Iran opens Rad International Archery Academy in Tehran

The Rad International Archery Academy was officially inaugurated in the Iranian capital of Tehran on 26 September 2019.

Built from low-cost materials and centred around an outdoor shooting range, the complex is more than 10,000 square metres in size. It’s got management offices, a gym, shop, cafe and classrooms. Construction started back in January 2019 and the enclosure was completed in May.

Each room is made from one or more recycled shipping containers.

The use of this flexible and easy-to-access building material has kept the budget low, assembly time fast and means the concept can be recreated in other locations cheaply and quickly if this first facility proves to be a success.

The academy in Tehran has been in use since early June and has already hosted archery matches for the national league.

“I’m happy with the infrastructure, facilities, team members and performance and I’m very hopeful with our vision for the academy,” said Iranian minister for sports and youth Masoud Soltanifar.

The idea for the academy project came in late 2015.

Success at an Indoor Archery World Cup stage in Bangkok that year was encouraging for Iranian archery but it was identified that a more structured approach to talent identification and development was needed if the team was to content on the world stage more regularly.

“Our target is the 2028 Olympic Games. We have some plans for our teenagers, youth and adults to standardise learning and training processes,” said academy director of international relations Arash Hadjikazemi.

“Meanwhile, we want to improve our coaches by participating in seminars and world-class level education programmes.”

Majid Ahmadi, Zahra Shabani, Esmaeil Ebadi, Nima Mahboubi and Mehrdad Gholami are the five coaches on the staff of the Rad International Archery Academy at its time of opening.

Ebadi won compound men’s gold at the Asian Games in 2014.

The academy is already hosting national competitions and is expected to add international events, training camps and courses to its portfolio in the future.

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