Trigger Panic – Make it Stop!
by Samantha Lance
Those two dreaded words that archery shooters can’t stand to hear… trigger panic. Even seasoned archery veterans get the heebie jeebies from the mere mention of it. Trigger panic refers to an action that has influence on an unsuccessful release. Most of the time it’s shot anticipation or punching the trigger on your release. With me, it was shot anticipation. I knew the exact moment when my trigger would release, and I’d flinch or choke up on my bow. My arrows would break left every time it happened! It was a horrible habit, and one that was very difficult to break.
During the ATA Show this year, I was introduced to the Hamskea back tension release. The one I got is called “The Cure;” its name and color promoting breast cancer awareness–an added plus. It’s smaller than their original “Break-Thru” version; suitable for smaller hands such as mine, and perfect for ladies or youth archers. It has a safety feature that must be set before you nock and pull an arrow. Once at full draw, the safety lever is pulled, and the arrow will release when back tension is applied. The lever is adjustable for a left- or right-handed shooters, and the release tension can be set to your level of comfort and draw weight. Back tension must be engaged for the hammer to release.
At first, I would flinch at full draw when I pulled the safety lever. I was so afraid it would misfire or release if I pulled it. After several fretful shots and adjustments, I finally got the hang of it. Now, I am able to make more consistent shots because I’m not punching a trigger or flinching due to shot anticipation. This has eliminated my trigger panic completely; and I could not be more elated about this product.
Release and follow through are a major component to shooting, and the last two steps before letting an arrow fly. If those two are not correct and consistent, all other steps leading up to the shot pretty much go out the window. I would highly suggest considering a back tension release over a trigger release if target panic is an issue for you. Do your research on back-tension releases, as there are many different options available, and test them on-sight if possible before making the investment.