|Archers began forming tournaments
when the bow was replaced as the main weapon of war in
the 17th century, and target archery evolved
as a competitive sport. One of the oldest known and
continuously running tournaments still held today is the
Ancient Scorton Silver Arrow contest held in Yorkshire,
The National Archery Association (NAA) was founded and held its first tournament in Chicago in 1879. Archery didnt become and official event in the modern Olympics until 1900 in Paris, France. Women began competing in the Olympic archery events in 1908 in London. However, international rules had not been developed and each host country used its own format causing confusion. Because of the lack of uniform international rules, archery was eliminated from the Olympic program after 1920 and did not reappear until the 1972 Games in Munich, Germany.
In 1930, Poland hosted the first real international archery contest and organized the Federation International de Ter a lArc (FITA) or International Archery Federation in 1931. FITA is currently the governing body for international archery competition and implements standardized rules for competition.
The 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany were the proving ground where FITA rules were recognized and established. The competitors shot 36 arrows for a single competition and 72 arrows for a double competition. Men shot from 90, 70, 50 and 30 meters while women shot from 70, 60, 50 and 30 meters. In the1988 Games in Seoul, Korea, team competition was added. There are four archery events held at the Olympics: Men's Individual, Women's Individual, Men's Team and Women's Team.
Two very important proponents of Archery include National Archery Association (NAA) founded in 1879 and Junior Olympic Archery Development (JOAD) in the 1960s. Both associations foster and promote the sport of archery through tournaments, programs, and publications.