Contributors to this thread:
Pat Lefemine's Link
Thanks Bowsiters - you helped a lot
You guys may recall that I asked this community two important questions: what are your favorite high end arrows, and what is your favorite release style. Our latest article describes an intensive effort to break 40 years of bad habits and improve my shooting. What I didn't expect was that I would nearly double my effective range on targets from 30 to 60 yards. It wasn't easy, and in all honesty I am still perfecting my form and release, but I am very happy with how far I came over the winter and spring months.
It's not easy to break 40 years of bad habits!
Nice work, Pat. There's so much good information out there that can make us better archers if a person seeks it out and really wants to work at it. I'm still nowhere near as good or as consistent as I'd like to be but I sure enjoy shooting now more than ever trying to be the best I can be.
Same for me. The young’s lads on YouTube can teach us quite a bit. I’m finally becoming a “threat”..
you used to be a big trad guy...what made you decide to go to a compound...was it simply a matter of wanting to be more accurate?
Now if we can get him to work on his scent control ;-)
Glad to hear it all came together…. Insightful video
That's awesome Pat! I did similar with my set up although I still fight target panic from time to time where I can't get my release to go off no matter what I do.
2 days ago I shot great (for me) out to 70 yds... last night was one of the bad days and my groups were 12"+ at 70. I know its all in my release.
A couple of years ago I was struggling with TP and I came across Joel Turner on Instagram. I went to his website and sent him an email, my signature had my cell number on it, about an hour after sending the email I get an outa state phone call and it was Joel. He gave me some great pointers and 90% of the time if I do what he said I shoot great. I can recommend his course enough. His instruction made archery fun again for me!
I do everything you've done except the thumb release, I've owned a few and just didn't like them, I now pull through with a stan index, works great
Good deal Pat. I do have to say, I went to the compound when they first started getting big. I developed TP bad and had to learn how to shoot through it. 7 - 8 years ago I went back to traditional and shoot instinctive. I do not have the TP problems shooting this way. But, if I pick up a compound and see those sights in front of me, the TP all comes back in aces. Even if I goof around and try to gap shoot using the arrow point on my recurve, TP hits. Shooting instinctive takes those sighting tools out of the picture and I focus on the spot and release.
That’s awesome, it’s amazing theirs so many great hunters out their, that don’t put a lot of emphasis on form, fundamentals, and consistent shots, imo being a good archer is the foundation of all successful hunts, physical fitness, scouting, everything else falls second, if you can’t capitalize in the moment none of the rest matters…
Pat, You brought us all together for just such a purpose. Glad to hear you reap what you sow, in this case.
Pretty awesome. And really not that hard once you learn it and promote the good habits. I had no mentors, so for many years I struggled to shoot consistently. Like you, 40 yards was where the wheels came off for me.
Finally, in 2008 I moved home to where I was raised and we happened to buy a house across the road from a big indoor shooter. He became my bow guru. First thing he showed me was that I was overdrawn about an inch and a half. He helped me find the right size draw length for me, and groups immediately tightened up when I had a bow that fit.
Then he tuned my bow and taught me proper grip and form. Again, groups tightened up and I started to shoot much better. Until TP hit, and I had to switch to a thumb release.
Once I figured out bow fit, and proper form and tuning, the next best thing for my accuracy was starting to shoot at long distances. I find if I practice at 70-100 yards, my shooting at 40 and 50 seems a lot easier than it used to. They feel like chip shots.
Have fun and take some long shots this fall and post about it so we can all argue :)
I like the part where you mention feeling like a proficient bowhunter but not the greatest shot - I think many can relate to this, I know I can. So there's always room for self improvement.
It might be the camera angles but throughout the video (I realize footage is split between index and handheld so that changes things) it appears your head position relative the string seems to vary slightly. Using the tip of your nose vs nearly the side might help achieve a truly consistent anchor/ reference point from shot to shot if you're finding inconsistency there.
Great job Pat! You're almost ready to come lose all your confidence and arrows with the rest of us at TAC! Ha!
Good for you Pat. Many of us have had to do the same things. Taking your accuracy to another level is so rewarding.
Oh SHIT! Now I have to buy a new bow, new arrows, sight, rest release, quiver, and accessories and then I have to practice a lot.
