Archery up first with an audience to captivate
The archery athletes in Team GB are among those kicking off the Olympic schedule in Tokyo with ranking rounds taking place alongside the opening ceremony on Friday 23 July and the first archery gold medal will be awarded as early as next Saturday 24 July.
All archers will be shooting for personal glory, with their own individual targets in mind – a personal best, top 10 performance or even the dream of a medal. This year more than ever it is the taking part that truly counts and to have finally reached the start of this year’s Olympics is a dream come true for every member of the archery team.
Whatever your age or ability, archery can work for you
Archery is a fun and inclusive activity – a recent initiative across the country – The Big Archery Weekend – attracted over 3,500 participants at 52 different venues, all keen to try something new and different. It is this natural appeal to a broad and diverse audience that will help archery become known more widely since it truly is a sport that can be enjoyed by anyone.
It is hoped that the individual and team performances which will be showcased to watching TV and online audiences during this first week of the Olympics will help garner widespread interest in the sport and generate support for the elite athletes representing Team GB. By demonstrating its suitability as a sport for all it is hoped archery will become cemented in the psyche of the UK population as a new sporting activity to be explored and experienced first-hand.
An inclusive and accessible sport for all
Archery is an inclusive sport that can be enjoyed by children and adults of all ages, backgrounds and abilities – it is also easily adaptable to most disabilities, breaking down barriers and creating an accessible path to sport. While not always considered a mainstream sporting activity, archery can be learnt relatively quickly and undertaken indoors or out, bringing many physical and mental health benefits for all participants while naturally lending itself to social distancing.
Commenting on the prospects for the archery team, Neil Armitage, CEO at Archery GB said “What a way to start this year’s Tokyo Olympics – I am sure our Performance Archery team will do everything in their power to succeed, whether this be personal bests or medals, and make Archery GB and the whole of Britain proud. The ranking rounds on Friday are just the starting point of their Olympic journey this year but it will be a relief to get the competition started given the delays and uncertainty of the last 12 months. We can’t wait to see how the individual and team events unfold over the coming days.”
David Tillotson, Olympic Team Director for Archery, said: “Like all sports and athletes we have had to adapt to a delayed Games year and worked hard on our flexibility and resilience in these uncertain and complex times. With this very talented group of athletes, our Games ambitions remain firmly in place and we are resolved and excited to deliver performances that will cast a bright and inspiring light on British archery. Being on so early in the Games programme gives us a great opportunity to lead TeamGB off in a successful Olympic Games.”
To help even more people get into archery, Archery GB has launched the Start Archery website, which provides everything beginners need to know about taking up the sport, including where to find courses and clubs. It will also offer a range of resources for schools and organisations.