Gone Outdoors

How to Score Games in Archery

by Leslie R. Thompson

Archery is a sport that can be played indoors or outdoors. A standard 10-ring target is used in most archery events. The first and second outermost rings are white. The third and forth rings, working inward, are black. The fifth and sixth rings are blue. Rings seven and eight are red and the two innermost rings, including the bull's-eye, are gold.

1. Place two archers at each target. The archers can keep their scores or you can assign judges to each target.

2. Inform the archers of the timing. If the competition is held indoors, each archer shoots three arrows in two minutes. If outdoors, each archer shoots six arrows in four minutes. Use different colored arrow shafts for each archer at a target.

3. Give the command for the archers to begin. Wait until the archers are finished before stepping forward to score the targets.

4. Add each archer's score, based on where the arrows landed on the target. The outermost white ring is worth one point. Each consecutive ring as you work toward the bull's-eye adds a point. For example, an arrow landing in the first blue ring is worth five points and an arrow landing in the second blue ring is worth six points. Arrows that land on the line between two rings are given the higher score.

Items you will need
  • Scoresheet
  • Pencil


  • Distances to the target vary according to location. Different ranges have varying distances. When working with beginners, relax or eliminate the time limits to make it easier for all involved. Another idea when working with children or beginners is to ignore the rings and attach balloons to the target, asking the kids to pop them for points instead.


  • Always observe range safety proceedures whether indoors or outdoors. These rules are posted at the range. Never step over the firing line until all archers are finished firing.