Summer is coming to a close, but there’s still time to get in some summer reading. If you’re thinking, “reading, ugh,” then think again! Grab one of these books and brush up on bows, arrows and the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, where archery will be one of the featured – and one of the hottest – events.
Grab your bookmarks, fire up your Kindle, and break out those beach blankets and lawn chairs to enjoy summer reading by the pool, lake, beach, or propped up against your favorite tree. We have seven great books to help you fall for Olympic-style archery.
1. Archery, by USA Archery
For archers that already have the basics down to a science, but need a little help getting to that next level, this book is a perfect stepping stone. “If you’re serious about improving accuracy, increasing consistency, and achieving competitive success, ‘Archery’ is your guide,” says Amazon. This book is ideal for competitive archers looking to get “in-depth instruction, insight and advice from the world’s top coaches and archers.”
2. Total Archery: Inside the Archer, by KiSik Lee
For more advanced archers, “Inside the Archer” is the tool for you. Focusing on the ins and outs of Olympic archery, each of the 28 chapters teaches something different about technique. The pages are “beautifully laid out with large, full-color photos and diagrams that supplement the words of the text in graphical form,” says Amazon, making this book great for visual learners.
Author KiSik Lee improved his skills throughout his life in Korea, and eventually became a renowned archery coach. Under his guidance, Korea won a combined eight gold medals at the 1984, 1988, 1992 and 1996 Olympics, his website reports. In January 2006 he became Team USA’s national head coach. He studies technique, body control, muscular requirements, mental concentration and other elements he considers essential to elite competitors.
3. Archery, by Hyung Tak Kim
Korean traditional archery is centuries old, but when Korea started embracing modern archery, Hyung-Tak Kim became one of the first Koreans to study and analyze the type of archery he now coaches, Lancaster Archery notes.
In this book, Kim passes along his advice for coaches and students alike, with something for every skill level. “Each person can discover his teaching techniques from the basics to top levels through this tool where he is presenting problems and solutions in a precise and practical form,” Lancaster Archery attests.
Kim also extends his technical knowledge to archers and coaches through training courses and seminars. Since his training center opened in 2004, over 500 archers from about 30 countries have received his training, said Lancaster Archery. Many of these competitors performed admirably at the Olympics, World Cup tournaments, world championships and European championships.
4. The Heretic Archer, by Michele Frangilli
Ever wonder how an Olympian trains? This book comes straight from the source, written by Italian medalist, Michele Frangilli. He reveals how his father, Vittorio, helped him become an 11-time world champion. “His shooting form or technique, all the processes he goes through, how to practice and train, equipment selection, how he handles pressure, stability of the shot and his secrets to bow tuning, and some interesting stories along the way are all covered in this extremely informative archery manual,” confirms Abbey Archery.
The Olympic.org notes that Frangilli received his first bow from his parents during nursery school, proving it’s never too early to start. Frangilli held an Olympic record that stood until Korea’s Im Donghyun broke it at the London 2012 Olympics.
Frangilli is known on the circuit as “the Heretic Archer,” the title of a book he published in 2005, said Olympic.org. He won the world and European team titles three years later, and competed in his second Olympics at Sydney in 2000.
5. Denise Parker: A Teenage Archer’s Quest for Olympic Glory, by Denise Parker
For another real-life account, Olympic archer Denise Parker discusses every aspect of her road to the Olympics in this autobiography. As Team USA notes, Denise Parker made her debut at the 1987 Pan American Games in Indianapolis. The 13-year-old lefty was the event’s biggest surprise, ranking first in one of the rounds. Parker became the youngest archer to win an Olympic medal when the U.S. women’s team took bronze at the 1988 Seoul Games in a dramatic shoot-off against the eventual silver medalists from Indonesia. Parker also competed in the 1992 and 2000 Summer Olympics. Age really is just a number, even in archery.
She later became CEO of USA Archery, a position she still holds. USA Archery selects and trains the men and women who represent the United States in the Olympics.
Ironically, Parker’s two young sons aren’t attracted to archery, even though their mother keeps a recurve and compound in their home, USA Archery said. If they should ever pursue archery excellence, they’ll have big shoes to fill.
This book is “the perfect read for any child or teenager who strives to achieve greatness as an archer, and it also provides parents and mentors insights to help young adults achieve their dreams in life,” says Amazon.
6. The Simple art of Winning, by Rick McKinney
For information on the mental approach to archery, as well as the technical, this book is the way to go. Author Rick McKinney’s accolades include many Olympic and world medals. He has worked in the archery industry, helping to develop carbon fiber-wrapped aluminum arrows. He has also served as an analyst for NBC’s Olympic archery coverage.
According to 3Rivers Archery, McKinney “gives you valuable information on form, technique and equipment, as well as physical and mental training.” Keeping the mind sharp is just as important as conditioning the body. You wouldn’t change the oil in your car then drive away on an empty tank of gas, would you? That’s why McKinney’s approach combines physical and mental training.
7. With Winning in Mind, by Lanny Bassham
In his past, Bassham tried for Olympic gold in rifle shooting, but didn’t succeed. In seeking to learn why he failed, he created a system he calls Mental Management. Bassham dominated his sport the next six years, winning 22 world individual and team titles, setting four world records, and winning the coveted Olympic gold medal in Montreal in 1976. He has taught his Mental Management system the past 34 years to Olympians, business owners, Fortune 500 corporations, and the elites of sports and business.
“Be wary of the people no one wants on their team, the ones who are too small, too slow and not very capable. The unwanted have a built-in motivation to do whatever it takes to succeed that those who are picked first do not have,” Amazon teases. Sound too good to be true? This book proves that it doesn’t have to be.
Did these descriptions pique your interest? Then put your summer to good use by soaking up these books while soaking up the sun, and the Olympic archery action. The 2016 Olympic Games begin Aug. 5 in Rio De Janeiro.