Each new year means fresh starts and opportunities to take on new challenges. Likewise, New Year’s resolutions are an annual tradition, as is forsaking most of them a month later. To achieve your goals, set them like an Olympian.
Top archers set goals as a powerful tool for achieving dreams. When Olympian Jay Barrs appeared on the Easton Target Archery podcast, he said his goal-setting strategies helped him make the Olympic team and win a gold medal in 1988.
Barrs breaks down his goals into small steps. First, he gets out some index cards and writes down the incremental goals needed to achieve his ultimate goal. Then he places the card with the current goal in a prominent location, like his bathroom mirror or the refrigerator door. Whether you resolve to make an Olympic team or simply practice more often, you can use Barrs’ proven goal-setting techniques to achieve your resolutions.
We chose four goals to inspire you in 2018.
Shoot on every day that ends in “day.”
You can start by shooting a few arrows in the morning or evening. You can also hit the range on the way home from work or during your lunch break. Photo Credit: USA Archery.
Finding time to practice is difficult. By making time to practice this year, you’ll see how much it improves your daily life. You’ll feel so gratified by the exercise and archery practice that you’ll soothe your daily stress.
Start by shooting a few arrows in the morning or evening. You can also visit the range during lunch or on the way home from work. As you build your practice routine, increase its frequency until you’re shooting daily.
Try Competitive Shooting
Ask your archery shop about upcoming tournaments in your area or a local league. Then study the rules for the tournament and show up ready to learn. Photo Credit: Shane Indrebo.
Shooting just for fun is relaxing and enjoyable, but competition broadens your archery experience. It gives you more reasons to practice, and motivates you to become better. It also can take you around the country and introduce you to new friends.
Ask the staff at nearby archery shops about tournaments or leagues in your area. Next, study each tournament’s rules and show up ready to learn.
After you shoot in a local tournament, consider competing in state- and national-level events. Once you’re an experienced competitor, set your sights higher. Try placing in the top three.
Shoot a Personal Best
Reaching a new goal you set for yourself can be a wonderful feeling. Whenever you reach a new personal best, a reasonable next goal should be within 5-10 points of the next highest point total. Photo Credit: USA Archery
Whether you shoot scores for fun or competition, your goal is to steadily improve. Make 2018 the year you shoot a personal-best score. To borrow from Barrs, break down your goal into incremental pieces. If your goal is to improve your score from a 240 to a 270, try increasing your personal best 5 points at a time.
To achieve this goal, seek coaching and talk to your shop’s archery pro about upgrading your equipment. Then it’s up to you to practice and hit your marks.
Try a New Archery Discipline
Recurve and compound can seem to be a more popular choice. However, don’t forget where these more modern forms came from The traditional barebow is just as fun, if not more, competitive than the other two. Photo Credit: USA Archery.
Do you love target archery? Then give 3-D archery a try this year. If you’re a compound archer, change things up and try a recurve. You can learn a lot by stepping outside your comfort zone.
Target archery teaches you how to maintain precise, consistent form. Likewise, 3-D archery teaches you how to trust your form and equipment to shoot under pressure.
Recurve and compound archery differ greatly, but shooting both makes you well-rounded. You’ll learn valuable archery lessons from both disciplines. Lessons carry over between equipment styles to make you a better archer.
You have 365 days to achieve your goals, so set them high and don’t abandon them by spring.
What are your archery resolutions for 2018? Share them with us on the Archery 360 Facebook page.