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FC Archery News – Russian Martial Arts Toronto :

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Summer Break

Category : FC Archery News

Hey FC Archers,

Can you believe it’s almost August? Where has the summer gone..!

I will be competing in a few Archery Tournaments in early August and away teaching in British Columbia towards the end (I am sure a few of you will be away in August too).
It’s probably best we continue the archery lessons in September.


There will be a lesson this Friday July 28th from 5-6pm.
See you all then!


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It’s never too late to learn archery!

Category : FC Archery News

Hey FC Archers,

* Please forward this email to any friends or family member who you think might be interested in archery!

Introductory Archery Course at FightClub
Date: Thursday July 27th & August 3rd from 5-630pm
Cost: $100 (bow and arrows are provided)
Register: Only 3 spots remaining!
Email to reserve:

Five Awesome Reasons to take up Archery…

1. It’s relaxing. Archery is the perfect stress reliever. At the range, it’s just you and the target. Problems seem to float away from your mind with each arrow you release.

2. It helps you learn to focus and concentrate. As you prepare to draw your bow, there isn’t any room for you to think about anything else other than shooting. A split-second loss of focus can result in your arrow totally missing the target. In time, you learn to clear your mind and focus on your shot.

3. It teaches you patience and coordination. In archery, all parts of your body have to work together to execute the correct form and shot. Once you’ve got it down pat, all you have to do is repeat it a dozen more times. No one gets it right the first few times, and it really takes patience and a lot of practice to make your shot consistent and right every single time.

4. It helps you develop trust and confidence in yourself. Every archer knows that archery isn’t just about form or physical strength. It’s also about mental strength and toughness. Over time, an archer learns to trust his shot and be confident that it will hit the centre every single time.

5. It builds character. Just like real life, there are good and bad days at the archery range. Personally, archery has taught me to win with humility and lose with grace. When scoring during a tournament, archery, very much like golf, demands honesty every time you submit your scorecard.


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Be perfect, each and every time!

Category : FC Archery News

Archery is a sport where the objective is to be perfect, each and every time. You are your own opponent here, and if you have a perfect round, you’ll beat anyone who isn’t perfect–Olympian or not.

-Improve your cardiovascular fitness in order to lower your heart rate. You can play breathing tricks as well to work with your heart rate. Military snipers take three deep breaths in rapid succession, then let out the third breath slowly halfway. I haven’t seen a single Olympic archer do that this year, but I’m sure they’re controlling their breathing as they aim and shoot.

-Strengthen (the stamina of) your core, back, and arm muscles to maintain fine motor control throughout the length of a full round. Holding a bow at full draw long enough to shoot an arrow is easy for anyone–if you’re only shooting a couple of ends. Stamina matters.

-Develop machine-like consistency in your form so that shooting becomes second nature. Form requires another discussion of its own.

-Finally, maintain control of your emotions–shoot like a robot, always following the routine whether or not your last arrow was a zero or an X.

See you on the range,


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Learning the Art of Attention and Focus

Category : FC Archery News

From a Legendary Samurai Archer

In the 1920s, a German man named Eugen Herrigel moved to Japan and began training in Kyudo, the Japanese martial art of archery. Herrigel was taught by a legendary archer named Awa Kenzo. Kenzo’s teaching philosophy centered on the idea that beginners must master the fundamentals of archery before attempting to shoot at a real target and he took this method to the extreme. For the first four years, Herrigel was only allowed to shoot at a roll of straw just seven feet away.

When he was finally allowed to shoot at targets on the far end of the practice hall, Herrigel’s performance was dismal. His arrows flew off course and he became more discouraged with each wayward shot. Herrigel was convinced his problem was poor aim, but Kenzo replied that it was not whether one aimed, but how one approached the goal that determined the outcome. Frustrated with this response, Herrigel blurted out, “Then you ought to be able to hit it blindfolded.” Kenzo paused for a moment and then said, “Come to see me this evening.”

Archery in the Dark
After night had fallen, the two men returned to the courtyard where the practice hall was located. Kenzo walked over to his normal shooting location with the target hidden somewhere out in the night. The archery master settled into his firing stance, drew the bow string tight, and released the first arrow into the darkness of the courtyard. Herrigel would later write, “I knew from the sound that it had hit the target.” Immediately, Kenzo drew a second arrow and again fired into the night. Herrigel jumped up and ran across the courtyard to inspect the target. In his book, Zen in the Art of Archery, Herrigel wrote,

“When I switched on the light over the target stand, I discovered to my amazement that the first arrow was lodged full in the middle of the black, while the second arrow had splintered the butt of the first and ploughed through the shaft before embedding itself beside it.”

