This sport is more akin to Hunting, with one major difference the targets are not living animals. They are normally 3D or 2D targets made from an assortment of materials from Cork; Foam; Silicone; and plain Sack cloth with a pictorials of animals or now a-days Zombies and everything in between. Foam targets are made to withstand the high impact of an arrow hitting it at around 300 ft per second. Cloth bags filled with an assortment of things can also be used usually made from a clothlike material containing anything from sand to polystyreen. Top rated materials are moulded 3D animals made from a specially prepared and strenuously tested material like silicone. These can be in a variety of sizes, from the size of a small Rat To a Fully Grown Buffalo, or Silverback Gorilla costing in excess of £2000.00, almost any animal is obtainable, there are a number of makes, with Reihart! a German Company out in front for quality and durability, some can have interchangeable target centres that can be turned around or replaced (this is the main target impact area, this saves replacing the whole thing after a few thousand hit ect.) as they are not cheap a Racoon or a Red Fox can cost from $350 – $700 depending on the maker. (these are made to look lifelike in appearance, size and colour).
The Course is set out usually in a woodland setting with some twists and turns that are aimed at testing the archers skill and accuracy with a whole raft of different Bows and Bow types and equipment. Targets are place at different distances and obscured within the woodland setting. As this is a sport using Deadly Weapons Safety is of Paramount importance, Most Clubs who hold these competitions (yes it is very competitive in a subtle friendly manner) will hold a Safety Briefing before archers go onto the course. Clubs are insured in the UK by the National Field Archery Society, this covers the club for most eventualities, the club is governed by the societies instructions in detail. The course is laid out and archers are instructed on the routes to be taken, in preparation for the start, archers would be escorted to the various start points on the course. Archers go to targets in small groups of around 4 – 6 depending on the numbers in attendance. These groups then go out to the different points, the “shoot” starts at the blowing of a horn or other loud signal this is the go ahead! to the arches may start shooting.
The Community is friendly and as individuals move around to different shoots at different clubs people get to know most of the members. There are National Championships held every year (Pandemic disrupted last year as it did not take place, I believe that this year it is being held near Durham. There is also a Southern Championships held in the Southwest. These championships, are held over two or three days, and have a huge attendance with participants from all over the UK.
I personally find that the aspect of shooting at targets within a woodland setting and the informality within the groups of “competitors” attending the shoots much more comfortable, and a greater test of skill and accuracy, than the alternative sport of Target shooting, that has a reputation for formality and is an Olympic sport. That is not criticism of that particular arm of Archery per se that has its own attractions and its own community of followers who are very happy with the sport.
We have products that can assist anyone who wants to try this sport from your first Bow set of Arrows, Quiver, glove, targets etc.
Just hit the buy button to buy or complete the contact form for any additional information required of this very popular sport, we can help with products, Information on UK clubs contacts as well as the NFAS. Please Note: Unable to help with contacts outside the UK.
Start up cost for this sport can be very low in comparison to other sports. Have a go! hit the ground running, a number of clubs hold taster sessions that will give you some basic instruction and a taste of what the sport can do for You! Hit the buy button or complete the contact form for more information on a 1-2-1 basis.
This sport brings with it a Sense of Achievement, a Relief from Stress, a Friendly Environment and a”Back to Nature” element a great sense of Fun.
This is an inclusive sport enabling people of all abilities to take part, and enrich the enjoyment for all.