Archery isn’t just for individuals hunting or shooting target practice. Engaging archery shooting games can be for the entire family. Snag your partner and kids and get outside with these dynamic games that will build family bonds.
Note: all of these games are intended to be played with safe archery habits in mind. Remind your children about best practices and ensure they implement them consistently during play.
Pyramid of Cups
One of the easiest archery games is knocking down a pyramid of cups. Get a large quantity of recyclable paper cups and stack them upside-down in a pyramid shape in front of a foam target. For beginners to the world of archery shooting games, make the pyramid a little bigger and/or use larger cups. For seasoned shooters, create a smaller pyramid and/or use smaller cups to increase the challenge.
One of the best parts about this game is you can change the shape to make it as easy or as difficult as you’d like. Try stacking the cups one on top of another in a single line or in difference shapes and configurations. The only limit is your (or your kid's) imagination (and possibly physics).
Next up in our list of archery shooting games is one that involves balloons. This is another game that’s extremely versatile, not to mention easy to set up in your backyard.
Get a bag of everyday party balloons. Set them up against a target to avoid damaging your arrows. For the simplest version, blow up your balloons and just try to pop them.
Like the pyramid of cups, you can set up your balloons in any configuration you’d like. Try using different colored balloons to up the challenge. For example, make a flower with a yellow balloon as the center target and surround it with a different colored balloon as petals. Aim for the center of the flower.
Another way to enjoy this archery shooting game is a little messier, but very fun. Try filling your balloons with various substances. Flour or baby powder make excellent little explosions when the balloon pops.
You can also use things like glitter, water, confetti, or even paint. Place large tarps on the ground to catch the mess or shoot in a garage or other safe indoor area for easy clean up. (Indoor shooting should be for very experienced archers only, to avoid missing the target and damaging arrows or belongings.)
If you decide to use paint for this archery shooting game, make sure to choose a washable kind and/or use arrows you don’t necessarily care if they get stained.
Balloon archery, while fun, can be messy. For a cleaner, more competitive option, you can play H.O.R.S.E. It works just like the version you play on a basketball court.
Set up your target(s) and choose a player to go first. This player decides which type of shot the rest of the competitors must complete by choosing the distance required and how close each player must get to the center of the target.
The next step in this archery shooting game is for the rest of the competitors to take turns attempting to fulfill the required shot. If a player can’t complete the shot, they get the first letter, H, and continue onward. The first player to spell out “H.O.R.S.E.” loses the game.
The competitive nature of this option means all players are motivated to improve their skills. However, it also means it may be best suited to more mature children who won’t get excessively upset if they lose.
Similar to H.O.R.S.E., this archery shooting game is a competition based on precision. Participants begin at a distance of 10–15 yards away from the target. Each person takes turns shooting, and those who keep their arrows within the required area move back to the next distance.
Keep moving in increments of five yards. The winner is the one who remains in the game the longest by keeping their arrow within the designated area at the farthest distance.
Here is a fun example of this game with 60X's Mackenzie Brown participating in the challenge.
Shoot like the pros! Shoot at a fair distance for your family, like 30-40 yards, at a scoring target face of your choice. Shoot 3 arrows for 3-5 ends and overall highest score wins.
You can make up brackets and shoot through to the gold and bronze medal matches. Another options is to shoot round robins and whoever wins the most matches is the gold medalist.
The last archery shooting game, but not least, gives an old game new life. On a large piece of paper or cardboard, draw a tic-tac-toe board (9 squares, 3 high and 3 wide). Attach the board to your target.
This archery shooting game is simple; each pair of archers takes turns aiming at different squares. When their arrow lands inside the square, it’s theirs. The goal is to get three squares in a row, either horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. Make sure your arrows have different colored fletching so you can tell them apart.
Engage Your Family with Archery
Whether you play balloon archery, tic-tac-toe, or one of the others on this list, we hope you got a few interactive ideas to engage the whole family with archery.
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