If you love bowfishing but are not right-handed like 90% of the global population, then you will likely find it difficult to get on with a regular bowfishing bow. However, much like scissors, guitars and even playing cards, there are left-handed bowfishing bows that can make your life so much more straightforward.

But it can be somewhat confusing to know what is essential in a bowfishing bow – are they the same as bow hunting bows? What’s the difference? And how can you tell whether an individual product is any good?

We will be answering all of these questions in this article, giving you the confidence to source and purchase a left-handed bowfishing bow that will serve you well, and you will be comfortable using.

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What Is Bowfishing?

Bowfishing is a sport in which you use a bow to target fish and underwater animals. In the main, most people would assume that bowfishing is precisely the same as bowhunting, and while there are many similarities, there are some apparent differences between the two.

Bowhunting is often done at long range, whereas bowfishing is usually done with relatively close targets and for this reason is ideal for those just starting with bow sports.

Furthermore, the arrows that are used in bowhunting are different since when they move through the water, physics will dictate that they behave differently; for this reason, bowfishing arrows do not have fletching.

Why Do You Need A Left-Handed Bowfishing Bow?

Since there are so many more right-handed people in the world, most things are designed for easy use when using a dominant right hand; however, for the small percentage of people whose left hand works better, there is a need for some items to be adapted.

The bowfishing bow is no exception, and while they may be more challenging to come across than a regular bowfishing bow, there are plenty of these products out there.

Using a left-handed bow will feel far more comfortable and make the entire experience much more enjoyable, so it is worth taking the time to search out one of these bows.

Fortunately, most bow manufacturers do make left-handed bows, but they may not be as well marketed as the right-handed versions, but if you look hard enough, you are sure to find one that you like.

What’s The Difference Between Left- And Right-Handed Bowfishing Bows?

A bow is just a bow, right? Some people may have this assumption, but if you have ever attempted bowfishing with a bow that was made for your non-dominant hand, you will know the pain of trying to shoot with it.

The main difference between a bowfishing bow that is designed for right-handed people and one made for those who use their left hand is the placement of the cut out for the arrow rest.

In bows that have been designed with lefties in mind, this cut out will be on the right, and for right-hand bows, it will be on the left.

To check to see which type of bow it is, you should hold the bow as if you were going to shoot and look at which side the arrow rest cut out appears.

However, some of the most experienced archers in the world will tell you that your dominant hand, whilst essential, is not as crucial as your dominant eye; but this is something that very few people are aware of.

In the same way that you prefer a hand, everyone has a preference over which eye functions better and in a sport like archery, this is imperative as sight is critical.

Therefore, it is also essential to look at the peep sight for your bow; in the main, most sights are easily adjustable regardless of your dominant eye. However, some are designed with either left or right eye dominance.

It is crucial to keep in mind that to set a right eye sight for those with a preference for their left eye, the sight will need to be installed upside down. In the main, this won’t affect your accuracy but may look a little strange, to begin with since the light and level will be back to front.

What To Look For In A Bowfishing Bow For Left-Handed People

Now that we are familiar with why we might need a left-handed bowfishing bow and how they are different from the mass-produced right-handed bow, we can begin thinking about the specific aspects of the bow. This will help us to determine the best piece of equipment for our needs.

Length Of The Bow

When you are choosing your bow, you will need to consider your height as well as the length of your arms, choosing something that is not the correct size may have an impact on your ability to use the bow effectively.

In the main, a bowfishing bow will be between 30 inches and 50 inches in length, and when you hold it, you should be able to hold it perfectly, not only for accurate shooting but also for your comfort.

For those just starting, it is widely accepted that a bow length, axle to axle, should be around 32 inches but you will also need to consider the type of fish that you will be shooting.

Brace Height

The brace height of the bow used for bowfishing may be different from that of one used for bowhunting and target archery, so it is vital to keep this in mind. Your brace height will alter the speed of the arrow with more extended brace heights slowing the arrow down and shorter ones having the opposite effect.

Is It Adjustable?

Depending on the speed and power that you want to achieve from each shot, you may need to adjust the bowfishing bow. This is one of the most important things to look out for when buying this type of equipment as having a bow that is adjustable will give you far more diversity in how you can use it.

Draw Weight

Where a fully grown adult male might have a peak draw weight of up to 75lbs, a child would have something three times lighter, and this is usually determined not only by the size of the user but also the size of the fish that they will be aiming for.

If you try to use a bow that has a draw weight which is not compatible with you, you will find the bow far more challenging to use. The bigger the peak draw weight, the larger fish you will be able to catch.

Is It Durable?

