Reinventing the fastest forgotten archery

Corvus

Jedi Council Member
I do agree with you on relaxed breathing, deep breathing (pipe breathing perhaps? :) ) though Olympic Silver Medalist, Jake Kaminski says the order is 'pull back, relax, aim and let go'

On second thought, a deep breath might just be enough to relax as there's not much time and also, by relaxing we can reduce the tension in most of our body but not in the drawing arm/shoulder.
Same is with firearms, standard procedure is to inhale then hold your breath while aiming and pulling trigger, then exhale after that. Depending on situation and if you have time(like in hunting) you pull trigger spontaneously to surprise you in a way, because knowing can disrupt concentration and aiming. Holding to long your breath can increase hearth rate and also disrupt aiming. Also fast triggering can move rifle and disrupt aiming because of jerking so it is essential to hold it tight. It is different in a way then archery but it is practically the same with breathing but it depends from person to person essentially.

I never used real bow but know that it had profound affect on warfare from my studies of ancient and medieval warfare and I had also master work on Achaemenid Persia and there was and section about it s military. Archery was very praised in that parts in the world, especially in ancient and medieval time. In the west, if we take for example Greece that was center of west militarly, culturally, etc.. in that time before Rome, archery was used very little and Greeks preferred hand to hand and looked at archery as cowardly way of fighting. When it came to ranged fighting they used mostly singers and Cretans were known for their archery skill and were used as mercenaries through whole Greece and in Roman time. Persian tactic was on the other hand based mostly on archers disrupting enemy lines and rest of infantry and cavalry finishing the job. But when it came to Greco-Persian wars they did not have yet composite bows that could go through armor because of their high penetration power so arrows did not do much to penetrate hoplite lines and their armor, and their heavy cavalry was dealt with when Philip, Alexander s father created phalanx formation. In the time of Parthia and it s wars with Rome (that used very few archers at first, mostly infantry, Caesar used Cretans against Gauls) it perfected it s archery thanks to composite bows that was brought by raids of nomadic Alans. Cavalry and archery tactics were brought in those areas thanks to nomadic people s from Central Asia, Scythian tribes, even in the time of Achaemenids Scythian tribes gave best cavalry units that made basis for later knights because they also brought scale armor and fully armored horses and mounted warriors, and they made best warriors in their army like Bactrians, Messagetes(although many western scholars will deny it because of their western centralized egos and west is always the source of everything and anything). Parthia perfected horse archery with composite bows and heavy cataphract tactic and brought heavy loses to Romans, famous being Crassus defeat against all cavalry Parthian army. Their tactic was being that of mounted archers firing volleys of arrows on enemy and causing high casulties and if enemy like Romans tried to engage, they would retreat and fire in return and in that way causing also great damage to pursuing infantry. They would also try to lure units to come following so the cataphracts would then surround them and break them or would wait for lines to weaken from constant arrows and charge them. They even have logistics that was delivering those arrows all the time when in battle. Romans had very hard time dealing with that tactic and there would pass some time before they started to use composite bows in larger numbers and copy cataphract cavalry but still did get bigger end most of times.

Sassanian Persians continued with that tactic against Byzantine Empire and got to conquer all the Syria, Palestine, Egypt, larger part of Asia minor from Romans(although t for short time) and besiege Constantinopolis with Avars. it s big three layers walls saved it as many times later(with Greek fire) during Arab invasions(and it was still to strong). Emperor Heraclius managed to organize counter offensive against tired Persia and free that areas and force Persian shah to sign peace. In the meanwhile Arabs prepared and used that situation that both sides got exhausted from fighting and began their conquest. Arabs had their own tradition of archery but with Turks Seljuks that used extensively horse archery and were most famous for it at the time and defeated Byzantines and others many times. Byzantines on the other hand had open mind to applying new tactics and used also horse archery very much, they used Turk and Alan mercenaries, Cum ans, etc... In Gesta Francorum there is description of some Crusaders first coming in contact with such warfare with Turks. After their howling like wolfs and volley of arrows many wounded and knocked out retreating and commenting how would they not because this warfare was new to them. Mongols used similar tactic as Parthians, Sassanian s and other Asian step people and laid waste to European and other armies. Mameluks, personal bodyguards and cavalry of Egyptian Ayyubid sultans (most known being Saladin) were also trained in archery from childhood because they were Turkish slaves like Ghulams units that were known through middle east at that time.

