Bhutanese Female Archer makes a Comeback

Email

Sherab Zam is a former national archer with the Bhutan Archery Federation. The 35-year-old retired in 2013 to become a coach for the federation’s grassroots archery programme in the east.

Drawing the bowstring, Sherab Zam takes a deep breath. As she releases the arrow, she takes another deep breath.

Sherab Zam is a former national archer with the Bhutan Archery Federation. The 35-year-old retired in 2013 to become a coach for the federation’s grassroots archery programme in the east.

Since joining the federation in 2005, Sherab’s biggest feat came in 2012 when she was selected to participate at the London Olympics. She was the lone archer selected along with a rifle shooter to represent Bhutan at the Olympics.

As a young girl, she fancied bows and arrows. She drew her inspiration from her brothers who were into traditional archery. She would pick one of her brother’s bow and practise above her house in Damchu.

“It was not normal during those days to see a girl carrying bows and arrows,” said Sherab. “For as long as I can remember, I was always attracted to games like archery, khuru and degor.”

As a traditional archer, it was difficult for Sherab to pick up the modern form of game, the recurve archery. “Like everything else, things are always difficult at the beginning. But once you get the hang of it, you will enjoy it. And when you hit a few karays, your motivation and interest grow further.”

In a game that is still dominated by men, Sherab’s passion for the game got her into the national team. She specialised in the Olympic-style of archery for eight years and also took part in several international competitions, winning medals for the country.

Four years after retirement, Sherab is all set to make her comeback into the national competition when she takes part in the upcoming BAF (Bhutan Archery Federation) international style compound archery competition next month.

For this, the archer has been practising compound archery for the last three months. “Compound archery is new to me. It is almost like recurve archery which I’ve been practising but at the same time it is very much different in many aspects.”

Sherab said that compound archery is easier than recurve because of the use of accessories like trigger that allows steady release of the arrow, providing a better accuracy. “However, since the target is just 50 metres compared to 70 metres in recurve, the target face becomes smaller, making it difficult to score well.”

The archer has also been competing against the men’s team in some of the local compound archery tournaments. “Had it been in the past, it would have been considered unnatural to see a female competing against men,” she said. “But now with the change in time, people have become more open and encouraging especially when it comes to female participation in any kind of sports.”

Sherab said that the BAF international style compound archery competition has provided equal opportunities for both men and women alike to showcase their talent. “It would be very competitive as it is the men who have dominated in compound archery so far. But since this is a new format to all, I wish to perform as good as if not better than them.”

 

This article has been edited for the Daily Bhutan.

This article first appeared on Kuensel.


Related Posts

The Perils of Dha – Bhutan’s National Game

Dha (Archery), the national sport of Bhutan is a double edged sword – while it is entertaining, it can also be...

Sep 30, 2017 05:33

Football Tournament to commemorate Birth Anniversary of His...

To commemorate the 37th Birth Anniversary of His Majesty The King, the Jigme Namgyel Engineering College (JNEC) in...

Jun 05, 2017 19:51

Bhutan prepares to face Palestine

Going by the performance of the two in the last five games, Bhutan has a draw and a win against Bangladesh in AFC Asian...

Aug 24, 2017 16:25

Football clubs in Bhutan gearing up for Bhutan Premier League...

Bhutan Premier League (BPL), the top national football tournament in Bhutan is set to commence on August 1.

Jul 24, 2020 14:33

Karma – Female Archer From Bhutan Qualified For Tokyo 2020...

Karma has been specialising in Olympics-style archery since 2009.

Nov 30, 2019 13:18

Bhutan’s Pelden Wangchuk Wins 10th Edition Of Tour 0f Dragon...

This year, the race also saw the highest number of female participants compared to past years.

Sep 10, 2019 01:08

Latest

News

Australia supports Bhutan in its COVID-19 preparedness, response and recovery

Extending support to Bhutan in its fight against COVID-19, the Australian Government has supplied medical equipment in response to the Royal...

Sep 22, 2020 09:39

Virtual Tsechu in Bhutan amid Pandemic.

Tsechu (Festival ) is one of the biggest religious celebrations of the Bhutanese year in every district in Bhutan. Tsechu has been held...

Sep 21, 2020 12:38

Features

The Heart Shaped Stone- Story to remember while you hike through Phobjikha Nature Trail.

Interesting Stories from the Trail

Sep 09, 2020 18:29

View from the Sky For Every Travellers Flying into Bhutan

Despite Boeing ranking Paro airport as 'one of the world's most difficult for takeoffs and landings, the views over the clear blue waters...

Aug 06, 2020 14:25

Sports

Football clubs in Bhutan gearing up for Bhutan Premier League (BPL) 2020

Bhutan Premier League (BPL), the top national football tournament in Bhutan is set to commence on August 1.

Jul 24, 2020 14:33

Karma – Female Archer From Bhutan Qualified For Tokyo 2020 Olympic Quota

Karma has been specialising in Olympics-style archery since 2009.

Nov 30, 2019 13:18

Business

Bhutan- The Kingdom of Peppers

Bhutan is a country with the highest per-capita consumption of chilli.

Sep 26, 2020 09:15

Are Local Vendors Earning More Money Than the Civil Servant?

A Farmer from Lango, Paro gave up farming to be vendor while office goers are switching into agriculture as the remedy to curb their...

Jul 27, 2020 19:15

Travel

The Significance of Jela Dzong

The journey towards the most popular Druk Path Trek starts with a short climb up to Jela Dzong. Jela Dzong is perched on top of the...

Sep 19, 2020 13:57

The Longest Urban Hiking Trail from PangriZampa to Lungtenphu, Thimphu

This trail is a less explored pocket of paradise for trekkers and wanderers who are in search of natures hospitality and solitude away from...

Aug 05, 2020 10:40

Lifestyle

Food on Wheels- First of its kind in Bhutan

The World's Largest Fast Food Restaurant Chains doesn't exist in Bhutan.

Mar 04, 2020 09:39

Amazing Stories from the Eastern Part of Bhutan

You can't say you have visited the eastern part of Bhutan unless you have experienced the following bizarre things.

Mar 02, 2020 19:02

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!

Download Daily Bhutan Mobile App

Connecting with us just got easier!