Handicap Classification Change

Dear Club member,


You may or may not be aware that AGB have changed the outdoor handicap and classification criteria, this will take effect from the outdoor season of 2023. They have had a few teething problems but hopefully these will be sorted out prior to the outdoor season.


If you wish to know more about the new scheme I intend to hold handicap/classification talks at 6.30pm on Tuesday evenings, at West Lodge during the summer.


There will be 2 talks, one for archers who understand the old system and just want to know the changes, and the other for archers who are new to the handicap/classification system. I intend to limit the spaces to 5 participants for each talk.


I expect the first of these talks to take about 20mins and the second to be about 40mins.


Would you please email me on records@targetcraft.org if you wish to attend either of these talks and please let me know which talk you wish to attend, so I can have an idea of the number of each of the talks that will be required.


AGB have included several more age categories in the classification and changed the way the age categories are assigned, if you wish to be considered for a classification awards I will require your year of birth (only if under 21 or over 50). Without a year of birth I will have to default to the most onerous age group (i.e. senior which is between 21 and 50).


At present AGB have only changed the outdoor criteria but I expect the indoor criteria will also be changed in due course.



Brief outline of the Handicap and Classification System for Target Archery



In the sport of archery, there are many different types of rounds, each with its own way of scoring. The handicap system is a way to standardise these scores for direct comparison.


For example- If an archer shoots 398 in a Warwick 30 round or 321 in a Warwick 50 round, his or her handicap score would be 60 for both.


There are many variables that influence the scaled handicap scores: the type of scoring system; the number of arrows shot; the distance to the target; the size of target and the type of target face which is being used.


Handicaps are measured between 0 and 150, and the handicap score gets closer to zero as the archer developed and improved their scores.


An archer will have a different handicap for all bow types used, they will also have separate indoor and outdoor handicaps. All handicaps are assessed separately and are therefore not interchangeable.


The archery handicap system enables archers of different ability to have meaningful competitions with each other, it also charts the archers progress in the sport.


How is my score equated to a handicap for that round?


Archery GB has published tables which show all the range of scores, for all the handicaps, on all the recognised rounds that are shot.


How do I get my first handicap?

Your first handicap is calculated by the mean average of your first three qualifying shoots, (rounded down to nearest whole number). You will have to submit three shoots for each bow type, and for indoor and outdoor, as these are all treated separately.

e.g. handicap for rounds of 62,65,63- the mean average is 63.33, which rounds down to 63


How does my handicap change during the shooting season?


For every shoot you submit, the handicap for the round will be calculated.


If the handicap for the round is higher than your existing handicap, then you keep your existing handicap.


If the handicap for the round is lower than your existing handicap, then your new handicap will be the average of your existing handicap and the round shot handicap, (rounded down to the nearest whole number).


You can find out your existing handicap on the club’s website, in the members area.


Can my handicap ever go up?

Yes. At the end of each shooting season (July 1st for indoor, Jan 1st for outdoor), a new handicap will be calculated for you. This new handicap is based on the average of your best three shoots during the season, rounded down.


If you only shoot one or two rounds your new handicap will still be reassessed, but in a different manner.


If you do not shoot any qualifying rounds then your handicap for that category will lapse, but you will keep your old handicap until you have re-qualified with three shoots.


How does the handicap system work when I compete against another archer?

Archery GB will be publishing more tables that gives you a starting allowance based on your current handicap and the round being shot. Your final total will be this allowance added to your actual score.


How were the tables formulated?

Because of the vast number of different rounds shot, there are complicated mathematical formulae to each handicap scaled score. These have been compiled by Mr David Lane, and are beyond the scope of this document.


If you would like to know more please contact your Records Officer or read ‘The Construction of the Graduated Handicap Tables for Target Archery”, by David Lane, Sep 2013′.



The classification for each round you shoot will be recorded in line with the Tables supplied by AGB


Where can I find the tables?

AGB anticipate that the outdoor handicap and classification tables will be revised as more data is collected, therefore any published table may become out of date. It is recommended to refer to the following links to download the current tables:-


Handicaps: https://archerygb.org/files/outdoor-handicap-tables-200123092252.pdf


Recurve classifications: https://archerygb.org/files/outdoor-classifications-amp-handicaps-recurve-190123111801.pdf


Barebow classifications: https://archerygb.org/files/outdoor-classifications-amp-handicaps-barebow-190123111828.pdf


Compound classifications: https://archerygb.org/files/outdoor-classifications-amp-handicaps-compound-190123111916.pdf


Longbow classifications: https://archerygb.org/files/outdoor-classifications-amp-handicaps-longbow-190123111853.pdf


It is also anticipated that new indoor Handicap and Classification tables will be published in due course.


Bob Reid

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