Run a Boost Archery Course

Run a Boost Archery course - Help your club members boost their skills. All archers want to experience success, enjoyment and a sense of progress in their personal development. These are all essential ingredients that keep archers going back to their club. Coaches and club officials are essential pillars of support. With the provision of good quality coaching, archers of all levels can gain valuable feedback about their performance, grow in confidence and make strong connections with their club.

Help your club members boost their skills

All archers want to experience success, enjoyment and a sense of progress in their personal development. These are all essential ingredients that keep archers going back to their club. Coaches and club officials are essential pillars of support. With the provision of good quality coaching, archers of all levels can gain valuable feedback about their performance, grow in confidence and make strong connections with their club.

We know that many archers who leave the sport have been members of Archery GB for less than two years. This emphasises the limited window we have to deliver on the promise of archery and, in particular, the important role that club support, coaching and competition can have. That’s why we’ve developed Boost Archery - a resource which helps archers access tailored coaching in their clubs.

What is Boost Archery?

Archery is an initiative to help clubs give their members (particularly novices) a positive experience of coaching. It’s designed to engage archers, help them enjoy the sport and keep them coming back. Boost Archery provides archers with a series of regular and organised coaching sessions. It gives club members the chance to receive dedicated support from a coach, whether they’re relatively new to archery or have been shooting for a while. 

Each session aims to help participants improve core skills for shooting and give them the opportunity to develop personally and socially. 

Holding Boost Archery sessions at your club can help you develop your members – archers who are more confident shooting and more closely engaged in the club ethos and its activities.

Boost Archery aims to help archers achieve this in two ways: 

  1. To develop personally and socially within archery 
  2. To understand and develop core skills for shooting 

Each session delivered as part of Boost Archery should give every archer the opportunity to develop in these ways.  Boost Archery will help your archers to enjoy archery, develop personally and socially, learn and achieve, and enhance your club.

Mother and daughter on the shooting line

Personal and Social Development

Personal development isn’t solely a by-product of good coaching, but should also be an objective in itself. Personal and social skills are central to the development of the person as well as the archer, and need to be considered within each session. 

How can your Boost Archery sessions include the 5Cs? 

  1. Competence: help archers learn and develop, with a positive view of their performance 
  2. Confidence: help archers attain a sense of self-worth and a ‘can do’ mind-set 
  3. Connection: give archers the chance to work with and help others, and be part of a group 
  4. Character: develop an environment that respects archers, coaches, officials, parents and the rules, and expects others to do the same 
  5. Creativity: help archers find their own solutions to problems, helping them to think for themselves in order to learn

Core Skills for Shooting

Boost Archery can be used to help archers understand and practise basic form, identify areas for improvement, develop effective training habits and create positive relationships with coaches and others. Everyone progresses at different rates and come with a mixture of abilities, so coaches will need to be flexible in their approach. They should be prepared to adjust their session outcomes and plan depending on the needs of their archers. 

When planning your Boost Archery course, think about what you’re trying to address through the sessions that will help each archer. 

For example, it could be: 

  • Understanding a specific aspect of shooting form 
  • Experience competing in a club or local tournament 
  • Experience shooting using recurve, compound or longbow 
  • Understanding how to score and identifying suitable formats for competition 
  • Understanding why and how to use training aids 
  • Understanding how to utilise video feedback or mirrors 
  • Knowledge of appropriate drills and skills 
  • Understanding stabilisation and when to use a stabiliser
  • Knowing how to use a finger sling 
  • Practising tuning a bow 
  • Understanding how to maintain equipment

To help archers deal with the different situations they will find themselves in, they need to gain a variety of skills and experiences while training and competing. Think about how Boost Archery can be used to not only challenge an archer’s technical skills, but also the tactical, physical and mental skills required for archery too.

Developing mental skills through Boost Archery

Having the appropriate cognitive skills to support the performing of different challenges e.g. self-awareness, concentration, evaluation, decision making, planning and organisation.

Developing physical skills

Developing fundamental movement skills and core strength. Technical: Techniques and skills required as a foundation for core competence. The development of these techniques are underpinned by the physical abilities of the participant.

Developing tactical skills

Being able to solve challenges in live situations. This involves skilful application of core techniques in order to maximise the chances of success. E.g. responding to the environment. 

Use Boost Archery to help archers understand and practise basic form, identify areas for improvement, develop effective training habits and create positive relationships with coaches and others.

Archer with coach

How to design your Boost Archery course

Here are some considerations that will help you design your Boost Archery course.

