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Re: Draw Weights?

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  • sca_evm
    Good evening, everyone. Please forgive me for a general email that does not address any specific email. My arcuarius (student) sent me this direction when she
    Message 1 of 67 , Dec 28, 2011
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      Good evening, everyone. Please forgive me for a general email that does not address any specific email. My arcuarius (student) sent me this direction when she had some concerns about what was developing here. To be honest, I have some concerns as well. I hope this email addresses all them in a fair and diplomatic fashion.

      For starters, I am pretty well-rounded in this area in that I am both a senior target archery marshal as well as an equestrian archery. I train horses for mounted archery and I am currently training my own young mare. One of my goals is to get horse people to talk more with archers and vice versa because I find that people, instead of asking questions, fill the gaps with assumptions made with ignorance. It is a tiring battle, but one worth fighting, I believe.

      With that, I will address a few issues:

      1. The assumption that a bow with a lower draw length will not shoot as far is a myth. Many of my friends, as well as I, have shot York Rounds (distances up to 100 yards) very successfully with bows with a draw weight of 30#. If one cannot send an arrow to the target with a 30#, or even a 25#, bow to 30 yards that one lacks good instruction and skill--not draw weight. Every bow is different and every bow has a temperament and one needs to learn to shoot it and use their body correctly. This is not an overnight success thing: it is a process.

      Archery is 90% technique (including how you use your brain) and 10% brute strength. Period warbows were 100# plus to pierce armor, but those same archers would hunt or target shoot with something with a lower poundage. Simple theory: why torment yourself if you don't have to?

      One more thing: even in international competition, your longest yardage (converted roughly from meters) is about 30 yards. By virtue of being on a horse and higher up, the bow naturally will shoot further than when the archer is on the ground. One of my physics expert friends explained this to me, it made sense, but don't ask me to regurgitate it. ;)

      2. Women and draw weight: sure, maybe we shoot lower poundage bows, but guess what? Not always true. You don't see my 55# hunting bow at events but you will see it when I hunt or shoot modern 3D shoots. I just do not see any point in shooting it for SCA target or mounted archery when my 35# longbow or horsebow works just fine. I also won two baronial championships with a 30#. You don't need to raise the ceiling just for men. 'Nuff said on this topic.

      3. Finally, it was mentioned that a higher poundage bow was needed because it was more stable. Again, we are talking about skill. If you are bouncing at the trot so much that you can't keep your arrow on the shelf, you need riding lessons to learn to sit or post a trot--not an 80# bow. I shot my 35# on my previous mare with a jackhammer trot and never once felt I was losing my arrow inappropriately--and my bow has no shelf, I shoot off my hand. I apologize if this sounds unnecessarily harsh, however this is not just archery it is also knowing how to ride well.

      That said, I am going to give away a small secret. The 35# bow poundage limit for mounted archery is based on these myths. It was implemented because it was assumed that a 35# bow would not shoot as far and thus not be as much of a danger. As this demonstrates, that is simply not true. I would not oppose lifting the poundage limit. However, if I saw someone struggle with their bow while on a horse or even on the ground, shooting would stop. That simple.

      Mounted archery requires discipline and skill mainly because one has to work on their riding AND target archery. These have to be started and mastered separately before being put together. It is work and if all you have done is guided trail rides, I don't care how good of an archer you are, you don't get to try mounted archery. I authorize for mounted archery when someone shows me they can shoot (often from the ground range first) and shows me they can ride--then we can test the actual mounted archery process.

      Finally, as far as mounted war archery is concerned, I am not big on this. I cannot imagine there being enough armor to keep a horse safe and I have yet to see a war arrow blunt from any kingdom that I would allow to be shot at my horse. There are plenty of games, many of them quite period (mogu, for example) that can develop period mounted marshal skills without unnecessary risk to horses and riders.

      Hope this clarifies a few things. Thanks!

      Yours in service,

      HL Vadas "Just Call Me Ersebet" Ersebet, OGGS
    • Taslen
      ty I just had to ask my daughter the horsey person in the family ________________________________ From: Emil Stecher To:
      Message 67 of 67 , Jan 3, 2012
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        ty I just had to ask my daughter the horsey person in the family

        From: Emil Stecher <gwrgi@...>
        To: SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Saturday, December 31, 2011 6:36 AM
        Subject: Re: [SCA-Archery] Re: Draw Weights?
        According to dictionary.com

        1 poll definition

        Pronunciation:  /ˈpōl/
        Function: n
        :  the head or a part of it

        horse: 1  forehead, 2  poll, 3  withers, 4  back, 5  flank, 6  loin, 7  point of hip, 8  tail, 9  hock, 10  cannon, 11  gaskin, 12  thigh, 13  stifle, 14  chestnut, 15  fetlock, 16  pastern, 17  hoof, 18  coronet, 19  knee, 20  forearm, 21  chest, 22  shoulder, 23  neck, 24  cheek
        especially :  the region between the ears of some quadrupeds (as a horse)

        Barak Raz
        (Emil M Stecher)

        --- On Sat, 12/31/11, Taslen <taslen2000@...> wrote:

        From: Taslen <taslen2000@...>
        Subject: Re: [SCA-Archery] Re: Draw Weights?
        To: "SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com" <SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com>
        Date: Saturday, December 31, 2011, 6:22 AM

        For those of us who don't know what is the "poll"? And it does seem like a unlikely occurance. Als can't the "poll" be protected? Sorry just woke up.
        From: Dan Scheid <damales@...>
        To: SCA-Archery@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Saturday, December 31, 2011 2:05 AM
        Subject: RE: [SCA-Archery] Re: Draw Weights?
        (Snip) As I think about the considerations, I am struggling to see how you could realistically shoot your horse in the head. Not impossible, but you would have to have such a unique combination of incredibly rare circumstances all come together in the perfect, one-in-10-billion-or-so situations that I am not sure what we are accomplishing. You have much higher odds of dying in a car crash or plane crash than you do of shooting your horse in the head. And no one thinks we should get quit riding in cars and planes. cheers, Terafan
        Something to remember it takes 5# of force to kill a horse at the poll
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