I do not want my latest book, Coach Yourself! to be a source of divisiveness so I would just like to add that I am an advocate of good coaching. That good coaching has not been widely available in archery is. I think, an incontestable fact. As a consequence I have spent a considerable amount of time and money trying to provide resources to archery coaches to help them do what they do better, to keep them “in the game” helping archers get better.
Having said that, I also recognize that the coaching tradition in archery is and has been very weak. Golf has a stronger coaching tradition but if you go back 100 years in golf, there were no golf teachers or golf coaches per se. All of the greats from the Golden Age of golf, pre-Hogan, taught themselves. In archery, we don’t have to go back 100 years to get to that situation, even fifty isn’t necessary.
In my opinion, most people in archery are taught the sport first by casual coaching (a friend gets you started) and from then on you coach yourself.
The Recurve people have a much stronger coaching tradition than do the Compound people, but compound archery barely goes back 50 years. I was taught archery by friends and was active in the sport for six years before I learned that archery coaches existed.
I wrote this book because I had seen only one other like it and that book had gone out of print (Argh!). I think people who choose to coach themselves deserve help as much as any other archer or coach. It is probably arrogant to think that I am the one to offer that help, but I asked a great many others to do it and since no one seemed interested I did it myself.
I will use a Harvey Pennick quote, somewhat modified, “If you are an archer/coach, you are my friend.” Of course, he was speaking of golfers, but I think the sentiment is a good one for archers and coaches, too.
Your friend in archery,
PS If you think I was offering a lower cost alternative to hiring a coach, think again. I am on record for years, many years, that archery coaches should be paid. A sport with an all-volunteer coaching cadre is not going far or anywhere fast. Coaching yourself is not an alternative that is equivalent to good coaching, IMHO. It is inferior . . . but if that is all you have . . . some help is now available.