If you are going to be using your bow frequently, you will need to be incredibly confident that it is well-made and will serve you for a long time. The best way to determine how durable your left-handed bowfishing bow will be is by looking at the materials from which it is made.

Naturally, the most hard-wearing material is metal, but there are wooden or plastic bows available too that can be very sturdy.

Furthermore, you should check the protective coating of the bow to ensure that it will be well protected, especially for sea-fishing, where the salty air could cause premature corrosion.


A bow may look like a relatively lightweight piece of equipment, but there are some that are very heavy and cumbersome to handle. It is vital that you are able to hold the bow steadily and if it is too heavy, this may not be possible.

Conversely, if you purchase a bow that is too light, you will find that you are not able to get the power you need for accurate or effective fishing. For this reason, you should find a left-handed bowfishing bow that meets your needs whilst having a balanced weight.

Bowfishing Kits

If you are totally new to bowfishing, you will likely need to invest in more than just a left-handed bow and the good news is that there are several bowfishing kits out there that provide you with everything you need to get started.

These kits include your bow as well as arrows, reels and rests as well as other additional components for a complete bowfishing experience.


Most archery equipment and any other type of equipment is made with right-handed people in mind, but ten per cent of the human population is made up of people whose left hand is their dominant one. This means that there is a significant call for left-handed items such as the bowfishing bow.

The main difference between these and those that are made for right-handed people is the location of the cut out for the arrow rest, and you can also get sights that are made specifically for those with left eye dominance.

There are fewer left-handed bowfishing bows on the market. Still, when shopping for one, you should take specific things into consideration to make sure that you are getting the right piece of equipment for your needs and that your bowfishing will always be accurate and comfortable.

Unless you are an archery master, it could be easy to assume that there is only one type of arrowhead. But when we look back over history, we see that these tools have evolved over thousands of years. Each one is unique to its purpose and designed in a specific way.

While you may only use one type of arrow with your modern bow, it can be interesting to learn about and understand how the archers that came before you used their weapons and what their arrowheads looked like.

In this article, we are going to be looking at the various types of arrowheads that have been used throughout the ages and gaining a deeper understanding of how and why they would have been used.

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Why Are There Different Types Of Arrowheads?

When most people, a layman, in particular, are asked to describe an arrowhead, they would most likely talk about a pointed, triangular-shaped object. This would not be an inaccurate description but it is by no means the only one.

Throughout history, hundreds of different types of arrowheads have been fashioned. Archery has been a form of hunting and weaponry for thousands of years. Regardless of the civilizations that we look at, archery has a place in it.

Even though in modern times, we use a variety of arrowheads that have been engineered for precision and accuracy, there are still people today who use a more traditional type of arrowhead. Just think about indigenous people in the rainforest and on the plains of Africa.

If many of these traditional arrowheads are still used today, they must have been pretty effective.

But why are there different types of arrowheads?

When you consider that arrowheads have been used for more than 200,000 years it is not difficult to understand that this technology would have changed over time. What’s more, people around the world may have made their arrows slightly differently depending on how they were going to be used.

If you look at the arrows used in medieval England compared to those that were used by Native Americans, there is a marked difference in the design. Some of the medieval arrows featured a forked head, which is rather unique yet specific use.

It is believed that these arrows could have been used aboard ships for cutting sails and rigging. Of course, arrowheads used by a Native American hunter would not have needed this type of design.

Furthermore, the location that the arrowheads were made could have a bearing on the material from which they were made. In some places, certain materials might have been more readily available than others.

What Materials Are Used For Arrowheads?

As we have mentioned, there are many different types of materials used in the creation of arrowheads. The location and intended use would have been the things that had the greatest impact on how arrowheads were crafted.

  • Animal bones were often used as arrowheads. This is because bone is extremely strong, particularly from certain parts of the body such as the femur.
  • Chert is a type of sedimentary rock that is made up of quartz and therefore very resilient. In some examples of chert, there can be traces of iron, which will add to the robustness of the rock.
  • Flint is a type of chert that was widely used in arrowheads throughout history. This is a limestone-based type of rock and is much rougher in texture.
  • Obsidian is a volcanic glass that is dark in color and has often been used to create arrowheads.
  • It may be surprising to learn that there are arrowheads that have been fashioned from wood. However, not just any wood can be used and you will often find that hardwoods are favored. Most commonly oak and bamboo are used.

Arrowhead Groups

There are many different types of arrowheads, which we will look at later, but these types all fall into one of three categories. The category of arrowhead that you will use will depend on the type of archery that you will be taking part in.

Throughout history, there have been three main uses for archery; hunting, war, and target practice. As such, arrowheads will fall into categories in line with these uses.

