The Yellow Game

No, this isn’t a game about cowardice or micturition.  It is a fun practice challenge to land all arrows into the yellow of a target.

For some you work to land all arrows in the X circle of the yellow.  I’ve played that game with my compound bow.  I’ve never won. I have come close, but there was always an eight or two (red ring) to ruin it.

Thirty-four days ago I switched to an Olympic recurve.  Hitting the target seemed like a good place to start.

As my groups got tight, all in the target, I moved from the barn wall to a single spot 40 cm paper target. Next, I moved to a 3-spot to reduce the stress on my arrows.

The arrows are inexpensive.  They are truly beginner arrows, Easton Vector 1000, which you can purchase from your local archery shop for $70.00 per dozen or from Amazon for $66.00 per dozen.  Still, breaking these arrows is fairly easy.  Pop a nock and you’ll likely find a cracked shaft.

My Easton Vector 1000 arrows are a tad weak for my poundage.  I didn’t know that at the time I bought them.  I trusted without verifying.  I’ve done it before; I’ll do it again.  They’re pretty close and for a beginner learning I am not too disappointed.  If shoot three to four of these inexpensive arrows at the same target I don’t cry when one breaks.

That target right is the yellow of the vertical 3-spot.  Right now I am limiting the number of arrows per day to 70 in the morning and 70 in the afternoon.  I’d started at 50 in the morning and 50 in the afternoon and have been working my way up at weekly or so increase depending on how things feel.  It is easy to over do it and end up with an injury.

The yellow game is hard at present.  On August 20th, 28 days after receiving the Olympic recurve, I switched to a 3-spot.  It really isn’t any harder to hit than the larger single spot.  It is just as hard keeping all the arrows in the yellow rings.

It isn’t a game unless I’ve shot the quota of arrows scheduled for the practice session. In other words, if I shot 9 out of 10 on the first end and quit, that 90% doesn’t count.  I did once get chased inside because a rainstorm became too fierce after 40 arrows and those arrows didn’t apply.  No the full count of planned arrows must be achieved.  There’s no stopping early to prevent fatigue from lowering percentages.

Since the beginning of the game, now in its 14th day my average is only 48.2%.  So, out of 1104 arrows fired during the game 530 have hit yellow.  Not even half.

If you’re a numbers person you might think 1104 is not many arrows over that amount of time.  Those are only the Yellow Game arrows.  Over the month, thus far, the arrow count is 3355.  I play other games; the Yellow Game isn’t the only one. There’s the tournament game.  That game is for another for a future story.

Even so, simply looking at 3355 arrows for the 34 days I’ve owned a recurve you might think, “David’s not shooting a lot.”  Maybe you’re right.  But, over those 34 days 9 recovery days, a ½ day lost to routine dentistry and one full day lost so that I could get 15 sutures put into a slice on my right shoulder.  Fortunately, those stitches didn’t seem to bother me.  Well, at least my scores don’t seem to have been hampered.  At this point it is hard to tell.

On my worst day I shot only 31% of the arrows into the yellow at 20 yards, my best day was 71% or 50 out of 70 arrows.  I’ve not shot 10 arrows in a row into the yellow; the best has been 9 out of 10.

I try not to rush the practice but don’t want too much time spent walking back and forth to the target to pull arrows.  So, each end is 10 arrows. I’ve got plenty of targets to save arrows. It is a game, after all.

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