Before you can become an NFAS or WFA member you need to go through an assessment and be “Signed Off”. This can only be done by an existing NFAS member who has been approved by the NFAS to Sign Off archers. Sign off is not just to shoot at your club but to be part of the NFAS and be able to shoot in any NFAS affiliated shoot. Therefore, the NFAS set these guidelines.
This is done against the NFAS “Signing-off Guidelines and Code of Practice“. The guide states: “Coaches and others with authority to sign off provisional NFAS members must be satisfied that the archer is competent, safe and understand the NFAS rules before signing him/her off.”
The categories that you are assessed against are:
- Disability/Health – in terms of not being at risk or putting others at risk because of your health.
- Children and Vulnerable Adults – is aware that they must and can be accompanied by a parent/guardian.
- Handedness and Eye Dominance – you are able to identify hand and eye dominance
- Equipment Check and Assembly – how to string/destring a bow; how to look for faults befor using; know a safe arrow length; knowing the right kit to use; not having unsafe clothes/jewellry/etc; how to mark arrows; how to set and use a sight.
- Basics of shooting – stop and hold; safe let down; safe range practices; safe drawing and release; a reasonable standard of accuracy when shooting unmarked distances [3 of 6 arrows hit target at short distances up to 25y or be close to the target for longer distances 65y]; shooting from disruptive stances;
- Scoring – What pegs to use; how to score in a competition; understand scoring rules such as line cutters/bounce backs/ pass through; robin hoods; broken arrows in targets; bounce-in; accidental shooting out of sequence; identify the right scoring zones;
- NFAS Rules and Etiquette – NFAS Safety Rules; NFAS Shooting Rules and Etiquette;
- Signing Off – the NFAS form must be completed correctly before signing-off.
- First Shoot – The archer understands what to expect at their first shoot: Suitable clothing; importance of hydration & food; finding the venue; booking in/registration/card check/group allocation; how to move safely around a course; safety talk; emergency alarms; practies on jumping and bringing in 3Ds; Strategies/tips for findind lost arrows; Safe retrieval of arrows from roots/trees/etc/ personal safety equipment; Awareness of Lyme disease;
- Disciplinary – aware that a breach of the rules could lead to disciplinary action and loss of membership.