Indoor/Outdoor Range Safety and Etiquette

Read the range rules! Know and obey all range commands and rules.  Know the signals for when to nock and shoot, when to retrieve arrows and when to hold the line.

Never dry fire your bow (pulling and releasing the string without an arrow nocked); this is dangerous to both you and your bow


Never point your bow at anyone, even if there’s no arrow drawn (this is important for creating proper shooting habits).


Always stand behind the shooting line if not actively shooting.


Do not nock or draw an arrow unless you are at the shooting line and facing down range.


Never draw an arrow if there are people between you and the target, even if you don’t intend to shoot yet.


Always aim your arrow towards the ground as you nock it.


Never fire the arrow high into the air as you cannot predict where it’s going to land. An exception is when you’re participating in a flight archery competition.


While shooting, if you drop anything in front of the shooting line, even if it’s within arms reach, do not retrieve it.  Wait until the “all clear” command has been given for everyone to stop shooting.


Always clear the entire shooting line before attempting to retrieve arrows. Verbal or whistle commands and hand waving are signs that archers are able to retrieve arrows.


Always walk on the range.


Make sure no one is standing immediately behind you when pulling out an arrow from the target.You could accidentally hurt them when forcefully pulling the arrow out.


Always check that the path to your target is clear of archers before you shoot. This one sounds obvious, but it’s remarkable how many people who are showing off forget.


If shooting by yourself at the range, ensure that you leave an identifying mark at the shooting line. This will allow others coming to the range to identify that someone is shooting and may be down range.


If one of your arrows travels too far and lands behind the target make sure people are aware that you are going to retrieve your arrow so they can hold the shooting line.


If you hear the command “HOLD THE LINE,” do not shoot even if your bow is nocked and drawn. Slowly let the bowstring down.


Make sure your cell phone is charged so you can call for help in case of an accident.


Always be aware of your surroundings and treat the shooting line as a live firing line.