Contract between club and club members

I recently went and shot at another club. I paid for my shoot (not cheap) and then had the slowest session in the world while a group of beginners were coached. It wasn’t really the coaching that I minded (we’re all familiar with that and I can hear a lot of you thinking ‘oh my goodness, please say you’re providing member only sessions’) what bothered me was that the instructors weren’t giving the beginners any encouragement to speed up or get back over the shooting line. On their last end the beginners stood around on the range snapping photos of each other with the targets and their arrows which took at least 5+ minutes.


Be the Change


So, why am I writing a blog post about this? Well, it made me think that as we have a lot of beginners through the club we could do with laying out our position on how this ought to happen. A kind of contract between the club and the members if you like. So, here goes.


  • The usual / main indoor round shot is the Portsmouth (60 arrows at 20 yards on a 60cm target face). Club members should ALWAYS be able to shoot a Portsmouth with 6 sighters (72 arrows). We hugely encourage scoring and we keep a leader board of member shooting on the website here. We’d love to restart leagues or club competitions – if you’re interested in co-ordinating this please shout!
  • If possible a club member should be nominated to either score during a session or count their arrows (I have a knitting row counter that I use to count my practice arrows). It’s helpful to have an accurate idea of how many arrows are getting shot.. not just for an idea of what you get for your money for a shooting session but for your own practice records.
  • Club members should feedback to the office if less arrows are being shot than this – if numbers drop really low for whatever reason (saving act of God / Downside / Schools Plus!) we’ll refund the cost of the session.
  • Instructors should do as much as they possibly can on the safe side of the shooting line. We won’t tolerate instructors standing on the range pontificating at beginners while club members stand around.
  • The only really unavoidably slow bit will probably be teaching beginners how to pull arrows. Club members are always welcome to go and assist the instructor, help to supervise the arrow pulling and help beginners to collect their arrows.
  • If the instructor is encouraged to always think – how can I be faster and allow more shooting time? Then club members are encouraged to think – how could I help the instructor to make this faster?
  • If you are interested in learning about coaching please tell us! Pretty much every club except ours has volunteer coaches who assist beginner club members. I’m not sure why we don’t have this. We’d love for more of our members to go through Level 1 / 2 training and help other club members to develop their shooting. It wouldn’t be a paid position but learning how to coach can be enormously helpful for your own shooting. Everyone coaches each other when learning to coach so you’ll get a lot of free feedback (including from the senior coaches leading the course).
  • We all need to remember that we need beginners – they are the life blood of the club and the fact that we run lots of beginners courses is how many many of our club members got started in the first place. BUT, we need to be respectful to our club members and appreciate how much they are paying to shoot.

OK so that’s it. Please do remember to tell the office if things go awry at the club as we may not know. Multiple reporting is better than everyone thinking that someone else will do it.


We’ve got a whole load of wonderful members and our constant flow of beginners lands more on our doorstep every month. It’s up to us to lay out what we expect but I don’t think we tell you what we’ll deliver in return often enough. And really – do think about coaching! Here’s a link to the Archery GB Level 1 course page.