Field Archers are all different when it comes to being competetive

Some archers shoot simply for fun and enjoyment of shooting their bow and never shoot anywhere than at their own club, they can think of nothing nicer than wandering through woodlands and shooting their bow

Other archers decide to attend Open Shoots at other clubs in their area, again just for fun and they choose to shoot non competively, they just enjoy shooting a different course and enjoying the location as they are all unique, and meeting up with friends they have made from field archery

Some archers attend open shoots and compete, they enjoy the competetive aspect of the sport, and they want to see how their skill compares to the other archers that they rarely get a chance to compete against,  many field archers cover thousands of miles a year to shoot at an open shoot at another club that could be a long way away

All NFAS Full Members who have completed at least 3 NFAS Open Shoots are eligible to enter both of the NFAS National Championships, this is where the field archer really finds out how their skill compares to the others in their class

Open Shoots are those where any NFAS member can choose to enter,  Open competitions run throughout the year,  most clubs that host Open Shoots will hold between 1 and 3 shoots a year,  most of the Open Shoots are held on Sundays but some clubs do like to hold 2 day shoots on Saturdays and Sundays, these weekend shoots often have camping on site and are very social in the evenings

Toad Hollow Archers usually host 2 x 1 day open shoots and a 2 day weekend shoot every year, in 2022 other commitments may mean we will change to 4 x 1 day shoots only for 2022 the first of which will be held on the 20th March

Toad Hollow is affiliated to The National Field Archery Society (NFAS) and when we host Open Shoots we follow the archery rules of the NFAS and we allow any NFAS member the opportunity to enter and compete

In the NFAS there are 11 different styles of bow and 8 different age and gender classes

The age groups are adult which is for those over 16, then juniors are split to those under the age of  16, 14, 12, and under 9 years old,  There is a gender split of males and females in each class

Entry fees for adult archers usually range from £8 to £10 per day, juniors usually pay half the adult rate and under 12 archers are usually free to enter

When archers approach a shooting point they will see different coloured pegs set out at different distances leading towards the targets,  from the furthest to the closest distance to the target they are coloured differently,  this shows the order in which they are shot and the shooting start point for each age, Red (Adults), White (Under 16), Blue (Under 14), Yellow  (Under 12), Orange (under 9),  there is the option to use a zebra peg with white and black rings on the peg, this is always the furthest from the target and is usually only shot by adult compound, freestyle and crossbow archers

The South West Crown for the Champion South West Archer

Some areas have regional championships, and for the Southwest this competition is called The South West Crown,  This was started by Ian of Toad Hollow and Nick of Muscovy Archers who both thought it was time to try a regional championships,  each year this championship moves around to a different club to host, the Trophies for each age group are unique and include deer horns to form a crown, the winner holding the title and trophy until the South West Crown is competed for again

All NFAS members can enter this championship the usual age, gender and bow style compete for the usual Gold, Silver and Bronze medals or awards, as this is a South West Championship archers from outside of our area can compete for The Visitor Award, but not for a Crown

But for all the archers from the southwest that are competing at this Championship event the real prize is being crowned The South West Champion Archer. This competition is different as it mixes all genders and styles into finding the overall winner in each age group  will compete against all the archers in their age group regardless of style or gender,  the final score for each archer is handicapped to allow for the difference in gender, style and age, the handicap is constantly updated and includes the results for over 70 NFAS shoots where all the archers shot the same course

You can find out more about The South West Crown Here

The NFAS holds 2 National Championships each year,to qualify to enter is very easy, they have to be a full NFAS member and to have completed 3 Open Shoots held at an NFAS affiliated club, the archer must prove their qualification by sending in their 3 scorecards to the Champs Admin, once this has been done that archer can enter any championships held by the NFAS

The NFAS 3D target field archery championships is held on the last weekend in May

The NFAS Face target field archery championships is held on the second weekend in September

Both of these championships are held over 2 days on Saturday & Sunday

Depending on the entry there will be between 2 and 4 courses at either championships of which each archer will shoot 2 of them, changing course on the second day

Each of the courses are organised, laid out, marshalled and usually catered by a club local to the championship location. Those clubs always volunteer to set the course. The Clubs do receive payment from the NFAS for doing this, but to the majority of clubs setting championship courses it is more about putting something back to the NFAS

The location of each championships change every year, moving to a different area gives more clubs the opportunity to course set a national championships as well as vary the amount of travelling for the competitors