Archery Information

Below are various important and useful bits of information for club members, especially novices


Archery is a science, and an art. Much has been written about archery down the years and there are many schools of thought regarding the 'right' technique, but there is no right technique. It is easy to spot a good technique and a bad one, but any technique can work as long as it is consistent. The best thing to do when starting archery is ask advice of the club coaches and experienced members.

For those who are interested there are also many books written on the subject of archery technique. The Archer's Reference Guide can be downloaded for free and is a good starting point. There are hints and tips which many thousands of archers have used successfully over the years to help them find a way of repeating the same thing time, and time, and time, and time.... again! The purpose of this document is to demystify the art, explain the science and hopefully provide some of those useful hints and tips

Competition Shooting

When you go to a competition you will be given a target number of the form “Number” “Letter” e.g. 3B. The number will refer to which boss you should aim at. The letter tells you which detail you are shooting in and whether you are shooting at the left or right hand target. A & B are detail 1 and shoot first; C & D are detail 2 and shoot second. In a Portsmouth round (the most common indoor round) A & C shoot on the left face; B & D shoot on the right.

Archer C is known as the target captain and writes down the scores for archers A, B and D. Archer D is known as the target lieutenant and writes down C’s score. You never score your own arrows in a competition. In an indoor competition you generally shoot arrows in ends of three in the following manner; A and B shoot 3 arrows and retire, C and D then shoot 3 arrows, you then go and score your arrows. In the next end C and D shoot first.


Do not touch the target face or any of the arrows until they have been scored. Archer C is the target captain and will record the scores on the score sheet. When the target captain calls your name, call your score in the order of highest to lowest, for example “9, 6, 5”. If you had an arrow that didn’t score, call a “miss” and it will be recorded with an “M” on the score sheet.

If an arrow is touching a line then it scores the higher value. If you are unsure or if it is not obvious call the higher score but draw the attention of others to it and let them decide. If other people on your target disagree over the value of an arrow call a judge, his word is final. If a score has been written down incorrectly then only a judge can change the mistake, which he will do in red pen. While others are calling their scores check that what they are calling is correct, it is very easy to make a mistake when calling arrows so feel free to correct them. At the end of a shoot, remember to sign your score sheet and always thank your target captain.


Tuning is the process by which the bow is set up in such a way that is is shooting optimally. Unless shooting around 560+ on a Portsmouth, fine tuning will do very little to help you, and your time is better spent shooting. However, basic tuning (such as nocking point, brace height, button tension, etc.) should be performed as soon as you get your own kit. Ask a coach or experienced archer to help you. For those who are interested, the Easton Arrow Tuning and Maintenance Guide should tell you everything you ever needed to know.