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Offseason Archery Practice: 20 Shots and Make them Count

If you are looking for a fun way to spice up your offseason archery practice routine, you might give this shooting drill a try.

[caption id="attachment_6833" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Shooting a longbow. Having a variety of offseason archery practice routines can boost your mental approach.[/caption] For those of us who have turned a part-time archery habit into a full-time addiction, shooting in the offseason is part of the annual ritual. As soon as spring turkey is in the books, we may hang the bow up for a spell, but soon we'll be at our local haunt flinging arrows downrange. Just watching a well-placed arrow arc across space can be a great way to pass an evening. Shooters across the country shoot in the summer to improve their skills, boost their chances in the fall, and out of love for the sport. Although the simple act of shooting a bow can be therapeutic, long stints of standard shots can stick us in a rut. Our minds need variety to maintain focus and keep us improving. With that being the case, it's always good to have a handful of different shooting routines to pull from. Close shots, long shots, single shot sessions, and even trick shots are just a few of the different types of sessions you can do during the offseason. One great archery practice routine is to simulate a tournament round. [caption id="attachment_6831" align="alignleft" width="187"]Block target. You can come up with a scoring system on a block target like this one to keep track of your score.[/caption] When simulating a tournament round at practice you give yourself a set number of shots, a designated scoring system, and keep your score. It can be formal with an Olympic style target, or less formal on your backyard block target. Essentially what you're trying to do is hold yourself accountable for each shot. Personally, I give myself 20 arrows with the opportunity to score a 10, 8, 5, or 0 on my 3-D target. I shoot 2 arrows at a time and keep score as I go. Each shot is at a different range which I determine before each shot. When I'm done with my 20 arrows I'll either keep shooting for fun, or just hang to bow up for the day. 20 arrows generally takes me less than 20 minutes. It is a good way to get in a solid round of shooting without sacrificing a tremendous amount of family time. Simulated tournament shooting like this can be a great way to refine your skills. Keeping score lets you track your progress over time and measure improvement. It also makes you pay for those arrows that get away. Rather than just shooting 20 arrows and walking away, you'll encourage yourself to shoot 20 good arrows before quitting. Shooting quality arrows over quantity arrows is a habit that shouldn't be underestimated. If you are looking for a good offseason archery practice routine, I'd encourage you to try keeping score with 20 arrows. It will force you to focus on each shot, and allow you to see improvement over time. As long as you are consistent with your scoring, the results should be factual. If nothing else, it can be another approach to practice that can broaden your repertoire. Having many different routines will not only help you for the approaching seasons, but will also help you enjoy a warm summer evening. NEXT: 4 ACHIEVABLE HUNTING RESOLUTIONS IN 2017
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