Archery Bow and Arrow – Survival to Sport
Archery is an ancient sport that is centuries old and uses arrows and an archery bow has quite an interesting history. In generations past, archery was critical for survival, yet almost died out in the modern world. How could this sport, which is really quite popular, go from one extreme to the other?
Long before man had gunpowder to power bullets and other weapons, a simple bow and arrow was all that separated early man from other beasts of the times. Since man was slow and defenseless as compared to other animals, he developed weapons. First came the spear, but he soon figured out how to make arrows that were propelled by a simple stick with a string tied to both ends – a bow.
This simple weapon helped ensure man’s survival, as even the fastest animal was no match for the speed of an arrow – propelled by an archery bow. As the centuries passed, archery equipment was needed less and less, mainly due to the proliferation of modern inventions such as the gun. When the last of the American Indians were placed on reservations in the early 1900’s, archery almost died in the U.S. as there was no real practical use for this ancient technology.
The resurgence of archery, and the archery bow and arrow, began in 1900, as archery was added as a competitive sport to the Olympics, where it has remained to this day. No longer needed for survival, many people around the world began to develop the sport of archery, devoted to skill development and competition, rather than hunting and basic survival.
Technological developments such as the compound bow, which multiplied the force of a bow by using pulleys and a much stiffer bow material and arrows made of metals vs. stone propelled archery to a much higher plane of importance. While these improvements to the basics of archery occurred hundreds of years ago, their basic designs have carried over largely intact over the centuries.
New man-made materials such as fiberglass, plastics and graphite construction have contributed to huge improvements in performance as compared to archery bows of years ago. And, the resurgence of bow hunting as a serious sport, rather than using a gun, has given new meaning to the “art” of hunting, as bow hunters can’t rely on the awesome power of a gun to bring down their prey. Th sport in hunting is back!
No matter if you use your archery bow for hunting or competitive sport, archery as a serious sport is here to stay.