Archery is a very technical sport and all equipment is carefully checked before competition. Arrows must be no larger than 9.3 millimeters in diameter. Many competitors use arrows around 5.5 millimeters in diameter as these fly faster and are not as susceptible to wind changes. Each arrow must be marked with the competitors name or initials. Many competitors combine their initials with specific color markings to distinguish their arrows from other competitors.
Bows must have specific draw strength, 22 kilograms for men and at least 17 kilograms for women. Bows can have only sights with a single aiming point and no telescopic functions. Participants are allowed to wear protective gear such as gloves, arm guards and chest guards, but these items may not have any special characteristics that will improve player performance such as improved grips.
The target is also standardized. It is 48 inches in diameter with the center of the target at 4 feet 3 inches above the ground. The target has 10 concentric circles colored in gold, red, blue, black and white around. There are two rings of each color. Each of these colors represents a scoring zone. The target is placed 70 meters away from the archer.
Olympic archery is a team or individual sport. Players compete in single elimination rounds. The archers shoot 12 arrows and the highest scoring player moves to the next round. The colors are scored as follows. Bulls eye 10 points, outer gold ring 9 points, inner red 8 points, outer red 7 points, inner blue 6 points, outer blue 5 points, inner black 4 points, outer black 3 points, inner white 2 points and outer white 1 point.
Arrows that land touching two circles are scored at the higher point value. Arrows that hit the target and fall or pass through the target also receive a score.
Individual and Team Events
Archery can be played individually or in teams of three. All competitions are single elimination. Individual players shoot 12 arrows at the target at the same time another competitor shoots 12 arrows. Judges score the round and the winner moves on. Teams of three archers can also participate and they follow the same rules. Each shoots 12 arrows and the team with the highest score progresses to the next round.
Archery continues to be a popular sport in the summer Olympic Games. Participants and spectators benefit from a clear understanding Olympic archery regulations. Competitors should review these regulations for changes before each competition to avoid elimination due to equipment that doesn’t meet the standards.