elbow on your knee with a rifle).


jim boyd's picture

Gatorfan Do not mind at - I


Do not mind at - I welcome all comments and your points are well taken!

Back in the day, I shot several deer sitting down in the stand.

Can't do that due to my stand configuration

Please do provide all of the feedback nd tips that you can!


ManOfTheFall's picture

That is definitely a great

That is definitely a great tip. The one thing I don't do enough of is practicing from an elevated heigth. I usually just target shoot from the ground. I should find a way to shoot down at my targets since I hunt from a treestand 99% of the time.

Critter done's picture

Great Tip

That's a great tip, I too believe you should shoot the same thing in practice that you are shooting in the field.

Great Tip.