Have an agreed goal

At the very first session the archer and coach should agree what they’re trying to achieve during the course and what success will look like. The purpose of this is to ensure the coaching sessions have a clear, identifiable goal and remain focussed. While archers may have similar goals, such as understanding positioning, variance in ability will mean that a coach will have different expectations about what this looks like in practice.

Provide opportunities for archers to work together

Everyone on the course is there because they want to learn. Consider how you will set a positive tone for the course by creating a supportive environment for learning and ensuring that it is relaxed and enjoyable. At the start and end of each session, before splitting off into groups, do a whole group activity. This may be as simple as completing the warm up together or some resistance band drills.

Provide time and expertise for archers to learn about tuning their equipment

Using the right equipment is essential to successful shooting, yet many archers struggle with equipment that isn’t set up correctly or is inappropriate, leading to poor form or injury. These types of issues often detract attention away from training and the coaching session, making it even more worthwhile to address. As a minimum, archers should understand the theory of basic bow set up and bare shaft tuning. 

Try to include an extra workshop on equipment in addition to the course. This will reduce the reliance on coaches by helping your members to understand their equipment and learn to optimise it for themselves. Consider visiting or bringing in a reputable retailer to help you, as they are used to dealing with these issues for a range of bow types and often have the latest information.

Help archers to learn for themselves what feels right

An important outcome of effective coaching is to help archers learn to identify what feels right and wrong while shooting for themselves, rather than relying on external feedback. This helps them to become more self-sufficient in the future. For example, try using a resistance band to help them experience the feeling of using different muscles.

Encourage archers to evaluate performance over score

Teach archers to evaluate their performance properly, rather than simply judging their performance on their scores. Make use of blank bosses and carefully consider how competition is used during the course.

Use technology and share analysis with your archers

It’s really simple to use smart technology to photograph and video archers’ shooting, using coaching analysis apps. Try to ensure that archers see a video of themselves shooting well so they’ve got this to refer back to, as well as using these apps to help identify any mismatches in technique to aid improvement.

Continue your own learning as a coach

Delivering Boost Archery is an excellent way for you as a coach to gain experience and continue your development, particularly if you are working in a team. Further expertise can be found from all manner of sources that will help you learn, from reflecting on your own experiences, speaking with coaches in your club and county, to engaging with other sports organisations.

Getting started with boost archery

Speak to your members. Consult to find out what their personal goals are and how they want to progress. This will help you provide coaching sessions that are relevant and engaging. 

Recruit a coaching team. It’s important the coaching sessions are led by someone who has the right qualities and skills to meet the participants’ expectations. If there isn’t anyone in your club that fits the bill, contact other clubs or your county association to use or hire an external coach. Coaching is a dynamic process and there isn’t a one answer fits all approach. It’s important that the coaching team used to design and deliver Boost Archery can draw on different areas of knowledge and expertise, for example: 

  • Coaching – knowledge of how to create good teaching and learning experiences 
  • Archery specific – knowledge of fundamentals for archery and shooting form 
  • Sport science – knowledge of basic principles of the sport sciences in relation to archery

We recommend that you use Level 2/Development Coach licensed coaches or above to lead the delivery of your Boost Archery course, with other coaches in supporting roles. The coaches need to be able to plan each session to suit the needs of every individual in the group. Development Coaches have attended a training course to learn about designing coaching programmes, which is well suited to this resource.

Design the programme

Boost Archery covers 6 x 1.5 hour sessions. This is the suggested time frame needed to give coaches and participants the opportunity to identify and practise core skills for improvement. However, the time may vary depending on the resources you have. 

To ensure that archers receive the attention they need, we suggest that one coach works with a small group of approximately four archers on a target. Each coach should be able to plan and monitor each session to suit the needs of their small group. 

Remember to think about how you will promote, plan and deliver Boost Archery depending on who the participants are. For example, if the participants are a group of junior members, how will you advertise the sessions and make them age appropriate? Think about how you will ensure that all your club members feel welcome to sign up to the course, and how you will cater for them if they have any specific requirements. Book the venue Boost Archery can be held anywhere that is accessible and comfortable for shooting, such as your normal club venue. 

However, if access to your usual shooting venue is limited, why not consider booking an alternative venue to ensure that your club can offer Boost Archery to members? You will need to check beforehand to see if a new venue is suitable for archery, complete a risk assessment and register the venue with Archery GB.

Archer stringing a bow

Equipment for your Boost Archery course

Think about what equipment you may need, in addition to what’s usually available on a club training night, and where you can get this from. 

