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When do you become an archer?

Q

Someone posted this on Facebook awhile back:

"When do you become an archer?"



And below is how I responded to this question:


When you first start you become an amateur archer.


When you compete, you become a competitive archer.


When you get paid to do archery you become a professional archer.

When you teach it and people come back for more lessons and tell their friends how great you are, you become an archery instructor (possibly by accident like I did).

When you have learned everything in terms of the physical aspects of archery and have to constantly challenge yourself mentally, you have become an archery master.

The master already knows how to shoot. That is not their problem. Their problem is finding challenges (often mental challenges) that allow them to continue learning something new.
A round of shots on January 24th 2019. The one shot clipped a nock and the nock went flying off.

Now you will notice that, yes, that is a very tight cluster. And yes, I did clip the nock so that it went flying off.

But what you might not notice is the date. January 24th and it was freezing cold outside. Here is some more photos from that day. To shoot that well in those conditions... it is mostly mental.

Eventually it got so cold I decided to go home.






Panarama of the Toronto Archery Range!

Private Archery Ranges near Toronto

One of my students asked me about private archery ranges near Richmond Hill, and in response I have made the following list of private archery ranges near the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) - which includes Richmond Hill.

I was originally thinking of organizing this list alphabetically, but then I changed my mind and decided to organize by categories as some of these locations are university clubs, archery tag locations, and only a few are wholly private archery ranges.

PRIVATE ARCHERY RANGES IN THE GTA

Archers of Caledon
archersofcaledon.org

Located North-West of Brampton, this club/private range was once known as the Humber Valley Archers, but changed the name when they moved the club to Caledon Hills north west of Toronto. The club hosts indoor and outdoor tournaments, and international tournaments as well.

The Archers of Caledon has a 30 x 15 meter heated indoor range, with 10 shooting lanes.

Outdoors, Archers of Caledon has:
  • A 30 to 90 meter target range.
  • A 10 to 80 meter practice range, which includes both field archery and target archery.
  • A 28 target field archery / 3D range course with animal targets ranging from 6 to 65 meters.

Durham Archers
durhamarchers.com
Two ranges located north of Oshawa, this members only club offers a 3D shooting range (only from Spring to Autumn, the 3D targets are put in storage during the winter to prevent ice damage), target ranges, and field archery. They also host a variety of tournaments.

Note - There is no indoor range.


Peel Archery Club
peelarchery.ca

Located in Peel/Brampton (north west of Pearson International Airport), this indoor range offers both target and 3D options, with the comfort of heating in the winter and air conditioning in the summer. It also boasts Canada's only 70 meter indoor archery range. (Currently the only one. This may change in the future.) They also host a variety of indoor tournaments.

Note - There is no outdoor range.


York County Bowmen
yorkcountybowmen.com

Located east of Newmarket (north of Toronto), York County Bowmen is a club/private range that boasts the following:

  • An indoor 18 meter (20 yards) range  with 12 shooting lanes.
  • Over 50 acres of 3D target ranges, with 14 field archery shooting lanes.
  • A target practice range, with targets spaced from 10 to 60 yards.


ARCHERY TAG INDOOR RANGES

The following is a short list of archery tag locations which also operate archery ranges, the trick being that most of the time the space is being used for archery tag, and they only rarely open the space up as an archery range. So for example some archery tag locations only open up the space for practice 1 day per week, so don't expect a lot of availability that matches your schedule. The size of the space varies on the locations, but don't expect anything larger than 30 meters as these locations are typically about the size of a high school gymnasium. The good news however is that you don't need a membership for these indoor ranges and can just pay an hourly rate to use the space.
  • Archers Arena in North York
  • Archery Circuit located south of Markham
  • Archery District in Etobicoke
  • Archery 2 You in Ajax
  • Battle Sports in North York
  • Stryke Archery Range in Brampton and York

UNIVERSITY ARCHERY RANGES

Joining an university archery club can be a bit trickier. It generally helps if you are already a student or alumni for that university. With university archery clubs there is typically specific times when the range is open, so you really need to find out what their hours operations are before deciding whether to make the effort to join one of these clubs.
  • University of Ryerson Archery Club
  • University of Toronto Archery Club @ Hart House
  • York University Archery Club

PLACES TO AVOID

Sharon Gun Club - Located north-east of Newmarket, this club does NOT offer archery. Contrary to what a Google search dictates, this club does NOT do archery at all. It is purely a gun club. So don't waste your time on this one.

