Maryland Archery in the Schools Program (MD NASP)

Is Archery Safe?

Archery’s safety record is exemplary; so much so that *most school insurance policies provide coverage under existing policies that cover all other recreational activities. It is almost unheard of for a person to injure himself/herself or another person while shooting bow and arrow.

The National Safety Council rates archery more accident free than every popular ball sport, including tennis and golf.

When one puts a ball in the air and kids get running, jumping and spinning around almost anything can happen. You expect injuries whether its turned ankles, twisted knees or torn ligaments. Archery allows students to be taught a safe, lifetime skill they can practice almost anywhere.

Since March 2002: 2.3 million students have participated from 3800 schools

44 states have adopted the program

Injury rates per 1,000 participants in youth sports -bar graph indicates archery equally safe

The NASP program in the schools is safe because it offers a controlled environment.

The range is designed with safety in mind. The space is divided into shooting and non-shooting areas. Only instructors and student-archers get close to the shooting line. No one can get close to the shooters to distract them and create a potential safety problem. All entrances and exits behind the shooting line are closed and secured.

Diagrams of indoor & outdoor archery range layouts courtesy ArrowSport

Students are trained to respond to whistle commands only, while on the range.

  • Several archery students straddling the shooting lineTwo whistle blasts signal students to move forward from behind the waiting line and get bows from the rack then straddle the shooting line.
  • One whistle blast means they can shoot after which they hang up their bow and go back behind the waiting line.
  • Three whistle blasts signals go get arrows where they move to the target line.
  • When a student hears five or more whistle blasts (emergency), no matter where they are on the range they have learned to immediately hang their bows on the rack and move to behind the waiting line.

For a more information on the safety of archery, see:

“Is Archery a Safe Sport”

(426KB pdf file and opens with Acrobat)
Provided through the courtesy of ArrowSport
Courtesy of the FAQ section at

Maryland Bowhunters Society logo

The Maryland Archery in the Schools Program
is brought to you in Partnership with the Maryland Bowhunters Society.​