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RE: [SCA-Archery] Question about the technique of holding arrows in the bowhand for ho

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  • Luigi Kapaj
    Ok, I have a few things to contribute to this thread. I took the mounted archery training from Kassia. Does he have an ego? Yes. Deserved? Yes. Annoying? Not
    Message 1 of 3 , Sep 25, 2008
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      Ok, I have a few things to contribute to this thread.

      I took the mounted archery training from Kassia. Does he have an ego? Yes.
      Deserved? Yes. Annoying? Not while you are taking his class. It comes with
      being really good at any martial art. Even the ones humble on the outside
      have the same self confidence. When you are teaching, even through a book,
      you want to emphasize the potential skill a student can reach, not hide it.
      Think this came up before.

      Horsearchery is a reconstructed martial art with Kassia. He put his method
      together from his own research coupled with trial and error. There are very
      few sources that preserved it as direct lineage from it being used in
      warfare, and those I know of I can't say to the accuracy of technique
      preservation.

      The technique used by Kassia is very effective for speed shooting. It lets
      you basically shoot like a machine gun. I know of no specific documentation
      for this. I've heard of it, but never verified. The asian sources I've seen
      which either continued mounted archery training, or reconstructed the
      mounted version from their unbroken standing archery traditions, do not use
      speed shooting. Competitions will have 1 arrow fired during each pass. This
      matches documentation I have verified for certain parts of asia such as
      China and Tibet.

      For most topics, Wikipedia is about as reliable as hearsay. It might be
      accurate, but you are never sure.

      There was a link for http://www.atarn.org put out here for one video, it
      actually has a wealth of research on the subject if you browse through the
      site.

      Kassai does indeed use a 3 finger draw, not the Mongolian draw. Lucas, one
      of his better students from the US, uses a Mongol draw and helped me with my
      technique. The number of arrows I can hold usually maxes at 4. I can do more
      but it gets messy fast. Kassai does groups of 4 or 5 between different rows
      of fingers. The Mongol draw, because you do not switch the side the arrow is
      on, uses about half the movements as the way Kassia does it. Theoretically,
      a person using the Mongol technique could get twice as fast as Kassai, but
      he's so fast I haven't seen anyone get close yet. In Mongolia, where modern
      archers do not use quivers, they took to storing the arrows in their boot
      while riding. Period archers used quivers. I practice grabbing 4 arrows at a
      time from the quiver, 3 go in the bow hand and the fourth gets immediately
      nocked.

      The thumb draw does not require a ring. It does require the ability to not
      have your thumb be torn apart by the string. For most of us, the ring is the
      best way to do this. I know of professional mergen (champion) archers from
      Mongolia who use no thumb ring. They shoot so much, they have built up a
      sufficient callus on their thumb to not need it. Think of a guitarist who
      uses a pick compared to one who does not. When I play, I need a pick. But
      then, I don't practice every day like a good guitarist would. From
      experience, the ring can sometimes slow you down, or out right make you
      fumble the arrow in ways which would not happen without a ring. I prefer a
      leather thumbring for mounted archery. I can last longer than with no ring
      at all, though not as long as with a horn or metal ring. Yet if I fumble the
      grab, the leather will fold out of the way and I mearly shoot that arrow
      from my bare thumb and still have the ring in place for the next arrow. I
      pull 62# on my bow at a full 36" draw and can do this with an occasional
      arrow here and there with no real problems, but I cannot shoot with no ring
      regularly - think I could not last an entire royal round last I tried.

      The pattern to make one is simple:
      http://silverhorde.viahistoria.com/ThumbRing.html
      I will also happily sell you one for $10 if you want, but this is something
      you could do yourself in 15 minutes the first time.

      I have seen documentation for bow quivers with both the string up and the
      string down, most had the string up. As I have one, (which can go either
      way) I can tell you that there is really no strain on the string at all. The
      leather presses against the bow and friction holds it on place. It is just
      as difficult to pull the bow out with either facing.

