The shoulder joint has great potential for injury due to its range of motion. It is one of the injury sites most common for bow hunters (1, 2). Here are some of the top reasons bow hunters injure their shoulders and how you can prevent it from happening to you:
Physical fitness affects all aspects of life. It is critical to find a way to stay fit that works with your personality, goals, and lifestyle. Ultimately, you need to enjoy the workout to stay in shape for the long run. If you hate the gym, you won't stick to a long term gym plan. Find something you can commit to; be it running, lifting, hiking, swimming, climbing, sports, etc. That being said, you have to be disciplined no matter what. Pushing through those days you don't feel like working out are the days you make the most gains.
America is in the golden age of technology. New software and products flood the market daily and gear gurus are ever able to spend their dollar. The hunting culture is not exempt. High tech clothing, new calls, packs, research, online scouting, and map technology all make aspects of the hunt easier or more comfortable. The average hunter does not have to be good at reading a map or navigating terrain. There are no secret spots anymore. Every honey hole can be viewed with a click of a mouse if you know what to look for. Quality optics, clothing, and gear give every hunter opportunity to be comfortable in the elements, see farther, and shoot farther. Even knowledge is close at hand for everyone. Resources to learn about your quarry and how to hunt them are available like never before.
I love to hunt for a lot of reasons. More reasons than will fit in this article; but one rose to the surface. That is, hunting speaks to the heart of manhood. This aspect of a man’s heart is not limited to hunting of course. For other men it may be fulfilled through woodwork, ranching, or a myriad of other activities. Woman hunters are on the rise and I do not mean to dissuade them. I simply seek to point out that certain aspects of adventure, manual labor, and large muscle movement activity speaks in a special way to men. For me, I find this fulfillment through hunting. What do I mean?
Dialing in your nutrition strategy in the backcountry can make an incredible difference in your momentary and overall stamina (not to mention enjoyment) during your hunt. How you eat can promote recovery, prevent constipation, and fuel the intense climbs and long days.
Never, ever give up!
On most of my hunts this fall I walked miles and miles up and down mountains. There were times when I was hunting alone, discouraged and ready to call it quits. There were other times where I was exhausted with only 30 minutes of hunting light left. I could have easily gone back to the truck to rest. Fortunately, perseverance pays off. Each time I wanted to quit was when I experienced the most success. The following are a few examples.
I left Montana in 2013 for the military. After four years of missing western hunting and beautiful mountains, my wife, Rachel, and I finally moved back. Now it was September of 2017 and I could not have been more excited. I reconnected with college buddy Seth Adams, and we made plans for a hunt.
Every year opening day came. I would watch Dad get ready to go. Gear was organized and packed, stories were told, and the rifle was sighted in. I would sit and watch Dad clean his rifle with dreams of carrying it into the forest myself one day. The wood stock gleamed and glistened, boasting of great responsibility and adventure. The smell of gun oil my father used would grow into nostalgia for the rest of my life.