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Read on to explore the history and origin of the game of archery in India.

History of Archery in India

The history of archery can be traced back to the ancient civilization, when bows and arrows were used as a weapon to hunt wild animals and used at the warfare. The heroic efforts of the archers at the battlefield helped gain triumph over several kingdoms. Studies suggest pines serves as the arrows in the ancient times, because they consisted of a long fore shaft and a flint point. According to the history of archery, bows were first developed in either early years of the Mesolithic age or the late Paleolithic age. The oldest bow used by archers is native to Denmark. Archeologists have discovered arrow shafts in many countries were archery was prevalent, which includes Egypt, Sweden, Denmark. Archery was also developed in Asia and other Islamic kingdoms.

Right from the ancient period, people were specially trained to use the bow and the arrow. People used bow and the arrow as their main weapon in the battlefield, until the development of firearms. A wide variety of bows and arrows were manufactured in order to suit different range. Some of the commonly used archery bows include the longbow, short bow, flat bow and cross bow. Long bows, as the name suggests, were very long. They were as long as the height of the archer. On the other hand, the short bow is short in length and is lighter than long bow. The flat bow consists of a wide limb, with a rectangular cross section, while the limbs of the cross bow are positioned in horizontally.

India's tryst with modern day archery started in 1975, three years after the game was chosen as part of the Olympic discipline in the 1972 Munich Games. In 1973, the Archery Association of India (AAI) was established, which proved to be a milestone in the history of archery. The organization help uplift the standard of archery from just being a primitive game to a sport with national and international recognition. The Archery Association of India has played a leading role in promoting archery in Asia, apart from its homeland.

The AAI helped the archers to acquire training and ensured that the available infrastructure was put in good use. This helped the archers to emerge as talented and promising sportspersons. Consequently, they participated in a number competitions held both at the national and international level. Players like Jayant Talukdar, Tarundeep Rai and Limba Ram excelled in the sport and brought laurels to the country. However, with the commercialization and immense popularity of other sports, archery in India still needs to be given as a supreme sport. The AAI is putting forward its sincere efforts in making archery, one among the most popular and accepted sports of India.