Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 56

butt with no target on it. It’s the perfect practice method to focus on nothing but your shooting form. Good shooting form is the most basic component of a good archery shot. And yet, it’s something few bowhunters work on in the offseason, said shooting instructor Rob Kaufhold, owner of Lancaster Archery Supply. Shooting at an empty bale allows the archer to think about keeping his or her feet shoulder width apart; proper, relaxed hand placement on the bow handle; drawing smoothly; finding the same anchor point time after time; and, finally, achieving a clean, twitch-free release. “It’s human nature for us to want to control everything, and if you shoot only at targets, you’re going to want to control the sight pin, which is impossible,” Kaufhold said. “That pin dances for everybody. But if you have good shooting form, when it comes time to shoot at a target, you’re going to feel confident that you’ll be able to release when your pin dances naturally across the bullseye.” When you go blind baling, stand within four or five feet of the backstop, so there’s no way you can miss it, and close your eyes after you come to full draw. When you release, you won’t be looking at anything, and you can concentrate solely on what a good shot feels like. Do that enough times and your muscles will become trained to perform with perfection whenever you draw your bow. Aim, but Don’t Shoot This drill is the companion to blind baling. With a target fixed to a backstop — or some other aiming point identified — draw your bow and aim, but don’t shoot. “All you want to do is get a feel for how the pin floats on a target, again, without trying to control it,” Kaufhold said. “You’re not going to force the pin to do something, because you’re not focusing on the end result of hitting the target.” As you might expect, the more you practice aiming, the more your pin will

settle down. Every shooter’s pin dances a bit, but it dances less for some than others. “The thing I like about this is you can practice this anywhere, because you don’t have to have an arrow on the bow,” Kaufhold said. “You can practice aiming in your living room and use anything as your bullseye. Just make sure you don’t dry fire your bow.” As the pin slides across your aiming point, you can visualize the release you’d need to make so the arrow finds its mark. “Shooters start to have problems when they get so focused on forcing that pin onto the bullseye that they say to themselves, ‘Shoot now’ when the pin gets close to where they want it,” he said. “That’s what makes them slap the release and it leads to target panic.” Mix It Up There are two basic types of targets — bullseye and animal targets. Obviously, when you’re shooting a bullseye target, you’re aiming at a specific spot. With animal targets, you’re aiming at an area, because there is no readily-discernible aiming point. Both are valuable to bowhunters, so you should practice with both in the offseason. The bullseye targets will help you develop pinpoint accuracy. You’ve got to have a steady hand to hit the bullseye. The animal targets — whether they are two-dimensional paper representations, video projections on a flat screen or foam 3-D critters — will help develop your ability to place an arrow where you want it when there is no bullseye to aim for. (Longbow and recurve shooters often go “stump shooting” for practice, where they walk through the woods and sling arrows at random targets, such as stumps. These targets would fall into the same category as the animal targets.) If you shoot only bullseye targets, you could have trouble when it comes time to aim at a deer. If you shoot only animal targets, you’ll never develop that rock-steady



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013

Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013
Contents
PGC 2011-12 Annual Report
Late Season Grouse
Then and Now
Field Notes
Conservation News
Off the Wire
Another View
The Naturalist’s Eye
Fun Game
Straight from the Bowstring
Lock, Stock & Barrel
Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - PGC 2011-12 Annual Report
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 3
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 6
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 9
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 16
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 22
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Late Season Grouse
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 30
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Then and Now
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Field Notes
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Conservation News
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Off the Wire
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Another View
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 49
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 50
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - The Naturalist’s Eye
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 52
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Fun Game
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Straight from the Bowstring
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 56
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Lock, Stock & Barrel
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 60
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - A
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - B
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - January 2013 - Cover4
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