What Is 3D Archery?


A subset of field archery, 3D archery is characterized by its use of life-size three-dimensional animal targets made from foam. The primary goal of shooting 3D is to improve your skills as a hunter, but in recent years the discipline has attracted a growing number of competitive-minded archers who are as interested in shooting good 3D scores as they are in bowhunting.

Because most bowhunters have to guess distances during the hunt, 3D target distances are usually unmarked. Therefore, often one of the most challenging aspects of this type of archery is learning to estimate distance. The targets themselves have a set of scoring rings, with the higher points generally centered over areas such as the heart or lungs. As with field archery, broadheads are not allowed for shooting at foam targets. Also, for the colder months many 3D groups have an indoor range where they can practice until they can return to their outdoor courses.

Many 3D competitions feature a wide range of cash prizes, some as high as several thousand dollars, depending on the resources of the club and the number of entrants into the competition.