Sophomore Archer Shoots for Success


Media by Thomas Sonn

Sophomore Sydney Sonn participates competitively for archery in competitions throughout the state. Sonn said that archers compete individually at tournaments, however, they can identify the club they train with if a title is won. Sonn trains both with a club team and with homemade shooting ranges at her house. “It just takes patience and a lot of determination,” Sonn said.

A young Sydney Sonn was fascinated with observing the Korean Olympic Archers. By the age of 10, Sonn had begun to do much more than observe. She had joined the Little Hills Youth Archery Club and began training.

Now a sophomore, Sonn has continued to practice archery and has participated in tournaments all over the state. 

“When I first started, all the coaches were just really nice, and that really made me love it more,” Sonn said. 

Though COVID-19 restricted her ability to practice at her club facility, Sonn’s father coaches archery and had built a shooting range in their basement. Sonn also owns her own equipment, contrary to some of her younger fellow club members, which makes it easier to practice on her own.

When the facility was previously open, she was able to attend her weekly practices on Saturdays where she could interact with her coaches and work on her form.

“Everybody was like, don’t look at that last arrow, just focus on the next one,” Sonn said. “I was feeling kind of discouraged cause I was like ‘I can’t get this down’ and then like a year later I was like ‘oh, I finally got this’.”

Sonn said most people have the common misconception that archery is not a competitive sport and is only for hunting when in reality, the opposite is true for her.

“I’ve never been interested in hunting, I guess. I just don’t like shooting animals,” Sonn said. “It’s very disciplined. You have a specific form, and then there’s a lot of patience to it because you won’t get it in the bullseye the first time.”

Though she has long-term goals to continue to develop her skill in a more advanced way, Sonn’s immediate goal is to make the switch from her compound bow to a recurve bow which is more difficult to maneuver, but more commonly used amongst professionals.

Sonn said she wishes archery was more mainstream and appreciated. 

Her father, Thomas, also sees that the sport is not as popular, though he enjoys Sydney’s dedication to it as it is something they can do together.

“It’s just nice to always be there to help her and learn new things together,” Thomas said. “I’m so proud of her and just to see her grow through the years as a better, more improved archer.”

With any club sport comes expenses. Thomas said that compared to more traditional club sports, the cost of the equipment is not nearly as bad though it does require a little bit of research in order to find out what’s available. However, he has found the Bass Pro Shop to be a good resource.