SOUTH AFRICAN JOURNAL FOR RESEARCH IN SPORT PHYSICAL EDUCATION AND RECREATION, vol.40, no.1, pp.141-155, 2018 (SSCI)
The aim of this study was to examine the muscular activation strategy of archers with different levels of expertise. Twenty-seven (27) male archers volunteered to participate in the current study. The activation of nine forearm and shoulder girdle muscles were analysed. Statistically significant differences were observed among the archery groups in the activation of muscles (flexor digitorum superficialis, extensor digitorum communis, deltoids middle, deltoids posterior, trapezius pars ascendens, trapezius pars transversa, and trapezius pars descendens) (p<0.05). The results of this study, indicated that in order to pull the bowstring, the elite archers used distal (forearm) muscles less, but used proximal (shoulder) and axial (trapezius) muscles more, while the mid-level and novice archers used distal muscles more. This differential muscle use was interpreted as the most important factor affecting the horizontal oscillation of the bowstring. To minimise horizontal oscillation, it is suggested that archers carry the weight with their axial and proximal muscles. The findings of the present study could be used as a reference to pave the way for the development of effective archery training, which would include visual or audial feedback methods.