‘Finding the archer from within’ is the motto at this Cotswold archery school – and where better to do that than at the lovely location within the grounds of Batsford Arboretum near Moreton in Marsh? With everything you need for a fun session learning the skills of archery and with plenty of hands-on practice this Gloucestershire venue is spot on!
The archery training is run by Neil and Jenny who pride themselves on a professional informative and approachable way to teach would-be archers to become proficient with the bow and arrow using a tried and tested teaching method.
In fact this Cotswolds location is the only place to coach in this way and Neil and Jenny firmly believe it’s on target. For starters being two hours long rather than the standard one hour session these Gloucestershire experiences go beyond the usual taster course. During the first hour you will take time to understand the Olympic sport and work on your posture and shooting style.
You’ll start off by shooting for an hour with the wooden three piece recurve training bow at the archery targets usually at 18 metre distance (juniors will start at 10 metres). As your accuracy improves Neil will move the target further away to keep you on your toes!
For the second hour you will have the chance to try out a whole host of different bow types – and it’s this that makes this archery experience in the pretty Cotswolds unique. Whilst most use recurve bows throughout the session Neil makes sure at Moreton-in-Marsh you can have a go at some really rather unusual bows all of which require a certain technique and different way of handling.
One of the most popular is a Katniss-style ‘Mockingjay’ Bow which is a sleek black recurve beauty of a bow and quite an impressive weapon as any Hunger Games fan will know. Then there’s the Syrian horse-bow (which as the name might suggest was designed to be shot on horseback) and the similar Mongolian bow which has that distinct ‘wavy’ curve design to it that dates from the time of Genghis Khan.
Then in that non-recurve way you might get to try out the American flat-bow here in the Cotswolds. This along with the English Yew longbow are what archery aficionados term as ‘traditional’ bows and a generally a lot longer any mighty in the pull but great fun to shoot with – especially when you could be shooting arrows at the foam torso of a zombie named ‘Undead Fred’ – one of the more atypical targets here at this Cotswold Archery centre.