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What Does It Take to Excel in Archery?

American archer Matt Stutzman holds the Guinness World Record for the longest accurate shot with a bow and arrow. In 2015, Stutzman broke his own 2011 record by accurately hitting a target 310 yards (283 m) away using a compound bow, and no one has bettered that mark since -- not even archers with arms. Stutzman was born without arms and grew up using his feet for nearly every task imaginable, including using a bow and arrow. Stutzman originally began shooting arrows in order to hunt and provide food for his family, before ultimately taking his archery skills all the way to the podium at the Paralympic Games.

Take a bow, Matt Stutzman:

  • At the 2012 Paralympic Games in London, Stutzman won a silver medal in the men's individual compound event. At the 2016 Paralympics in Rio, he lost in the round of 16, and he is now preparing for the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
  • How does a person without arms shoot arrows? He picks up an arrow with his left foot, maneuvers it onto the bow’s string and then pushes his right foot away from his chest. He’s now locked and loaded.
  • To release the arrow, Stutzman uses a belt stretched around his chest. The belt holds a release aid that he activates with his jaw, using pressure similar to clicking on a computer mouse.
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