Recently I received a couple of emails from people just starting out with the atlatl and they complained of hitting the dirt in front of the target, or, low shots.
1. The most common source of hitting the dirt in front of the target is the result of lowering your elbow during the throwing motion. Your throwing elbow should start off shoulder high and remain shoulder high throughout the entire throwing motion. When you let your drop down during the throwing motion, your dart drops down with it.
2. If you lever the atlatl upward too soon during the throwing motion you raise the rear end of the dart above the point end of the dart, thus the dart is pointed down hill when you throw and that is exactly where the dart will go, down hill, hitting the dirt in front of the target.
At the start of the throwing motion, the atlatl and dart must be pulled forward horizontally until the atlatl handle is about a foot in front of your face before you start to lever the atlatl upward.
3. Bending over at the waist during the throwing motion will like wise lower your dart point. You might as well drop to your knees during the throwing motion because the effect will be the same,,,, loss of altitude, dart hits dirt in front of the target. Stand up straight and tall, don’t bend over during the throw.
Don’t drop your elbow.
Pull, pull, pull the atlatl past your face before you lever.
Don’t bend over.