Archery is the art, sport, practice, or skill of using a bow to shoot arrows.  

It sounds simple, but according to Sattva Center for Archery Training owners SerahRose and Kyle Bissell, the sport is so much more than that.  

Producer Dave Fraser visited the couple’s Training Center in Florence to get an up-close look at the ancient sport of archery. 

This story originally aired on August 14, 2019. 

Read the Full Transcript:

Zydalis Bauer, Connecting Point: Archery is the art or sport of using a bow to shoot arrows.

It sounds simple, but according to Sarah Rose and Kyle Bissell, owners of the Sattva Center for Archery Training, there’s a lot more to it than that.

Producer Dave Fraser visited the couple’s training center in Florence and shares this story.

Kyle Bissell, Founder: All right, so we’re going to, we want to keep the thumb and pinky back and that’ll help keep the wrist out.

Archery is a form based sport, not an aiming sport. Kind of like dancing, we need to move our bodies through space in the same way each time.

Serahrose Bissell, CFO: Something also magical about archery that people sort of think of archery and they think of the stories that we tell, and it’s historical, but it’s also modern because it’s in movies, but it’s also like from the medieval times.

And so so you say archery and people sort of go, Ooh.

Kyle Bissell: Set up.

I started Sattva center for archery training eight years ago.

Keep this a little bit lower.

Sattva means balance, truth, and strength on the inside. So, what we take that to mean when we use the term Sattva center for archery training, it’s about building archers, building athletes that are strong on the inside.

Good, load, anchor.

The most satisfying part of coaching Archery for me is when people show abilities that are beyond just pure archery skills.

So I love it when people are taking the lessons that they’re learning from archery, and we try that – we try to instill through our coaching and we see them applying that beyond just the form, the beautiful form that archery is.

Because, my hope then is that it’s going to transfer off the archery range.

Lynn Oberbillig: It’s very much a mental sport. So once you learn the physical aspect, conquering the mental, performing under anxiety, staying relaxed, and going through the form is the biggest challenge for me right now.

I like the challenge that it’s personal, like you can start where, wherever, and take it where you want it.

I also like to compete, so I go to tournaments, I like that part of competition, I’ve been an athlete all my life, so this allows me, even at my advanced age, to be a continual athlete.

Serahrose Bissell: We get a lot of people who are adults who tried it in camp or wanted to try it in camp, and then they get to try it as an adult, and so it sparks this, this memory of childhood, and then they get to do it as an adult.

There’s not a lot of things in life that you you really wanted to do when you were a kid and you actually get the chance to go back to do it. And archery, archery is that for a lot of people.

Lyle Denit: Ever since I was a kid in Boy Scouts, I’ve been interested in archery, fascinated with it, but never had too many opportunities to really do it.

It’s just a lot of fun. It really charges me up and gives me it gives me a lot to think about during the week. I can think about it, and then when I’m here, I’m just totally focused on this. I forget about everything else.

Jack Masi: I used to be a competitive fencer, but I have brittle bones and fencing, plus that, led to a lot of injuries.

So, I was looking for a new sport get into, and I thought archery seemed just as different and safe as fencing did.

So I decided to do that.

Serahrose Bissell: We do six arrows at a time, that’s called an end, and sometimes during those six arrows, depending on the number of archers, I can work with every single archer during the course of that end, because I am checking in with every single archer to see.

Where are you in this process? Did you take what I said and incorporate it yet, or are you still working on that?

Which means I can’t give you more coaching yet because you’re still trying to process what I just talked to you about.

So it’s definitely a lot of give and take with every Archer to sort of see where are you and what do you need next.

Jack & Eliza Tuthill: It’s a I think an 11 or 12 step process that starts with knocking the arrow on the bow, raising it up, coming back, sort of transferring in the muscles of the back into a holding position where you can sort of have skeletal alignment and feel that just you have straight through your body, through the arrow towards the target.

Actually, I started about eight years ago in middle school because I wanted something to do and archery seemed cool.

And I just kind of haven’t stopped. And then I started because he started and my dad started. So, so yeah, yeah, it’s a family thing.

Serahrose Bissell: At every age I’ve seen people come in thinking they’re not athletes and eventually they walk away and they call themselves an athlete, or they say, I am an archer.

And that’s really exciting for me to have given them the opportunity to feel proud of what their bodies can accomplish.