      I don't remember the weight of Kassai's bow, but he uses standard fiberglass
      arrows with target or field tips. I've never seen him miss. He, and many
      other mounted archers, like to practice things specifically banned by SCA
      rules such as having someone throw up moving targets while he rides past to
      shoot them. Very risky stuff, but as a full time practitioner of the martial
      art, there are ways to take safety precautions even in such situations.

      Remember, he trains at this full time, and as a martial art. Not as a
      weekend hobby.

      I know of one mounted archer in Montana who would shoot 1,000 arrows a day.
      It must be great to retire to place where the Great Plains are your front
      yard, and the Rockies in the back...

      BTW - I will be teaching a class on mounted archery at Warrior's Naadam 2
      this October here in the East. Saturday, October 18th, 10am, in the
      Equestrian area. Event announcement:
      http://www.eastkingdom.org/event-detail.html?eid=1659



      Puppy
      (Gulugjab Tangghudai)
      http://www.NYCMongol.com




      .
    • 'Merry' Toirdhealbhach Mirywoder Lutre
      I debated about responding both because just saying thank you for good input is considered by some to be a list-sin... but as I just did it on another post,
      Message 2 of 3 , Sep 25, 2008
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        I debated about responding both because just saying thank you for good
        input is considered by some to be a list-sin... but as I just did it on
        another post, I'll do it here. I also wanted to say that I meant no
        slight of Kassai as it seems I might have gotten your ire up a bit if I
        read it right. My only contact I've had with him has been his book (and
        now I own one of his gorgeous bows), and well... some rumors and
        hearsay. I meant not to call into question the justification of his
        ego... just to state that I was hit with it upside the head when I began
        reading his book. I should not have been. I've had a lot of male
        Russian friends in their 20s and several of them were like this whether
        they deserved it or not :) I got used to it there, but it's been years.

        Cheers!

