Remote-coached archer takes top spot at US Nationals
Alex Zuleta-Visser of Florida, USA, took first place at the US Open elimination competition in senior recurve women, beating Erin Mickelberry, 6-2. It is her first national title, at the 136th USA Archery Target Nationals in August 2020.
She is one of several athletes coached remotely, or with a mix of direct and remote coaching by Alexander Kirillov, a former international from the Soviet Union who moved to the USA in the 1990s, and is based in Arizona.
Zuleta, who now studies in Georgia, has limited opportunities for direct coaching. “I didn’t have a coach for several years. When I first started, there weren’t really any coaches in the area, and the nearest big centre was over two hours away.”
When she found Kirillov, via another archer at a tournament, she started a mix of in-person and remote coaching. “I send video and discuss things on the phone, and then I would go out to Arizona whenever I had a break from school, or spend a few days there before a tournament.”
Zuleta, now on the World Cup squad, has ambitions to shoot a World Cup next year. “The Olympics is a big deal, and everyone is all about that, but for me its always been about going to the World Cups and interacting with all those amazing archers. The Olympics is in the future, but I want to shoot international events first.”
‘Archer’s Toolbox’ is ready to launch
Dave Leader at Aim4Sport, one of the best known retailers in the UK is launching a new and wide-ranging app called Archer’s Toolbox, which aims to provide a ‘one-stop shop’ for all things archery for both archer, club, county, and region. It covers scores, score submissions, analytics, coaching, tuning, social media links and more. More here soon: archerstb.com
Leader has ambitions that the app will aid the return of archery in the UK by speeding up the submission process of scores through club and county. Features in the initial launch include a score entry journey, round stats, a profile screen, and a portal for record officers to view submitted scores in club. Further feature releases are planned every two to four weeks to include all the functions “you could possibly want” from an app.
“The journey has been a long one, that is for sure. Almost five years ago, I was frustrated that the app I was using was good in one area and poor in a lot of others, or the app was too complicated to use. The mission was to produce an app on Apple and Android that would be easy to use, easy to understand, and had all the functionality I wanted in one place.” said Dave.
What is different about your app from other archery apps? “The main difference is the way in which the scores can be viewed by the records officers. Currently we hand in a score on paper and the records officer will collect and then enter either a club-built system, or long hand.”
“Here, the archer enters the score and upon completion, the score will be visible by the records officer who will have special access to all the members scores that use this system. This can be rolled out to county records officers along with county team selectors who struggle with score submission. The reply of “I didn’t think I was good enough to shoot for the county, so I didn’t submit any scores” is all too familiar.”
“We have several clubs and counties that have expressed an interest. Once the initial version has been released, we will deliver new features incrementally. We will listen to our users and learn from them; ensuring features are prioritised based on user needs and behaviours. Coaching and performance archery will be high on the list of requirements. Again we are looking to come away from the paper driven process we currently use. Coaches; for example, will have sight of their archers session plans, goals, periodisation. Archers will be able to enter their journals straight into their phones/tablets and the coach will see the entries once they have been made through a unique link.”
The app is expected to be free for archers to use initially, but perhaps with a paid tier for clubs to use.
Details will be available soon at: www.archerstb.com
Third Eye Archery training system aimed at intermediates launched.
Kristina Dolgilevica, a level II Archery Coach, alumni of the Hyung Tak Kim Archery School, and instructor at Archery Fit (and regular Bow International columnist) has opened a remote training programme specifically aimed at intermediate archers.
Many have noted the difficulty of improving intermediate archers, often because of a lack of dedicated individual coaching. If learning stops, so does the progress. It leads to loss of confidence, enjoyment and purpose, and for many, ends in quitting the sport altogether.
Structured one-to-one coaching is essential to help archers progress. In addition to building a good technical skillset, they must also learn about the physical and mental side of the sport to help improve overall performance and advance. The launch of this project coincides with the times when remote coaching is becoming a norm and is proving its effectiveness worldwide.
Dolgilevica has studied extensively in Korea and incorporates Korean form, discipline and teaching methods. The programme, as launched, asks archers to dedicate four weeks of commitment; while shooting is not required every day, archers are given many tasks on the way. At the core of each session are full-form video assessments, and the course is personalised to each archer.
The training programme is available in English or Russian to senior archers (18+), with a junior programme in development. Recurve, compound, barebow and traditional styles are assessed.
More at thirdeyearchery.com