Archery in Ancient China

November 29th, 2009 5 comments

Archaeological discoveries proved that archery in China dates back 20,000 years. Practical archery takes three conditions: a bow strong enough to propel arrows, arrows that are sharp enough to kill, and a technique to ensure the stability of arrows in flight. The bow and arrow in ancient China fully met the three conditions. Archaeologists have unearthed finely made arrowheads in a site of the Paleolithic Age in Shanxi Province. Made of stone, the arrowheads were sharp and pointed, and could be mounted on a shaft. No bow was found at the site, since bows were usually made of wood,  bamboo and perhaps tendon of animals and could not remain intact for so many years. But the arrowheads were enough to prove the existence of bows.

As for how to keep the arros stable in flight, Kao-Gong-Ji, the earliest work on science and technology in China, writes under the item of THE ARCHER: “Decide the proportions of the shaft to install the feathers.  The feathers at the end of the shaft are installed in three directions, and then the arrowhead is mounted. An arrow thus made will not lose its balance even in strong winds.” It also says, “When the feathers are too many, the arrows will slow down; when the feathers are too few, the arrow will become unstable.” Later on, ancient Chinese developed bronze arrowheads and the crossbow, upgreading archery to a new height.

Picture of using archery with feet in ancient China:

a pic of using archery with feet in ancient China

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June 1st, 2015 No comments

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China archery launches selection for Rio Olympics

March 27th, 2015 No comments

Chinese Archery AssociationFUZHOU, March 27 (Xinhua) — Chinese national archery team launched selection games on Friday in Putian of Fujian rovince to choose archers from 101 competitors for Rio’s Olympic Games.

According to the organizing committee, the national archery athletes will be selected based on the scores of international contests, national matches and fitness test. The first round in Putian will last till April 10 when 24 archers will be listed. The second and third round will be followed as various games go on.

Mu Yong, head of the national team, said the final list of six archers for Rio would be released next June.

“Before that, we need to play well at world archery championships in Denmark this July to win the qualified seats of Olympics,” said Mu.

Mu said Chinese national team is very young with an average age of 23 to 24. Many talented archers stand out and become competitive.

“We are still inches behind South Koreans,” said Mu. “Our young archers lack experience, especially when the game goes up and down. They need to be more steady and confident, with better psychological control over their emotion.

“We also prepare the special training with different weather conditions, especially in the rainy and windy days.”


China takes first ever Asiad recurve archery men’s team gold

September 28th, 2014 No comments

INCHEON, South Korea, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) — China swept Malaysia 6-0 to clinch the recurve archery men’s team title for the first time at the Asian Games here on Sunday.

Chinese athletes Yong Zhiwei (L), Qi Kaiyao (C) and Gu Xuesong pose on the podium during the awarding ceremony of the recurve men's team match of archery at the 17th Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea,

Chinese athletes Yong Zhiwei (L), Qi Kaiyao (C) and Gu Xuesong pose on the podium during the awarding ceremony of the recurve men’s team match of archery at the 17th Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea (Xinhua/Wang Peng)

The Chinese young archers edged their South Korean peers 5-4 after the shoot-off in the semifinals two days ago, then defeated their final rivals from Malaysia without mercy.

“I have to say that I was a little bit nervous as it’s the first time I competed in a final,” said Qi Kaiyao, 21, who launched his campaign on Sunday with an excellent 10’s. “We had prepared for a hard fight with the rivals and we had strong confidence in ourselves.”

The three Chinese archers contributed to eleven 10’s in three sets while the Malaysians shot the center mark for eight times.

“We hadn’t expected that we could win so fast,” said Yong Zhiwei, who also qualified for the individual semifinals later on Sunday. “But we believed in ourselves. We had faith in the team.”

South Korea’s loss to China means it failed to secure its ninth straight gold in the event at the Asian Games, but the hosts managed to edge Japan 5-3 to grab the bronze medal earlier.

“Our male archers did perform well at the Asian Games,” said Mu Yong, the manager of the China’s archery team. “They kept calm and shot marvelously. Especially in today’s final, they showed no fear at all.”

In the women’s final, South Korea beat China 6-0 to defend their title. Japan took the bronze after beating India 5-4.