In this week’s Shooting Lines, Leidamarie talks about how archery interacts with her fibromyalgia, as well as Hawkeye, Hawkeye, HAWKEYE!
Tell us about yourself. Are you currently an active archer?
I am currently an active archer. I took up the bow on September 5th, 2012 so I’ve been at it for about 1 year and 8 months.
What sort of a bow do you use? Why did you choose it?
I shoot a Hoyt Avenger which is a compound bow. I tried both compound and recurve but something about compound just felt right to me. I also love their look. Additionally, the easy adjustability of the draw-weight is ideal for me since I have fibromyalgia and sometimes my muscles aren’t up to a heavier pull-weight.
When did you first fall in love with the idea of archery? What was it that got you interested?
I actually wrote about my start in my blog. The short version is that my husband took me for a lesson on my birthday because he thought I would like it. I ended up loving it and just kept going because I love the community; also it’s teaching me patience and focus.
Are you a sporty person, outside of your participation in archery? What makes archery important?
I used to be athletic (I was a dancer) but ever since I got fibromyalgia I am not as active as I used to be. Archery is a great equalizer though because there are so many adjustments that can be made for people with limitations/disabilities. Anyone can do it. There are some amazing Paralympic archers that shoot right up there with able-bodied archers. Archery is important to me because it helps me relive stress, focus, learn patience, and meet with a great group of friends. It also gives me something to look forward to and it genuinely makes me happy, which is important to have in your life when you are fighting a chronic illness.
How easy was it for you to find a beginner’s course, a club, or your own personal entry into the sport?
My hubby was the one that found it but the club I go to is very well advertised online and they have been on the local news a few times. They have introductory classes all the time so it was really easy to start up. The only barrier is that it is about 45 minutes away but I love it so much that I keep going.
What was you reaction to the sudden archery boom of the last few years? Did you notice it affecting your friends, peers, or club membership?
I am absolutely ecstatic about the rise of archery in pop culture. I love that many of the archery figures are such positive role models for young girls, and boys too. My biggest annoyance though is that there aren’t very many compound bow wielding archers on the big screen. Archery is such a great sport and I tell everyone about it. I am always tweeting or posting on Facebook about it. I even blog about it. Many of my friends even asked to tag along when then found out I was starting archery. I think to date I’ve taken at least 10 friends to the range and I’ve talked to many more to answer questions about archery.
As for club membership, usually we find that around the time of a movie release we get a huge surge of new faces who want to try it out. Many of them only come back once or twice but a small portion become active members of the club which is great.
We don’t care what made you start archery –but we do hope that you stick around once you try it!
What’s your current favourite archery-related comic/book/myth/film/etc?
I have an OBSESSION for all things Hawkeye especially those related to the Fraction/Aja series. I’ve started collecting a bunch of t-shirts, sketches, etc that are all Hawkeye related. Most of my equipment is even purple. I particularly love Kate Bishop. The slightest mention of anything Hawkeye will send me off into fangirl land.
Has your motivation been affected by fictional characters, fictional archers? Tell us all about it!
Fictional or not, they are definitely inspiring. Seeing such amazing archery on the screen always gets me amped to go in and improve my shooting.