A treat for us Dads in the Los Angeles area. About a year after I moved to Southern California, I discovered a club in the city I lived in, Pasadena, for archery. It was the Pasadena Roving Archers and I attended their practices for a few weeks before another hobby I was pursuing (my kung fu training) had a schedule conflict and I gave it up. Now that I live in LA proper (and work in the Valley), and I have a little boy, I am looking to take archery up again. Probably start myself, but then when Nathan is old enough, bring him out and play Robin Hood with him together.
I’ve discovered a club out in Culver City at the Rancho Park archery range. Relatively close to where I live, so I’ll try them out and post a review. I also found a club in the Valley close to where I work. It’s the Woodley Park Archers and they are at Woodley Park off the 101. They’re actually close enough to work that I could probably shoot off a few shots after office hours before going home. I’ll try them out and post a review in the future as well.
So, you’re thinking, why archery?
I do martial arts, have been for almost twenty years, and I’ve learned to handle a lot of ancient weapons. But I will admit that bow and arrow is the one weapon type that I never became proficient in so I’m interested from that perspective in rounding out my repertoire.
But there is another reason. One of the reasons that kyudo, the Japanese art of archery, is considered a gentleman’s martial art, is that it takes a great deal of discipline, control, and steadiness to get good at it. Archery is one of the few martial arts where you can’t “muscle you way” and all the energy and ferocity in the world will do you no good. In fact, being calm and steady, being zen in the face of a hurricane, that kind of demeanor is what makes a good archer. And this kind of attribute is something that I want to impart on Nathan. I think it’s a good attribute to impart on any child.
In any event, I’ll put up a follow-up post as soon as I try out the Rancho Park and Woodley Park clubs. I’ll also try out Pasadena again – since it’s been more than 7 years since I was there. Stay tuned.