Shooting Academy Canada - Located in Scarborough, this location does offer both guns and archery (as well as throwing knives, airsoft, and BB), and boasts a tiny 15 yard indoor target range. There is no outdoor range. No field archery, no 3D archery targets, etc. Hence why I decided to list it down here and not with the wholly private archery ranges. Plus since they are using firearms indoors, users should really be wearing hearing protection - which many archers might object to as it would feel weird wearing hearing protection while doing archery. So it is not a location I would recommend to students.

Target Sports Canada - Located north of Markham, this is another location that does NOT offer archery. It is another gun range that could be easily confused as an archery range, mostly due to faulty Google search results.


See Also

List of Archery Clubs in Ontario

Why you SUCK at archery

I admit I do not own this book.

I don't need it. I don't suck at archery, ergo I do not need this book.

So this is not a book review, because I admit I have not read this book.

However, the book was written by Steve Ruis, who is the editor of Archery Focus Magazine. (Cough cough, the guy who keeps publishing my articles in his magazine. I am up to 3 articles so far. Visit archeryfocusmagazine.com to learn more.)

I do however find the title of the book funny and appropriate. And I don't mind returning the favour by giving him some free advertising, and I hope he does the same when it comes time to promote some of my own archery books.

I also recommend Steve's other book "Precision Archery". Getting a book like that is the next best thing to getting archery lessons from an instructor. So given his track record of previous books and magazines, the new book is doubtlessly a good one and worth reading if you are a beginner - or if you suck at archery and need to rectify that problem.



Online you can buy the Kindle version or the Paperback version on Amazon.ca.

Kindle - https://www.amazon.ca/Why-You-Suck-at-Archery-ebook/dp/B00BM925AQ/
Paperback - https://www.amazon.ca/Why-You-Suck-at-Archery/dp/0984886036/

The paperback version is currently $19.59 CDN, whereas the Kindle version is $9.14 CDN.


Meanwhile, I do actually have 1 archery book available of my own... although it is admittedly a poetry book... about archery. I am still working on my guide / how to book, and I am in the planning stages of a 3rd and 4th books.

Dreaming of Zen Archery

Kobo - https://www.kobo.com/ca/en/ebook/dreaming-of-zen-archery


Cardio Trek Milestones and Achieving Milestones

January 4th 2019.

So in ancient times the Romans would place a milestone along roads to mark how far that section of road was from Rome. Important Milestones might be every 100 miles, 500 miles or similar distances.

Today we use the term Milestone when there has been achievement of some kind.

For example, as an archery instructor I have been on CBC, CTV, CityTV, TSN and several other television and radio broadcasts, usually promoting the sport of archery. Oh and newspaper articles. I tend to forget the newspaper articles.

I also have personal milestones like when my wife and I got married, or when we had our first son, our 1st anniversary, and our son's 1st birthday party.

And now that it is 2019 I want to do a wee bit of record keeping regarding the "History of Cardio Trek", which began as a website in 2011. Truth be told, I started teaching archery back in 2009, but it wasn't until December 2011 that I began taking it seriously as a business and put together this website. Prior to that my archery lessons were based on word-of-mouth, so the creation of the website was a milestone by itself because it means I realized that this had potential as a business and I could teach significantly more people if I was able to advertise more effectively.

I also got my personal training certificate, although now I think I should have got a sports training certificate instead as that would have been more accurate to what I actually do.

Statistics

Regarding the website, there was an explosion in popularity in the early years of the website.