Europeans did use very little archery in comparison, in western Europe horse archery was practically non existent, relaying mostly on knights and heavy infantry, spear-men. Hungarians and Bulgar s used horse archery because of their steppe origins, Byzantines because their constant clash with such armies and Russians because of being on frontier with central Asian steppe people, wars with them and Mongols. Other Slavic south and eastern European people also used horse archery. I know English long bowmen were also known for their contribution in Henry V s victory at Agincourt against larger and stronger french knight army because they penetrated easily their armor, flower of french nobility being subdued by ordinary peasants or something like that was the story, same with gun-powder which was first recorded as being used in same battle. Horse archery and archery was common in east among steppe people: turko-mongolic people and Indo-european people in the east. Only way to counter such tactic is by using same or many foot archers, cavalry, spear men, and use terrain where horses can not easily escape or move.

Thanks for sharing.
 

H-KQGE

Dagobah Resident
Thanks for the information Nuke. The Kaminski video was ok but I still feel all those "bells & whistles" on the Olympic circuit (& in general theses days) are too much like cheating. I get the ideas of efficiency etc but I prefer a way that offers pragmatism across the board. So from hunting to target practice & the connections with nature & history. I'm all for progress & using what you have in your time, but as said before, cheating... never mind the aesthetic abomination.

I enjoyed the Berger video though, (4 parts on the Longbow, haven't watched his arrowhead videos) & I thought it was well made. He even included his mistake before the tilling stage. The guy is obviously well-practised in making bows & delivering to camera. I do wish that he didn't refer to it as "primitive" bow-making, it's likely to encourage some conversive thinking in those that might want to look into original, or classic bow-making, as it should've been called. Ah, no matter.

Those Hungarian bows had lovely hand-painted designs on them, the Turkish bows I think, are reflex(ed) recurves. The "Sportsman's Guide" had some great information in it & I'm glad it spoke about deflex bows too. I would've included that in an earlier post but I preferred to use pictures where possible as there's a lot of words in archery terminology. All in all, I would alternate between a deflex-reflex contoured Longbow, & a reflex-recurve bow, learning all I could on the histories & evolution (as you rightly point out, recurves are ancient so you're bias toward them, especially where horseback engagements are concerned, is valid) & the differences & why they are so.

Thanks to Corvinus for the historical info as well. FWIW, this is the video I was referring to in one of my responses: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5qJKLOLJOKk the "death-metal/rock" stuff kicks in at approximately 5 mins so just mute it from there. Decent enough video though.
 

Nook

Dagobah Resident
FOTCM Member
H-kqge said:
Thanks for the information Nuke. The Kaminski video was ok but I still feel all those "bells & whistles" on the Olympic circuit (& in general theses days) are too much like cheating. I get the ideas of efficiency etc but I prefer a way that offers pragmatism across the board. So from hunting to target practice & the connections with nature & history. I'm all for progress & using what you have in your time, but as said before, cheating... never mind the aesthetic abomination.
I actually agree so I'm not sure I understand correctly what you're referring to. Are you referring to the order of shooting? The ''pull back, relax, aim and let go'? If you are indeed, could you elaborate as to why you consider that cheating? The order of shooting is the only reason I shared the video because otherwise, I agree with what you said about Olympic archery..

What Kaminski said ties in nicely with what Corvinus said also:
Corvinus said:
Holding to long your breath can increase hearth rate and also disrupt aiming. It is different in a way then archery but it is practically the same with breathing but it depends from person to person essentially.
Or it might depend on the person, I guess :)

Also, thanks for sharing that extensive history of archery, Corvinus. I remember watching a documentary on 'ancient special forces' and they talked about the Roman canine unit. The only theory as to how they were used in battle (as there's not much else to go on) was that they were let go to attack the enemy and just before the dogs would get to their target, a massive amount of arrows were shot by the Romans, so the enemy had to lift their shields in order to protect themselves from the arrows but by then, it was too late, because the dogs got to them under their shields.

Just a theory but thought it's worth mentioning as long as the history of archery is on the plate.

