Field Archery: Something Nobody is Talking About

April 06, 2016

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There are a plenty of ways of loving archery. You can shoot 3D foam animals, Olympic type of targets and can also try with bow hunting. Another way of enjoying your time with your bow is through field archery.

The sport began in 1934 by a small club in Redlands in California wherein the members realized they had no interest in target archery. With other archers across the nation, they sought a game that was more challenging.

At the same time, target archers who hailed from Michigan, Ohio, Oregon and various other states started gaining following at shoots of the annual field. These events began as fun shoots for novelty and were generally considered as a comic relief that followed a session of actual target archery. All these tournaments inspired the club of Redlands to frame a field course that was permanent. They started the first course in the 1934 spring, and was popular instantly, despite a few shortcomings. The course had twenty targets spread over the rolling hills. 

As the sport flourished, every course made a standard for itself for both the number of targets and the shooting range. It instantly became evident that this sport required an organization to maintain its consistency of growth.

That is when the National Field Archery Association originated. The main goal was to develop the rounds and to make the regulations for competitions and field style shooting. In the year 1940, the first mail-in tournament on the outdoor fields was held. After six years, the first annual NFAA championship for national field was held at the Allegan of Michigan.

Now, the NFAA crowns sectional state as well as champions of national field every summer and also plays host for lots of field shoots held across the nation.

Many people draw comparisons between a golf round and target archery. Archers move from one target to another, with varied distances. Every round will have 28 targets spread among the mountains, hills, flat fields and other terrain. If you don't have enough budget to fund 28 targets, you could go with 14 targets. Make sure you hit every target twice to finish a complete round.

The field round will have three variations that are Animal, Field and Hunter.

Archers take four shots of arrows for every target on Animal and Hunter rounds, for the sum of 112 arrows for a round. Field rounds will be different by making way for many shooting positions for one target. At a few positions, you can take all four shots of arrows from one fixed point.

The method of scoring on field courses of NFAA are similar throughout the country, letting competitors from various states compare accuracy levels as well as scores.

Martin Douglas
Martin Douglas