JOAD Frequent Asked Questions
What is JOAD?
JOAD or Junior Olympic Archery Development is a USA Archery program intended to provide archery instruction and competition for young archers across the country. The JOAD program allows young archers the opportunity to get out and shoot with fellow archers of all different abilities as well as participate in local and national tournaments.
What type of bow use do you teach?
JOAD offers both recurve and compound archers the opportunity to learn range safety and proper shooting technique in an environment that also fosters focus, increased self-confidence, and team building skills. Introductory JOAD classes teach the fundamentals of proper shooting form; as the young archer develops, they will learn more advanced techniques.
What is the Awards Program?
Through the JOAD Star Pin Awards program, these archers can earn incentives as they develop and improve their scores up thru the ranks of Yeoman, Jr. Bowman, Bowman, Junior Archer, Archer, Master Archer, Expert Archer, Olympian, Silver Olympian and Gold Olympian. Each archer can advance at his or her own pace. Success at each level is dependent on the individual's skill and willingness to apply themselves.
Who can participate?
JOAD is open to any youth archer aged 8 to 17 and must have completed an Intro to Archery class (or equivalent) or who have prior archery experience.
Who are the coaches?
The JOAD coaches are all members of Minnehaha Archers, Inc. All our coaches are USA Archery certified coaches, with Certification Levels 1, 2 and 3 (some pursuing level 4).
Is Archery safe?
Did you know fewer than one in every 1,000 people participating in archery suffer any injuries? That statistic is very impressive compared to most outdoor sports (Football, Soccer, Baseball, and many others). The reason is directly related to the training that most beginning archers receive when first introduced to archery.
It is the responsibility of not just the JOAD coach, but of you, your young archer, and of every adult present at the archery range, to insure that the safety rules are followed. Young archers must understand the importance of following the rules anytime s/he is shooting or is around someone else that is shooting. These rules and methods are the reason target archery is one of the safest sports.
When are the sessions?
We offer 3 Sessions a year, with each session lasting 8 weeks, Spring Session: January to April, Summer Session: June to August and Fall Session: September to November.
Usually, each Session will consist of 3 different level classes (3 different days per week), so we can accommodate archers according to their skill levels (Beginner, Intermediate and Advance).
Classes are generally scheduled on weeknights 6pm to 8pm. During the Summer session, a day time class is also offered depending on coach/instructors availability.
Scheduled sessions vary from year to year, sessions are contingent to class capacity, range and coach availability and other scheduled range activities.
Where are the sessions?
What is the cost to join JOAD?
A Club Membership is required to join our JOAD Program.
Do I have to join Minnehaha Archers, Inc. Club?
Yes, to take part of Minnehaha Archers JOAD you do need to be a Minnehaha Archers member. You can join either as a Family or obtain just the youth membership. Some of the membership benefits are the 24/7 access to our Indoor Range and also access to our Outdoor range. See the Membership page for full membership details and the Facilities Page for information of our ranges.
Can I join JOAD at any time?
Acceptance to the Minnehaha Archers JOAD program is based on availability; priority is given to the archers already enrolled in the program. To join our JOAD program, please email us to get up to date information.
Any requirements to join JOAD?
Yes, must complete an Introduction to Archery class. or have previous archery experience. Please also be advised that completion of an Introduction to Archery course does to guarantee placement in JOAD. Kids who have completed the Intro class will be invited to join JOAD as space becomes available. Also a Club Membership is required.
We can provide the basic equipment to the beginner archer; Genesis Bow, arrows, arm guard, finger tab (equipment must stay in the range). As the archer advances to the next levels, we advise the participants to acquire their own equipment. Our coaches can help you to determine the proper equipment to buy.
What kind of bows can be used?
Youth may shoot either recurve or compound bows.
What's the difference between bows: Barebow, Recurve, Olympic, Compound ?
The barebow is the closest to the original bow when you think of "bows and arrows". No sight, no pulleys, no add-on equipment aside from an arrow rest. The appeal of barebow is that it takes a lot of effort to get reasonably good with one, yet archers can be remarkably accurate with one. The simplicity of the bow keeps costs down as well.
Generally, archers must invest much more time to be "good" with a barebow, the least time/effort to be "good" with a compound bow, and somewhere in the middle of those with the recurve bow.
Recurve or "Olympic" bows start with the same bow shape as the barebow. "Olympic" because this is the only style of bow allowed at the Olympics, "Recurve" because the bow actually has a middle curve and then a second curve, a recurve, at the tips of the bow, are allowed to have many more enhancements to the basic barebow, such as: kisser button, sight (no magnification or electronics allowed), a clicker, stabilizer(s)
Recurve archers draw the bowstring back using their hand (and finger-tab) just like barebow archers
Compound bows are a product of modern knowledge and technology. Their appearance readily shows that there are major design differences from the recurve bow. One or two wheels are used to use leverage to make the bow easier to shoot than the recurve, and to make the arrow go faster. With eccentrically-shaped wheels on the bow that provide "letoff" the archer doesn't have to hold as much weight while aiming to shoot the bow. There is no let-off with recurve and barebows.