Before we talk about how to get started, I wanted to let you know I researched and compiled science-backed ways to stick to good habits and stop procrastinating. Want to check out my insights?

Everything Is Aiming
Great archery masters often teach that “everything is aiming.” Where you place your feet, how you hold the bow, the way you breathe during the release of the arrow—it all determines the end result. In the case of Awa Kenzo, the master archer was so mindful of the process that led to an accurate shot that he was able to replicate the exact series of internal movements even without seeing the external target. This complete awareness of the body and mind in relation to the goal is known as zanshin.

Zanshin is a word used commonly throughout Japanese martial arts to refer to a state of relaxed alertness. Literally translated, zanshin means “the mind with no remainder.” In other words, the mind completely focused on action and fixated on the task at hand. Zanshin is being constantly aware of your body, mind, and surroundings without stressing yourself. It is an effortless vigilance. In practice, though, zanshin has an even deeper meaning. Zanshin is choosing to live your life intentionally and acting with purpose rather than mindlessly falling victim to whatever comes your way.

The Enemy of Improvement
There is a famous Japanese proverb that says, “After winning the battle, tighten your helmet.” In other words, the battle does not end when you win. The battle only ends when you get lazy, when you lose your sense of commitment, and when you stop paying attention. This is zanshin as well: the act of living with alertness regardless of whether the goal has already been achieved. We can carry this philosophy into many areas of life.

“The battle does not end when you publish a book. It ends when you consider yourself a finished product, when you lose the vigilance needed to continue improving your craft”

The enemy of improvement is neither failure nor success. The enemy of improvement is boredom, fatigue, and lack of concentration. The enemy of improvement is a lack of commitment to the process because the process is everything.

The Art of Zanshin in Everday Life
“One should approach all activities and situations with the same sincerity, the same intensity, and the same awareness that one has with bow and arrow in hand.”—Kenneth Kushner

We live in a world obsessed with results. Like Herrigel, we have a tendency to put so much emphasis on whether or not the arrow hits the target. If, however, we put that intensity and focus and sincerity into the process—where we place our feet, how we hold the bow, how we breathe during the release of the arrow—then hitting the bullseye is simply a side effect. The point is not to worry about hitting the target. The point is to fall in love with the boredom of doing the work and embrace each piece of the process. The point is to take that moment of zanshin, that moment of complete awareness and focus, and carry it with you everywhere in life.

It is not the target that matters. It is not the finish line that matters. It is the way we approach the goal that matters. Everything is aiming.


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10 fascinating facts about Archery

Category : FC Archery News

Hey FC Archers,

* Reminder that FightClub is closed today and tomorrow for the Canada Day Long weekend *

1. The modern Olympic recurve bow may look hi-tech, but it is actually based on a design that originated over 3500 years ago (1500 BC)!

2. An archer can also be referred to as a toxophilite (although they rarely are!). The word comes from two Greek words that together mean ‘lover of the bow’.

3. During the Middle Ages, a skilled long-bowman could release between 10-12 arrows per minute. That’s an arrow every five/six seconds!

4. Archery is the national sport of the Kingdom of Bhutan.

5. To get within the ‘gold ring’, Olympic archers have to be able to hit a target the size of a beermat from a distance of seven bus lengths!


6. Five-time US Olympic archery champion Khatuna Lorig trained Jennifer Lawrence for the Hunger Games films. She’s not the only Hollywood star to be adept with a bow. Thelma & Louise star Geena Davis just missed out on making the US Olympic archery team in 2000, placing 24th out of 300!

7. Archery was the only sport that women could take part in, when they were first allowed to compete in the 1904 St. Louis Olympics.

8. South Korea has (so far) won the most gold medals in Olympic archery with an impressive haul of 19.

9. One of England’s greatest victories was because of the skill of its long-bowmen. During the Battle of Crecy in 1346.

10. At various times in Britain’s history, monarchs have banned the likes of football, bowls and even golf, because men were playing these sports rather than practising archery in their spare time. In fact, during the reign of Henry VIII, every man in the country had to “Practice at the Butts” after church on Sundays to hone their archery skills.







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