H-kqge said:
I enjoyed the Berger video though, (4 parts on the Longbow, haven't watched his arrowhead videos) & I thought it was well made. He even included his mistake before the tilling stage. The guy is obviously well-practised in making bows & delivering to camera. I do wish that he didn't refer to it as "primitive" bow-making, it's likely to encourage some conversive thinking in those that might want to look into original, or classic bow-making, as it should've been called. Ah, no matter.

Those Hungarian bows had lovely hand-painted designs on them, the Turkish bows I think, are reflex(ed) recurves. The "Sportsman's Guide" had some great information in it & I'm glad it spoke about deflex bows too. I would've included that in an earlier post but I preferred to use pictures where possible as there's a lot of words in archery terminology. All in all, I would alternate between a deflex-reflex contoured Longbow, & a reflex-recurve bow, learning all I could on the histories & evolution (as you rightly point out, recurves are ancient so you're bias toward them, especially where horseback engagements are concerned, is valid) & the differences & why they are so.

Thanks to Corvinus for the historical info as well. FWIW, this is the video I was referring to in one of my responses: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5qJKLOLJOKk the "death-metal/rock" stuff kicks in at approximately 5 mins so just mute it from there. Decent enough video though.
Yeah, though I think Berger could've compressed it into 3 videos but it is useful seeing him doing the whole thing in every stage. (for those who haven't watched it, he shows himself carving at times from 30 seconds up to a minute, after he explained what the goal is in the particular segment). And he also talks about mistakes and even shows them, as H-kqge mentioned.

Is this the deflex-reflex longbow you meant?
_http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cu8sqYPmoI

This one looks like a great combination, perhaps having the pros of both the longbow and a recurve and none of the cons?

And I also found this website, where they have many different types of horse archery bows in 2 main categories:

1. Flagella Dei Bows: _http://www.traditional-archery.com.au/home-page/traditional-bows-perth/horse-archery-australia/ (where the Deflex Reflex Bow is the second on the list)
2. The Istvan Toth Bows: _ http://www.traditional-archery.com.au/home-page/traditional-bows-perth/istavan-toth-bows/

Are any of these close to the deflex-reflex contoured Longbow, you mentioned? I couldn't find any references with 'contoured' included in the name.
 

H-KQGE

Dagobah Resident
Nuke said:
H-kqge said:
Thanks for the information Nuke. The Kaminski video was ok but I still feel all those "bells & whistles" on the Olympic circuit (& in general theses days) are too much like cheating. I get the ideas of efficiency etc but I prefer a way that offers pragmatism across the board. So from hunting to target practice & the connections with nature & history. I'm all for progress & using what you have in your time, but as said before, cheating... never mind the aesthetic abomination.
I actually agree so I'm not sure I understand correctly what you're referring to. Are you referring to the order of shooting? The ''pull back, relax, aim and let go'? If you are indeed, could you elaborate as to why you consider that cheating? The order of shooting is the only reason I shared the video because otherwise, I agree with what you said about Olympic archery..
No. The breathing seems logical & any slight variation could only come from experienced archers, & I'm in no position to dispute this; especially as there's crossover (of a sort) with gun shooting. To reiterate, I'm not even a novice, have never constructed or in any way handled a bow, the responses got me more interested as I had an opportunity to look into the topic properly, for the first time. The reference I was making was to learning original "primitive" bow-making & use, & then on to modern methods, excluding compound bows which rules Olympic archery.

In my opinion, they've lost the spirit of it by constructing levers & pulleys to maximize the bow's efficiency. Good idea. But to keep adding more gadgetry to a simple, clean device, that can be made & used the world-over (optimally at the earlier part of the year, if I remember correctly) for ordinary people to protect themselves & hunt for food, well... bad idea. But that's the Olympic committee for you. :huh:

Nuke said:
H-kqge said:
I enjoyed the Berger video though, (4 parts on the Longbow, haven't watched his arrowhead videos) & I thought it was well made. He even included his mistake before the tilling stage. The guy is obviously well-practised in making bows & delivering to camera. I do wish that he didn't refer to it as "primitive" bow-making, it's likely to encourage some conversive thinking in those that might want to look into original, or classic bow-making, as it should've been called. Ah, no matter.

