Judging is a rewarding and fulfilling role. The purpose of judging is to enable participants to compete in archery within the spirit and rules of the sport. The rules provide the framework for a sport that is enjoyable and safe to participate in.
Archers are expected to observe the rules and to respect the principles of fair play. Officials can help achieve this by displaying fairness, consistency, sensitivity and, at the highest levels, management.
If you have any questions relating to Judging, that aren't answered in our FAQs section, or the Rules, or are interested in becoming a Judge then please contact the current Scottish Archery Judge Liaison Officer (JLO) – Jules May.
Email: JLO@scottisharchery.org.uk for more information.
There are many reasons why individuals may want to get involved in officiating, for example:
• Interest and enthusiasm for being involved in the sport
• The challenge and excitement offered by officiating
• Giving back to archery and making a difference
• Staying active and keeping in shape
• Learning and improving leadership skills and self-confidence
• Sharing a common interest
• Meeting new friends and having fun
In the UK there are several tiers of judging starting at Candidate and reaching National level. Candidate and County judges work as part of a larger team of Judges that is headed by a Regional or National Judge. Each judge level is supported by a programme of training and improvement. You need to be at least 18 years old to be a County Judge which is the 1st grade of adult judge.
There is also the opportunity to train as an Archery GB Youth Judge for those aged 16 to 21 and soon there will be a Junior Judge level for 8 to 15 year olds.
World Archery also offers opportunities to officiate at major events such as the Olympic and Paralympic Games, either as a Continental or International Judge and World Archery also has a special category of International Youth Judge if you are under 30. Youth Judges officiate at the many World Archery youth events around the world.
Training is by mentored attendance at competitions and of course learning the rules and being assessed on your knowledge. You can qualify at your own pace – the more judging experience you gain the quicker you can qualify but you can also mix shooting and judging so qualifying will take a little longer.
Assessments at all levels are required to include both a practical examination on the field of play and a closed book examination.
You need to be a member of Archery GB and:
The skills of being an official and your knowledge of the rules will be developed by the training and mentoring you will receive.
Some familiarity of competition either through participation or being on a shoot field party or even organising a competition can help a candidate judge. If you have vast experience in these areas of the sport the National Judge Committee can award accreditation for Prior Learning.
Archery GB are starting a Youth Judge program – this is a new scheme for younger members of the society enabling juniors to become involved in judging in schools and at junior/youth tournaments. Scottish Archery will be delighted to hear from anyone at least 16 years of age who wishes to take up the opportunity – there is also a planned Junior Judge scheme that will run from age 8 and details will be available soon.
Qualifying as Youth Judge gives you a head start on the judge pathway as when you turn 18 any qualified Youth Judge will become a County Judge and judging days acquired since qualifying as a Youth Judge can count towards advancement to Regional Judge level.
The International Youth Judge program is open to judges under 30 years of age and trains young people to officiate major events including the Youth Olympics, World Archery Youth Championships and World Archery University Championships.
All judges are expected to be active and perform to a high standard.
To ensure this there is a re-accreditation system, involving an open book exam every four years, in place for all UK judges. There is also an expected minimum level of work attendance at record status events depending on judge level.
One of our trainee Youth Judges says:
''I have been involved with archery for eight years and ever since I started competing five years ago I thought to myself "I want to be a judge."
I have now been shadowing for eight months and I really enjoy it. All the judges are really friendly and they all have taught me so much. They have made me feel really welcome and I hope to be an official part of their team in the future as a Youth Judge and hopefully progress to Youth International Judge.''