[Horsebow] Horsebow as a first bow - sensible or stupid?

Remi

New member
I've been 'doing' archery for a couple of years now but with no real consistency. I've done various club give it a go sessions and a few practice nights here and there but never enough to make myself a regular. I've moved too much around the country anyway. I went on holiday for two weeks where I had archery lessons everyday. Having the same bow to practice with over such a long time really inspired me to look into archery a bit more when I got back.

For a couple of years I've really wanted to give horseback archery a go. I'm pretty good on a horse and can do all those gymkhana type swinging round in the saddle at a gallop things. My horse would be pretty ace too; he's stood next to a washing line whilst I take clothes of it, pinging the string as I go. But, I don't think my archery is going to improve much until I've got my own bow to practice with.

So, (I know this is all very long winded), could I go straight in and buy a horse bow as my first bow? All the stabilisers and sights business has never interested me but the horse bows and longbows do. I'm worried that I would then turn up to an archery club that I've never been to and not even be able to shoot it. I can shoot reasonable well with a bare bow, three fingers under but wouldn't have a clue about thumb draws and such. Any advice? What would you think if a gangly newcomer strolled into your club and couldn't even hit the target? Do I make myself known at a club first? Get a bit more practice on a normal bow first and then buy my own? :p
 


chuffalump

Member
Have you completed a beginners course? Have you got an Archery GB card? Or one of the other archery associations that exist in this country? If yes then the answer to your final question is - it depends on the people in the club. If no then just strolling in to most clubs is a no-no. Basically, all clubs need some official evidence that you are safe on the shooting line/course.

If you want to shoot horsebow then shoot one. I'd like to give it a go myself. You might be better off looking for a more specialist club as thumb draw knowledge is going to be sparse at a bog standard target club. There's a guy on here called Chakazulu (hope I spelled that right) who will know better.

Otherwise, just join a club. Get involved. Listen to what other archers tell you, learn. That attitude will give you a lot of plus brownie points to counteract the ones you lose by holding up shooting while people help you look for your arrows. 😀
 


As said - to shoot amongst the organised people, you'll have to be a member of that organisation first, and then most clubs will want you to proove that you're safe under the shooting conditions (eg you know know not to wander off to the target until others have finished shooting, or not to talk to someone at full draw etc etc).

Any bow you can comfortably handle will be fine I would think - you may find some GNAS (ArcheryGB) club members don't know much about the bow or how to shoot it, but that's not really much of an issue unless you think you need some coaching. But having said that - most basic knowledge is pretty transferable.

I'd also suggest looking into the NFAS (National Field Archery Association) as they're a lot more relaxed - which sounds like your sort of thing ;)

Whereabouts are you based?
 


Remi

New member
Thanks both. Is a 'beginners course' something official? I've had various coaching but nothing where I came out with a certificate or any kind of proof. I'm right at the beginner end but I can group happily at 20m or so getting 9s/8s (if that makes sense? i.e., they're not in a bush somewhere) and am well aware of shooting etiquette. How do you prove your competence to a club?

I'm in Sheffield :)

I'm just a bit worried about convincing a club that I know what I'm doing, turning up with a bow that I've never shot with before, without even an arrow rest(!) and making a right hash of it :p
 


Thanks both. Is a 'beginners course' something official? I've had various coaching but nothing where I came out with a certificate or any kind of proof. I'm right at the beginner end but I can group happily at 20m or so getting 9s/8s (if that makes sense? i.e., they're not in a bush somewhere) and am well aware of shooting etiquette. How do you prove your competence to a club?

I'm in Sheffield :)

I'm just a bit worried about convincing a club that I know what I'm doing, turning up with a bow that I've never shot with before, without even an arrow rest(!) and making a right hash of it :p
To be honest - investing in a beginners course as an introduction to the club is not going to be a complete waste of time & money - best thing to do would be to talk to the coaches at your nearest club and see what they recommend.
 


chuffalump

Member
I'm just a bit worried about convincing a club that I know what I'm doing, turning up with a bow that I've never shot with before, without even an arrow rest(!) and making a right hash of it :p
That's what a beginners course is for. You'll shoot a club bow and learn shooting line safety etc. At the end if it you get a certificate which then allows you to join a club/archery GB/other.

Does anyone know if there is a reason why the coaches wouldn't let Remind do the actual course with a horsebow? If not then just put up with a basic recurve. Complete the course. Join up and start shooting the horsebow.
 


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