Safety on the Archery Range

The “Fast” Warning

Anyone present at the shoot (even those not shooting) must call “Fast” if they witness unsafe behavior. All archers must stop shooting immediately and come down. Remove the arrow from the string and place it back into their quiver. If necessary, the call of “FAST” should be repeated by other archers to ensure that everyone has heard and stopped shooting. Shooting will recommence only on the instruction of the Judge or Field Captain.


No loaded bow, either drawn or not drawn, shall be pointed at anyone or anything other than the target. When drawing the bow, keep it level with the target. Drawing high and then lowering the bow could be very dangerous should a premature release accidentally happen (at a competition or official shoot, a judge could instruct you to change your shooting style).


Arrows must ONLY be shot at the target. NEVER shoot an arrow vertically into the air. Arrows should only be nocked on the shooting line and pointed in the direction of the targets.

Carbon Arrows

Please handle Carbon Arrows with care. If you get a carbon splinter in your finger or hand you will have to go to A & E Department of the Hospital to have it removed.
See Archery UK Autumn 2013 edition page 57 for more information on this subject.

Shooting Line

You MUST have one foot on either side of the shooting line while shooting. ALWAYS shoot from the shooting line, NEVER from in front of or behind the line. NEVER step forward of the shooting line for any reason whilst shooting is in progress. NEVER approach the shooting line until the Field Captain signals that it is safe to do so (generally one blow of a whistle. You will be informed at the start of the shoot if procedures for the present shoot are different).

Waiting Line

ALWAYS return to the waiting line once you have shot your arrows.

Collecting Arrows

ALWAYS wait for the signal to proceed forward to collect arrows (generally two blows of a whistle. You will be informed at the start of the shoot if procedures for the present shoot are different). NEVER run. Keep looking for arrows that may have fallen short of the target (this is especially important when shooting outdoors).

Withdrawing Arrows

Stand to one side and ALWAYS make certain that no one is behind you when withdrawing the arrows from the target. ALWAYS ensure that anyone who is scoring their arrows has finished doing so before ANY arrows are removed from the target. ALWAYS pull arrows from where they meet the target (pulling from further down the arrow shaft can damage the arrow).

Arrow Length

ALWAYS make sure the arrows you are using are of the correct length for you and your bow. They must be long enough so they cannot be drawn off the rest and fall inside the bow. If they are too long, it will affect the flight of the arrow. If in doubt, ask.


ALWAYS call scores in groups of three, e.g. 10-9-8 pause 7-6-5.

Reference Point

Always draw the string of the bow to the reference (or anchor point) and NEVER beyond. If you are not sure what this is – ask.

Bows – Warning

NEVER, EVER DRY FIRE A BOW (do not draw the bow up and let the string go without an arrow attached to it). NEVER let anyone draw or shoot your bow if their draw length is longer than yours. Over drawing of the bow can cause damage to the bow.

Cease Shooting

If there is the slightest likelihood of anyone entering the shooting range stop shooting. If a person risks crossing in front of another archer, call “FAST”.

Field Captain

ALWAYS follow the instructions given by the Field Captain
Remember: Safety is of prime importance in Archery; DO NOT mess around with a bow.
As well as safety issues, archery etiquette is also important at a shoot.

Please Note: G.N.A.S. do NOT insure shooting at home.