The rules for compound bows permits the sight to actually have a scope. The sight can also have electronics, such as lights, to illuminate the crosshairs in lowlight hunting conditions. Barebows and recurves are not allowed to have "bubble levels" which compound sights routinely employ. All of these modern enhancements contribute to making the compound bow potentially much more accurate and easy to learn and shoot than the other two styles described above.
Should I buy a Right or a Left Hand bow?
The eye dominance of the archer used to be the absolute factor that decides which side of the bow the arrow should be placed on, and which hand the archer uses to draw the bowstring. Now it is more accepted to have the archer follow "hand dominance" to choose whether to be a left-handed or a right-handed archer.
A "Right Hand" archer means that the archer DRAWS the string with the right hand (and is usually right-eye dominant). The JOAD coach will verify eye dominance as one of the first things done with each new archer, to assess the archer's potential.
How can I check my own eye-dominance?
Hold both hands out in front of you at arms' length and make a small circle with your hands (a "peep-sight", that you can see through). Now focus on a point (say a picture on the wall) with this "peep-sight" and keep looking at that point as you move your hands towards your face. As the hands approach your face, you will discover that the peep-sight has gone to one side/eye or the other. The eye you kept using as the hands drew near your face is your dominant eye.
Will wearing glasses affect my ability to use a bow and arrow?
No, people with glasses actively participate in archery every day.
Do I have to compete in Shoots and Tournaments?
Though all members of Minnehaha Archers JOAD will have the opportunity to compete, none are required to. For those looking for purely recreational archery, JOAD is a chance to hang out with friends and pursue the sport for fun.
What’s so special about Archery competition?
A unique thing about archery competition is that while there is a degree of "do better than the other guy" element, there is much more emphasis placed on "try to shoot your personal best”. JOAD archers gain great self-esteem by virtue of competing against themselves and improving on their personal best scores.
Do I have to join USA Archery?
Initially you do not need to join USA Archery. Upon reaching the level of Bowman you must join USA Archery before you can advance to the next level.
What is JOAD (USAA) Dress Code?
What about Safety?
Rules must be obeyed and follow at all times for your safety, and the safety of your fellow archers.
What are the Safety Rules?
What are the Whistle Commands?
What should I check Before Shooting?
As an archer you should always ensure that your equipment is working properly.
What to do During Shooting?
What to do After Shooting?
What are the general basic guidelines when shooting?
What a good archer should not do?
What are the Scoring Guidelines?
You should have your feet shoulder width apart and your weight evenly distributed.
Always be sure that you hear the nock snap when it goes on and that the arrow is placed in the arrow rest. Your bow should be vertical at your side and pointing toward the ground between you and the target.
Drawing then firing the bow without an arrow will result in a Dry Fire and can cause injury to people and harm your bow. Never shoot a bow that has been dry fired until examined by a qualified bow technician.
3. Set Release Hand
Attach your release to the bow string or loop and set your hand in the release. If you shoot with fingers put your fingers on the string the same way each time.
4. Set Bow Hand
Place your bow hand in the bow grip. Your hand should be set firmly into the grip and relaxed. Your grip should only be hard enough to stop the bow from dropping. Once again it is very important to have your bow hand set the same way very time.
5. Pre-Draw (Set-up)
Raise your bow arm. The bow should be raised slightly pointing to the target.
Draw the bow straight back to your face. Continue to point the bow to the target as you come to full draw.
Keeping your bow arm extended and your elbow slightly bent, you anchor your release hand snug to the side of your face or jaw as your anchor point. It is very important to anchor in the same place every time for accuracy.
8. Aim (Loading - Transfer - Holding)
Aim at the target. There will be some movement of sight. Once you are “on target” you are ready to begin your release sequence.
9. Shot set-up (Expansion)
The shot set up is the part of the release sequence. Apply a little extra tension to the bow string by using your back muscles as the string begins to move make your release.
While pulling the string back with your release hand, begin to slowly pull backward, using your back muscles, to activate your release. When you release it should be all one smooth movement.
11. Follow through and reflect
Keep your bow arm up through the shot. Let your release hand come back naturally as the bow moves forward, on its own. Keep your eyes on the target as your whole body relaxes and follow through. After each shot it is good to reflect on your shot. See what you did well on so you can repeat those actions in your next shot. Also see what you need to improve on so you can concentrate on them in your next shot.