“Focus on your goals, one arrow at a time.” – Jane Johnson
Joe and I have had the privilege in the last few years of receiving our USA Archery certification training both from Jane Johnson, the grande dame of archery in Oklahoma, and Tom and Kathleen Stevenson, world class coaches and competitors. One of Miss Jane’s most famous statements is the one above, often quoted by the Stevensons (and us) when teaching. It’s key to the concept that the most important arrow of all is the one currently on your string.
It’s one of the most simple in concept but difficult in practice things we try to teach our beginning archers. They’re so excited when they see their arrows start to hit the target! And they concentrate on “what’s my score?” instead of their shooting form. Shooting for achievement pins is a good way to motivate them, and give them a benchmark on how they’re improving. But somehow we have to keep them from worrying about what their last few arrows scored or what their next few arrows have to hit to earn that pin. No matter whether they’re in practice, a fun shoot, or competition at any level, their focus has to be on this shot, no other. It’s something I have to constantly remind myself, as well.
Set your goals. Learn from each shot, but don’t dwell on it. Prepare for your next shot, but don’t anticipate it. Keep your focus on the arrow you have right now, and you’ll reach your goal, one arrow at a time!