PSE’s Christopher Perkins Says to Marry Tournament Archery to Bowhunting to Improve at Both Sports
Editor’s Note: Christopher Perkins from Athens, Ontario, Canada, has been shooting for PSE for the last 2 years. In 4 weeks of 2012, this 20 year old earned $18,000 in two professional archery tournaments – not bad for a summer job. But, Perkins never really set out to be a tournament archer winning championships and money and gaining sponsors. Like many tournament pros, Perkins just wanted to shoot better, so he could become a more proficient bowhunter. However, Perkin’s love of bowhunting and the desire to become a better bowhunter lead him to participate in archery competitions and world championships. He discovered like many of us have that the marriage between target archery and bowhunting produces a much better target archer and bowhunter than just choosing one of these two archery sports.
I took another buck in 2008 the same year I took my first buck. I took this 9 point buck in October. I never got a trail camera picture of this buck. He just showed up on the property. I had a box full of trail camera pictures of other bucks, but I didn’t have a single picture of this buck that weighed 180 pounds dressed. He was a small basket rack buck that came to within 20 yards, and I took the shot. He went only about 30 yards before he piled up
Christopher Perkins, like many other bowhunters who also shoot tournament archery, knows that one of the biggest advantages of shooting tournament archery during the off season is that you drastically can reduce the amount of time required to trail and find your deer when bowhunting, because you’ll shoot accurately. When you’re able to place the arrow exactly where it needs to go and either get a double lung shot or a heart shot, then most of the time you’ll only have to travel a short distance from where you’ve arrowed the buck to where you find him. Another factor that plays a major role in recovering your animals is the size of the entry hole and the size of the exit wound. The bigger the hole, the better the blood trail. The speed at which the arrow is traveling when it makes impact also helps ensure that you get a clean pass through just one of the many reasons why people enjoy hunting with PSE bows, since PSE produces some of the fastest bows in the archery industry. In the past, the weight of the bow determined speed. Many years ago archers had to shoot heavy bows to get fast speeds. However, because of the cam systems and the intensive engineering designed in the PSE bows we have today, you can get that good speed with a lighter weight bow. Too, because of the let off system on today’s bows, you don’t have to hold that heavy poundage so long, while waiting for a buck to step out to the spot where you can take the shot. All of us who go afield to take game with our bows want to know that when we draw our bows back and put our sights on the spots we want the arrows to enter the animals that when we release these arrows, they it will fly true to the targets.
One of the best ways to shoot with confidence during hunting season is to build that confidence by shooting target archery in the off season. You not only learn the mechanical and physical skills required to make an accurate shot when an animal presents itself by shooting target archery, but just as importantly, you learn to control your emotions and be able to shoot accurately under pressure. When you’re in the woods, no one is watching when you make the shot. However, a buck of a lifetime standing in front of you impacts your shot with a tremendous amount of pressure, anxiety and adrenaline. When you are shooting target archery, everyone is watching the flight (other competitors you are shooting against) and the final rounds where observers also may include the press and possibly TV crews. In that situation, you have to face and overcome the same mental and emotional problems that you must face and overcome when you have the big game animal of a lifetime standing in front of you. So, shooting target archery in the off season not only will better prepare you mechanically to take game during the hunting season, but it will also better prepare you emotionally for the moment of truth when the big game animal of your dreams presents the shot.