Which bow to choose to start archery and how to choose your bow

A bow is a device made up of a flexible curved component and a string, enabling the shooting of arrows. There are several types of bows, each made from different materials such as plastic, wood, or metal. Understanding these differences is crucial to select the bow that aligns best with your specific needs.

Which bow to choose to start archery and how to choose your bow

What type of bow to choose ?

The selection of a bow relies on multiple factors, including the type of shooting you intend to pursue, your level of experience, physical strength, and stature. There's a variety of bows available, such as the traditional bow, compound bow, or longbow. Here are some insights to assist you in making a choice tailored to your specific needs!

Which bow to choose to start archery and how to choose your bow

Recurve bow or classic bow

The classic bow, also referred to as the traditional or recurve bow, is a type of bow with a lineage that spans thousands of years in human history. It stands as one of the earliest tools of hunting and warfare utilized by humans, and its elegantly simple yet effective design has essentially remained unaltered throughout the ages. The classic bow comprises a wooden arc, a string of synthetic or natural material, and an accompanying set of arrows.

Distinct from other modern bow types, the classic bow lacks a sight or additional aids for aiming, presenting a greater challenge to beginner archers. However, for those with advanced skills, the classic bow provides a unique archery experience and fosters a profound connection to nature and the historic roots of archery.

Which bow to choose to start archery and how to choose your bow

Long bow

The longbow, also known as the English bow, is a type of bow with an extensive legacy in England, where it was utilized for centuries in hunting and warfare. It's characterized by its significant length, often exceeding 1.80 meters, and its simplistic design, primarily consisting of a wooden bow and a string. The longbow boasts high firing power, making it suitable for both hunting and competitive archery.

Though it necessitates a distinct shooting technique, the use of a longbow can deliver an authentic and traditional archery experience for those deeply interested in history and tradition. However, owing to its substantial size and shooting power, which make it excellent for long-range shots, the longbow may not be the most suitable choice for beginners or those facing challenges related to physical strength and conditioning.

Compound bow

The compound bow is a contemporary type of bow that employs a system of pulleys and cables to enhance shooting power and ensure arrow stability. Unlike the traditional or longbow, the compound bow can be outfitted with a range of accessories, such as a sight, stabilizer, arrow rest, and release aid. These enhancements make it more user-friendly for novices and competitive archers.

Due to its accuracy and high shooting power, the compound bow is frequently the bow of choice in archery competitions. However, its complexity and the necessity for additional accessories can make it more expensive than other bow types. In the end, the selection of a compound bow will hinge on the individual archer's preferences, their level of experience, and their budget.

  • traditional bow

    The classic bow

    The traditional bow is a more historical bow that comes in different sizes to accommodate a variety of archers.

  • longbow

    The longbow

    The longbow is also considered a traditional bow. It’s made up of a single block and is designed for advanced archers (no accessories can be added).

  • compound bow

    The compound bow

    The compound bow is a powerful bow used mainly for competitions.

Archery for kids

Archery can serve as an enjoyable and advantageous pastime for children. It not only offers them an opportunity to enhance their coordination, focus, and self-esteem, but it also promotes engagement in outdoor sports and fosters a deeper bond with nature. Nevertheless, when selecting a bow for children, their age, height, and physical strength should be carefully considered.

Bows for children should be sufficiently lightweight to allow for effortless handling and to avoid muscle strain. Additionally, it's advisable to use arrows equipped with rounded tips to mitigate potential injury risks. Ultimately, adult supervision is paramount in ensuring safety and compliance with established safety guidelines. By heeding these precautions, archery can become a secure and enriching activity for children across all age groups.

Which type of archery for your practice

Target archery is an activity that can be enjoyed both indoors and outdoors. During competitions, the shooting distance spans from 18 to 70 meters. Targets typically take the form of a coat of arms, an image, or a three-dimensional animal replica. The aim is to hit the center of the target as frequently as possible, often within a specified timeframe. The traditional and compound bows are the most commonly utilized for this type of shooting.

Instinctive shooting, on the other hand, is an age-old technique employed by seasoned archers. The task is to hit a target, whether stationary or moving, using only a longbow, without the aid of a sight or any aiming device.

What type of bow is best for beginners or skill level

  • discover archery

    Discover archery

    If you’re new to archery and want to practise with friends or family,
    head to the discovery section.

  • shoot in a club archery

    I can shoot with a bow

    If you can already shoot with a bow and are starting to shoot in a club, 
    head to the discovery or club sections.

  • practice competitively archery

    I’m mastering archery

    If you can already shoot with a bow and would like to practise competitively, 
    head to the discovery or club sections.

Should I choose a left or right-handed bow ?

The choice of bow hand depends on the archer's dominant hand. If the archer is right-handed, they will use a right-handed bow and hold the bow in their left hand while drawing the string with their right hand. Similarly, a left-handed archer will use a left-handed bow and hold the bow in their right hand while drawing the string with their left hand. It's important to choose a bow corresponding to the archer's dominant hand to avoid any strain or discomfort when practicing archery.

