Close up of Sharon shooting

How can Costa Coffee cups help your archery practice?

Sharon on the range

Sharon on the range

No, not a trick question, nor am I talking about cup shooting, and if you don’t know what Cup shooting is check out Grizzly Jim’s video here.

This is a tip from my better half Sharon came up with and was using this on our range the other day. It’s no secret that I like Costa coffee, in fact it has got to a stage where I can walk into the local Costa Coffee shop by my office and they have had my order ready for me by the time I reached the front of the queue. This means I tend to have a few spare cups floating round. Normally they get used for mixing paints or pant pots.

stack of Costa Coffee cups

stack of Costa Coffee cups

But how can they help with archery?

We have a 40 yard practice range marked out in five yard increments, behind our house. This means we can practice distances from five yards upwards, but we both like to mix up the distances we shoot from. So we might shoot a set of arrows at ten yards, then move to thirty five yards for the next set, then fifteen for the third set and so on. The key thing is not to shoot two sets at the same distance consecutively. Why? Well it improves your distance judgement.

The problem is when you are doing multiple sets it is quite easy to lose track of which distances you have shot at. Well Sharon, the ever intelligent one can up with a simple idea of how to track this using Costa cups.

First step is dropping a cup over each of the distance pegs at the beginning before you start. Then when you have shot from that distance you remove the cup to indicate you’ve shot the distance. When all cups are off the pegs, you know you’ve shot all the distances and can start again.

On the second round after you’ve shot you take the cup to the boss and stack them on top. This means when you’ve shot all the distance, all cups will be at the boss for you to collect. It is a simple and easy way of tracking the distances.

If you look at the picture below you will see some of the pegs covered and others with a coffee cup along side.

Close up of Sharon shooting

Close up of Sharon shooting

The only problem comes if it’s a windy day.

By mixing up the distances you shoot at you can develop great skills in judging distance. It is something that is mentioned in Beginner’s guide to traditional archery by Brian J Sorrells.

Thanks for reading and no this post was not sponsored by Costa coffee.

Literature review – Beginner’s guide to traditional archery

There are a wealth of books, magazines and websites out there offering the archery related advice and guidance.
So I thought it a good idea if I put down my thoughts down on such sites I’ve found.
The first of these is a book review.
Beginner’s guide to traditional archery by Brian J Sorrells ISBN 978-0-8117-3133-1 Stockpile Books
I’ve found this book covers the basics pretty well. It is very easy to read with simple clear explanations of the key points. I’ve taken to carrying this in my work bag to read on the train, as I have found I can pick it up and read a few pages or section easily.
I like the shooting exercise shown in the later chapters, these are particularly interesting as they mirrored many of my own practice methods. As a coach I’ve found that some of my pupils have also found these techniques worth while.
I think it works by giving an overview of archery for those interested in learning to shoot a traditional bow (recurve,  flatbow etc) but compound archers may find it less useful.
Beginner's guide to tradional archery
Overall I would say 9/10 as I really like the way it is written and find it an easy  read, along with something I go back to from time to time.
Thanks for reading