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Karolina Hynkova: “It was love from the first shot!”


A four–time Czech Republic champion in crossbow shooting, a young and promising athlete, Karolina Hynkova told us about her path to the crossbow world. Read about training, hobbies as well as future sports plans in an exclusive interview specially for www.iau-crossbow.org

- How many sports titles do you have? Which one is the most significant for you and why?

- I have 4 titles of a champion of the Czech Republic and a bronze medal from Ulan-Ude in a team competition. I´m glad for every award I`ve got. Though the best moment ever was competing in the final in Ulyanovsk. It was my first time shooting the final and I gained incredible experience. So, I appreciate it higher than any title.

- How did crossbow sport appear in your life? What exactly attracted you in it? Was it ‘love from the first sight’?

- I discovered crossbow sport thanks to the bet with my dad. We joked who´d be worse shooter and he won. Mr. Nedělník invited me to a training and I have been shooting till now. Absolutely, it was love from the first shot! To be honest, I felt so cool when I told somebody that I went in for crossbow shooting. I felt like Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games. Now it´s different, I feel more like Darth Wader.

- How many years have you been doing crossbow shooting?

- I have been shooting for 6 wonderful years.

- What is the place of crossbow shooting in your life? Is it a hobby for you? Is it a lifestyle already?

- Like Alice has Wonderland, so I have a shooting range. Shooting is my hobby, it´s the best way to calm down my mind and relax.

- How many times a week do you train? What do you focus on in your workouts?

- It depends. Sometimes I have trainings only once or twice a week and more often in case of some interesting competition coming. I try to work on a mental part of shooting. I feel nervous in every single competition. In Ulyanovsk in the final I could hardly manage heart attacks with every single shot. I had just to calm down and to perform well under the pressure.


- ‘Crossbow shooting is not just a sport! We are a big crossbow family!’ Do you agree with that? In your opinion, why is it more than just a sport?

- Yes, I absolutely agree. Crossbow shooting gains us together. The point is that we all do what we love. We support each other, we help each other and we share experiences and joys.

- Is crossbow shooting popular in your country? Which division is more popular “Match” or “Field”?


- In the Czech Republic everybody wants to play football, hockey and tennis because it´s well paid. Crossbow shooting is not paid at all, we don´t have professional coaches, we don’t have professional shooters. We are just amateurs who learn from their mistakes. For many young people it is hard to do the same thing and keep concentration for all the time. They think it´s easy and that they will win in every competition. I think that Field division is more popular. It´s much easier to go in for it.

- Tell us about your life. What do you do besides sports? What is your hobby? What book do you usually read? What kind of music do you prefer? How do you spend your free time?

- I study the Czech language and literature and it means spending a lot of time with books. I love fantasy and young adult like "Game of thrones", "Harry Potter" or "The Giver" and also classic literature – "Pride and prejudice", "The Hunchback from Notre-Dame", "The old man and the sea", "Animal farm" or "1984". I don´t prefer any certain kind of music but I love “Imagine dragons”, Billie Eilish, “Rag´n´Bone Man”. I like singing but I am not good enough in it so I do it only in the car or in the shower. I used to dance in a folk group, act in a school theatre and do scouting. I still help in a summer scout camp. Yeah, I can survive 2 weeks without mobile phone and Wi-Fi.

- Now it’s a difficult time for sports. The reason is covid-19, also known as Coronavirus. Please tell us about a pandemic situation in your country.

- The biggest problem with Coronavirus is that nobody expected it could be so dangerous. It was 11th of March when I was at school and my teacher told us that the universities were going to be closed. And then everything happened so quickly. Nobody could go out. Everybody was afraid. Life changed here. People spent more time together. They tried to keep in touch with their families and friends.

- Have you had an opportunity to train all this time? How was it? How often?

- We didn´t train during Coronavirus crisis but every shooter tried to keep a good shape.

- Was it a difficult period for you? How did you spend your time? (new hobby, some new courses, or webinars and etc.)

- I think it was somehow difficult for everybody. Most of the time I spent with my puppy, parents and grandparents. I was cooking, reading books, watching movies and doing homework. My friends made me start running and drinking wine.

- Do you miss the IAU international competitions?

- Yes, I do. The international competitions are something special. They have a good atmosphere and are so much fun. And I miss all the people I can meet there.

- And the last question. What do you dream about? What is your main sports dream? What title would you like to win?

- Well, to be honest, I have no idea. Dreams change every single night and my sports dreams change as well. I only want to get better and learn as much as possible, have fun and many good experiences, memories and friends. Maybe one day some title comes.