Hi There! Archery in LA

Welcome to Los Angeles Archery!

Hi, I am Alejandro Barahona, Level 3 Instructor Instructor at Rancho Park Achery Range in LA. — the best place to practice Archery in LA.

We are located at Cheviot Hills Recreation Center, 2459 Motor Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90064.  Rancho Park Archery Range in Cheviot Hills is at W. Pico and Motor, just south of Century City and the Fox Studios.

Enter the park at Motor, through the entrance closest to Pico, and drive to the back of the park until you reach the rotunda with the sign for the West Region Headquarters of the Department of Recreation & Parks.

You will find parking space there; the archery range is right behind the Petanque (Bocce) fields.

There are free archery classes every Saturday at 11AM and the second Sunday of every month at 1:30PM. We also provide all the equipment for free. We can take only 24 students and we run the class on a first come-first served basis, so try to be there early as you can. We open doors at 8AM Saturdays and about noon on Sundays.

Bring sunscreen, comfy shoes, water, and a willingness to learn something and have fun.

Once you take the class, you can come back to the range and shoot during our Open Shooting Times Saturdays from 9:30AM to 12PM, Sundays from 12PM to 3:30PM. And once you have more experience, Wednesdays from 6:30PM to 8PM, and yes, there is no rental fee.

If you want private lessons, I can organize classes for groups or individuals. You can reach me at losangelesarchery@gmail.com.

Advertisements
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hi There! Archery in LA

Welcome to Los Angeles Archery!

Hi, I am Alejandro Barahona, Instructor at Rancho Park Achery Range in LA. — the best place to practice Archery in LA.

We are located at Cheviot Hills Recreation Center, 2459 Motor Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90064.  Rancho Park Archery Range in Cheviot Hills is at W. Pico and Motor, just south of Century City and the Fox Studios.

Enter the park at Motor, through the entrance closest to Pico, and drive to the back of the park until you reach the rotunda with the sign for the West Region Headquarters of the Department of Recreation & Parks.

You will find parking space there; the archery range is right behind the Petanque (Bocce) fields.

There are free archery classes every Saturday at 11AM and the second Sunday of every month at 1:30PM. We also provide all the equipment for free. We can take only 24 students and we run the class on a first come-first served basis, so try to be there early as you can. We open doors at 8AM Saturdays and about noon on Sundays.

Bring sunscreen, comfy shoes, water, and a willingness to learn something and have fun.

Once you take the class, you can come back to the range and shoot during our Open Shooting Times Saturdays from 9:30AM to 12PM, Sundays from 12PM to 3:30PM. And once you have more experience, Wednesdays from 6:30PM to 8PM, and yes, there is no rental fee.

If you want private lessons, I can organize classes for groups or individuals. You can reach me at losangelesarchery@gmail.com.

Posted in Archery Classes, Archery Equipment, Archery shops, Arrow, Bow, Brave, Hollywood, Los Angeles, Movies, Online, Rancho Park Archery Range, Safety, sight, Training, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Kyudo

We are somehow blessed at the range. Nanka Kyudo Kay from Pasadena practices Kyudo every Sunday from 8AM to around 11AM at Rancho Park Archery. Archery is to Kyudo what fast food is to a four star Michelin restaurant. We both launch arrows to the target, but they make it look good. Kyudo is “The way of the Bow”, and it shows in their execution.

Japanese archer at full length.

We have this image of the Samurai warrior with his katana hacking people in half from shoulder to hip. In reality, Kyudo was considered more important in the formation of a warrior than swordsmanship. From the 12th century to the 16th century in Japan, the bow was the symbol of the professional warrior, to the point that the way of the warrior was called “the way of the horse and bow” (kyūba no michi). When the matchlock musket was introduced to Japan in 1543, the importance of the bow in war declined, and the importance of the musket and the spear (yari) increased…then, after Tokugawa Ieyasu controlled all Japan and created the shogunate and peace lasted untill the 1860s, the whole mystique around the katana and the samurai was invented, but that is a story for another day…
Like with many other Japanese martial arts, the way of the bow evolved both as an art or a path “do” and as the martial techniques of the bow “jutsu”. Kyudo schools merged, disappeared, evolved
and expanded all over the world, and we are lucky at Rancho Park to have Nanka Kyudo Kay practicing here.
I highly recommend not only my archery students but also anybody interested in archery to go see them practice. It’s not only beautiful, it is also inspiring. Not only that, I also think that their approach to archery is also applicable to the modern archer.
One very interesting thing on Kyudo’s archery technique, if I understand it correctly, is that there is not a single point where the practitioner aims, the whole process of the shoot is aiming. If you have the correct stance and you perform the technique correctly, you will hit the target. That is something that I drill into my students. If your technique is correct, you will hit the target…and everything is aiming.

Posted in Archery, Archery Classes, Arrow, Bow, Los Angeles, People, Rancho Park Archery Range, Training, What does it has to do with archery? | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

We are always learning, Part 2

Now that I told you my story on the first part of this post, let me tell you how connects with Archery.

