How Is Archery Scored?

Archery Scoring

Archery is scored by valuing each target ring that the archers shoot at to score points. The center ring is worth 10 points, and the rest of the rings are in sequential order from 9-1 inside to outside. If the arrow misses the target, no points are scored.

Archery Points

The archers shoot the arrows at a target, usually placed some distance away (70 meters in the Olympics, but usually less for indoor archery). The closer to the center the arrow is on the target, the more points the archer earns. The center of the target is worth ten points, and each ring outwards is one point less. For example, the center is worth ten points, the next ring is worth nine, then eight, etc.

Target RingPoint Value
Inner Yellow10
Outer Yellow9
Inner Red8
Outer Red7
Inner Blue6
Outer Blue5
Inner Black4
Outer Black3
Inner White2
Outer White1

Set System Scoring

Since April of 2010, archery has been scored using a set system as opposed to the former 12 arrow match. During elimination rounds, three sets of six arrows are used. Meanwhile, during the finals, five sets of three arrows are used by each participant.

For each set won, a competitor receives two points. In the event of a tie, each participant gets one point. After each competitor has taken their turn, the archer with more points earned from all three arrows will win that individual set. The first to win the majority of the possible sets (either two in a three-set match or three out of five in a five-set match) moves on to the next round. If neither competitor has won a majority of the sets, the winner is decided via a one-arrow shoot-off between the two. In the shoot-off, whichever competitor lands their single arrow closer to the middle of the target is named the winner. If the judge can’t distinguish which arrow is closest, they will repeat the shoot-off to determine the winner.

Olympic Archery Scoring

Archery in the Olympics consists of three separate events: Individual, Team, and Mixed Team. Scoring is slightly different in each event.

Individual Scoring

In the Olympics, a total of 128 archers compete in individual events, with 64 men and 64 women representing their country. In both competitions, 64 archers shoot 72 total arrows each, broken into 12 series of six arrows to receive their initial position in the competition. The total of points for all of their shots are added up and placed in a bracket. Then, the archers compete in head-to-head knockout rounds where they attempt to outscore one another.

In these knockout rounds, the set scoring system is used. The matchups are organized with the highest and lowest seeded archers going head to head, the second highest and second lowest competing against one another, and so on. Each archer is aiming to earn a total of six set points, with each set victory counting as two set points and each tie counting as one set point to each participant. The archer with the most points at the end of the head-to-head wins and moves onto the next round, until a final winner is determined. In the case of a tie, the conventional one-arrow shoot-off is used to decide the winner.

Team and Mixed Team Scoring

In Olympic archery team matches and mixed team matches, the scoring is also done using the set system. However, team matches use sets featuring either six arrows (team matches) or four arrows (mixed team matches) as opposed to the traditional three-arrow set you’d see in individual archery events. 

Tie breakers in team and mixed team matches are settled by having each member of both teams shoot a singular arrow, alternating back and forth between the two teams. After every archer has shot their arrow, the team with the higher collective score within the set wins. However, if the match is still tied after the completion of this tie breaker set, the team who has an arrow closest to the center of the target wins.


How do you score in indoor archery?

The main difference between the scoring of indoor and outdoor archery is the size of the target face. For outdoor archery, an archer can earn anywhere from 1-10 points per arrow shot, but for indoor archery, only 5-10 points can be earned per shot. This is because indoor targets are significantly smaller. A typical outdoor target face is 122cm, while an indoor target face is only 40cm. 

What is a good score for archery?

A good score in archery is based on the points earned in a set. A set in archery is made up of a total of three arrows in individual matches, six arrows in team matches, and four arrows in mixed team matches. The maximum score that an archer can earn in one set is the number of arrows in the set multiplied by 10. In order to earn 10 points, an archer’s arrow must land within the smallest gold circle in the center of the target.

How many points do you score if you hit the black ring in archery?

There are two point possibilities that an archer can earn when they hit the black ring on the target. The black section contains two consecutive rings, so the archer can earn either three or four points. If the arrow lands in the outer black ring, the archer will earn the three points because it is farther away from the gold center. If the arrow lands in the inner black ring, the archer will earn four points. 

Do archers keep track of their own scores?

Technically, an archer is not directly responsible for keeping their own scores, as an official is in charge of keeping track of scores. However, they should always know their score in case they have questions or disagreements about the score. There will be two scorers assigned to each target, who tally the score after each end. Another person will call out the name of an archer and then the point values of the arrows. The values are recorded from highest to lowest values, so those closest to the center will be recorded first.