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Archery Merit Badge

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My son is 11 and would like to work on the archery merit badge. He enjoys archery and has his own compound bow. Is there an age requirement for this merit badge? I have looked at the requirements and don't see one. One of his friend's parents insists that they must be 14 and have to do it at a BSA camp. Thanks for your help.

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He has to do it at a council or district level.

It doesn't specifically say wether compound bows are allowed or not, but if I had to guess, I'd say no. Maybe once he'sa BOY scout, he might be able toi use a compaound bow.

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As I read the MB requirements, he can use a compoung bow and he does not need to be 14. His MB counselor can inform him of when and where he may do his shooting.


Bear in mind that his Scoutmaster must first sign his blue card.

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Where does it say that the Boy Scouts have to shoot the Archery MB at a BSA event. I know that Cub Scouts have to, but I coulld not find where it says they are restricted to Council Summer Camps. I looked in the Archery MB page on Scouting.org and the Age Appropriate Guidelines.


Just a little confused about the post.

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Thanks for the replies.


This was will be his first MB and he was a little disappointed that he might have to wait to earn the archery MB since he has enjoyed sport this since CS Day Camp.


After his meeting today, I re-read both the Archery MB book and several on-line worksheets including BSA and found no mention of the any age requirements or requirement it be done at a BS camp. The person who cited the age requirement stated it was based on safety.


My understanding based on what I read: The requirements do allow a coupound bow option and it simply lists requirements including shooting at a couple of different type of archery events.


He got his blue card tonight and he shoots weekly at a local archery proshop that has 10 & 20 yard indoor ranges, a 40+ yard 3-d range and even a video range based on the requirements listed he should be able to fullfil the actual shooting portion of the requiremnts there (as long as the counselor does not object).


He will be trying to get approval at his next troop meeting next week,



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When you said 11, I just did the math and assumed he was a Cub Scout.

I forgot that he could have crossed over already.


According to G2SS he is of an appropriate age for field, target and moving target archery - and is not restricted to council or district events.

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Sounds like he's doing the right thing. As long as his Scoutmaster signs a blue card and there is a registered merit badge counselor for him to work with he is good. There aren't any stated age restrictions on merit badges that I know of, I dont know even near the requirements for every badge so I may be missing something, but I know for sure Archery does not. That said a Scoutmaster may counsel a youth that it might be better to wait on a specific merit badge until he matures more, finishes a bunch or partials, tries something else, whatever reason he sees in the boy that might make him more successful, but that does not seem to be an issue here.


Shooting sports does not need to be done in camp; that is a Cub Scout restriction. Yes he can use a compound bow, so can Cub Scouts. If he were shooting at a Scout camp he would not be able to take his own bow, he would have to use what they had, at least thats the case around here, not sure if that is national policy or not. What type of equipment he uses and how he completes the requirements is really between him and his counselor. He will need a buddy or be accompanied by someone to take the badge, for the protection of both the boy and the counselor. If for some reason there isn't a counselor local, maybe the troop/district/your son could talk one of the staff at the proshop and see if this is something they would be willing to register for. Folks with no other scouting connection are sometimes willing to register for merit badges if they are passionate about their job or hobby as it gives them a chance to share it with others.


What you're likely running into is some local interpretations of rules. Some Boy Scout camps apply an age restriction to certain merit badges to give the scouts a better chance to be successful and to make the classes a bit smoother for the staff to handle. This is often the case with shooting sports but more so with rifle and shot gun. But this restriction applies to taking the badge at camp, not at all. In the end what your son needs to do is speak with his Scoutmaster, he/she is the one that keeps the list of counselors and signs the blue card for him to begin working on the badge.


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It sounds good.


Just follow the rules of the camp. They may have a no compound bow rule. There are different scoring options for using either a longbow, recurve, or compound bows. The compound requirements are:


Option B - Using a Compound Bow

Name and point to the parts of the compound bow you are shooting.

Explain how to properly care for and store compound bows.

Show the nine steps of good shooting for the compound bow you are shooting.

Explain why it is necessary to have the string on a compound bow replaced at an archery shop.

Locate and mark with dental floss, crimp-on, or other method, the nocking point on the bowstring of the bow you are using.

Do ONE of the following:

Using a compound bow and arrows with a finger release, shoot a single round of ONE of the following BSA, NAA, or NFAA rounds:

An NFAA field round of 14 targets and make a score of 70 points.

A BSA Scout field round of 14 targets and make a score of 90 points.

A Junior 900 round and make a score of 200 points.

A FITA/NAA indoor* round I and make a score of 90 points.

An NFAA indoor* round and make a score of 60 points.

Shooting 30 arrows in five-arrow ends at an 80-centimeter (32-inch) five-color target at 10 yards and using the 10 scoring regions, make a score of 170.

As a member of the NAA's Junior Olympic Development Program (JOAD), qualify as a Yeoman, Junior Bowman, and Bowman.

As a member of the NFAA's Junior Division, earn a Cub or Youth 100-score Progression patch.

* The indoor rounds may be shot outdoors if this is more convenient.


These are not easy, but not impossible either. The most important part here is the finger release method. No mechanical devices are allowed. The best you can use is the finger tab to prevent finger fatigue and blisters.


Good Luck.

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