Broadhead Arrowheads

Broadhead arrowheads are designed for hunting large game. If they are used in any other type of archery, they will not have a very good effect, other than damaging your target.

The reason for this is that these arrowheads are designed to be sharp and penetrate deep into a large animal when hunting.

They usually cause a lot of bleeding and are extremely difficult to dislodge. If you are using these, you must be prepared to lose arrows since archers often find that their arrows will break before the broadhead can be pulled from a target.

Blunt Arrowheads

While a blunt arrowhead will not penetrate the target, the design is such that it will cause a lot of damage just from the trauma of the hit. These types of arrowheads are particularly useful when hunting small game as they will kill or at the very least paralyse the target upon impact.

Many people make the mistake of thinking that blunt arrowheads are safe for use as toys but this is not the case. The tips of these arrows are often very hard and will cause a lot of damage. The only exception is the safety arrowheads which are used in historical reenactments and are made with a soft material that will not cause injury.

Target Arrowheads

When you begin practicing archery, you will need a simple arrowhead that will go into the target easily as well as coming out easily. Target arrowheads have been designed with this in mind.

However, this does not mean that they are not extremely efficient and designed to kill. These sharp arrowheads can do some serious damage and should be respected.

Different Types Of Arrowheads

Considering how long arrows have been used as a weapon and the different approaches to their creation around the world, there are many varieties of arrowheads. Let’s explore each of these in a little more detail.

Lanceolate Arrowheads

There are four main types of lanceolate arrowheads.

  • Triangle arrowheads have a wide base that narrows to a point at the tip.
  • Lanceolate arrowheads have a pointed tip that becomes wider but then narrows down again towards the base.
  • Auriculate arrowheads come in a fish shape and have auricles which are more commonly known as ears angled downwards.
  • A leaf arrowhead features a more rounded base but still has a triangular design with a pointed tip that widens and then narrows towards the base.

Medieval Arrowheads

When asked to think about a time when arrowheads were commonly used, a lot of us would turn our thoughts to the Medieval times and this is not by chance. Arrows were widely used as a weapon of choice during this period for both war and hunting.

Of course, the reason for using the arrowheads would have determined their shape and design.

In the main, these arrows fall into one of two categories; barbed arrowheads and non-barbed arrowheads.

Barbed arrowheads were typically used for hunting thanks to their ability to lodge into the target. There were several designs in this category including the swallowtail broadhead which was used when hunting large game.

Additionally, there was the curved broadhead which would have been used when hunting medium or large game. This was much more effective as it could hit deeper than other types of arrowheads.

Non-barbed arrowheads were often used in war and once again, there were several different types. For example, the war bodkin was the most commonly used type of war arrowhead and could easily penetrate through even the toughest chain link armor.

The needle bodkin was a long, thin type of arrowhead which was also in the non-barbed category and was commonly used in battles. This arrowhead design was based on that of the Viking leaf design and was extremely effective in penetrating armor, hence why it was one of the most popular.

Stemmed Arrowheads

While there are many different types of stemmed arrowheads, there were some that have been more commonly used throughout history.

Firstly, there was the contracting stem which was tapered from the shoulders down to the base. These tapers varied in their design and could range from being relatively small to extremely long and sharp.

Next, we have the expanding stem which was an arrowhead that, rather than being tapered from the shoulder, had an expanding stem. These arrowheads are sometimes confused with side-notched arrows (which we will discuss later on) but there is a clear difference in the notches.

Notched Arrowheads

Notched arrowheads, as their name may suggest, have notches in the design, Once again, there are several different types of notched arrowheads, including the following;

  • Side notched arrowheads feature parallel notches that run from the blade into the body of the arrowhead.
  • Corner notches arrows typically appear to have barbs due to the location of the notches which are usually at the corner. However, there are some designs whose notches are at the base.
  • Basal notched arrowheads have notches that are carved from the base of the head. This design typically causes rather long barbs.

Other Types Of Arrowheads

There are some arrowheads which cannot be placed into a specific category, but nonetheless, they have been used extensively throughout history.

Mechanical arrowheads are a more modern invention and we will look at modern arrowheads in a little more detail later on. However, in short, these usually have blades that retract before the shot, these blades then expand as they hit the target. They are not designed to be used in bows with a higher draw weight.

Bifurcated arrowheads have a notch that is carved out from the base of the blade but there is not one consistent design. You will see these types of arrowheads with notches and stemmed points.

Arrowhead Blade Shapes

Arrowhead blades come in a variety of shapes and each one is designed to work in a different way. When looking at antique arrowheads or indeed, choosing a modern arrowhead for your archery practice, it is good to know the types of shapes that you have at your disposal.

