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If you've become curious about archery after seeing our Aussie Olympians win a bronze in the Rio Olympics, it's easy to try the sport at indoor, outdoor and game-based ranges throughout the city.
To hit the bullseye, you'll need a bow, arrows and ideally, an arm guard covering your inner forearm and a finger guard to protect from the bruising bow string. Many centres have loan equipment for left and right handed archers and instructors to guide you with technique and safety tips.
At every club, safety is the top priority.
Shoot your first arrow at one of these top 7 archery ranges in Melbourne.
Waverley City Archers - Freeway Reserve, Mulgrave
'Come and try' mornings of 2.5 hours cost $20 for adults, $15 for children with all equipment and instruction provided as you learn the 10 steps of shooting technique, aiming at a target 10 metres away. The beginners course is 4x2.5-hour sessions costing $90 for adults, $70 for juniors and allowing you to progress to heavier poundage bows requiring more strength to draw but offering more power and distance as you aim toward 20-metre targets. Visit Waverley City Archers for details.
Yarra Bowmen - Bulleen Park
Run by volunteers, the Yarra Bowmen club caters for recurve, compound and crossbow shooters with targets up to 90 metres distant. The club is open 8am - 6pm 7 days a week, costing $10 for a casual visit or with membership starting at $150, with your own bow and arrows. There is a beginner course taught by accredited and qualified instructors costing $100 for 3x2-hour sessions with equipment supplied. Visit Yarra Bowmen for details.
Go for Olympic archery gold (by Pierre-Yves Beaudouin / BY-SA 3.0)
Moorabbin Archery Club - Turner Road Reserve, Turner Road, Highett
The Moorabbin Archery Club, one of the oldest and largest in Australia and Victoria's Olympic training centre, has over 50 outdoor targets and 10 indoor targets. There is a 2-hour 'come and try' session each Sat and Sun for $22 including equipment. The club is open 7 days and also hosts tournaments for the serious archer. Visit Moorabbin Archery Club for details.
Ambrose Archery - 25 Orr St, Heidelberg Heights
Ambrose has 'come and try' sessions for ages 7 at $20 for the first hour and $10 for subsequent hours. There are also lessons with 9-week terms starting at $180 teaching all the elements to become a complete archer. Ambrose is open weekdays 1pm - 9pm and weekends 10am - 5pm. Visit Ambrose Archery for details.
AIM Archery - 73 Grange Rd, Cheltenham
AIM is one of the most convenient choices for archers with targets up to 30 metres and opening 7 days a week, closing late at 10pm on Tue and Thur. 'Come and try' 90-minute sessions are $35 and an introduction course of 5x90-minute lessons is $160, allowing you to shoot recurve and compound bows at 5 and 10-metre targets or you can book a coaching session. There are also birthday party packages for 10 children at $220 with balloons as targets. Visit AIM Archery for details.
Take aim at your friends...or your boss (by Archery Warz)
Combining elements of archery, paintball and dodgeball, opponents on this player vs. player indoor battlefield use foam-tipped arrows which are less painful than paintball hits. Similar to dodgeball, teams are separated by a 6-metre safety zone and taking cover behind sponge blocks. The aim is to hit your opposing players or down their static targets. Players wear a full face mask and a dedicated instructor/referee monitors the action. For an hour of action, it's $20/player for a game with 2 teams of 5 players. Visit Archery Warz for details.
Archery Attack - 118 Henty St, Reservoir
Player vs Player archery at Archery Attack's indoor arena can host up to 40 players. Based on LARP (Live Action Role Playing), gamers can re-enact medieval battles without the bloodshed with sponge-tipped arrows and face masks. A 1 hour battle costs $35/player or the battlefield can be setup on an outdoor field near you with inflatable self-standing obstacles and targets. Sessions are supervised, equipment is supplied and an instruction briefing is given before the battle. Visit Archery Attack for details.
Where's your favourite place to replicate Robin Hood the Hunger Game's Katniss with a bow and arrow? We'd love to hear your comments.