Those Hungarian bows had lovely hand-painted designs on them, the Turkish bows I think, are reflex(ed) recurves. The "Sportsman's Guide" had some great information in it & I'm glad it spoke about deflex bows too. I would've included that in an earlier post but I preferred to use pictures where possible as there's a lot of words in archery terminology. All in all, I would alternate between a deflex-reflex contoured Longbow, & a reflex-recurve bow, learning all I could on the histories & evolution (as you rightly point out, recurves are ancient so you're bias toward them, especially where horseback engagements are concerned, is valid) & the differences & why they are so.

Thanks to Corvinus for the historical info as well. FWIW, this is the video I was referring to in one of my responses: _http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5qJKLOLJOKk the "death-metal/rock" stuff kicks in at approximately 5 mins so just mute it from there. Decent enough video though.
Yeah, though I think Berger could've compressed it into 3 videos but it is useful seeing him doing the whole thing in every stage. (for those who haven't watched it, he shows himself carving at times from 30 seconds up to a minute, after he explained what the goal is in the particular segment). And he also talks about mistakes and even shows them, as H-kqge mentioned.

Is this the deflex-reflex longbow you meant?
_http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cu8sqYPmoI

This one looks like a great combination, perhaps having the pros of both the longbow and a recurve and none of the cons?

And I also found this website, where they have many different types of horse archery bows in 2 main categories:

1. Flagella Dei Bows: _http://www.traditional-archery.com.au/home-page/traditional-bows-perth/horse-archery-australia/ (where the Deflex Reflex Bow is the second on the list)
2. The Istvan Toth Bows: _http://www.traditional-archery.com.au/home-page/traditional-bows-perth/istavan-toth-bows/

Are any of these close to the deflex-reflex contoured Longbow, you mentioned? I couldn't find any references with 'contoured' included in the name.
I'm not sure. It looks like one but, I can't remember my photo-reference (or if it was a video) for a deflex-reflex contoured Longbow, I just know what they are, do, & the why. The contour is the handle/grip and, keeping in-line with the references used in this thread for context, here's a useful quote from The Sportsman's Guide:

Bowyers have found they can improve the longbow's performance by angling the limbs in (toward the string) at the handle, then back out near the tips, a design called deflex-reflex. This tends to increase arrow speed and stability while reducing hand shock, one of the more significant liabilities of the longbow. Contouring the grip, either by dishing it in on the face (shooter side), or even carving a full pistol grip, promotes consistent placement of the bow hand, which is crucial for consistent accuracy. More and more longbow models are being made with contoured grips

Virtually all recurves feature the contoured handle and deflex-reflex design. The major design variation is one-piece versus takedown. Aside from being a bit heavier and less sleek, the takedown has all the advantages. Its disassembly feature makes it much more convenient for many forms of travel. If part of the bow is damaged or the shooter desires a different draw weight, bow components can be replaced for a fraction of what it would cost to replace an entire one-piece bow. On average, takedown bows can be shot just as accurately as one-piece models.

Along with the fundamental design differences, there are other more minor ones. If you prefer to shoot off a rest, or mount a bow quiver or stabilizer, you will need the appropriate accessory holes and hardware.
Which is why I would choose to alternate between a deflex-reflex contoured Longbow, & a reflex-recurve bow, these seem to be the best for me. The ratings on those reflex-recurve bows are brilliant, (the Deluxe Hungarian Horse Bow!) thanks for getting clear pictures. (the ones I came across were at unclear angles)

Your first link seems to be a deflex-reflex but again, those angles don't help my depth-perception (like the guy in your video link) & I have to study it closely. The second link pictures, from what I can tell, have the same grip & I'm assuming it's due to tradition or something similar. But I wouldn't do an intense search for the phrase I used, they probably don't call Longbows that (in literary reference) & it may be that you'll have to customize the grip - contour. In this respect (for the Longbow at least) I think it's specific to the L.B. (curvature providing the aforementioned benefits in the Sportsman's Guide) with differences in the mass produced recurves, which I imagine are taken for granted. Then again, recurves (in the west) are most popular, along with that Olympic crap, where they manipulate risers, sights, stabilizers etc & all to shoot a damn arrow.

