What is an Atlatl?

Well there’s a new word for the day ;). After a few minutes doing research, I learned that an atlatl is a neat little device used to gain leverage for throwing a spear or arrow long distances with great force. It was used back in history as a hunting weapon.

Another brief description I dug up on the Wikipedia goes:

The atlatl, or “spear thrower”, is a tool that uses leverage to achieve greater velocity in spear-throwing, and includes a bearing surface which allows the user to temporarily store elastic energy during the throw. It consists of a shaft with a hook, in which the butt of the spear rests. It is held near the end farthest from the cup, and the spear is thrown by the action of the upper arm and wrist. A well-made atlatl can readily achieve ranges of greater than 100 meters.

Yeah.. what they said ;).

Recently, with the hunting season going strong over here in the US, there’s been a fascination with going back to the ‘good old times’ and using ‘old school’ hunting techniques.

The only trouble I’d see with that is becoming so fascinated with it that you forget to have a backup plan and the next thing you know, you’re out in the mountains hunting down ‘Monster’ the grizzly bear and all you have is a little spear. You’d better have brought along a good pair of running shoes ;).

Interested in more? There’s an association of atlatl fans.. Check out their site at http://www.worldatlatl.org/

Interested in even more? Perhaps looking to get your own atlatl? I’m thinking of putting together a mini-site over the next couple of weeks with more information, including ways to make your own atlatl and places you can go the ‘lazy man’ route and just buy one ;). Drop me a comment if you’re interested and be sure to let me know how you found my site!

For my regular readers, this is just another way of doing market research. If there is interest, I will put my time and energy into building a high quality site. If not, I’ll be focusing my time and energy elsewhere :).

-Jonathan Wold

1 thought on “What is an Atlatl?

  1. Tony

    I would welcome a site depicting the steps in making an atlatl..member of the Archaeological Society of New Jersey.

    Reply

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