As a coach, I spent most of my time teaching, and not as much as I should practicing. As a coach, I could sit in my high throne, and decide that I know all there is to know about archery. As a coach, I could decide that I don´t need to learn anything else. Three problems there: First, you are letting your ego getting in the way of your learning. Second, we  we have a blind spot and we don´t see all we are doing or what we are doing wrong, and third, when we practice, we like to practice what we know how to do well instead of what we need to improve (coming back to point one again).

No, we don´k know everything there is to it. You are coming to a class because you want to learn something. Listen to the instructor, you are not born knowing how to drive and how to shoot.  And the difference between an amateur and a professional is that the amateur practices what he does right, and the professional practices until he or she can´t do it wrong.

You mix all this and you have a big problem brewing, because  you don´t know what you are doing, you can´t always see what you are doing, and sometimes, even if you see what you are doing, and you know that you are doing wrong, you will not want to recognize it because a guy/gal as good as you makes no mistakes… I´m not going to lie to you. If that is you, and you are one of my students, it´s great for me. You will not improve and you´ll need to pay me for more classes. Me? I want to learn. That is why I go to other coaches with more experience than me, and ask them to asses me and let me know what I am doing wrong and where I need to improve. Because I am alive.  Leave your ego at the door.

Stay alive!

Posted in Archery, Archery Classes, Arrow, People, What does it has to do with archery? | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Archery Through the Ages, Part 2

Months ago, I posted one article about the history of the longbow, and I mentioned knights pinned to their horses through their armor plate and stories of arrows going through four inches of oak.

Those feats were possible not only because of the power of those bows, between 120 to 180lb, but also because of the design of the points. The archers had at the time specialized points in their bows called Bodkin points.

This was the .50 cal. Barrett rifle of those times. These where their armor-piercing rounds at that time.

I was lucky  that one  SCA (Society of Creative Anachronism) member at the range, had a couple arrows with bodkin points that he let me photograph.
Stay safe.

 

 

 

Posted in Archery, Archery Equipment, Arrow, Bow, Rancho Park Archery Range | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Hi There!

Welcome to Los Angeles Archery!

Hi, I am Alejandro Barahona, Level 2 Instructor at Rancho Park Achery Range in LA. — the best place to practice Archery in LA.

We are located at Cheviot Hills Recreation Center, 2459 Motor Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90064.  Rancho Park Archery Range in Cheviot Hills is at W. Pico and Motor, just south of Century City and the Fox Studios.

Enter the park at Motor, through the entrance closest to Pico, and drive to the back of the park until you reach the rotunda with the sign for the West Region Headquarters of the Department of Recreation & Parks.

You will find parking space there; the archery range is right behind the Petanque (Bocce) fields.

There are free archery classes every Saturday at 11AM and the second Sunday of every month at 1:30PM. We also provide all the equipment for free. We can take only 24 students and we run the class on a first come-first served basis, so try to be there early as you can. When the range opens at 8AM Saturdays there is already a line of people waiting…

Bring sunscreen, comfy shoes, water, and a willingness to learn something and have fun.

Once you take the class, you can come back to the range and shoot during our Open Shooting Times Saturdays from 9:30AM to 12PM, Sundays from 12PM to 3:30PM. And once you have more experience, Wednesdays from 6:30PM to 8PM, and yes, there is no rental fee.

We also have children classes Saturdays at 8AM and Tuesday at 3:45PM, but those are not free.

If you want private lessons, I can organize classes for groups or individuals. You can reach me at losangelesarchery@gmail.com.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

We are always learning, and when we stop, we die

A long time ago, in another continent, I was practicing Aikido, as I would do every Sunday for three hours. That day, we were focusing in aiki-ken or sword techniques. And I remember that I wasn´t too happy with my form and how it flowed, and I was shaking my head.

Now, in eastern martial arts, and more specifically in Aikido, the sensei or teacher in charge of the class, does not teach the technique by explaining. The technique is taught by having it done to the student and then by having the student do the technique. Wash and rinse, repeat if necessary.

Another component of the eastern teaching process is that the teacher will roam through the class offering corrections if he feels they are necessary, but otherwise, will let the senior students guide the junior. Combine that with the fact that because we are wearing swords at our sides, tradition and safety require that you don´t walk on anybody´s right, and I could not see that the sensei was standing behind me.

After making a few clicking noises with my tongue a few more times, I heard my sensei´s voice from behind me:

-“You are never going to do it right”

“Oook”, I thought. “I am completely F#%€d!”

-“You are not going to to do it right today, you are not going to do it right tomorrow, you are NEVER going to do it right.”

At this point, I´m thinking to myself: ” Ok, please hold my katana, I am going to jump right under that truck”.

And then he said:

-“But, tomorrow is going to be better than today, and the day after is going to be better than the day before. The very moment that you say to yourself “I know everything there is to know about this”, you are dead and you are not going to grow anymore.”

And then he disappeared leaving his judogi and hakama in a pile in the ground while saying: “There is another Skywalker!” or at least that´s how it felt to me.

What does this have to do with Archery? EVERYTHING!

I will continue with my story and the connection with archery on my next post. Might the force be with you!

 

 

Posted in Archery, Archery Classes, People, What does it has to do with archery? | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments