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How to Make a Bow and Arrows

How to Make a Bow and Arrows

What do Robinhood, The Hunger Games and the new TV series Arrow have in common? All hit stories involve one of the most popular weapons in history, a bow and arrows. As a child I was always attracted to Indians rather than cowboys. I can’t really explain why. I guess the Indians were more mysterious than the guys who wore hats and slung pistols on their hips. And maybe because American Indians are experts in using a bow and a set of arrows.

If you’re into hunting and the great outdoors, here’s a real treat for you. Let’s discuss how you can make a bow and arrows. Let’s aim to make one that can shoot as far as 275 meters.

Make The Bow.

Carefully select a long piece of sturdy but flexible wood for the bow. You can select from the following list: white woods elm, ash, hazel, lemon tree wood, oak, hickory, yew, black locust, or teak. There are some important points to consider when choosing wood for your bow. Get a piece that is about one meter long. Your choice should be almost perfect; without limbs, twists or knots.

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Pick a wood that can bend to your satisfaction. That way, when you release arrows, the string won’t slap the side of your hand. To avoid a painful incident like this, pick flexible choices such as juniper or mulberry—they’re recommended for this purpose. However, I highly recommend bamboo: my personal choice. My advice is also to choose a piece of wood that will fit your grip. A young bamboo stalk is a perfect choice because it’s strong and flexible. Bending it will be easy breezy!

Shape the bow.

The middle of an ideal bow is sturdy, so it’s usually thicker. A bigger center makes a better handle. Moreover, it’s advisable to look for a piece of wood with a natural curve. It’s easier to bend when shooting arrows.

Shave off portions of the wood on the inner part of the curve with a knife, or carve out the side that faces you when shooting an arrow. Make shavings on the thicker half of the stick until its width is identical with the other end. Balance is a crucial factor in this step. If your stick has roughly the same diameter from end to end, it’s recommended that you shave both ends. Your goal is to have a bow with a thick, sturdy center bordered by two slimmer, and more flexible edges that ideally have the same length and diameter.

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Create notches for the bow string.

With a knife, make small notches about one to two inches from each end of the bow. The notches should be shaped like a half moon and located outside of the bow’s curve.

Choosing a bow string.

For the string, you can use nylon rope, hemp cord, rawhide, strands of cotton or silk from caterpillars, fishing line, or ordinary twine. If those materials are not available, then you’ll be forced to use vines or sinew. Let’s imagine you’re stuck in the wilderness, in this scenario it could be difficult to look for material for a string. You might need to do a series of trials and errors before you can settle on a choice that meets your needs. A bow string should not stretch too much since, basically, the power comes from the wood, not from the string.

We’re done with the bow. Now, how do we create arrows?

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Choose materials wisely for your arrows.

Ideally, arrows are straight; the straighter the better. Look for the straightest sticks you can find. While a dead wood is not recommended for the bow, the wood for your arrows must be dry. The length of the arrows is preferably 50% shorter than the bow, or as far as the bow can be drawn backwards. It’s not wise to have arrows that can’t be drawn back to the bow’s full potential. Additionally, you must take these items in consideration:

Construct the arrowheads.

The arrowhead can simply be a point carved out on the front of the arrow stick. Whittle a point with your knife and then harden it by heating it mildly on coals (be careful, don’t burn the wood). Find the right distance from the heat to do this.

You may also choose to construct arrowheads from metal, glass, bone or stone. You can then attach them to the arrow’s tip by notching them to the wood. How? Cut a notch across the tip of the arrow shaft and insert an arrowhead into each notch. Next, to make sure the arrowheads won’t fall off, tightly fasten them to the wood with a strong cord.

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Fabricate the arrows.

Whittle the wood with smooth cuts around the arrow’s circumference. You can harden an arrow by heating the shaft over hot coals gently and then hold the arrow straight while the wood cools down. Create a tiny notch at the back end of the arrows to suit the bow string.

Create fletchings.

Fletchings improve the arrow’s flight. Some will say it’s optional, but personally I suggest you make them. Feathers are the best material for fletchings: simply glue them on the ends of the arrows. Another way is to make a small split at the back of every stick, slide in a feather, and wrap a thread around the fletching.

Now, you can smile. Your bow and arrows are ready for a hunting party. Just make sure you exercise extreme care!

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Anthony Dejolde

TV/Radio personality who educates his audience on entrepreneurship, productivity, and leadership.

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Last Updated on May 22, 2019

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

1. Cat Camel Stretch

Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

Here’s a video to guide you through:

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2. Go for a Walk or a Run

This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

3. Jumping Jacks

Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

4. Abductor Side Lifts

Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

5. Balancing Table Pose

This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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    6. Leg Squats

    Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

    Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

    The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

    7. Push Ups

    You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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    An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

    Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

    This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

    8. Bicycle Crunches

    There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

    Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

    9. Lunges

    Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

    Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

    This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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    10. Bicep Curls

    You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

    Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

    Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

    Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

    Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

    These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

    You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

    Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

    More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

    Reference

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