In addition to your usual club equipment, you may also need access to: 

  • Basic training equipment e.g. lightweight bows, resistance bands 
  • Alignment tools e.g. Foremaster Training Aid 
  • Feedback and analysis equipment e.g. provision of mirrors or video camera 
  • Sports analysis software e.g. Coaches Eye, Dartfish, Kinovea
  • Developing Good Technique Manual for Development Coaches and Handbook of Observation and Analysis for Development Coaches (see your Development Coach Learner Pack)

How much to charge for your Boost Archery course

List the costs you’ll incur and think about what most people would feel is good value for money for a group session. Funding from the UK’s Sports Council may support this type of activity! It is often easily accessible and will help pay for coaching, facility hire and equipment. You simply need to describe how your project will help keep people in sport or participate more.

How to promote your Boost Archery course

We’ve made a promotional tool kit including posters, web banners and a social media guide to help you raise awareness of your course and recruit participants. These resources are free for you to download (see below) and can be easily edited to suit your course.


If your club is affiliated to Archery GB, your course should be covered by Archery GB’s insurance. However, you will need to ensure that you comply with Archery GB Policies, Codes of Conduct and the Rules of Shooting. If you need to deviate from these, then remember to seek separate cover for your participants, coaches or venue. For insurance enquiries please contact Archery GB’s Membership Services.

Facility, range layout & set up

Ahead of each session taking place, you need to check that the range is set up correctly and all of the equipment is safe to use. If you have not used the facility for archery before, please refer to our facility guidance which is provided separately. 

A range can be indoors or outdoors, but it must be laid out and managed so that everyone – the archers, spectators and passers-by – is safe at all times. You will need to refer to the Archery GB Rules of Shooting and Archery Range Health and Safety Guidelines to ensure your range is compliant. 

It is also important to carry out a risk assessment before the course takes place. A risk assessment is simply a careful check of what could cause harm to people, so that you can decide if you have taken enough precautions or should do more to prevent harm.

Bring your Boost Archery course to life

What you do next is up to you! You have the freedom to make each session as innovative and engaging as you want it to be.... 

Coach the person, not just the sport - to increase the personal and social connections participants have with archery in your club or organisation, try to: 

  • Reach out to potential participants so they feel welcome to show up 
  • Connect with individuals so they have a sense of belonging, want to be part of the action and recognise that they’re in a ‘can do’ environment 
  • Engage participants with enthusiasm and empathy so they recognise that coaching is more than just setting up practice or giving instructions 
  • Listen and be responsive to participant needs, and be flexible about ways of doing things 
  • Use practices and games that excite, are interesting and are playful in nature, to allow participants to develop with confidence 
  • Provide challenges along the way to stretch individual ability and achievements

Club competitions with Boost Archery

Target full of arrows

It can be quite nerve racking turning up to a club competition, particularly if you haven't been before! A Boost Archery course could offer the ideal opportunity to give members a positive experience of competition, providing a supportive and friendly environment. 

There are many different formats that you could use, enabling your archers to test themselves whilst having fun. It’s up to you what this may look like in your club - the most important first step is to recruit someone who is willing to lead the organisation of events.

Don’t be limited to the rounds and formats as detailed in the Rules of Shooting - why not try something different? Archery GB’s ontarget Club Competition format can be used as part of any informal shoot. 

  • Archers shoot in teams of four, such as two recurve archers and two compound archers 
  • It consists of 3 rounds of 2 dozen arrows at 50m on an 80cm face, with archers shooting ends of 6 arrows 
  • Round 1: Team v Team 
  • Round 2: Pair v Pair 
  • Round 3: Individual v Individual 

The format is designed so that archers work together and individually, and is all for all ages and bow-style.

Further support

World Archery have produced videos and coaching resources

Archery GB has a number of coaching videos on our YouTube channel

Visit the Resource section on this page for a guide to making reasonable adjustments for disabled learners. 

Archery GB National Talent Development Programme

We’ve designed a talent guide to increase understanding of Archery GB’s Olympic and Paralympic performance pathway and the journeys archers can take to reach their potential. Guidance is included on posture, skills & drills, bow training, physical readiness and mental management of performance. 

Why not network with other clubs to find out examples and tips from clubs who successfully deliver Boost Archery? Each county archery association has a designated point of contact for coaching, called County Coaching Organisers.

If you require funding to support the set up of Boost Archery, you can apply for a small grant from your sports council. Funding is available to help clubs provide specific activities designed to help people access sport and, for example, can be used to pay for facility hire, coaching, and equipment. 

For more information or support please get in touch

Contact your Regional Development Officer or email:

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