Katniss Everdeen from “The Hunger Games,” Hawkeye from the Marvel Universe and the members of the U.S. Olympic team – archery has never had more glamorous representatives.
The sport’s increased visibility in the media over the last decade has caused interest to rise in turn. After an initial surge in popularity around 2012, the number of archers in the U.S. continued rising for several years; according to an annual survey by the Archery Trade Association, 23.8 million adults participated in archery in 2017, compared to 18.9 million in 2012. Additionally, USA Archery announced that its 2017 indoor nationals competitions saw the highest participation in its history.
Since 2017, participation has stayed largely steady, according to data published this year by the Sports and Fitness Industry Association. That means there are thousands out there each year picking up their first bow and looking to start a possible lifelong hobby, whether that’s traditional target shooting, bow hunting or both.
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“We launched 14 years ago as a very firearms-focused business, but the goal was always to become a full-fledged outdoors retailer with products in everything from shooting sports to outerwear and camping gear,” says Hinterland president and co-owner Brett Klein. “Archery and bow sports go hand-in-hand with that vison.”
Archery is an activity that seems simple at first – how complicated can a bow and arrow get? However, a closer look reveals its many nuances.
There is, of course, the most traditional and simplistic D-shaped bow and its more powerful and popular recurve counterpart, which is what is used in the Olympics, most target shooting and onscreen in everything from “Robin Hood” to “The Lord of the Rings.” Traditional recurve bows are where most people start their journey in archery, as they tend to be the simplest to understand, easiest to use and the least expensive.
However, the equipment evolves significantly from there. There are compound bows, crossbows and compound crossbows, with stabilizers, sights, pulley systems and other parts as complex as they sound.
Hinterland has a large selection in each category, along with a detailed information page that breaks down bow anatomy and provides explanations of archery accessories and applications. Those looking for guidance can also contact the company for an expert’s opinion on what they need to start.
Hinterland ships to all 50 states, so archers – whether novice or professional – don’t have to be confined by the inventory of their local outdoors store.
“Being an online retailer, it’s hard to beat our prices – we’re extremely competitive,” Klein says. “We’re known to be able to get hard-to-find products and high-end products as well, so whatever you’re looking for, we can help.”