  • Excurvated arrowheads are perhaps one of the most easily recognizable. They have a pointed tip and widen gradually towards the base.
  • Incurvated arrowheads are very similar to excurvated arrowheads but are typically much narrower due to the curved edges.
  • An inward recurvate arrowhead has a wide base and pointed tip but the base tends to be wider and the entire arrowhead has a much more distinct shape.
  • Serrated arrowheads have serrated edges.
  • Straight arrowheads are similar in design to many other types with a wide base and pointed tip but their edges have no curves.

Arrowhead Points

As well as the type of arrowhead, there are also a variety of different points. As with the design of the arrowhead itself, the point will vary depending on how the arrow is going to be used.

Over time, arrowhead points have evolved and there are some that are not used in modern archery. In contrast, others have stood the test of time and while their design may have been modernized, there are clear similarities. Let’s take a look at the various points.

Bullet Point Arrowheads

This type of arrowhead is commonly used across different types of archery, including target shooting and for small game hunting. The arrows feature a sharp steel point.

Blunt Point Arrowheads

Blunt point arrowheads may be used for similar reasons to bullet points, small game hunting, and for target practice. However, they are vastly different by design.

Rather than having a pointed tip, these arrowheads have a blunt head and are not made from just one material. You will find these types of arrows made from steel, rubber, and sometimes plastic.

Bodkin Point Arrowheads

We discussed bodkin arrowheads earlier on and their effectiveness in war since they were able to penetrate through tough chain armor. However, this is a design that has remained through the ages and is still an effective design today.

Bodkin points were once made from iron and it is believed that this was because it could have helped them travel further. The design is rigid and short and you will notice that they have a cross-section.

Field Point Arrowheads

Archers use field point arrowheads for both game hunting and for target shooting. One of the main reasons that they are so popular is because of their design. Unlike other types of arrowheads, field points can be removed from the target without causing significant amounts of damage.

What’s more, if a shot is misfired, the arrow will not end up being lodged in an obstacle such as a tree.

The field point arrowhead is made with a sharp steel point and could be mistaken for a target point. In order to tell them apart, one only needs to look at the shoulders as these are extremely distinct on a field point arrowhead.

Broadhead Point Arrowheads

In modern archery, you will often see broadhead points being used, particularly in large game hunting. This is because, in the United State, these are the only arrowheads that are legal for this type of archery.

The broadhead point is extremely sharp and is made up of steel blades, sometimes multiple blades which are very well made and robust.

Elf Arrowheads

If you practice archery in modern times, you will be extremely unlikely to come across an elf arrow. This is because they are no longer used in the sport despite having been used for many thousands of years.

This type of arrowhead was made from flint and often used for hunting and as a war weapon. In some of the remote corners of the world where native people still live a traditional lifestyle, these arrowheads may still be used.

However, in the modern world, the only place you are likely to see this type of arrowhead point would be in jewelry. It is believed that wearing an elf arrow is a way of repelling the dark side of witchcraft.

JUDO Point Arrowheads

Not to be confused with the martial art of the same name, JUDO arrowheads are fitted with a spring. This prevents them from becoming lost during practice.

Fish Point Arrowheads

Archery is not limited to shooting land-based targets. There are many people and communities that used archery as a way of fishing.

These aptly named arrowhead points are used for just such an occasion. They usually have very long barbs which will prevent the fish from escaping once the arrow has been released and are much longer than other types of arrows.

Target Point Arrowheads

These are bullet-shaped arrows that have a very sharp point. They are, as their name would suggest, used for shooting at target butts. Their design means that they will not cause much damage and can be easily dislodged. However, they will also easily penetrate the target.

Safety Point Arrowheads

Many people enjoy taking part in historical reenactments but of course, using sharp arrowheads in these situations would mean that there is a very real risk of injury.

That is where safety point arrows come in.

These arrows are designed to be used with bows that have an extremely low draw weight and have flat, wide heads so that they do minimal damage when hitting a target.

Depending on where you are in the world, there may be different rules and regulations around the sizes and uses of these arrows. But you will typically find that the reenactment participants also have a say in the type of safety arrowheads that are used.

Buying Historical Arrowheads

In modern archery, stone arrowheads and some ancient designs are no longer used but thanks to archeology, there are arrowheads being found all the time. You might even find one yourself when out for a walk.

If you are not fortunate enough to make an ancient discovery, there are dealers who specialize in arrowheads. But how can you be sure that what you are getting is an authentic arrowhead?

The first thing that you should think about is finding a reputable dealer. Speaking to other people about their experience with antique dealers is a good way to pick out the good from the bad.

