Archery is a historical 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, that is really quite popular, go from one extreme to another?
A long time before man had gunpowder to power bullets and other weapons, a straightforward bow and arrow were 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 determined how to make arrows that have been propelled by way of a simple stick to a chain 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. Whilst the centuries passed, archery equipment was needed less and less, mainly due to the proliferation of modern inventions like the gun. When the final of the American Indians were placed on reservations in the first 1900s, archery almost died in the U.S. as there was no real practical use for this ancient technology.
The resurgence of archery, and archery bow and arrow, began in 1900, as archery was added as a competitive sport to the Olympics, where it’s remained to the day archey. No further necessary for survival, many people around the globe began to produce the activity of archery, specialized in skill development and competition, as opposed to hunting and basic survival.
Technological developments like the compound bow, which multiplied the force of a ribbon by utilizing pulleys and a much stiffer bow material and arrows manufactured from metals vs. stone propelled archery to a greater plane of importance. While these improvements to the basic principles of archery occurred hundreds of years ago, their basic designs have carried over largely intact on the centuries.
New man-made materials such as for example fiberglass, plastics, and graphite construction have contributed to huge improvements in performance as compared to archery bows of years ago. And, the resurgence of bowhunting as a critical sport, as opposed to using a gun, has given new meaning to the “art” of hunting, as bowhunters can’t rely on the awesome power of a gun to bring down their prey. Th sport in hunting is back!