Image Credits: @SanchitaTiwari
At just 19, Sanchita Tiwari is yet another rising star of Indian archery. Recently won a gold medal in Veronica Cup and a bronze medal in KIUG, we spoke to Sanchita who duly gave us an illuminating insight into life as a successful young archer.
Sanchita Tiwari is yet another name to keep an eye on and who has already found herself on the radar of the Indian national team setup. She is technically competent, boasts an excellent precision and balancing ability and confidence to pull them off.
The Ghaziabad native received the prestigious Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar (National Child Award) in 2020 from the Prime Minister of India for her outstanding achievement in the field of archery. She is also one of the baton-bearer for the Queen's Baton Relay Commonwealth Games 2022, Birmingham.
Currently pursuing Bachelors in Dental Surgery in ITS Dental College, Ghaziabad, Sanchita has always had a passion for sports.
The youngster got her first taste of archery at the age of 12 when she accidently began archery competitively. Having blazed a trail through the sub-junior sections, Sanchita hit the mainstream in 2017 when she won a bronze medal in the women’s compound event at the Youth World Championship in Argentina.
Her latest exploits came at the Khelo India University Games, where she won a bronze medal in the individual compound event.
She’s consistently dropped fantastic performances and has blossomed into one of the most promising talents in the Indian women's archery scene. With 2022 is shaping up to be a busy year for her, she is a talent to watch this year and beyond. Keep an eye on her progress.
Hello Sanchita, we are delighted to interview you, and big congratulations on winning a bronze medal in KIUG and a gold medal in Veronica Cup. Archery is such a peculiar sport and now you are one of the most exciting competitors to watch in the country as well. So, I would like to being with asking the basic question of – can you tell us about your first-ever archery experience? What inspired you to become an archer?
Thank you so much! I started archery seven years ago and I was accidentally introduced to the sport in my school. I never thought I would do archery professionally, but soon after joining the sport I got selected for Nationals and this is how my journey started. I was introduced to the sports world in my first national and this inspired me to professionally pursue archery.
You could have chosen other sports too, why archery and how did you discover the passion? And when did you actually decide that you wanted to be a professional archer?
I idolise Jhansi Ki Rani and as soon as I got to know that archery is all about bows and arrows, I was quite excited to try this game. Over the years, as I started to realise that I could be really good at archery, I started to prioritise my training and competitions over other aspects of my life. The excitement helped me perform well and as I started achieving and getting medals, I was motivated to work even harder.
Who do you look up to in archery?
Columbian archer Sara Lopez has always inspired me. She is a medical student as well as world No.1 in archery for the last five years.
For sports like archery that require a huge amount of mental strength it's also sport that requires a lot of concentration, right? With archer’s basic practice is carried out on the range for an overwhelming amount of time; the challenge is not only to hitting the target, but to shoot while also controlling your nervousness is hugely difficult, what would you say is one aspect of your sport that is a real strength for you?
Archery is more of a mental game than physical and this fact proved to be beneficial for me, since during my initial days as an archer I was not that strong physically, but my mental strength overpowered my weakness and this helped me believe in myself. My real strength in the sport is my love for the game and my hunger to keep achieving.
We all know that you are successful in your sport. But the first win and the first medal are always special. Do you remember your first success as an archer? If yes, how will you describe that moment?
My first ever medal in archery was a gold medal in sub-junior national. I wasn't hoping for a medal and was just enjoying my game, this helped me perform better and win a gold. That moment was very special and worked as a fuel to my fire. I was inspired to work harder and perform better after this victory. The pressure during the medal match taught me how to control my emotions in the toughest of times.
Despite your young age, you seem to shoot well under pressure. Please tell us about your mental game.
Mental training and pre-match strategies play a vital role in our game. I am habitual of playing an imaginary match before the actual match and performing my best there. This helps me recall all my positive thoughts and my good shots during the actual match.
When a person is passionate for something, that thing is like a life for him. We all know that you are extremely passionate about archery. What are your feelings when you take the equipment in your hands?
I carry my bow with pride and the moment I hold my bow in my hands, I feel more confident and more accomplished. I am happiest when I shoot an arrow and that sound of my arrow hitting the ten ring is the secret of my good sleep.
Archery is a sport which requires extreme concentration and focus. If you lose even 0.01% of it, you miss the target. How do you manage to maintain both under pressure situations?
Every single player is under pressure during the matches, but the one who is able to control those emotions on right time, wins the game. I am able to control my emotions and pressure because of my coach who is there to console me every time needed and my family members, who are my strength, my psychologists and my favourite cheer leaders.
Even if a person reaches the pinnacle, there is always scope for improvement. And in sports, you should improve daily. A healthy competition or rivalry often helps a sportsperson to improve. So, who is that archer with whom you have a healthy rivalry?
I believe we are rivals only on the competition ground and on the shooting line, and the moment we are out of the ground, each and every player is my good friend, and this helps us create a healthy environment.
How much time do you spend each day/week/month shooting your bow?
I try to shoot at least 200-250 arrows per day.
Out of all the medals you have won till date, which would you say was the memorable one and why?
My bronze medal in Youth World Championships was the memorable one for me. As this was my very first international tournament and my very first international medal. I learnt a lot from this tournament and got to know about my strengths.
What lies ahead for you this year, and what are you most excited about?
Asia Cups and many world ranking events are lined up this year and I am excited to give my best in maximum of them.
What else do you do? Is there something else that you do that you like to perfect outside of Archery?
I am pursuing Bachelors in Dental Surgery for my graduation, so, apart from archery, I am inclined towards my career as a good dentist.
Your favourite Indian archer?
Your favourite foreign archer?
Which is the category or event you like to participate in the most?
World Ranking Events
Indoors or outdoors?