The historical group Sbandieratori and Balestieri has reenstated the medieval art of flag throwing and archery , once a tradition of the city of Volterra in 1406, as historical documents attest.
The group was established in 1978 and has since been called to exhibit thier skills in Italy and abroad receiving applauded recognition for the elegance of their costumes, the skill of the flagthrowers and talent of the musicians. In 1981 the group became a part of the Italian Federation of Flag Throwers and in the same year the first edition of the Astiludio , a spectacular tournament in medieval costume between other historical groups from different parts of Italy took place in the evocative setting of the Piazza dei Priori. The Astiludio is now an annual event that takes place once a year on the first Sunday of September.

The choreograghy and the games have been inspired by actual historical events that took place in Volterra during the Middle Ages and the Rennaissance and the 15th century costumes have been meticulously reproduced using the original colours of the contrade of Medieval Volterra.