Learning and development

New to archery...

Our beginners courses are held throughout the year and can be accessed by completing our online form. If you’ve just completed a beginners course and would like to leave some feedback please fill in our feedback form.

We offer a loan bow scheme that is open to Wymondham Archers members only and can help you get on with your archery from day one. We want you to get the best use of the bow and ancillary equipment. You can use it in peace, as if it’s yours, for around six months - time extensions are available.

We have a purpose built agreement that you can download and sign if you’ve been accepted as part of the scheme. Once signed it will need to be forwarded to our treasurer.

Great news, you’ve completed a beginners course in archery, perhaps right here at Wymondham Archers! You may not believe this right now but as far as we are concerned you are an intermediate archer; you are safe and very welcome to shoot some arrows with us 365 days per year. We have numerous session coaches (see below for more information) that can help you along your journey and you most likely met one or two of them when you completed your beginners course.

We recognise that you may want some more coaching and we are pleased to be able to offer this to you as part of your membership fee. To get more coaching all you need to do is contact the coaching coordinator and we’ll get back to you.

  • Please indicate whether you are seeking a male or female coach.
  • Please also let us know what you are seeking to achieve.
  • We will need to know what kind of bow you are wanting to improve with, barebow, olympic recurve, compound, flat bow, horse bow or longbow.

Intermediate and beyond...

You may have been shooting for some time now but have reached a plateau ... or you may know that you could improve in some way but are unsure of how you might go about that.

Our development coaches (see below for more information) can support you through your archery challenges, working with you on periodic training cycles, tournament preparation, gaining higher scores, bow set up and more. Our development coaches can also help you to avoid injury or work around some physical impairment that may have developed. Working as part of a national network they can call on external advice and guidance from coach developers across the UK.

If you would like more coaching then please contact our coaching coordinator.

If your bow isn’t working for you, or you suspect that something isn’t right with it, you can ask for support. We hold equipment setup sessions for our archers and would encourage you to take part in these. We are numerous and take names until we have sufficient people to enable a short morning or afternoon course.

You will need to bring your archery equipment along with tools appropriate for your bow (allen keys, screwdrivers, etc.) so as to be self-sufficient during the session. Please email the coaching coordinator should you wish to have your name added to the list.

We are all different, thank heavens, and our differences are what makes archery so very interesting. When you undertook a beginners course, maybe many years ago you might have been provided with information that has since gone out of date. You may have just completed a course but had a sleep last night and it’s all gone over to a dreamscape. Below are some tips and tricks that are designed to help you wherever you are in your experience of archery.

  • Getting started
  • Where you put your feet and the position of your body in relation to the target
  • Drawing the bow
  • Getting yourself into alignment
  • Finding your anchor position
  • Where the string touches the face
  • When you begin to aim and how
  • Where the string is aligned in relation to the bow
  • Finally working to execute the shot
  • Where your string hand goes to when you release the string
  • What happens when you relax midway through a shot
  • Some exercises to help you with string release
  • Finally the follow through of the shot
  • Some skills acquisition exercises that will assist you
  • Why it’s important to not overload yourself too early
  • Why a simple clini-band can do wonders for your shot
  • Why you should consider shooting at a blank boss (a lot)
  • Strength and conditioning are key elements to obtain a stronger shot
  • Warming up is vital. And includes Happy Cat (how lucky are you)
  • Upper body and trunk strength exercises
  • Shoulder strength is an important element and must not be missed

If you need more help please do not hesitate to ask our coaching coordinator.

Coaching archers is a wonderful experience as they adopt strong technique, posture, and accuracy under your guidance. Developing their understanding of the equipment and how they influence the shot sequence is extremely rewarding. Working with beginners a session coach can enable them to shoot accurately and safely over the duration of the beginners course.

You will be part of a coaching team all working to support our novices at Wymondham Archers. If you would like to become a coach then please email our coaching coordinator.

Additional information

Welcome to the outline of your Beginners Course. The course falls into two distinct phases - acquisition followed by application of skills. Like much in Archery there is quite a bit of acquisition, prior to application.

The course has a PASS/FAIL element. Archers unable to grasp the Phase I element will not be put forward towards Phase II. Coaches have autonomy and authority to refer the Beginner back to the start of Phase I at the end of this phase. Most people move on to Phase II at the end of Phase I.

We consider a simple ABC approach to our efforts in enabling you to enjoy your Archery, your Club and the space we have created.

A Autonomy
We work to ensure that you are able to work out your own archery difficulties. But we don’t leave you stranded. We have support for you following your course with further coaching as you need it.
B Belonging
Knowing who to turn to and how to find your way around is very important to us. We have club sessions as well as free sessions all the time and encourage you to join in.
C Competence
By providing coaching as you go along we can ensure that you will continue to grow into your archery. You can gain insight into how your kit works and indeed how you work, as well as learning about other archery issues.