However, one of the most reliable ways to determine the authenticity of an arrowhead is to ask the dealer to provide you with the relevant documents. If they cannot do this then it is not worth parting with your hard-earned cash as they could be selling a replica arrowhead.

Telling The Real From The Fake

Asking for certification from your arrowhead dealer is an excellent way to guarantee that what you are getting is the real deal. But it can be helpful to know a little about the arrowheads yourself so that you can look over them and determine how genuine they are.

  • Talk to the dealer about where the arrowhead came from. If it is genuine, they should have this information. You might also take a look at other arrowheads that were found in the same location as these will likely be similar.
  • Looking at the edges of the arrowhead is a great way to tell its authenticity. Genuine arrowheads will usually have a serrated edge that has circular dents. In arrowheads that have been mass-produced as replicas, these dents may not be present at all or will not feature a circular shape. Keep in mind that hundreds, or even thousands of years ago, they would not have had the tools to make a perfect arrowhead, so irregularity is a good sign.
  • Speak to experts. There are plenty of internet discussion groups and historical societies that you can have face to face meetings with other enthusiasts.

Modern Arrowheads

One of the most common types of modern arrowheads is the broadhead point arrowhead. As we have discovered, these are extremely sharp and effective weapons that are mainly used when hunting large game.

These arrowheads are typically made from steel. This is a lightweight material that can be molded to a sharp point easily. Not only this but steel is incredibly durable and weather resistant.

When you are out in the field, you cannot always guarantee the weather, and having a steel arrowhead will ensure that your equipment does not deteriorate.

Another common type of modern arrowhead is the mechanical arrowhead. These have retractable blades that expand upon impact. Once again, these are often made from lightweight and durable metals such as steel.

Arrowhead FAQs

Are arrowheads made by heating rock and dripping water on it?

This is a common misconception, the process of making arrowheads is much more intricate and complex. Stone arrowheads that were made from flint need to go through a process known as flint-knapping which uses one piece of stone to forge another.

Are all triangular stone items arrowheads?

Not all objects that are made from stone and triangular in shape will be arrowheads. Of course, you may be lucky enough to stumble upon an arrowhead but you should inspect the item to determine its original use.

Some stone objects could have been used as cutting tools whereas others might have been arrowheads. The best way to determine this is to look at the edges and for signs of damage.

Does it take a long time to make an arrowhead?

If you have never made an arrowhead before, then, of course, it is going to take some time, and you probably won’t get it right straight away.

This is something that takes a great deal of skill but once that skill has been acquired, some of the most adept flint knappers can create an arrowhead in as little as half an hour. 

Setting a nocking point on your bow is one of the most important parts of the bow setup, this is because your nocking point will keep your arrow in place allowing you to fire the bow accurately and precisely.

However, if you are new to archery, you might have never even heard of nocking points, never mind a bow square. So you may be wondering where to begin.

In this article, we will be giving you detailed instructions on how to set your nocking point with a bow square as well as introducing you to everything you need to know about this aspect of archery.

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What Is A Nocking Point

When you buy a compound bow, your nocking point will typically already be in place. However, on a recurve bow, it is very likely that you will need to install this yourself. But, regardless of the type of bow that you are using, the nocking point is a small component on the bowstring that helps to keep the arrow in place.

An arrow has a nock on its base; this is a small cut out that allows the archer to place the arrow onto the bowstring. However, alone, this still leaves a lot of room for instability and therefore, an inaccurate shot.

A nocking point not only keeps your arrow in place while you line up your shot but it also ensures that your arrow is always fired from a consistent position.

One of the most critical parts of becoming a good archer is maintaining consistency in everything you do. From how you stand right through to where you nock your arrow.

In the most simple form, the nocking point is merely a knot in the bowstring which many archers use successfully. However, you can also purchase a metal or plastic nocking point which is attached to the bowstring.

Whichever method you use, you will likely notice a much greater degree of consistency and accuracy in your firing.

Types Of Nocking Point

As we have mentioned, nocking points can come in all shapes and sizes and much like anything else, there are pros and cons to each one. Before we get into the nitty-gritty of figuring out how to use a bow square to set your nocking point, we must understand the different types of nocking points.

Most often, you will see brass nocking points, they are clipped onto the bow and attached using a pair of specially designed pliers. One of the main advantages of this type of nocking point is that they fit very securely onto the bowstring and it is rare that they will ever loosen before you take them off.

Furthermore, many people who have not been practicing for very long find that a brass nocking point makes life much easier. This is because they do not require the arrow to be loaded quickly so you can take your time getting things right.

