Grace Groves – In my experience with shooting archery through NASP® I have had many positive experiences with other archers, coaches, and NASP® coordinators. In my first year of NASP®, my team was very inexperienced and needed help.
At my first state tournament, I was in fifth grade and was very clueless and unaware of how tournaments worked. My lane partner who was much older than me and in high school was very experienced. She helped me with scoring for my first time and gave me good advice about archery. I have seen her a few times since then, but unfortunately, we have never been lane partners again. I will always value how she helped me. Because of this, it inspires me to help the shooters that are younger than me when they are struggling or need help, whether it is in tournaments or in different scenarios.
Another way I have made a good connection with an archer was when I went to Worlds. Once again, I had a helpful and kind lane partner from Ohio that was my age. I remember her motivating words on the waiting line, and we still follow each other and our accomplishments on social media. Because of this, I try to always stay in touch with the people I shoot with so we can watch each other grow as archers.
NASP® has been positive for me because it helped me gain more self-confidence. My first success as an archer helped me feel more confident and talk to people that helped me improve. The program introduced me into the much larger world of archery. My passion gave me the opportunity to venture outside of NASP®. I have recently started shooting in a local compound league and I have made many positive connections with others because of this league.
NASP® is a great opportunity for students that are unsure about engaging in other sports. Archery is accessible to any student regardless of their athletic ability. Because of this, it creates a positive environment to meet many different groups of students and it can improve and create many friendships with students from other schools. Many schools in my area are beginning to get involved in NASP®. I believe this will lead to students from other schools forming bonds and friendships and it will create a positive environment between many different schools.
-Grace Groves is a 2022 student contributor. Watch for her future submissions.-