Life Outside Spring 2018 - 27

doing schoolwork or shooting, Merritt repairs bows
or teaches others how to shoot through his family's
shop and archery range, Spring Lake Archery, in
Moneta.
At times, it's difficult to remember that Merritt
is still just a teenager. When he talks about archery,
there is a sureness to his voice and a wisdom that
speaks beyond his 18 years. Once, while discussing
the components of his bow he explained, "Your bow
is a machine, you need to eliminate yourself to let
the machine do its work."
For him, archery is 100 percent a mental exercise,
it is, in his words, about "getting your body to stop
and your mind to focus," which is why his cross
training in rock climbing has been so effective.
"When I began free soloing," Merritt explains, "I
had to learn to trust the situation and that helped
me work though a lot of the pressure I experienced
in archery competitions."
Seeing Merritt shoot is what really brings it
all together though. Outdoor archery is highly
sensory-you can hear the leaves rustle in the wind,
feel the ice crunch beneath your boots. Shooting
an arrow takes Merritt only 10 or 15 seconds, but
in that short time, you can see him tick through
the various steps he takes to set-up, adjust and
release. Within a second of release, you hear the

quick thwack of the arrow hitting the target, and
then, inevitably, you'll see Merritt drop his bow,
look your way, and crack a goofy smile. When
I ask why he loves archery so much, he doesn't
skip a beat, "None of my equipment lies to me,
and compound archery shows how good I am: no
more, no less."

Q

SHOOT STRAIGHT
Ready to Try Competitive
Archery?
Archer Merritt offers this
advice for those interested in
keeping their aim true in the
growing sport:
* Find a local pro shop and skip the
big box store (they don't have the
knowledge and coaching expertise to
help you learn the sport).

* Don't be scared-you're only
competing against yourself and the
arrows coming out of your bow.
* The more athletic you are the better;
weight training and cross training
are very important because you want
to become as efficient in processing
oxygen as possible.
* Have fun, be safe, and don't point at
anything you don't want to shoot.
-JG

LifeOutsideMag.com // Spring 2018

27


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Life Outside Spring 2018

Life Outside Spring 2018 - Cover1
Life Outside Spring 2018 - Cover2
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 3
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 4
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 5
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 6
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 7
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 8
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 9
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 10
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 11
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 12
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 13
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 14
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 15
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 16
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 17
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 18
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 19
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 20
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 21
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 22
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 23
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 24
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 25
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 26
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 27
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 28
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 29
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 30
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 31
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 32
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 33
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 34
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 35
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 36
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 37
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 38
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 39
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 40
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 41
Life Outside Spring 2018 - 42
Life Outside Spring 2018 - Cover3
Life Outside Spring 2018 - Cover4
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/leisure/Life_Outside_Spring_2019
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/leisure/Life_Outside_Fall_2018
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/leisure/Life_Outside_Summer_2018
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/leisure/Life_Outside_Spring_2018
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/leisure/Life_Outside_Fall_2017
http://www.nxtbookMEDIA.com