Archery by Keenan

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“Imagine walking into an archery range after you unload everything like a bow, arrows, quiver, belt [if needed], arm guard [if needed] and a release if you have a compound bow.

But did you know that archery includes a lot of muscles and bones? Just follow through takes a lot of bones and muscles. And even talking to the coach about a problem takes bones and muscles! You need the deltoid muscle to keep your arm up after you release and to pull the string back. Don’t forget the trapezius that also helps pull the string and hold the arm up.

The pectoral muscle helps to stand straight. You use your calf muscles to stand straight and walk so does the thigh and buttocks.

You use the atlas + the pivot to look through the peep sight. You use the hinge to stand straight. You use the ball and socket joint to move your arms straight. You also use the saddle joint to hold the release.

Imagine what would you look like if you had no bones, muscles, and joints trying to shoot a bow?”

(in Keenan’s words) I was born with a birth defect called Poland’s Syndrome. I do not have a right pectoral muscle. My family thought that I would be able to fight this defect by shooting a bow and building up my other chest and arm muscles. I started shooting a Mathews mini-genesis when I was only 6 ½ years old. I joined the Rigney School of Archery in my hometown of Springfield, Illinois to learn how to shoot a bow. My coaches took me through beginner and intermediate classes. I transitioned into numerous league teams and participated in two outdoor S3DA and two JOAD seasons. I am a member of USA Archery and the ASA. In the winter of 2018-2019, I competed in the Midwest Open, the ISAA Pro/Am and the Illinois Spot Classic. I am hopeful of joining the outdoor S3DA season in the Spring. Currently, I am shooting a Bear Cruzer Lite compound bow with stabilizer, peep and 5-pin site. I also shoot PSE Razorback arrows. I shoot my bow not just to overcome my physical challenges but to also just enjoy a sport that I love and a chance to get to know a great group of people that build others up. A long shoot with a lot of arrows causes me a lot of chest soreness but I need to fight through it to reach my goals. I am currently shooting towards an archery career. In my paper that I wrote in my 4th-grade class, I wrote about shooting a bow without muscles and what that would look like–I am what that looks like.


Added by Keenan’s mom:

**1/32,000 births have characteristics of Poland’s Syndrome. It is a rare congenital defect characterized by the absence or abnormality of the pectoralis major muscle, a major chest muscle that normally attaches to the upper arm on one side and the breastbone (or sternum) on the other side–typically the right size.**


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