I've seen even more horrible looking bows & this just compounds the sterile atmosphere of Olympic archery, I'd honestly rather watch re-runs of old "Robin Hood" movies with the classic scenes of the archery competition/trap (where he splits the arrow in the centre!) set-up by king John...

For what it's worth, if you Google this: "pictures of contour handles on recurve bows" then you should get some results, just keep scrolling. Also: "pictures of contour handles on Longbows". There are also videos of rudimentary grips for bows.
 

c.a.

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
It has come a long way from the typical bow, and arrow. But always, and still lethal for big game, or protection.
Regulator BowRegulator vs. Soda Cans
_www.youtube.com/watch?v=o3_Ce9LALZo&list=TLPdZpZH4HBCTFowQlCXf3Y_Vs8eW-J__e

How to make a bow, and arrow.
_https://www.google.com/search?q=how+to+make+a+bow+and+arrow&tbm=vid&source=lnms&sa=X&ei=87OyUs-eB6b70gWFtYCIDw&ved=0CAoQ_AUoBA&biw=1400&bih=927&dpr=1
 

Attachments

canavare

Jedi
Thank you for this video H-kqge,

H-kqge said:
Archer Lars Andersen can shoot 10 arrows in less than 5 seconds, without sacrificing power or accuracy. Andersen learned his technique by studying ancient archery practices...the key is holding the extra arrows in the hand and instinctive shooting.
Another very important part of the technique is using the tumb ring for shooting. For more information:
_http://www.tirendaz.com/en/?page_id=428
 

Tigersoap

The Living Force
Lars Andersen: a new level of archery


Incredible video of Archery skills by Lars Andersen who rediscovered (?) the art of ancient archery.

_https://www.youtube.com/watch?x-yt-cl=84503534&feature=player_detailpage&v=BEG-ly9tQGk&x-yt-ts=1421914688

The ultimate archery trick!

Prove that Hollywood archery is not historical.

Podcast about how I started archery:
https://soundcloud.com/claus-raasted/...

Quiver:
An archers with a quiver on his back is a movie icon which is widespread throughout the world.
But putting arrows in a quiver on your back is not a good solution.
It is bad in motion and the archer cannot see his own arrows, as he has an enemy in front of him. He must focus on his quiver, which makes him vulnerable.
Past archers often had different types of arrows simultaneously in his quiver but since the quiver is on his back, he cannot see which arrow he takes.
Placing the quiver in the belt solved most problems, and if the archer is horseback, the quiver could be placed on the horse in front of the rider. These methods were the most common ways to use a quiver.

The round divided target:
The two dimensional target is not known from the past. Historical targets were not flat, but three dimensional.

Quiver, arrows in the bow hand, arrows in the draw hand:
I think there has always been an evolution in archery. Archers from even the earliest times have gone from using quivers, to arrows in the bow hand, and ultimately, to hold arrows in the draw hand.
Going from the quiver to holding the arrows in the bow hand is not difficult, it can be learnt. You get the arrow in front of you, so you do not have to focus away from an enemy
It is far better in motion, so there are many advantages over a quiver. There are today archers which are really good with this method.
Keeping the arrow in the draw hand provides a wide range of benefits, but it assumes that one can draw and shoot in a single movement automatically.
If you must use multiple movements or have to use your fingers on the bow hand to get the arrow in place, then it is far better to go back and keep the arrow in the bow hand.

Double draw
I have for many years experimented with drawing with both hands simultaneously so while your hand with the arrow pulling the string behind, while bow hand is pushed forward, this providing more power on the arrow.
when I 2 years ago made the video "Reinventing the fastest forgotten archery" I had seen many historic pictures of a low half drag, and then I thought it would be interpreted as past archers only drew the bow short, but today I think it is more likely that the images show a double draw,

To hit an arrow in the air::
I have currently tried 14 times (everything is filmed)
For me this is the ultimate archery, which I until recently had thought was impossible.
it can be done, but requires the handling of the bow and arrow to become completely bodily.
you may not have time to aim or think, and you must first be completely convinced you hit, you see, "feel" the incoming arrow and shoot in an instant.
do not attempt this
I / we have been in doubt about wether this should be shown,
because we were afraid that someone gets hurt if they try to emulate it,

I trained for many years and spent a really long time before I tried it the first time.
For several years, I along with my friends Peter and Ask also trained with harmless buffer arrows where I often have shot their arrows down and before we switched to proper arrows I had very safely hit 5 harmless arrows in a row.
It will not be shot with a very strong bow (but it's still dangerous)
The arrow that fired at me is a light bamboo arrow with metal tip, I'll shoot back with a heavy aluminum arrow so I'm sure that the incoming arrow flexes when they hit together.
The archer shoots at me normally sits behind one large safety sheet, but in the video is filmed with the sheets pulled away, so you can see what is going on.

