Ski Archery is a combination of Archery and Nordic cross-country skiing. It takes its origin in the Scandinavian countries hundreds of years ago. The most ancient pictures showing a skier carrying a bow are found through the work of the Norwegian Claus Magnus, circa 1540. The characters were represented in shooting position with a very short recurve bow. Ski Archery saw a rebirth in Italy in the mid-1980s. Since then, it has gone through many changes and modifications that have brought it to the current rules.
WA recognized Ski Archery in 1991. The sport is becoming popular in Italy, France, USA, Germany, Ukraine, Slovenia, Russia and Japan. One of the objectives is to gain more top level athletes and countries participating. The International Biathlon Union (IBU) and WA had built a partnership to develop the discipline. As of the (northern) winter season 2006, WA has become the international governing body for Ski Archery. International events are being organized every winter.
An event very similar to the sport of biathlon except a recurve bow is used in place of a gun. The athletes ski around a cross-country track and there are two stances in which the athlete must shoot the targets: kneeling and standing. During competition the skis can not be removed at any time. The athlete may unfasten the ski when shooting in the kneeling position but must keep the foot in contact with the ski. The shooting distance is 18 meters and the targets 16 cm in diameter. In certain events, for every missed target, the athlete must ski one penalty loop. The loop is 150 meters long. In summer or regions with little snow, the European run archery is a mentionable alternative.