Conversely, since brass is a rather heavy metal, this can slow the arrow down significantly so if the type of archery you do relies on speed, it might be a wise idea to steer clear of a brass nocking point.

You should also be careful when using a brass nocking point as some archers find that they cause friction on the fingers.

Another common type of nocking point is the tie and these are often used by Olympic archers thanks to their simple design and easy to install nature. What’s more, they are much lighter and will not adversely affect the speed of the arrow.

A tied nocking point is great for those who need to load their arrows quickly and they are also great because they do not rub the fingers. Furthermore, a tied nocking point is even more secure because, short of untying it, they will almost always stay put.

What Is A Bow Square?

If you have never practiced archery in your life, you might be surprised at the sheer volume of equipment and gadgets that are needed to make the sport a success. Many laypeople are under the false impression that all an archer needs are a bow and a quiver of arrows. But this could not be further from the truth.

In reality, if you are going to take up archery as a hobby, or even a profession, you need to be prepared to invest in a wide range of equipment.

One of these pieces of equipment is a bow square. Of course, this isn’t a necessary bit of kit because it is entirely possible to install your nocking point without one. That being said, having one will make the process a lot easier and more straightforward.

A bow square, which is sometimes called a T square is a small accessory that is used for measuring the bowstring. It can be clipped onto the string and is sometimes used for tuning the bow.

Where Should The Nocking Point Be?

It’s all well and good us telling you that you need to install a nocking point on your bowstring but where on earth are you meant to put it? The string of your bow is relatively long and you could be forgiven for thinking that the nocking point can be placed anywhere.

But this is not a correct assumption. The good news is that there is a pretty simple way to locate the nocking point on your bowstring.

You should always use an arrow with a bare shaft; this essentially means that the arrow has not been fletched. You may think that this is counterproductive as many people believe that a fletched arrow will fly better and while this is true, to a degree, a bare arrow will fly just as well.

The reason that it is better not to use a fletched arrow is that there is far more room for error. Unfletched arrows allow for a more precise locating of the nocking point. But even more importantly, if you use a fletched arrow to find your nocking point, you will likely find that any mistakes you make are amplified significantly.

Furthermore, using an unfletched arrow means that the arrow will have no help in flying during the release and this means you will get a much more precise location. Here are some handy tips for finding the nocking point.

  • If you draw with your thumb, you should set the nocking point above the arrow, whereas archers who draw with the fingers will need to place the nocking point below the arrow.
  • If you use an arrow rest, it will be much easier to find a starting point. However, for archers who do not use a rest, you will need to use your eyes to locate the point on the bowstring where the shaft lies horizontally and rests on your hand.
  • It is always a wise idea to start off with the nocking point too high. This is because as you fire the arrow if it is too low, it will bounce off the arrow rest or your hand and fool you into thinking that it is too high, when in reality, it is not.

How To Set A Nocking Point With A Bow Square

We are now familiar with the importance of a nocking point and have gained an understanding of what a bow square is used for. Now we are ready to start looking at how you can use this handy piece of equipment to set a nocking point.

For the purpose of this article, we are going to be using the tie nocking point method.

Step One

Choose the thread that you want to use for your nocking point; some people use dental floss or you can buy purpose-made string for nocking points. Much like other aspects of archery, this is down to personal preference.

Take your chosen thread and run it through a hot glue gun. It is important to note that this is not necessary but it will make things easier later in the process. This is because it will be more straightforward to bind the thread to your bowstring.

Step Two

Now take your bow square; (in some cases, as we mentioned, this might be referred to as a T square or even a bracing height gauge) and place this onto the bowstring at a point just next to your arrow rest. It should rest lightly on the arrow rest without putting pressure on it.

Step Three

You will now need to choose a location that is above the bottom line of the bow square. It might be a wise idea to start at a location that is around 5mm up from the bottom line.

This location is where your arrow will connect to the bowstring but you may not instantly find the right place. You will need to be patient and experiment to find the perfect position.

Once you have chosen where your arrow will sit, you will need to loop your thread around the bowstring and secure it with a knot.

Step Four

Next, you will need to tie another knot underneath the original one, keeping most of the knot on the opposite side of the bowstring. Once you have done this, start tying the third knot over the first knot and keep this facing the same way.

Step Five

You should now continue tying knots, one above, one below and so on until your nocking point is the size and shape that you would like it to be.

Of course, you are going to have some loose thread so you will need to cut this with a sharp knife or pair of scissors. You will want to leave around 5mm.

Step Six

Now take a lighter and burn the 5mm you left over, this will take flame and melt, allowing you to mold it down. For this step, you must be very careful not to damage the bowstring with the flame.

