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The Lubuskie Archers

Archery ( Łucznictwo ) - Poland

The Lubuskie Archers was founded to promote interest in the craft skills, history, and the practice of archery in Lubuskie in the west of Poland. Most of what our group is involved in has been borrowed from the English traditional, so for this reason we might be considered more like an English archery club or society than a Polish one. However, we hope that you will find our form of archery of sufficient interest to make contact with the 'Lubuskie Archers' and maybe even join us at one of our regular shoots and/or archery tournaments. We are not involved in any sort of league, but instead organise regular informal meetings of local archers and open-entry archery tournaments in which we invite anyone interested in archery to take part, not just from Lubuskie, but from all over Poland, the rest of Europe and beyond. An archery tournament organised by the Lubuskie Archers is always an 'international' because it always includes archers from outside of Poland! We encourage archers of all levels, from beginner to the most experienced to have a go. If you are interested in taking part in such a tournament, please register your interest using the contact form at the bottom of the page. If you're coming from outside Poland we can help arrange accommodation and give you any help and/or advice you might require. Our members speak English, German and Polish!

Our archery group concentrates on traditional archery. Archers who take part in our archery events use bows like the English longbow, wooden or composite recurves, or native american and asian style bows. Currently, none of the Lubuskie Archers use modern compound bows equipped with the pulleys, wheels, and sights, which you may have seen used in the Olympics. In general we favour the traditional or even primitive over the hi-tech. Fun over formality.

On this page you can find out something about the kind of archery we practice here in our base in and around the Lubuskie Lakeland.

The four forms of traditional archery practiced by the Lubuskie Archers are: TARGET ARCHERY, SPEED ARCHERY, FIELD ARCHERY and CLOUT (MARK) ARCHERYBrief details of each discipline follow:

Target Archery

Outdoor target shooting, is perhaps the most well known archery discipline and is certainly the most widely practiced form of archery in Poland. The essentials are that all the competitors line up and shoot an alloted number of arrows at various distances. The standard at our shoots is 6 arrows at 90 metres, repeated at 70, 50 and 30 metres, making 24 arrows altogether. Sometimes we organize tournaments where the targets are at a shorter distance of 20 metres. The winner is always the archer with the highest score!

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The archers score their arrows depending on accuracy. The central gold or bullseye, scores 10 and 9, the other colours scoring down to 1 for the outer white ring. This is a target face for 90 and 70 metres and is about 4 feet (120cm) across.

Speed Archery

This is a variation on target archery but the aim is to shoot arrows both quickly and accurately. The competition is won by the archer who shoots the greatest number of arrows shot into a target in one minute. Archers use only unmarked and unsighted bows. and follows the rules set down by the Guiness Book of Records i.e. that the diameter of the target in inches equals the number of complete yards in the shooting distance. The minimum shooting distance is 15 metres. The current world record, recorded in the Guiness Book of Records, stands at 21 arrows in one minute.

 

Field Archery

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Target archery usually takes place in a flat field. Field archery normally involves shooting in  woodland, and offers an alternative to bowhunting. Artificial targets in the form of paper targets and / or foam 3d animals are positioned around an area consisting of both field and woodland and the competitors move in groups of 3 to 6, around a circuit consisting of 12 targets. These are placed for shooting at different distances and in places which afford a challenge to the competitors.

Targets are of varying sizes, some small field targets designed to be shot at from a short distance - perhaps only 10 metres; others are animal pictures or forms of life-size, and are shot at from greater distances. The distances shot are shorter than for target archery, and are normally between 10 and 60 metres. The Lubuskie Archers use only traditional barebows, such as English longbows in our archery tournaments. These, of course, have no sights, and the method of shooting is more "instinctive" in that the archer "points and shoots". Field archery takes place summer and winter and is much enjoyed by adults of all ages.

 

Popinjay

Popinjay archery involves shooting rubber-tipped arrows straight up at wooden "birds" on a frame on a mast, which is 30 metres high. The "birds" are laid out in order with the "Cock" at the top, the "Hens" are the next line with the "Chicks" underneath at the bottom of the "roost". The arrows must for safety reasons have a rubber blunt on the end, and only one archer shoots at any one time. The "birds" must be struck with the arrow, dislodged and fall to the ground to score. More details and photographs.

 

Clout Archery

Clout (or Mark) archery is a traditional shoot over distances of between 100 and 175 metres. There is only one target for any given distance, usually a small flag in the ground. Basically, it is a test of trajectory skill, as the competitors shoot their arrows high into the air. The lighting of the Olympic flame at the some Olympic opening ceremonies has been lit using a similar technique. The aim of this form of archery is that the arrows land as close to the clout (mark) as possible, but not hit it. This can be very difficult on a windy day as the arrows are in the air for as long as seven seconds. Only traditional bows are used in competitions. A shoot can have up to a dozen different marks set up at different distances.

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Under the rules of standard clout archery set down by our archery society each archer shoots three arrows at each clout. Points are calculated based upon the distance measured in relation to a standard long bow length (around 175cm). 10 points are scored for arrows within half a bow-length; 5 points for arrows within one bow-length; and 2 points within a further two bow-lengths.

We have also devised a rather more warlike and bloodthirsty version of clout archery. Read about this here!

 

Other Forms of Archery we sometimes have a go at:

Flight Archery

The object of this form of archery is to shoot an arrow as far as possible. A kind of archery based javelin! Flight archery can be done individually or with all the group members firing at the same time. Distances an arrow can reach can be quite staggering so a large area is needed.  Witha special flight bow it is perfectly possible to shoot the arrow more than a kilometre. The current world record for an arrow shot with a standard recurve target bow is 543 metres.

Archery Noughts & Crosses (Tic-Tac-Toe)

In this archery game a fairly large noughts & crosses board is drawn onto the back of a target, and turns are taken to fire arrows at it. An arrow doesn't count if it lands in a square where there's already another arrow, but the player doesn't get another shot. The winner is the first person to get arrows in three boxes in a row.

Balloon Shoot

A fun archery game where archers shoot arrows at inflatable ballons. You can also vary this by putting something insidet the ballon with the archer who bursts the ballon getting whatever is inside.

 

We welcome newcomers to our shoots and the sport of archery, and can loan you equipment should you want to try your hand at archery. Our meetings and tournaments take place in Lubuskie, a picturesque province on the German / Polish border.

You can ask us anything you want about the Lubuskie Archers, archery in Poland and / or join our mailing list to receive news about archery and our upcoming archery tournaments in Poland by using the form below:

 

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All correspondence concerning archery tournaments sent via the Lubuskie Archers mailing list will written in both the English and Polish languages!



Archery Links:

The Archery Centre: The specialists in field, traditional, and re-enactment archery.

Free Archery Game: a simple but highly addictive archery game

Archers reference (PDF format) : a useful free guide to archery

 

 

The Archery Society of Poland

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