I hope to try again during the summer outside, with an HD camera in slow motion.

Do I hit everything?
I use a lot of time practicing, and it can take a very long time before I learn a new skill. For instance, when I got the idea of jumping to grab and enemy’s arrow before I land, it took me months to learn, where for a long time, the arrows would fly everywhere, until I learned to handle it.

Thanks for reading and watching my videos
-Lars Andersen
Edit : Some people are doubting the tricks he is doing so if anyone knows a lot about archery and if it's even possible,just chime in.
 

hiker

Jedi
Re: Lars Andersen: a new level of archery

Tigersoap said:
Incredible video of Archery skills by Lars Andersen who rediscovered (?) the art of ancient archery.

_https://www.youtube.com/watch?x-yt-cl=84503534&feature=player_detailpage&v=BEG-ly9tQGk&x-yt-ts=1421914688
Thank you for bringing up this more recent video Tigersoap. Extremely impressive, how he turns around and shoots at an arrow aimed at his back, splitting it in half. Almost as if he's "using the Force". :cool2:

It has taken him years to perfect his skills, but with this particular trick it feels like there is more involved than just hand-eye coordination and muscle memory. Perhaps at this point he is able to tap into the "morphic field" between himself and the target?

As he says:

Tigersoap said:
you may not have time to aim or think, and you must first be completely convinced you hit, you see, "feel" the incoming arrow and shoot in an instant.
 

goyacobol

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Re: Lars Andersen: a new level of archery

hiker said:
Tigersoap said:
Incredible video of Archery skills by Lars Andersen who rediscovered (?) the art of ancient archery.

_https://www.youtube.com/watch?x-yt-cl=84503534&feature=player_detailpage&v=BEG-ly9tQGk&x-yt-ts=1421914688
Thank you for bringing up this more recent video Tigersoap. Extremely impressive, how he turns around and shoots at an arrow aimed at his back, splitting it in half. Almost as if he's "using the Force". :cool2:

It has taken him years to perfect his skills, but with this particular trick it feels like there is more involved than just hand-eye coordination and muscle memory. Perhaps at this point he is able to tap into the "morphic field" between himself and the target?

As he says:

Tigersoap said:
you may not have time to aim or think, and you must first be completely convinced you hit, you see, "feel" the incoming arrow and shoot in an instant.
Thank you Tigersoap for the video link and hiker for the comments. I have not been thinking so much about archery lately with all that is going on in the forum but it is nice to diversify our interests I think. I still have a basic re-curve bow and a weaker one for letting my granddaughter and neighborhood kids have a try at shooting.

Lars Andersen is amazing and to think he studied historical records to bring back ancient technics is fascinating. I used to try instinct shooting with a BB-gun as a kid. After watching a man on TV describe how to approach it I was able to throw a walnut in the air and hit it (sometimes anyway).

I think there is a similar transfer of the instinct shooting from bow to gun or vise/versa. The idea of the "morphic field" is really an interesting possible connection. Maybe this could also tie in with "anticipation" like little or no anticipation? :huh:
 

goyacobol

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
This thread has been fun and interesting. You can learn so much about how other cultures developed their own techniques in archery and for it's day it was a technology for warfare. I just found 2 interesting videos on Japanese archery which is Kyudo. I had always wondered why their technique was so different and these explain some scientific reasons for their designs.

One part explains that while the Samurai eventually had drop archery in warfare (one of the martial arts) due to modern weapons competition they continued to shoot everyday because it was more of a spiritual experience. It is like in Western religion that describes "sin" as missing the mark (an archery concept).

In Japanese archery it is just hitting the target that counts and closer to the center is just icing on the cake.
Hope some may enjoy these as much as I did.


Continued arrow technology details

 
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