One of the first things any boy does with a piece of bent bamboo, a string and an 'arrow' - which is usually another piece of bamboo, thinner than the first and, with a bit of selection, straighter - is to see how far he can shoot it. This is Flight Archery in its simplest form.
Flight is the only discipline in Archery which doesn't involve a target - or it has the biggest target, the Earth, depending on how you look at it.
It is ironic that this first type of Archery for children has the fewest adherents among adults. Yet Flight Archery is at the cutting edge. Without Flight, Archery would generally be much poorer, for Flight Archery is the 'Formula 1' of Archery. Like a Grand Prix car, dedicated Flight bows are not built for the reliability needed for 144 arrow FITAs, week after week, year after year. The dedicated Flight bow is built to shoot an arrow as far as possible - that's it! The Flight bow is refined to its ultimate; stressed to its limit; strings with as few strands as possible for lightness; arrows lovingly and painstakingly hand-made for aerodynamic perfection. In Flight Archery tuning and technique are all-important. To win at Flight nothing less than perfection is good enough.
Although Flight is very much a minority discipline, it should be fostered for the good of Archery as a whole. Just as all motorists benefit from innovations on the Formula 1 race track, so all archers benefit from innovation of the Flight archers. For example, how many competitive Target or Field archers would want to be without carbon arrows today? It was American Flight archer, Rulon 'Ike' Hancock, who made and used the first carbon arrows - for Flight Archery.
And it is not just Flight archers who can shoot Flight. There are classes for Target and Field recurve bows, compounds, English long bows, American long bows and primitive bows, so all archers are catered for in Flight competitions.
Conventional Flight bow
Compound Flight bow
Target recurve bow