If you can’t fly, leap tall buildings or use laser vision to beat villains, don’t worry. You can achieve superhero status with archery. No spider bite or exposure to radiation is required.
Green Arrow, comics’ best-known bowman, is the latest archer to appear on the small screen. The main character, featured in the CW’s “Arrow,” returned home with a vengeance for taking down bad guys after spending five years stranded on an island.
In the show’s new season, Oliver Queen/Green Arrow’s high-tech archery equipment has been upgraded from the original bow he made while stranded. But producers haven’t revealed details beyond that.
CJ Davis, an avid archer, bowhunter and president of Montana Decoy, follows the entertainment industry’s depiction of archery and enjoys identifying equipment adapted for use in movies. He said Batman and Hawkeye shot Hoyt recurve bows in “The Dark Knight Rises” and “The Avengers” respectively, and Abigail Whistler uses a PSE compound bow in “Blade: Trinity.”
Like Green Arrow, Davis also started shooting archery with a homemade bow. At age 6 his dad fashioned one from a dogwood branch. Now he shoots a Hoyt Buffalo recurve, and his bowhunting passion has sent him on backcountry hunts around the globe.
Archery doesn’t require cutting-edge equipment, though. You can become highly skilled in your backyard. If you haven’t given it a shot, get started.
4 Reasons Archery Isn’t Limited To Comic Book Heroes
Face it: You’ll never become Superman or Wolverine because it’s physically impossible. But with training and practice you can develop archery skills you see on TV and in movies.
“On some level, you can become Green Arrow because the person with the best technique will win,” Davis said. “I can be bigger and stronger, with the newest and most expensive archery equipment on the market. But if you train better than me, you’ll outscore me.”
2. You Can Do It Well Even If You Aren’t Ripped Like Lebron
Archery appeals to every generation, whether you’re 5 years old and shooting suction-cup arrows at your mom’s freezer, or you’re an adult who got interested after watching “The Wolverine.”
“I was an archer before I was a bowhunter,” Davis said. “I killed my first deer with a gun, and my second with a PSE Strato Flite Express bow. I bought a Jennings T-Star bow as a teenager and bagged small game before bagging that first deer. I played baseball, softball and football; all kinds of sports. At age 41, I don’t play those sports anymore, but I still shoot a bow.”
3. It’s Versatile
You can’t play catch by yourself or play football solo, but you can shoot archery alone or as part of a team. In most sports, a team can compensate for a single person’s shortcomings. On an archery team, each shooter’s individual skill matters.
Archery also is versatile because you can bowhunt for deer, rabbits and squirrels and other wild game. Many bowhunters use modern compound bows but some, including Davis, enjoy the extra challenge of hunting with a traditional bow.
4. What Goes On Between the Bow & Arrow Is Superhuman … Even When You’re Not
Even without superpowers or an arsenal of gadget-arrows archery still seems like magic.
“It’s exciting to see that spinning arrow fly through the air and hit the mark,” Davis said. “Even after 35 years of shooting archery, I still find something magical about it.”
Like any sport, mastering archery takes time, determination and practice. An archery coach also can help you perfect your technique if you want to enter competitions.
To find the right bow, arrows and other equipment, search for an archery shop in your neighborhood.