When most parents were in school, archery was a staple of summer camp and summer recreation programs, which gave people basic one-time introductions to the sport.
Today, archery is more mainstream, with several programs available during school and after school throughout the year. These continuing classes focus on safety first and making archery fun for students. The programs introduce kids to archery and provide paths to making it a lifetime sport, either through target archery or related activities like bowfishing or bowhunting.
If you’re a parent, you’re likely also concerned about safety. No problem. You’ll be glad to know archery is an extremely safe sport. In fact, archery is far safer than soccer, baseball and football.
Archery is also great for athletically gifted students, and those who aren’t so athletic. It doesn’t matter how fast you can run or jump. What matters more is a student’s ability to listen and follow instructions. Archery builds focus, discipline and self-confidence; things that benefit all students.
Let’s review some archery programs available in school.
If you want to unplug your kids and get them outside, consider archery and bowhunting. They’re great ways to spend time with kids outdoors. Explore Bowhunting programs are currently in 23 states, with more added every year. Thousands of students learn bowhunting skills through the program’s interactive games and lessons. In the process, they also learn about wildlife and archery safety.
“Explore Bowhunting is interesting, and serves as a next step for those who’ve had a basic introduction to archery,” said Jay Rouk, Oklahoma’s Explore Bowhunting statewide coordinator, in an interview with the Archery Trade Association. “Explore Bowfishing does the same, and it’s a good pairing or follow-up for Explore Bowhunting.”
Bowfishing is a fun, exciting way to fish with a bow and arrow, and get students outside to experience nature. Explore Bowfishing teaches students the skills unique to the sport, as well as archery safety and conservation. It’s an excellent companion to Explore Bowhunting or other youth programs like Scholastic 3-D Archery.
Scholastic 3-D Archery
Scholastic 3-D Archery is fun for all students. The program began as the next step to introductory archery programs, and helps students experience the fun of 3-D archery. In this after-school program, students shoot life-sized, three-dimensional animal targets indoors and outdoors. All types of archery equipment are allowed, including basic bows, Olympic recurves and compound bows. In addition to after-school classes, the program offers competitive tournaments locally and nationally. Participating in tournaments is fun and excellent for boosting college resumes.
National Archery in the School Program
NASP is an in-school activity that provides a basic introduction to archery. These programs use Genesis bows and arrows, which fit everyone from adults to small children. NASP archers shoot 5- to 15-yard distances at an 80-centimeter target. NASP also sponsors tournaments where students compete against other schools locally, regionally and nationally.
All these programs give children fantastic starts in archery. But archery fun isn’t restricted to kids. Archery is an activity the whole family can enjoy. If that sounds like summer fun that lasts a lifetime, then don’t delay. It’s time to get started in archery!