Is Archery Safe for Hunger Games Fans?
Many Hunger Games fanatics are teenage girls like Katniss, and archery hasn’t exactly been associated with teenage girls. With the thousands of Hunger Games tributes witnessing Katniss’ archery ability, some may wonder: is archery a safe activity to take up as a hobby?
The short answer is yes, archery safe. It’s one of the safest sports out there for kids and adults. But there are some aspects of archery that you should consider.
Katniss was no muscle-bound woman with manly biceps. She was scrawny and a little frail since there wasn’t much food available in District 12 other than small game and Peeta’s bread. But she had a lot of practice and inner strength that powered her bow. And although Katniss is a fictional character, archers come in many sizes. Part of archery safety is getting the right equipment for the right size.
Bow power is measured by draw strength, which is the amount of force pounds it takes to draw the bow string back. Most youth-sized archers can handle bows between 15 and 25 pounds of draw strength. That’s enough power for target shooting at a considerable distance. Too strong of a bow could cause an archer to pull an arm or chest muscle, while too weak of a draw might cause premature arrow release.
No one wants to feel the sting of a drawstring on the ear. Trust me, it hurts!
Archery Range Safety
Even when shooting indoors, a good archery instructor will practice good range safety techniques. There are general guides for marking out an archery range. There should be about 10 feet between the archery waiting line and the firing line. Do not notch any arrows onto your bow if you aren’t on the firing line. Also do not “dry fire” your bow, i.e. fire it without an arrow. Repeated dry firing can shatter your bow’s limbs. A complete list of rules can be located here or check out this video:
Archery, like most sports, comes with optional safety equipment to prevent injury. Finger tabs fit around the tips of the fingers and help archers hold onto the arrow longer prior to firing it. They prevent slippage as well as keep your fingers from getting sore from repeated arrow launches.
Female archers also have the option of wearing chest protectors for their delicate female parts.
You can also wear forearm- length armguards called bracers to protect you from misfire damage. If you prematurely release the arrow or hold your forearm too close to the string when you fire, it can graze your arm.
Trust me again: it hurts!
Safety in Style
Even though this archery safety equipment is optional and you won’t likely do severe damage without it, you should consider using it to enhance your Tribute costumes if you are into role playing scenes from The Hunger Games. Even ancient archers decorated their equipment to signify their specific tribes or armies. Do the same and decorate your safety equipment based on your district. Hunting stores often sell armguards and fingertabs. However, you can look on Amazon to find a variety of archery protective gear. With variety comes more options to decorate. Who says you can’t be safe and stylish?
See Also: Archery Training