I even have old posts regarding some previous Milestones:
1 Million Visitors

1.5 Million Visitors

2 Million Visitors
And sometime in late April/early May of 2019 I expect to reach the 2.5 million visitors mark.

I should note however that a lot of those visitors are Americans who are visiting a handful of my posts that went viral. Seven posts in particular that got 20,000 visitors or more. Roughly 850,000 of the current 2.4 million visitors are people who were visiting those 7 viral posts, mostly because the posts in question were unusual subjects.

Of those 7 posts, only 1 of them had anything to do with archery: "Ramsay's Archery Skills on Game of Thrones"

What is more important to me is the statistics for my Archery Lessons in Toronto page, which recently surpassed 40,000 visitors.

Now why is that one important? Because that is the page that usually indicates how many people are checking out my site, looking for archery lessons in Toronto. Since archery lessons makes up a good chunk of my annual income, keeping track of that is important to me.

How many of the visitors to that one page are from Toronto? Unknown. I should hope it is mostly people from Toronto, but I know that I also get international students so there must be a good chunk of people who see my site and say "Hey, this guys looks really good. I am going to plan a trip to Toronto and schedule archery lessons with him." Hence why I also get archery students from the USA, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Japan, China, the U.K., France, Russia, and other countries.

Regarding Old Posts

As noted in my Cardio Trek End of 2018 Notes, I used to do a lot more posts per year.

180 posts in 2012
230 posts in 2013
120 posts in 2014
120 posts in 2015

And then it dropped to 100 posts in 2016, and 60 posts per year in both 2017 + 2018.

So including the 10 posts from December 2011, there has been 880 posts during the 2011 to 2018 period. At the current rate of 60 posts per year, I should reach 1000 by December 2020.

However, I am somewhat tempted to go back to my old routine of 120 posts per year. 60 is certainly easier, but if I did 120 in 2019 then I would reach 1000 posts by the end of this year. So to do this, I would need to be writing 1 new post every 3 days roughly.

I could in theory do this, and it would no doubt help my business if I grew my content of archery themed posts. My busiest years as an archery instructor was the 2012 to 2016 period.

Starting in 2017 I noticed a decline in the volume of students, partially because the Hunger Games Fad was wearing off, but also possibly because I was not writing as much as I used to do.

Regarding the Future

In 2017 I also did something new. I published my first article in Archery Focus Magazine.

Which was followed by two more articles in 2018, one about Adaptive Archery, and a second article about Teaching Archery through Narrative Storytelling. So these magazine articles were also milestones, and I have another two articles upcoming in 2019.



Then there is also my 2nd poetry book, which was specifically about Zen Archery. So yes, for those of you who don't know I have a secondary career as a writer / poet, and I am not limited to writing nonfiction about archery.


During the past several years I have also been writing an "Archery How To" book, so whenever I finish that it will be an additional Milestone. Plus I have been accumulating things for a 2nd archery how to book. Oh and a 3rd poetry book. And a book of fables which is now about 60% finished. And various fantasy novels, novellas, short stories, and a web series about a vigilante boxer set in Toronto.

So yes, I am very busy. Busy teaching, busy writing, busy taking care of my son and enjoying life with my wife.

But being so busy does not prevent me from achieving milestones.

If anything, achieving milestones is what makes me so busy - and motivated.

Motivating Yourself through Milestones

So yes, the second purpose for writing this post is the issue of achieving personal milestones and motivation.

Motivation is an important thing for people seeking to lose weight, gain muscle, or do specific sports. For the people who lack motivation to go outside and exercise (or stay inside and exercise), finding motivation to exercise is just as important as the exercise itself.

But when you achieve some kind of milestone you also get a feeling of accomplishment. That feeling of accomplishment makes you want to go forth and do more. To do better. To achieve more. To hit greater milestones.

And thus tracking your milestones is important.

For me, Cardio Trek is not just a business or a website. It is also how I track myself through milestones. If I have a particularly great day doing archery, and take photographs of what I did, I do a post about it.

If I do a series of trick shots and have photographs of it, I do a post about it.

If I get some really nice testimonials from students, I post.