Step Seven

Now you will need to nock an arrow into the bowstring and tie another nocking point on the other side of the arrow.

It is crucial that you leave a small gap so that the arrow does not catch on the two nocking points during a shot.


A nocking point is a small component that is added to a bowstring. This helps to keep an arrow in place giving you a much more consistent and precise shot.

There are various types of nocking points but most commonly, a tied nocking point is used. This is easy to install using a bow square to help you measure and several other pieces of equipment that you will likely already have at home.

In archery, regardless of the type, one of the most important things is to have an accurate aim. Without this, you will never hit your target and this is massively frustrating.

But what is also frustrating is not knowing how to get an accurate shot in the first place. In truth, this requires a lot of practice and the correct approach, especially when using a crossbow.

One thing that a lot of people do not realize is that shooting a crossbow out of the box doesn’t always mean that you will get pinpoint accuracy. In fact, there are several things that you must make sure of before you can guarantee a dead-on shot every time.

If you’ve been wondering how to make a killer crossbow shot that is accurate to the millimeter; this article is for you.

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What Is A Crossbow?

In recent years, more and more people are buying crossbows. Could this be a result of Daryl Dixon from the walking dead? Or is it merely a spike in the sport? We’d hazard a guess it;s the former, but whatever your reason for getting in on the action, we are sure you will enjoy what you’re about to do.

However, it is important to keep in mind that a crossbow is not like a typical archery bow and differs in many ways.

Crossbows are mechanical weapons whereas a traditional bow operates manually. ONe of the great things about a crossbow is that it is far easier to draw and shoot as you are not having to use your own strength, rather the mechanical system does a lot of the work for you.

Unlike a traditional type of bow, the crossbow is held horizontally rather than vertically which can take some getting used to if you are used to using other types of bow. But the idea is still the same; the string is drawn back, the trigger released and the arrow is fired.

Crossbows harbor some extreme power and as such, are typically used for hunting larger game animals although it is perfectly reasonable to use a crossbow for target practice as well.

Getting The Right Crossbow

One of the most common mistakes made by new archers is that they believe that they can select a bow, pay the fee and be on their merry way; if only it were that easy.

You wouldn’t buy a pair of shoes without first trying them on to see if they fit and buying a crossbow is no different. You must make sure that you are fitted for your bow otherwise, you will be fighting an endless uphill battle where accuracy is concerned.

The three things that you should be testing when trying out your new crossbow are its weight, its draw length, and its width.

You will likely find that if the bow is too large or too heavy, you will have a very difficult time holding it and therefore, controlling it. This will have a direct impact on your accuracy and no matter what you do, the only fix will be to get a replacement bow that fits you correctly.

A lot of people are tempted into buying the biggest and bulkiest crossbow in the store to prove that they can handle it. Only, once they get the bow home, they realize that the opposite is true. It is far more impressive to have a smaller bow that you can shoot accurately than fumbling around with something that is clearly too big for you.

But this is not the only consideration when it comes to choosing your bow. If you want to have a consistently accurate shot then this begins before you have even laid your hands on a bow.

There are two main types of crossbow, those that are used with one hand and those that are used with two hands. The type that you choose will largely depend on the type of archery that you intend to do.

For hunters who might be shooting at larger game and therefore, at a greater distance, a two-handed crossbow is typically the best option. Conversely, if you are aiming for smaller targets at closer ranges, you will likely find that a one-handed crossbow will serve you much better.

Aside from this, you may also wish to speak to your supplier about the various components of the bow, the construction, and its quality but these are more in-depth considerations that would require a dedicated article.

Things That Affect Accuracy

Once you have chosen the right crossbow, there are many things that will contribute to how accurately you are able to shoot it. As we have already mentioned, archery does take a lot of practice, and dedicating the time to getting things right is a must. However, you could practice every day until you are blue in the face and without the following, still not get it right.

Tuning The Bow

If your crossbow is not correctly tuned then this will have a severe impact on your accuracy and yet still, a lot of new archers are not aware of this.

When we talk about tuning your crossbow, we are referring to two main points; balancing the tiller and balancing the brace height.

To begin with, let’s talk about balancing the brace height. Brace height refers to the distance between the belly of the riser and the center of the bowstring when the bow is not cocked.

When you first start using a bowstring, you will notice that it sits at a particular point on the riser. However, every time the bow is fired, the string will stretch a little. This makes very little difference up until a certain point when the string will noticeably move past the point where it originally sat.

This can have an impact on the accuracy of your shot but can be easily adjusted by replacing the bowstring. You should always keep an eye on your bowstring and its condition, changing it when it is necessary. However, as a general rule, a bowstring can be changed every two years but this will depend on the quality of the string and how often it is used.

