A Guide To Archery For Beginners

Archery is for anyone of any age to love and enjoy!

No matter your age, if you are new to the sport, this quick guide to archery for beginners can help you get started in going the right direction towards your archery adventures.

If you are already a little experienced around bows, it isn’t a bad idea to get refreshed on the basics.  Also check out our Archery Shop if you need gear!

Remember, no matter where you go, there are as many arts and forms of archery as there are a number of ways to customize your bow.  Always respect all archers from around the world!

The most important thing is to have fun using your favorite archery bow!

Common Beginner Archery Problems

Many beginners find themselves aiming too long.  People think it helps them be more accurate, but in reality, if our arms haven’t been hitting the gym, they tend to tire faster, making the bow wobble.

archery proper

Arrows could be having a hard time staying still on top of the rest.  One solution would be to have an arrow rest attachment— one of the many fascinating archery mods to learn about.

Another solution could be correcting your hand placement near the nock of your bow string.  The nock is where the rear of the arrow gets placed before firing.

Don’t pinch the arrow, as this makes it move.  Have it relaxed between your fingers while keeping the back of the hand flat with 3 fingers holding the bow string.

Using too many fingers can cause unwanted vibrations to tremor across your bow which alters your accuracy. Three fingers is the most recommended form.

Make sure the index vane is facing outwards.  The index vane is the odd-colored feather at the rear of your arrows.

Try to avoid moving your feet after every shot as that breaks your stance.

Always be watchful for the angle of your arrow in relation to the ground.  People unintentionally aim too high with their arrow pointing in a steeper angle, causing shots to miss above the target.

You need to compensate by aiming lower.  This is where archery sights can benefit you greatly in your aiming process.

In the modern age we have access to many advanced optics and scopes that helps us adjust our aim to perfect precision.

A Few Archery Misconceptions

Some people may tell you that archery can be hard and challenging.  Don’t let that discourage you!

As a beginner, the learning process can be easy and fun as you try new bows and targets!

The challenge comes with competitive sports as each team competes for the first place title.  As well as hunting where the accuracy of every shot is important to take into account.

archery team

Learning archery for the first time alongside a partner or a group of friends should be encouraged and can be a good bonding experience forming lasting memories!

You need the strength to pull the bow string, however, at the same time this doesn’t mean you need heavy poundage bows.  The average draw-weight is typically around 30 pounds(13.6kg).

Just because lots of young people are into archery does not mean adults or even the elderly can’t enjoy archery, as well.  As long as you keep practicing, you can be an archer at any age.

Not all arrows work for every bow!  Be careful when using other people’s arrows as this could lead to dry firing of your bow or over-bending the arrow.

What is a Beginner Bow?

Let us take a look at these two compound bows for example:

The Genesis Original and the Bear Archery Cruzer compound bow.

You may think Bear Archery’s bow is definitely for experts because of the popular brand, the high price value, and all of the available customization options.

In truth, both bows are fundamentally the same.  Being that its main purpose is to be able to shoot an arrow precisely and accurately onto a target.

archery rack

So there is no reason that a beginner cannot properly shoot the more expensive bow as they both function the same way.

However, it can be economical and wise to begin practicing archery with a lower-costing, yet high-quality bow.

This way, you can get a good feeling on whether or not you wish to fully commit more towards the sport of archery and then proceed spending over $1000 in archery equipment.

That being said, if you have already decided on your love for archery and have a plan and the money set to invest on one of the best bows on the market, nothing is stopping you from learning that heavy-duty bow.

Very important things to consider when deciding on a beginner bow:

  • How likely will I grow into it?
  • Will it teach me good habits when I practice?
  • Are there additional modifications I can add to help me aim better?

Those are just a few questions to keep in mind on your search.

Remember, this bow is your instrument and we need one that plays good music!

A very good tip is to look out for “ILF” or International Limb Fitting.  It allows you to replace your limbs a lot quicker, it’s more popular worldwide,  and it lowers the chances of you having to by a brand’s specific limbs.

The most recommended beginner’s recurve bow that has been top rated time and time again would be the Samick Sage takedown recurve bow.

The Proper Way to Draw and Fire an Arrow

Once you have a bow and arrow prepared and ready to use, it is time to perform the proper stance in order to make consistent bullseyes!

archery stance

It is wise to be mentally prepared to shoot an arrow, remembering to keep a good posture and loose arrows only at the appropriate times.  No flinching!

  1. You establish your grip on the handle of the bow with nice, relaxed fingers.
  2. Maintain a proper stance by keeping your legs straight.
  3. Your shoulders should be slightly apart, opening up your stance as you face your target.  Doing so moves your forward arm clear away from the string.
  4. Establish anchor points as you pull back the bow string.  The more contact points you set between your face, the string, and your hand, the more consistent you will be with each draw.
    • If you are using a compound bow release wrist strap, keep your fingers behind the trigger mechanism as you draw the string.  This lowers the chances for it to misfire.
    • Otherwise use 3 fingers to pull the string.
  5. Keep the arrow parallel to the ground, pointing straight at the target.
    • If you are having trouble pulling the bow string, lower the poundage!  Some compound bows have adjustable draw-weights.
  6. Release the arrow as soon as you are on target.  Aiming for longer than 3 seconds can lower accuracy.
  7. Keep practicing and don’t forget to breathe!

Helpful Archery Tips

Make sure to never pull on a bow string unless an arrow is properly nocked.

Pulling on any part of the bow string without a nocked arrow can lead to dry firing which risks damaging parts of your archery bows.

Be confident when pulling the bow string.

archery anchor

Placing the string along your face is common procedure.  The bow string will always go the opposite direction!

Keeping your bow string properly waxed insures the maximum speed of your arrows and keeps you safe from the string snapping.  Read our Bow String Waxing Guide!

The bow string will avoid hitting your arm when you have the proper stance.

Practice your stance along with a good arm guard, just in case.

It is VERY IMPORTANT to keep your palm closed while you are firmly holding the bow.  An opened palm is very dangerous around arrows.

A wrist sling is recommended to keep a close grip on the handle of your bow.

Trust yourself and your aim!

When you let things come naturally in archery, you’ll find your precision and accuracy increase incredibly!  Be confident!

Archery for Beginners: In Conclusion

When you find yourself effortlessly drawing a bow and loosing arrows left and right without breaking a sweat, it could be time to consider using a heavier poundage bow.

On the other hand, if you are having trouble pulling an average draw-weight of 30Lbs(14kg), we highly recommend reading our article Archery Workout Exercises & Strength Training!

And if you want to learn more about crossbows, make sure to check out What is Crossbow Archery?

The most important thing you should take from this guide to archery for beginners is…

  • Be confident.
  • Work on your stance.
  • Have fun!

Enjoy your own way of doing archery no matter what bow— crossbows, compound bows, recurve bows, airbows, sling bows, sights or no sights.  They are all beautiful archery equipment that need proper caring and handling by a great archer like you!

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