I just got an email from Paulette Krelman asking “Could you please let me know what is the age recommeded for a child (boy) to start with archery?” This question comes up very, very often because, well, how would a parent know? Here’s the answer.
The rule of thumb for starting kids in archery is the age of eight. This involves the child having not just the physical maturity to handle the activity but also the emotional and social maturity to be in a group and to be able to follow safety rules.
Having said that we know of a child who started shooting at the age of two (really). But this was a case of the child having archer parents. So there are kids who arile they shoot. Since this is not possible in a group class setting, you may want to attend such a class and ask the instructor, either before or after the class, whether your child is “ready.” The instructor may have your child sit in on a class session or may ask them some questions or may try teaching them how to shoot or some combination of these, but they are likely to spend only a few minutes making the assessment. There is no formal process for doing this, so their estimate is just a estimate, but at least it is an informed one.
I wrote a book for parents of archers or potential archers covering such questions (and more, like how do you know you have a good class/instructor, what about buying equipment, etc.) and I recommend it to you (A Parent’s Guide to Archery). It is available on Amazon.com.