With her eye on the target, Molly Sulzer ’17 lets the arrow fly. Sulzer spends two to three afternoons a week practicing archery.
She first became involved in archery in ninth grade after she stopped playing volleyball at Marlborough to pursue other interests.
“I still wanted to continue playing a sport outside of school that I could just do for recreational purposes, and there was an archery range at the park near my house, so I just signed up,” Sulzer said. “I had done a little bit of archery … on class trips so I kind of knew what I was getting into.”
Before taking archery lessons, Sulzer first had to take a safety course during which she became more fascinated with the sport and met her current archery coach. She then began taking weekly lessons, which she said were less difficult than she expected.
“They [coaches] start you out with a very lightweight bow so it’s not hard to hold or anything, and you basically just start practicing with your form, and then you gradually get heavier bows that can move your arrow farther… If you move gradually enough it’s not too hard,” Sulzer said.
Currently, Sulzer is using a twenty-pound bow, and after three years of practice, Sulzer said that she’s gotten a lot better. She occasionally records her scores during practices and said that she notices herself improving.
Sulzer does not enter herself into archery competitions. Instead, she said, she enjoys and continues the sport as a hobby because of its non-competitive aspects. Her sister, who does not attend Marlborough, practices archery with her, so it provides them with a quality interest to share together.
“Because I do it for fun, it’s kind of calming to me. It’s a way to be outside and enjoy the outdoors, and it’s something I get to do with my sister, so it’s a way for us to bond… I [also] meet interesting people when I go to the range.”
Sulzer continued that practicing archery has not only been fun, but that it’s also taught her a lot about how she thinks.
“I can shoot a better group of arrows if I’m not aiming at a target. Once the target goes up I start to overthink, and I focus too much on where I want to shoot so my arrows end up spreading out a lot more. It’s more of a mental sport… [It’s taught me] not to overthink things,” Sulzer said.