Special Techniques

The techniques I want to show you on these pages are no longer considered up-to-date and have generally become obsolete. However in the days when a bow and arrow was an effective long-distance weapon, these techniques were very important: mastering them often meant the difference between winning and losing a battle. The Ottomans and Persians in particular perfected these skills to an art form, attempting to outperform each other to gain an advantage in battle. The Arabs were by no means inferior and developed increasingly clever methods.

English translations of Arabian sources from the 11th – 15th century have helped me to bring these forgotten techniques back to life. Direct contact with experienced archers from Turkey has also been helpful. Getting to know the different techniques step by step is a lot of fun; in addition to handling your bow and arrows you also learn a lot about history and gain a better understanding of why things were done a certain way.

Personally I’m not interested in finding the most efficient way to get a curved stick to launch an arrow at a target – there are many better and cleverer ways to do that these days. Hitting targets loses its meaning when I can feel the pulse of history when I draw my bow and use such an old technique. I am very happy when I’m successful and can see that it works.

The following pages will slowly introduce you to these techniques. I would be happy to show you one or two of them as part of a thumb ring technique course.

Yours, Martin Gröber