Think of it like how some people keep journals of their exercise routine, how many calories they are eating, etc. A person who keeps a journal can also note down their personal bests they've ever achieved in specific tasks, keep track of their weight, etc.

So for me, CardioTrek.ca doubles as an online journal, which allows me to keep a record of every kind of milestone I feel is worth sharing.

Note - Some people might prefer to use Instagram or something similar for their online journal. Photos of their gym workouts and other personal achievements.

Imagine for example a person who wants to lose 100 lbs of weight and they workout every day for 3 years, losing about 33.3 lbs per year. And during that process they took a selfie of themselves every day and posted it on Instagram.

No doubt the images would show a dramatic change in their appearance as they exercised. It wouldn't be a simple before and after photo. It would show the entire process of their physical transformation over 3 years.


So think about what kind of milestones you can achieve and make a list.

Weightlifting Milestones
Speed Milestones
Jumping Distance Milestones
Dieting Milestones
Belt Size Milestones
Weight Milestones

With respect to sports like archery, one could also have:

Accuracy Milestones
Speed Shooting Milestones
Furthest Distance Milestones
Competition Milestones

And you can even track other milestones for other activities that have nothing to do with exercising. So for example for my writing career I have:

First Novel Published
First Short Story Published in an Anthology
First Solo Anthology of Short Stories
First Magazine Article
First Poetry Book
First Children's Book

And then the Second Novel, the Third Novel, the Fourth, etc.

Achieving these milestones encourages you to keep working at it, and it works for everyone regardless.

Imagine a person who has been in a terrible accident and the doctor says they may never walk again because they are paralyzed from the waist down. But they are determined to prove the doctor wrong so they keep trying.

First Toe Wiggle
Second Toe Wiggle
All Toes Wiggling
Foot Movement
Leg Movement
First Steps with Assistance
First Fall
Second Fall
First Steps without Assistance
First Jog
First Dance
First Run

It is really a matter of finding joy in every milestone, no matter how small or how insignificant. That is your milestone. It is important to you.

Every baby has their first steps, but just because you're an adult doesn't mean you cannot achieve more milestones than when you were a baby.

My son has been figuring out how to climb out of crib lately - or trying, but I keep stopping him and distracting him. Some day soon he will climb out for the first time and then he will realize that he can climb out of the crib whenever he wants.

Take that as a metaphor for your life. Your crib is not a cage. You can climb out whenever you want to, it really is a matter of motivating yourself and achieving that first milestone.

The Best New Years Resolution for 2019

Looking for a really good New Years Resolution?

Want to get off your butt and exercise?

Want to eat healthier?

Well, there is one New Years Resolution that is flexible and suits your needs...

It is "Just Do It Now." That is it. No fancy goals like "I want to lose 20 pounds during the next 20 weeks." or other specific goals. Just a simple motto of getting stuff done, now, without procrastination.




For Example:

Want to sign up for archery lessons? Always wanted to do archery? Just do it now. Just click the link below, email me via cardiotrek@gmail.com, and sign up for archery lessons. Done.

http://www.cardiotrek.ca/p/archery-lessons.html


Now you may have noticed that usually we post 12 New Years Resolutions. But this year the focus is really just on the one concept. Just do it now. But for those who need a bit extra, here goes.

12 New Years Resolutions for 2019

  1. Just do it now.
  2. Not later, now.
  3. It might rain later again anyway, so do it now.
  4. Just get it over with and do it now.
  5. People who accomplish things with their life just get things done and over with.
  6. Bored? Go do something and get it done.
  7. Tired? Have a nap and then get something done.
  8. Stressed? People who worry suffer twice, so get it done and then you won't have to worry about it anymore.
  9. Great things come to people who wait, but why wait when you can do great things now?
  10. Happiness is getting your tasks done and then relaxing, knowing you already did them.
  11. A clean house helps create a clean mind. Cleaning is exercise, so why not do both?
  12. That task you said you would do later? Just do it now.


Looking to sign up for archery lessons, boxing lessons, swimming lessons, ice skating lessons or personal training sessions? Start by emailing cardiotrek@gmail.com and lets talk fitness!

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