If an archer uses a bow meant for the opposite hand, it can impact their shooting accuracy and technique, and it can also be dangerous for them and others. Generally, the archer's dominant hand is the one that holds the bow, while the non-dominant hand holds and draws the bowstring.


How to choose bow length and size

Size: Your size will help determine the right bow for you. It’s measured in inches (1 inch = 2.54 cm), usually represented with quotation marks.If the bow is for a child, it’s possible they will outgrow it. Tip: it’s better to get a larger bow than one that is too small. It will be more flexible and easier to use.

Size is dependent on two factors:

-The bow handle, available in several sizes according to the model. Comfort and ease of handling will help you make your selection.

-The limbs: your size and the strength of your bow will dictate which libs you choose.

Strength: draw weight Measured in pounds (lb). It corresponds to the propulsion the arrow receives when the string is released: 1 lb = 453.5 gramsIt varies according to the type of bow used, most often between 15 to 60 lb.The more powerful the bow, the quicker your arrows will reach the target and with more precision over longer distances.However, it requires great physical strength to handle it.

We recommend a powerful bow for experienced archers.

If you are new to archery, select a a less powerful bow so you can learn from your mistakes without tiring yourself out. Your arrows won’t go as fast or as far, but the power of your bow will allow you to learn to adjust your shots and acquire good technique. Once you’ve mastered your movements, you can choose a more powerful bow.

Bow size chart
right or left how to know

How to find your dominant eye for aiming

With both eyes wide open and your arm extended, place a thumb in front of an object about 5 meters away. Now, close your left eye.

- Is your thumb centred on the object? If yes, your dominant eye is the right one. A right-handed archer aims with their right eye, holds their bow with the left hand, and pulls the string with the right hand.

- Is your thumb to the left of the object? If yes, your dominant eye is the left one. A left-handed archer aims with their left eye, holds their bow with the right hand, and pulls the string with the left hand.

What type of arrow should I choose for my bow ?

The selection of arrows hinges on the type of bow in use, the shooting distance, and the specific type of archery being practiced. Arrows are usually composed of a shaft, which can be made from carbon, aluminum, or wood, a tip, and feathers or vanes for stabilization. Additionally, they have nocks, which allow for their attachment to the bowstring.

Carbon arrows are lightweight and durable, making them an ideal choice for compound bows and competitive archery. On the other hand, aluminum arrows, while heavier, offer superior penetration, thus making them more suited for hunting.

For traditional bows, wooden arrows are often employed. They provide an archery experience that is more authentic. It is of critical importance to select arrows that are compatible with the shooting power of the bow. Incompatible arrows can potentially cause damage to the bow and pose a danger to the archer and those nearby.

Moreover, it's crucial to regularly inspect the condition of the arrows to spot any cracks, breakages, or damaged tips. These issues could compromise the safety of the archer and the integrity of the shooting environment.

Which bow to choose to start archery and how to choose your bow

Which equipment to choose for archery?

There is a wide array of accessories available for archery, each designed to improve an archer's accuracy and performance in unique ways. The most prevalent of these accessories include sights, which facilitate precise aiming at the target, stabilizers that dampen bow vibrations for enhanced stability, and arrow rests which secure the arrow in its position on the bow prior to shooting. Release aids, especially popular in the realm of compound bows, assist in the accurate release of the bowstring.

To protect the archer's hands, grips, and fingers, bow slings and finger guards are often employed. Furthermore, carrying bags and bow cases are indispensable for the safe transportation of the bow and its accessories. For recreational activities, the target is an essential element not to be overlooked! It's crucial to select accessories that are compatible with both the type of bow and the proficiency level of the archer. However, it's also important to keep in mind that certain accessories might be subject to regulations in official archery competitions.

To conclude, the selection of an appropriate bow for beginners in archery is a pivotal step towards a successful and enjoyable shooting experience. It's imperative to factor in various criteria such as the bow's power, size, shape, and type, in order to find the one that most closely aligns with your personal needs and proficiency level. Ensure you dedicate ample time to inform yourself and to experiment with different options before settling on a final choice. Armed with the right bow and through consistent practice, you will be well on your way to mastering the intricate art of archery and relishing this exhilarating sport.

More like this

Target sports to play at home and the cottage

Discover the benefits of target sports

Sports like archery and pool can improve many skills like concentration, patience, agility, flexibility, and analysis. Get the whole family on board!

Finnish skittles on grass

Finnish skittles: Rules of the game

How many points do you need to win? How do you set up the skittles? Learn to play Finnish skittles, a fun and easy outdoor game!

young girl playing ping pong

7 family sports activities

Looking for ways to keep the kids occupied? Enjoy time together on the weekends with these fun family activities that get everyone moving.

Kids playing basketball in front of the house

5 fun activities to do in your driveway or neighbourhood alley

With a little imagination, your concrete driveway or neighbourhood alley can become a sports paradise for kids. We’ve got tons of creative ideas for outdoor activities you can enjoy this spring!