Indoor Archery Rules

If you’re new to competing in archery, you’ve likely read through the competition rules as well as the specific site rules for your next tournament. In addition to the set competition rules, there are also indoor archery rules that everyone should follow. Here are five indoor archery rules to keep in mind to have a great time and avoid any mishaps at your first archery competition.

Rule 1- If an Archer is Shooting Next to You, Stay on the Line

This is the number 1 rule in indoor archery. They can see your movements in their peripheral vision and create a distraction if the archer next to you is at full draw and you get out of line. After you shoot your last arrow, the best way to prevent an accident is to look around to see if there are any other archers still shooting. If they are archers, wait until they have finished their arrows before you move.

The final reason you should avoid leaving your shooting line is if you and the other shooter are the last competitors remaining. Many people consider waiting in the shooting line with the other archer in good manners until they finish their last shot. This way, the other person is not standing alone when they take their final shot.

Rule 2- Know How to Stand on the Shooting Line

There are two ways an archer will stand on the shooting line when competing in a tournament. The first way to cross a finish line is by straddling it with one foot on either side of the line. Another way to stand is with both feet behind the shooting line.

First, check the competition venue’s range or competition rules to learn more about this rule. If the rules are unclear, when you arrive at the competition, ask a staff member or another archer competing; they should be able to help you.

Rule 3- Stay in Your Lane

This rule may seem obvious, as most archery ranges and competitions will have specific areas for each archer to stand on the shooting line. The archers will stand in areas specified by numbers on the floor, lines showing where each archer stands, or both. You might unintentionally be in another archer’s space, even if it’s clear where you are standing.

The first mistake you might make is with your quiver. If you wear a field quiver or one that points your arrows behind you, it may point the arrows into the space of the archer behind you. It depends on how your quiver is situated on your belt. If you wear a quiver that points the arrows in front of you, they might accidentally hit or get into the space of the archer in front of you.

When you step on the line, check your arrow and quiver to see that they are correctly in place. If you’re ever in doubt, ask the people around you if your arrows are causing any disturbance. If they say ‘yes,’ then simply readjust your quiver accordingly.

Unknowingly, another mistake an archer can make is how they load their arrow onto the bow. Many archers prefer to tilt their bow to the side or load it horizontally before nocking an arrow, making the process simpler. If you compete, this can cause problems because people could be indoor archery crowded in front or behind you. When you’re loading your arrows onto your bow, make sure to keep your bow as vertical as possible.

Rule 4- Save Talking for Off the Line

This is another rule of indoor archery, while line talking in archery competitions can be distracting to other archers trying to shoot. It is also impolite to talk or make too much noise near the archers while they are shooting. It is especially if you have already stepped off of the shooting line.

If there is space, the best way to act at an archery competition is by stepping off of the line and moving away before starting a conversation. If the contest is being held in a small venue with limited space, walk off the line and make sure to lower your voice to be polite to others and if you want to talk to another archer and they are still shooting, wait until they finish or till everyone is walking downrange. That way, you can have a small conversation without interrupting their game.

Rule 5- Leave the Targets and Arrows Alone While Scoring

It doesn’t happen often, but if an arrow is close to a scoring line and you touch the arrow and the target before scoring, it can break the line on the target or slightly push it in or out of the line. This can change the way the arrow is able to get points. Whether you mean to or not, most archers will see this as cheating if it makes your arrow more valuable than another archer’s arrow.

The best way to avoid touching the targets or arrows is by waiting until all arrow values have been called. Even if you’re trying to call an arrow and it feels right to touch the arrow or target to get a better look, just don’t do it. Ask a line judge if the arrow is hard to call, and they may be able to get a perfect call on the arrow.

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