Phase I - minimum of 3 sessions

The archer understands and is able to describe and demonstrate
Acquisition of skills - Range safety
  • Shooting line - Where you shoot from
  • Waiting line - Where you leave your kit
  • Spectator line - Where everyone else is
  • Target line - Where you shoot to/ where the targets are
  • Role of Field Captain - Managing H&S
Acquisition of skills - Shooting safety
  • Fast / Stop - In an emergency to stop
  • Come Down - For tuition purposes
  • Verbal commands - Used at Wymondham Archers
  • Whistle and hooter commands - Used at many clubs
  • Arrow collection - Safe method - always be cautious
  • Spatial awareness - Being aware of others
Acquisition of skills - Personal safety
  • Appropriate clothing including footwear - Closed-toe shoes or trainers
  • Finger sling - You can use a lace
  • Arm Bracer - Essential protection
  • Tab - Essential protection
  • Warm ups / cool downs - Essential practice
Acquisition and application of skills - Equipment
  • Assemble/ dismantle bow - Taking your time - Understanding what goes where
  • String / de-string bow - Always use the stringer
  • Check equipment for damage - Limbs, string, bolts, arrows, tab, finger sling
Acquisition and application of skills - Shooting your bow
  • Barebow finger position and reference
  • Point of aim (POA)
  • Freestyle finger position and reference
  • Reference points (anchor)
  • Setting up a sight
  • Shooting etiquette
  • Scoring

Phase II - minimum of 1 session

This phase is designed to enhance the skills learned in phase 1
Embedding skills and being part of Wymondham Archers
  • Setting up your equipment solo
  • Shooting with other archers (this may be the coach)
  • Introduction to other bow types
  • Resolving own difficulties
Nurturing archery and being part of Wymondham Archers
  • Discussed with archer - club sessions
  • Discussed with archer - how to access more coaching
Empowering the archer and being part of Wymondham Archers
  • Archer is introduced to other activities found at Wymondham Archers
  • Archer is encouraged to take part in other activities found at Wymondham Archers
The autonomous archer
  • Taking the time to find out about clubs around the UK
  • Discussing what our affiliating body does
  • Know where to go for more help on archery matters, including enhanced coaching, tournaments and equipment
  • Confirming where all the facilities are at the Wymondham Archers archery ranges

After your beginners course you will be encouraged to become part of Wymondham Archers club. We will be asking for a little feedback at the end of your course, or you can provide it online. We have more resources on our website that you can review at any time and if you have further questions then please contact our coaching coordinator.

Good luck with your archery!

Lead Coach
Wymondham Archers

A session coach is a licenced level 1 coach and has undertaken a series of modules enabling archers of beginner and intermediate levels to progress. Their course to become a coach was challenging but provided them with the tools to lead the way for archers wishing to develop their technique and understanding of archery.

Each of our coaches has undertaken the following:

  • At least 4 hours of learning identifying simple yet must-have skills for coaches, including how to use reflection and feedback to take action towards improvement.
  • At least 4 hours of tutoring on Empowering Archery™ which focuses on how to optimise people’s experiences of archery and help them achieve their goals.
  • 4 hours of learning effective shooting technique, setting you up for a happy and healthy experience of archery. In particular to understand the basics of shooting form and teaching these to archers from beginner level onwards.
  • At least 4 hours of creating engaging learning sessions to enable a wonderful opportunity for new archers to our sport, something in life that is increasingly missing from day-to-day activities.Your coach will strive to create a sense of achievement, development, and connection alongside highlighting the multitude of health benefits. Your coach will endeavour to meet their audience’s needs.
  • At least 2 days were taken to practice what they have learned in their course as supported practice with other qualified coaches.

We believe it is important to find the coach you want to help you with your archery. If you find that you resonate particularly with a coach please let them know. If you find you are seeking something else, just ask.

Learning agreement for coaches

A development coach is a licensed level 2 coach and has attended an extended course to enable the development of archers through designing and delivering learning to help people continue their archery journey beyond their initial beginner’s experience. They will strive to help you and can encourage you to grow your skills and remain part of the archery community. The development coach's learning has included the following.

  • 1 hour module on the role of a development coach.
  • 4 hour module in developing the archer in front of them. Designing a progressive series of sessions that addresses the needs of archers, to enable noticeable progress over a period of time. This module helps with the understanding of how to prepare a coaching programme taking into consideration key design factors, including the needs of the person in front of the coach, goal setting, training principles, mental skills, equipment, anatomy, and nutrition.
  • 8 hours of Empowering Archery. One of the biggest responsibilities that a coach has is setting the motivational climate for a coaching session. This module, designed by the University of Birmingham and tailored specifically to archery, explores the evidence around motivation and applies it to real-life archery scenarios, enabling coaches to learn how they can create good relationships and an optimal climate for their archers to enjoy and succeed in archery. Empowering Archery also focuses on how to optimise people’s experiences of archery and help them achieve their goals.
  • 8 hour module of archery technique – Drills and Skills. This module builds on the knowledge acquired in the Introduction to Technique. It includes more details on shooting technique and a further evolution of the drills and skills used to support the development of good shooting technique. Coaches learned the importance of using a progression of resistance, intensity, and feedback in your coaching. Use of photos and video to analyse archery technique were also included in this section of the coaches learning.
  • 8 hour module of coaching technique – Practice. A day of coaching where opportunity was taken to practice coaching skills on real life archers under the supervision of a coach developer.
  • 8 hour module of recurve equipment selection, setup and tuning. This element of a development coaches course covers the selection of a first competition standard recurve bow, how to set it up, how to tune that bow to the archer, and included some practical opportunity to bow tune several recurve bows.
  • 8 hour module of compound equipment selection, setup and tuning. Covers the selection of a first competition standard compound bow, how to set it up, how to tune that bow to the archer, and included practical opportunities to tune a compound bow.
  • 8 hour module of coaching journey round up and presentation. This module provides the development coach with the time to try out and practise what they’ve learned from the other modules. The goal is to give confidence in the ability to develop an archer’s shooting technique. On this final day, coaches present their coaching journey working with an archer to improve their shooting technique. Development coaches then take the opportunity to lead a discussion with their peers to get feedback about their journey and what they’ve learned.
  • Development coaches undertake supported practice. Often they will have worked with at least a Level 2 mentor. Each development coach will have completed at least 12 hours of work coaching an individual archer or several archers.
  • The course includes a series of assessments, designed within a supportive programme of learning that helps the development coach achieve successful outcomes.

Learning agreement for coaches