OK, how much is this going to cost me, ballpark? Probably too late for my upcoming hunt, but ... if I'm being honest, it's time.
Good stuff Pat! Glad you can shoot better!
And I bet you can learn to shoot the index finger release with back tension just like the thumb release. I did and it has worked great for many years.
Long range practice is fun! Makes you a more accurate bowhunter at closer hunting yardages.
Great write up Pat - thanks for sharing.
Pat - this was a very bad idea. Do you realize how boring the blood trail challenges are about to become?
Shot a turkey It went 10 steps. Died
Nice read some good info there thanks for sharing Good luck Lewis
Awesome! and welcome to the club of "yes, I can hit same point of impact with both Field points and broadheads." :)
Yep some times were stubborn and resist change. Glad you’re shooting great!
I’ve had great luck with Axis match grade also. Great write up. Thanks.
Keep it fresh !! Continue to practice !!!
I went thru a little re-work on all my gear this past winter. Archery doesn't seem to evolve much but then you really start studying what's out there and it can be fun starting over.
One thing I found was that the calculated weight chart for a lot of arrow manufacturers can be very frustrating. The seem to post an "easy" chart but then a little more digging on their website, etc can show a more detailed chart that can put you in an entirely different spine category. I found this to be especially true with Carbon Express and Ive shot their arrows for many years. The chart they show online vs the one that comes with their packaging are incredibly different.
I ended up with Easton Axis Match Grade and really like them. I was told to go with a very stiff shaft initially, but then went down a spine and they fly beautifully.
Something to look out for...
Not sure if it was mentioned, but what release did you end up with?
Well done Pat! Impressive
Pat, congrats on your improvement, and thanks for the write-up.
Are you getting a true surprise release with the changes you have made?
Pat, good thread and also I see that you doubled your effective range with your stated efforts which is very impressive. I am wondering if draw weight was a consideration especially at the longer ranges. If so, did you determine that increasing or decreasing draw weight affected your accuracy at any distance? Bob
Thanks for the comments guys. It’s been so nice to have this much improvement in a short period of time.
My thumb release is a Tru-Ball Max Pro Plus. I always liked their releases so I went with this one just to try out to see if I could make the switch. Seemed smarter than buying a Stan or other expensive release. I really liked it so I bought another. Tried some expensive releases since and can’t find one I like better than the Tru-Ball so I’ll probably stick with that.
My draw weight was not a factor. Every bow I own is 70lbs.
The Easton arrows are really nice. Very impressive. I was really getting tired of the garbage being produced the last few years where I was throwing out 40-50% of the shafts due to inconsistent spine and weight.
Nice write up. I’ve shot some form of Easton arrows for many many years. Currently shooting axis 340’s off my longbow and fmj 340’s off my compound. I haven’t been able to convince myself to use a collar yet but who knows. I’ve tried a thumb release and that was a disaster! Lol it created so many problems for me. It’s nice to see so many different types of releases now in order to help us improve. Congrats on the improvement!
Great write up and reminder for all of us......The “continuous improvement journey” means we have to be willing to try new things/new techniques IF we want to improve!
I like the Easton arrows as well. I am wondering why Bass Pro doesn't carry a better selection of Easton arrows as I have a ton of their points but they do not have my required arrow gpi.
Thanks for the write up Pat. It got me thinking. Ever since my tree stand accident, I've been struggling to get back to the shooting accuracy that I had before. The Scott Mongoose releases I have for 3D are 20+ years old. My hunting releases are Scott Little Gooses, 10-15 years old. Your article made me think that maybe I should change things up too. Can't hurt. I ordered a Tru Ball Trex 4 finger thumb release and a new Scott S2 release (not a thumb release). We'll see if I can improve my game. Thanks for the tips.
Congrats Pat. Personal progression is fun no matter what area of life!
Yep. You’re either getting better or you’re getting worse. Nothing we do is stationary.
Good video, regardless of what type of bow you're shooting. If you're not improving it might be time to re-think.
Before I switched to trad I had switched to a thumb release with my compound. Made a HUGE difference in my shooting. You can still "punch" it but not near as easily. Looks like you are dialed in and I am ready for another elk hunt from you. :)
badbull, I think Bass Pro/Cabelas quit carrying Easton arrows.
12yards, I think that you are correct and think that they may be missing out by carrying mostly substandard arrows imo.