Considered a sport, 3D archery is a specific style of target archery. If you ask someone about it, they will be very quick to tell you that it is fun and addicting. Regardless of your skill level with archery, you can participate in 3D archery. It can take place in fields, the woods, or even indoor ranges. Overall, with 3D archery, the goal is to guess how far away your target is and determine where you need to shoot in order to achieve the highest possible shot – sort of like darts, expect you are shooting a bow and you are a lot further away from your target.
3D Archery Can Be Compared to Golf
In a sense, 3D archery is like golf. In the sport of golf, you need to gauge how far away you are from the hole in order to determine which club you will use to hit the ball. In 3D archery, you need to estimate the distance from the target and shoot the arrow to gain the highest possible score. Like in gold, if you estimate wrong, you won’t score as well. In golf, you win if you have the lowest score. However, in 3D archery, you win with the highest score.
Marked 3D Archery vs. Unmarked 3D Archery
In 3D archery, there are two primary types of events, marked and unmarked yardage. Usually, most events are unmarked yardage, which means that you will stand at your pre-designated stake and attempt to estimate the distance of your target. You will then take your shot for as many points as possible. In the marked yardage events, you will be told at your pre-designated stake how far your target is. At some events, there will be a dot on the ring with the highest score and your object will be to hit it.
3D Archery Target Scoring
In this aspect of 3D archery, each target will have a set of rings on it. The scoring will be dependent on the association or club in which you are attending. Most clubs will utilize the following scoring: the smallest circles are worth 11/12 points; the heart ring is worth 10 points; the lung ring is worth 8 points, the body ring is worth 5 points and the antlers or hoof on a deer will be zero.
Types of 3D Archery Targets
As a general rule, the targets will be life-sized targets of multiple animal shapes. Depending on the club or association, the types of animals can vary and will include deer, elk, moose, beaver, antelope, sheep, cougars, skunks, snakes, bobcats and more.
Required Archery Skills
The great thing about 3D archery is that there are classes for all skill levels – even children and beginners can get involved and have tons of fun. Ultimately, the bow equipment that you use will determine the distance your targets will be from you. One example of a class is 35 yards and under.
How Do I Know Which Class I Belong In?
Each association and club is different, so you need to check in with them. For generalities, however, there is usually a Cub Class, which is for children under 11 years old. The next is a Youth Stake for 16 years of age and under. Then, there is the Traditional Archers Stake, followed by the Bowhunter Open and Competition Stake, which is usually for a maximum of 45/50 yards. However, this is a general guideline and may vary depending on your locale.
Estimating Distance in 3D Archery
The primary skill in 3D Archery is estimating yardage, especially in unmarked 3D archery. It is a requirement that you guess the distance of the target in order to make the highest-scoring shot.