How Safe is Archery?
The National Safety Council rates archery more accident free than every popular ball sport, including tennis and golf. When one puts a ball in the air and kids run, jump and spin around, almost anything can happen. You expect injuries, whether it is turned ankles, twisted knees or torn ligaments. Archery allows students to be taught a safe, lifetime skill they can practice almost anywhere. More than 500,000 students have participated in NASP since its inception in 2002 and there have been no accidents.
To address safety concerns, while the students are shooting the teachers stand at the shooting line. Everything is done with whistle commands, as students are instructed to pick up the bow, walk to the firing line and pick up one arrow. Always pointing it downrange in a safe direction, they fire three or more shots upon command, rack the bow and return to the waiting line. Then the whistle allows them to go downrange and withdraw the arrows out of the target in a safe manner. When they carry the arrows back, they carry them covering the tips so there"s no possibility of someone getting hurt. It is almost unheard of for a person to injure himself/herself or another person while shooting bow and arrow.
Students have the opportunity to shoot at bulls-eye targets placed before an arrow-resistant net in their gymnasium. This allows the course to be conducted anytime of the year, regardless of the weather. It can also be adapted to outdoor ranges. When setting up the range, safety of the shooters, observers and bystanders is of the utmost importance.
Indoor Archery Range Layout
Archery is safe because, as a shooting sport, the field of play – or range – is designed with safety in mind.
For indoor ranges, arrow safety curtains are hung no further than 3 feet behind the archery targest across the full length of the target line. No one is allowed bedhind the safety curtain while shooting is in progress. All doors in the general shooting area are closed and warning signs are posted outside the doors where archery practice is in progress. Doors behind the target line are locked or temporary barriers are used as a warning signal.
A shooting line is established at least 10-20 feet in front of the targets.
A waiting line is used for those archers waiting their turn to shoot. Between the waiting line and shooting line is where the equipment is hung in a safe, non-shooting position. All archers stand behind this line while not shooting.
A target line is set 6 feet from the front of the targets and is the distance from which archers score and wait to retrieve their arrows.