There are a lot of things that contribute to becoming a better bowhunter. To gain the best edge out in the field there are a lot of things you can do in preparation, Fitness is one of those things.
Technology is rampant in just about all things today, and its flooded today’s bowhunting world, there are thousands of gadgets and accessories (some not all that bad), that are there to make things, Easier, Faster, more Efficient, etc…But its a grave mistake to depend on them over the fundamentals. And thats becoming the norm these days, bowhunters are overlooking the fundamentals.
A good level of fitness can only benefit you out in the field, it will benefit your health and extend your hunting time in years to come, It go’s hand in hand with making you a better shot, increase’s confidence in all your abilities, and allows you to hunt longer and harder.
Some argue hunt smarter, not harder….and I agree, BUT your missing the point if you think you have to choose one over the other, you can do both and if your looking to take things to the next level, you should do both.
Now Im no fitness junky, far from it, and ill be the first to crack a beer back at camp after a long day, But I train because there is no doubt its benefited my hunting over the years, that’s all the motivation I need.
My advice is to keep your training basic and try mimic what you’l will be doing out hunting. Hiking with a loaded pack is a great way to get outside and keep your legs and back strong.
I can think of more then a few pretty unfit hunters, with a proven success under their belt that speaks for itself, but at the same time there is not one amongst them that would not have been more successful or achieved it a lot more easily, had they been in better physical shape. Its not to say you have to be fit to be successful, but all else being equal the fitter you are the more you will get out of all the aspects of your hunting.
Now there’s Gym fit and Hunting fit. Before pointing out the difference let me say that ANY form of fitness however it is attained is better then non at all.
However you choose to go about it, within your means, desires and abilities make it a part of your year round hunting preparation. It is after all a part of the Hunt.
I’v not set foot in a gym to train since my school days, you don’t need to pay a monthly fee to get into great hunting shape. I keep things simple and keep them relevant to the hunting ill be doing. An hour of the right training every other day is plenty to get you and keep you in good shape.
There is a wealth of information on different forms of training, find what works for you and find a balance that will best benefit the hunting you wish to embark on.
Cardio and Endurance will keep you ahead of the game and allow you to keep pushing on in the final stages of a hunt. Strength gives you the ability to exert and get over that last ledge, carry on you own shoulders what you need for a hunt and then carry out your rewards, Core and balance is key for stalking, allowing you to move decisively and under control in sometimes tricky situations during the stalk. Etc. the list goes on……..all aspects are required and all combined will improve your ability to bring it all together and make that one shot, you’v worked so hard to get all come together.
(No gym required) Simple bodyweight exercises are a great way to get into hunting shape. During the Buffalo season I use a pull up bar to prepare for the mountains. One of the best tips I can give is “Variety” is your friend, always change things up, it’l keep you interested and challenged and will reward the best results.
Preparation for a hunt also includes preparing your body physically. Its the start of a new year and its as good a time as any for you to get into it.
Give up those waisted hours behind the key boards scrolling through bowhunting this and that and put that time into something that will make you a better bowhunter. The rewards will speak for themselves.
As always if there are any questions, feel free to ask, between the Stark Brothers and Pedro ( those boys are mountain goats) we’ll be more then willing to help and advise where we can.
All the best for 2013, the good old days of hunting are here and now. Make the most of them!
Find more bowhunting tips and helpful guides from the team at http://adventurousbowhunter.com
Images courtesy Andy Ivy