Want to compete against other universities? Interesting in joining a sport along side other Cambridge colleges? Want to use an upgraded and nicer bow to take your shooting to competitive level? The novice squad might be just right for you. We travel around to various archery competitions across the UK, feud with those Oxford rascals, and train together to create the best Cambridge mixed squad we can. You are only considered a ‘novice’ for your first year of shooting, so the novice squad presents an ideal opportunity to compete in fun and friendly events as a total beginner, but with the coaching, training, and support to take home medals and prizes.


What is the Novice Squad?

The novice squad is for beginners who want to progress in archery beyond just learning to shoot and joining the club recreationally. We offer additional coaching beyond that provided by the beginner's course geared at shooting competitively. Archers in the novice squad have a commitment to improving their archery as a sport.

We are looking for enthusiastic beginners who are willing to put in effort to represent their university at competitions, who want extra training and to improve, and who want to work as a member of a team of similar young archers to realise their full potential.

What do you put in?

Being on the novice squad requires a time commitment of at least two evenings a week, as well as occasional weekends for competitions. Coaching of the novice squad takes place on Tuesday evenings from 5-7pm near the boat houses, and you can practise at the Friday evening club session at the sports centre. There is also the option to shoot on Wednesday evenings as well once you can shoot safely and independently.

It is expected that you will attend every Tuesday session for coaching, and Friday evening for practise. You are also expected to be available to shoot for the club at competitions as a novice (dates below).

It is also expected that you attend the Introduction to Strength & Conditioning session on 15th November. After, you must continue some form of strength training, whether it be at a personal gym session or a Thursday S&C class. If you are using a personal or another club's routine, it must be at least equivalent to attending the S&C class every week.

The novice squad also requires a slightly greater investment. In addition to the beginner's course fee of £60, you will need to pay the range fee of £27.50 in order to use our second indoor venue, and you can hire a bow from the club for £10 per term. Those that do not keep up with attendance at training sessions or competitions will be removed from the squad back to the beginner's course, and a member from the waiting list will be promoted.

What do you get out of it?

Being part of the novice squad connects you directly to the great Cambridge sporting tradition. You get to wear stash and represent the University. You will make friends with archers across Cambridge colleges, compete against but also befriend archers at universities across England, take home medals, attend award dinners, grudge match with Oxford, and visit some of the best pubs around as a mighty cohort. You’ll also come away with the confidence that should the Normans invade again, you’ll be able to repel their advance from 90m away (come Easter term and our move to outdoors). All and all being on the novice squad is truly a quintessential Cambridge experience.

If you are interested please contact the Novice Officer who will making the selection and running the course here. There will be a chance to ask any questions, find out more, and register your interest after the have-a-go sessions.

Competition Dates

As mentioned above, the main focus of the novice squad is shooting for the novice team in competitions. These are held at weekends during term time. It is expected that you will attend the majority, if not all, of these. The competitions for the 2019-20 year are as follows:

  • Michaelmas

    • 9th November - BUTTS Leg 1
    • TBC - BUTTS Leg 2
  • Lent

    • TBC - BUTTS Leg 3
    • TBC - BUTTS Leg 4
    • TBC - BUTTS Team Champs
    • TBC - BUTTS Champs
    • TBC - BUCS Indoors 1
    • TBC - BUCS Indoors 2
  • Easter

    • TBC - Varsity Match (Oxford)
    • TBC - BUTTS Outdoors
    • TBC - BUCS Outdoors (Lilleshall)

Training Exercises

Warming up - It is important to warm up correctly to prevent injury.

More training information once novice squad starts.