        Luigi Kapaj wrote:
        > Ok, I have a few things to contribute to this thread.
        >
        > I took the mounted archery training from Kassia. Does he have an ego? Yes.
        > Deserved? Yes. Annoying? Not while you are taking his class. It comes with
        > being really good at any martial art. Even the ones humble on the outside
        > have the same self confidence. When you are teaching, even through a book,
        > you want to emphasize the potential skill a student can reach, not hide it.
        > Think this came up before.
        >
        > Horsearchery is a reconstructed martial art with Kassia. He put his method
        > together from his own research coupled with trial and error. There are very
        > few sources that preserved it as direct lineage from it being used in
        > warfare, and those I know of I can't say to the accuracy of technique
        > preservation.
        >
        > The technique used by Kassia is very effective for speed shooting. It lets
        > you basically shoot like a machine gun. I know of no specific documentation
        > for this. I've heard of it, but never verified. The asian sources I've seen
        > which either continued mounted archery training, or reconstructed the
        > mounted version from their unbroken standing archery traditions, do not use
        > speed shooting. Competitions will have 1 arrow fired during each pass. This
        > matches documentation I have verified for certain parts of asia such as
        > China and Tibet.
        >
        > For most topics, Wikipedia is about as reliable as hearsay. It might be
        > accurate, but you are never sure.
        >
        > There was a link for http://www.atarn.org put out here for one video, it
        > actually has a wealth of research on the subject if you browse through the
        > site.
        >
        > Kassai does indeed use a 3 finger draw, not the Mongolian draw. Lucas, one
        > of his better students from the US, uses a Mongol draw and helped me with my
        > technique. The number of arrows I can hold usually maxes at 4. I can do more
        > but it gets messy fast. Kassai does groups of 4 or 5 between different rows
        > of fingers. The Mongol draw, because you do not switch the side the arrow is
        > on, uses about half the movements as the way Kassia does it. Theoretically,
        > a person using the Mongol technique could get twice as fast as Kassai, but
        > he's so fast I haven't seen anyone get close yet. In Mongolia, where modern
        > archers do not use quivers, they took to storing the arrows in their boot
        > while riding. Period archers used quivers. I practice grabbing 4 arrows at a
        > time from the quiver, 3 go in the bow hand and the fourth gets immediately
        > nocked.
        >
        > The thumb draw does not require a ring. It does require the ability to not
        > have your thumb be torn apart by the string. For most of us, the ring is the
        > best way to do this. I know of professional mergen (champion) archers from
        > Mongolia who use no thumb ring. They shoot so much, they have built up a
        > sufficient callus on their thumb to not need it. Think of a guitarist who
        > uses a pick compared to one who does not. When I play, I need a pick. But
        > then, I don't practice every day like a good guitarist would. From
        > experience, the ring can sometimes slow you down, or out right make you
        > fumble the arrow in ways which would not happen without a ring. I prefer a
        > leather thumbring for mounted archery. I can last longer than with no ring
        > at all, though not as long as with a horn or metal ring. Yet if I fumble the
        > grab, the leather will fold out of the way and I mearly shoot that arrow
        > from my bare thumb and still have the ring in place for the next arrow. I
        > pull 62# on my bow at a full 36" draw and can do this with an occasional
        > arrow here and there with no real problems, but I cannot shoot with no ring
        > regularly - think I could not last an entire royal round last I tried.
        >
        > The pattern to make one is simple:
        > http://silverhorde.viahistoria.com/ThumbRing.html
        > I will also happily sell you one for $10 if you want, but this is something
        > you could do yourself in 15 minutes the first time.
        >
        > I have seen documentation for bow quivers with both the string up and the
        > string down, most had the string up. As I have one, (which can go either
        > way) I can tell you that there is really no strain on the string at all. The
        > leather presses against the bow and friction holds it on place. It is just
        > as difficult to pull the bow out with either facing.
        >
        > I don't remember the weight of Kassai's bow, but he uses standard fiberglass
        > arrows with target or field tips. I've never seen him miss. He, and many
        > other mounted archers, like to practice things specifically banned by SCA
        > rules such as having someone throw up moving targets while he rides past to
        > shoot them. Very risky stuff, but as a full time practitioner of the martial
        > art, there are ways to take safety precautions even in such situations.
        >
        > Remember, he trains at this full time, and as a martial art. Not as a
        > weekend hobby.
        >
        > I know of one mounted archer in Montana who would shoot 1,000 arrows a day.
        > It must be great to retire to place where the Great Plains are your front
        > yard, and the Rockies in the back...
        >
        > BTW - I will be teaching a class on mounted archery at Warrior's Naadam 2
        > this October here in the East. Saturday, October 18th, 10am, in the
        > Equestrian area. Event announcement:
        > http://www.eastkingdom.org/event-detail.html?eid=1659
        >
        >
        >
        > Puppy
        > (Gulugjab Tangghudai)
        > http://www.NYCMongol.com
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > .
        >
        >
        >
        > ------------------------------------
        >
        >

        --

        // Merry

        ----------
        "Merry" Toirdhealbhach Mirywoder Lutre AoA:071013 Torse:080906
        Shire of Standing Stones; Formerly: Philippe Sebastian LeLutre
        Christian M. Cepel --- 573.999.2370 --- Columbia, MO
        http://Thistledowne.org/ http://ShireOfStandingStones.org/
        ICQ:12384980 YIM/AOL:Bramblethorne MSN:Merry@ShireOfS.....

        'Toirdhealbhach' anglicized Tirloughe (1576), modernly 'Turlough',
        pronounced 'TIR' or 'TUR' + 'low', 'logh', 'lock', or 'loch'
      • Luigi Kapaj
        Message 3 of 3 , Oct 2, 2008
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          <<
          I have seen documentation for bow quivers with both the string up and the
          string down, most had the string up.
          >>

          Correction, most I have looked at recently have the string down.

          These are mostly Persian pictures:
          http://silverhorde.viahistoria.com/research/MongolShield.html

          Persian pic of Chinese soldiers:
          http://img211.imageshack.us/img211/2113/atlilar01a9vg.jpg

          Not sure of the source, also possibly Persian:
          http://members.tripod.com/mongolian_page/warrior/mongolarcher.jpg

          Yuan Chinese source:
          http://www.npm.gov.tw/en/collection/selections_02.htm?docno=102&catno=15&pag
          eno=3
          The one bow case shown is on the left side of the painting, and is oriented
          string down.


          Can't find any string up at the moment.



          Puppy
          http://www.NYCMongol.com
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