As you begin to develop in this sport, you’ll find that your focus on other things in your life outside of Traditional Archery will most likely become heightened. Your physical fitness will improve as you practice more and more. Not only it's a fun game, it helps the mind to focus, the body to breathe, the limbs to exercise, the heart to connect and the spirit to develop.
The physical elements of archery is the use of all parts of the body and assists in developing fit, strong and robust athletes. The act of aiming helps the mind to ignore distractions and sets one's sights and clarity of purpose. Releasing of the arrow, on the other hand, reconnects the heart and soul to the concept of
'La hawla wa la quwatta illah billah'
(There is no Help nor Power but God)
The very act of shooting has huge and unseen benefits and practicing archery also helps you to learn patience.
As a team sport it will help you bond with others and hone your team-working skills which will be valuable in the working world. Like in many other sports, it also gives one a sense of accomplishment as well as empower confidence and improve one's self-image.
The dynamic nature of Traditional Archery will sharpen your instinctive faculty, an innate ability that is increasingly becoming a subject of research. For example a UCL (University College London) study has found that you are more likely to perform better when given almost no time to think and instead trust your instincts (the Science Daily: Jan 8, 2007)
In "BLINK: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking" (the bestseller by Malcom Gladwell) a book about rapid cognition (or intuition), it is stated that there is as much value in a blink of an eye as in months of rational analysis. People are subtly influenced by their subconscious but are unaware of this fact - as if the subconscious is behind a locked door. Putting oneself in situations where snap decisions can be practiced is beneficial because with experience, time slows down, and that provides our minds time to process - resulting in better decisions. In the various practices in Traditional Archery, you will be continuously challenged to react spontaneously or within a blink of an eye, at increasing speed or in other words to react instinctively.
The famous American director, writer, producer, and photographer of films, Stanley Kubrick once said, “The truth of a thing is the feel of it, not the think of it” or “Good instincts usually tell you what to do long before your head has figured it out (Michael Burke)” or “You must train your intuition - you must trust the small voice inside you which tells you exactly what to say, what to decide (Ingrid Bergman)”.
Educators believe that if the student can be engaged in some type of extra-curricular activity, that student will make better grades and be more likely to stay in school. Unfortunately, many common extra-curricular activities require the student to be tall, fast, strong, or otherwise athletically endowed, to enjoy success. Archery is a life sport that circumvents traditional barriers to engage students of all genders and physical abilities, even facilitating participation and competition in students with disabilities.
Traditional Archery can be challenging or it can be for fun. You get to control how competitive and challenging you want the sport to be. You can enter into contests that match your talent against other archers or you can practice for fun and not keep score. Whatever your competitive desires are, you will be sure to like the advantage of being able to go outdoors and let a few arrows fly. What you do beyond this, will be up to you.
Being in the outdoors will bring a natural feeling of freedom and releasing and watching your arrows in flight is a great stress buster.
For traditionalists, archery is a great way to see how past ancestors lived while trying their luck with a bow and arrow. This can be an initially humbling experience which will give you a new found respect of what your ancestors have done, but also great satisfaction in knowing you too can master this skill.
Finally, it gives you an interesting conversation topic when people find out you have taken up the sport as so few people are experienced with archery!