Archery: The most socially distant sport?

Archery: The most socially distant sport?

Isabella Carrero-Baptista, Reporter

As schools start to warm up to the idea of allowing school sports to begin again, many have been debating which sport is the safest to play amidst the ongoing pandemic. While wrestling and football are out of the question, tennis and cross country (along with others) have generally been able to survive. But even these sports require at least some level of physical interaction. Thankfully, there is one sport that requires zero interaction: archery. 

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of archery? From Robin Hood to Merida (or Hawkeye for all you Marvel fans out there), many fictional characters have partaken in the sport to help the needy or save a family member. But while your playing may not be as glamorous as the movies let on, or your intentions as selfless, archery is the best sport to learn as you social distance.

Arianna Yi, a junior at Urbana and an archer, was kind enough to give her insight on the matter. Upon being asked to describe how often she comes in close contact with people, she responded: “It often depends on where you go to shoot,” explaining that “usually when I go outside to shoot, there would be a range with cones and only a limited amount of people are allowed on the range. But because going outside to shoot is quite far from home, I now do archery in the basement of my home so I don’t really have to interact with other people.” Archery is one of the few sports that you can practice at home; whether it’s in your basement (like Arianna), backyard, or even your living room. 

If you lack the space, or your parents aren’t very fond of the idea of dodging arrows every time you practice, there are multiple archery ranges near Urbana where you can fling arrows to your heart’s content. Arianna used to go to Alpha Ridge Park in Howard County, but there are even closer alternatives. South Germantown Recreational Park or Rock Creek Regional Park, for example, are just under five miles away and feature outdoor archery ranges.  

But the question remains: Can we play archery at school? 

Unfortunately, the answer is likely no. The most obvious reason for this is that archery, although fun, can be very dangerous. As Arianna put it, “I’ve always wanted to do archery at school, but I believe the dangers of archery could get others injured as they have never done it before, even by the slightest mistake of the aim, or the form of the arrows or bow. Following the rules of using the equipment of archery is extremely essential for the safety of others as well as yourself.” Having archery in school would present an unnecessary safety hazard. And, as Arianna points out, it’s not the most physically active sport: “There is nothing real physically demanding in archery besides the weight of the bow and draw… archery is more of a full on concentration sport as others like more of physical demanding sports.” With the potential dangers and the lack of physical payoff, it is unlikely that archery will ever be part of the school’s sports offered. 

However, if you’re looking for “a more relaxing sport that (you) can just play to have fun with friends or family, or maybe just to get stress off (your) back” that socially distances, archery could be the best sport for you.


Sources Cited:

“Rock Creek Regional Park.” Montgomery Parks,



“South Germantown Recreational Park.” Montgomery Parks,