Archery RangesEarly humans created the bow and arrow sometime around the Upper Paleolithic era and we've used them in various ways ever since. Neanderthal man learned how to sharpen one rock on another rock to create a sharp edge and, in time, they tied the sharpened stone to a long stick to form a spear, which would eventually be shrunken down into the more familiar bow and arrow.
With blockbuster films like The Avengers and The Hunger Games helping to make archery seem exciting again, more and more people, both young and old, are picking up a bow and quiver and trying out archery as a hobby. One of the best and easiest means of practicing is to take your bow and arrows of choice are archery ranges. Archery ranges are found all over the US and all it takes is a basic internet search or flip through your local phone book to find the archery ranges nearest to you.
For safety purposes, archery ranges are usually set up outdoors, though it's possible to find indoor archery ranges as well. Most archery ranges will charge a fee to gain access to their archery ranges. Often, archery ranges will offer pro shops so you can buy archery equipment but will also sometimes offer archery classes that you can attend right there at the archery range.
If you prefer a particular distance for your practice, you can phone the archery ranges directly and ask them what distances they have available, so that you can find the archery range that's best and most comfortable for you.
Oftentimes, gun ranges and sportsman's clubs will also have archery ranges available. Again, make sure to contact the archery ranges to find out more details about their setup.
If there are no archery ranges in your area, another option is to make one at home! All you need is a large backyard, a bale of hay, a target, and some string. For most archery ranges, it's best to find a place that has adequate distance between the archer and the target. For standard archery ranges, twenty-five to thirty feet between the archer and their target is best. Simply tie or pin the target to the hay bale, making sure to measure the proper distance, and then mark a spot to indicate where the archer should stand. All archery ranges have a firing line to indicate the safest place for those not actually practicing to stand. If any archery ranges you visit do not have this line, it is not advisable to practice here as both the visitors and the archers risk serious injury.
By picking up a bow, you're not simply pretending you're as cool as Katniss Everdeen, you're also learning a very useful skill and visiting one of the local archery ranges in your area is the first step.