What connects 3D archery to an older archery practice, bowhunting, is the outdoor practice, and as a new sport, it brings together the old an the new. What this means is that it has the idea of bowhunting but it uses today’s technologies and it doesn’t harm wildlife. This type of sport is not meant to be played only by professionals, as there are recreational activities organized by archery clubs with very little skill required. What differentiates it from other archery disciplines is that its terrain is similar to a golf course, except here you have only one shot per hole on each target.

How Is it Played?

As you have probably figured out by now, 3D archery uses outdoor archery targets in the form of foam stuffed, three-dimensional animal-shaped figures with holes. Each target has different scoring rings with their own point value – the smaller the ring you have to hit, the more points you will get. Various types of animals can be used, such as deer, bears, antelopes, and leopards. They are spread throughout different places with different shooting distances, called stations. The setting of each station changes, which makes it a bit more challenging for archers to score.


In a typical round, there can be up to 40 targets with a total of 18 holes. Every hole is a Par 1, which can be included in two different types of tournaments called “known” and “unknown” distance. In “unknown distance” tournaments, you are not allowed to use rangefinders and instead, you need to judge for yourself how far away the target is. This makes it a lot more difficult because the target range really helps when aiming, and to possess that kind of skill takes quite some time and practice.

What Equipment Do You Need?


There’s not a lot of things that you’ll have to carry, but there is certainly a lot of different bows to choose from. Professional archers will use compound bows with magnifying glasses and long stabilizers. You can see some archers carrying bowhunting setups that feature short stabilizers instead and multiple fixed pins on them. A small percentage of archers are carrying a traditional recurve bow or a longbow. You can pick whatever suits your hand and eye best, but don’t rush with it, take your time to try every single type of bow if you can. If you have a big enough yard and want to start on your own, you will need multiple outdoor archery targets to create a mini-course. This may not be cheap, but you will have it and will be able to practice in the comfort of your home without anyone bothering you.