Three Perfect Targets for Your Home Archery Range
A tough, durable archery target can help you hone your skills and provide years of fun for the whole family.
Want to have some fun with your kids? Buy a youth bow and introduce them to the fun of target shooting. Depending on where you live, you may have ample (and safe) space right in your own yard to set up a range or you may have room in the basement or garage for easy target shooting. You’ll need a quality target to stop field-point tipped arrows, however, but which should you choose? There are lots of options out there, so we’ve put together some simple buying tips that will help you find the target that’s just right for your shooting fun.
Bag-style targets are heavier than block-style targets, but they offer some real advantages for anyone shooting field points. The target’s surface area is generally larger than block-type targets, which allows a larger margin of error—critical for anyone who is just starting out in the target-shooting game. They’re also filled with heavier synthetic materials (some even have Kevlar included). These will stop arrows fast yet allow easy removal. Many have a rugged cloth covering with grommets at the corners so you can suspend them outside or indoors. Look for models with weather-resistant covers so they will last longer and always make sure you have a safe backstop, just in case an arrow misses the target.
Block-style targets are lightweight and far more portable than bag-type targets (most have easy-grip handles). Those made of “foam-layer” construction stop arrows with friction as arrows slide between layers of foam, which pinches and slows arrows to a stop. These are great for field-point arrows. “Foam-core” targets use a solid foam material. These targets hold up well, but the solid foam makes it much tougher to pull arrows out of the target. If you choose a foam-core type, be sure you can access the interior foam baffles from the side of the target in case an arrow gets stuck and you need to pull baffles out to free your arrow or retrieve your field-point tip.
Target shooting with a bow is lots of fun, but you should always think about safety first. Regardless of which type of target you choose, make sure you have a backstop behind your target to keep arrows that miss the target from flying wild and obey the basic range-safety rules. There are lots of options available from large, tarp-type backstops made of heavy-duty nylon netting that suspend like a wash line to oversized foam backstops that will stop errant shots cold. Keeping target shooting fun and safe is what it’s all about. A rugged backstop will help.