The ultimate archery trick. Proving that Hollywood archery is not historical.
Article about me in OutdoorHub
DO I HIT EVERYHING?
I use a LOT of time practicing, and every time I set out to learn a new skill, a new trick or how to handle a new type of bow or arrow, it takes a long time, with plenty of misses. When I got the idea of grabbing an arrow in flight and firing before I landed, it took me months to learn. For a long time, arrows flew everywhere!
But there's no trick in the video that I haven't done many times (except for splitting the arrow in flight – after I'd done that once I finished the video). The one with hitting the blade I've only done three times, though. All that running hurt my knees. ;-)
THE BACK QUIVER
Hollywood of course did not invent the back quiver, but they spread the myth it was proper archery!
Many asked why I do not use a back quiver and that is why I am showing my own experience, how bad it is in motion.
There are many different historical variatoner of back quiver and they have of course been used, but presumably belt quiver was more common and some archers did not use quiver.
Past archers obvious used fixed targets, but not the modern round divided two dimensional.
ON MY BOWS AND POWER
Many people talk about how what I do is only possible because I use bows that are less powerful than English longbows. They are correct. I'm 50 years old, and have been doing archery for only ten years. I'll never be able to shoot really fast with 100 lbs+ war bows. I tried, but it just produced injuries. Had I started at age 10, it would have been a different story. ;-)
There is also a tendency from critics to assume that bows were always fired against plate armour (as at Crecy in 1346 and Agincourt in 1415). This was very much the exception. Many opponents had little or no armour at all, and Stone Age findings show that many animals were taken down by multiple shots. Also, in 1923 Saxton T Pope examined a number of historical museum bows from around the world. His conclusion was that most only had a tensile strength of 45-50 pounds.
THE CHAINMAIL TEST
I penetrate chainmail. The arrows had bodkin tips, and the chainmail is riveted. However, while the gambeson is thick, it's not as thick as some I've seen elsewhere. But one reason the arrows penetrate is that I sharpen not only the tip itself, but also the edges of the bodkin tip.
SHOOTING ON THE RIGHT SIDE
There are archery traditions alive today which shoot the arrow on the right side of the bow, as I do. However, the places where most people come into contact with archery (Hollywood, The Olympics, archery clubs) do it left around the bow.
THE THREE LEVELS OF ARROW HANDLING
It is obvious much more complicated, We can not know what the first archers did, some of the earliest pictures show arrows in the bow hand, but the arrow is much older than the bow so the quiver may be used and it is impossible entirely exclude that the first archer held his shafts in the draw hand.
In some parts of history is progress gone in the 3 levels, but other times the opposite has happened. Some archers are gone from arrows in the draw hand to the avancerde rapid fire quiver that was developed just before war archery disappeared.
THE ULTIMATE TRICK TOOK 14 TAKES
At first, I didn't think it was possible. You don't have time to aim or think, but can only do it if your reactions are completely instinctive. First of all, you need to be convinced that you WILL hit it, so you can “feel” the incoming arrow and fire at it instead of just flinching away.
I was also in doubt whether it was smart to show this, because I don't want anyone to get hurt trying to copy the trick. I trained for years with soft boffer arrows and spent a LONG time before I tried it even the first time. And the arrow fired at me was not fired with a very powerful bow, though it was definitely dangerous enough!
It was a light bamboo arrow with a metal tip, and the arrow I shot back was a heavier aluminum arrow. That the arrow split was just pure luck, and I'm not certain I could repeat it without first training for a long time. I believe it split because it hit just behind the head and made the shafts fluctuate against each other, causing the bamboo shaft to split lengthwise.
I hope to try it again using a proper high-speed camera!
Thank you for watching my videos and for reading.
I will remove rude and dumb comments.
I will also remove dumb “archery experts” comments.
- Lars Andersen, January 2015