Next, let’s consider the tiller. This refers to the limb balance. Both limbs should have an equal draw weight and length. It is easy to see when this is out of whack as your arrows will start flying to either one side of the other rather than in a straight line.

You can address this problem pretty easily by taking the measurements from where the limb joins the prod at the string. On both sides of the bow, this distance should be exactly the same, even just a millimeter can make a difference.

If you are using a recurve crossbow, this problem may be corrected by replacing the limbs. However, with a compound crossbow, the solution is far easier and involves using the bolts on either side of the bow to make adjustments until the limbs are balanced.

Cocking The Bow Correctly

One of the most important things is that your bow is properly prepared for the shot. If it isn’t, you can wave goodbye to hitting your target every time, without fail.

Cocking the bow correctly isn’t an overly complicated process but you must make sure that you know how to do it. Many people have problems because of their dominant arm. This is because, as they cock the bow, they will pull with greater strength through the dominant arm resulting in the bowstring coming slightly off-center. Even if this is by the smallest amount, it can make a significant difference.

To cock your bow correctly, you should always go through the following steps.

  • With the crossbow on flat ground, keep it secure with your foot.
  • Take hold of the string and pull it evenly on either side.
  • Now move the string to the cocking mechanism and place it here. An audible click will be emitted.
  • Take your arrow and put it into the groove.

Shooting The Bow Correctly

Before you even consider shooting your bow, you must make sure that you are using the correct form. All too often, archers blame other aspects of the process without taking a look at how the stand and how they hold themselves.

However, by learning the correct form from the get-go, you will notice that your arrows are always on target.

Where other types of bow require one form, that of a crossbow is slightly different. This is because other sorts of bows are held vertically whereas a crossbow is held in a horizontal position.

According to experts, rather than aiming for the form used in other areas of archery, those shooting a crossbow should be studying the form used in rifle shooting. This is because the design of the crossbow is more similar in nature to this weapon, despite appearing like a traditional recurve bow or a modern compound bow.

When you begin practicing with a crossbow, you will likely notice that this is a rather cumbersome piece of equipment. Fortunately, the modern crossbows tend to be much lighter than some of the older models but they still require a good amount of strength. This confirms our earlier point regarding finding the right weight for you.

If the equipment is too heavy, you will not be able to hold your form and as a result, your accuracy will be off.

When you sight in your crossbow, you should do this from a bench in the same way you would sight in a rifle. As you look through the sight, you will want to make sure that your view is consistent every time, if it is not, once again, the accuracy will be affected.

You should be looking at a view that is crystal clear and centred as well as appearing sharp and it is worth taking the time to sight in the bow properly to avoid issues down the line.

Once you are ready to fire your arrow, it is important to maintain a consistent stance. One of the first things to keep in mind is where your cheek meets the crossbow. This point, known as the cheek weld, should always be the same. You might not think it, but just being slightly off can vastly divert your arrow.

It is also vital that you line your bow up correctly. This means that each of the limbs should be parallel to the ground atg equal distances. It is no use having one limb slightly lower than the other as this will cause the arrow to veer off.

One of the best ways to avoid this problem is to make sure that your bow is correctly fitted and while we keep coming back to this point, it is one of extreme importance. Furthermore, practicing will help you to naturally hold the crossbow correctly and after some time, you will be able to feel when it is level.

A crossbow, unlike other types of bow, is fired using a trigger. This is significantly different to other bows which are typically released using either the fingers or a bow release. This means that even if you have practiced with other archery equipment, you will need to work on your release if you want an accurate aim.

It is essential that you are vital when pulling the trigger, it should be gently squeezed as opposed to being tugged or pulled and it most definitely should not be jerked.

The reason behind this is simple, if the trigger is jerked, this will move the entire bow, throwing the arrow off course before it has had a chance to clear the bow and enter its flight.

A lot of crossbow users are tempted to fiddle with the trigger or adjust it but this is neither necessary or safe.

Doing this will almost certainly throw your arrow off course but it will also serve as a way of making the crossbow more dangerous to use. The reason for this is that messing with the trigger could cause it to fail.

Bow Maintenance

Much like any other piece of mechanical equipment, a crossbow needs to be well-maintained if it is going to function correctly.

After each shooting session, it can be helpful to give your crossbow the once over to ensure that there is no damage or that none of the components have come loose. Doing this will give you the opportunity to address problems right away rather than letting them become worse.

You should also check the condition of the bowstring, replacing it at the first signs of fraying or breaking. Most manufacturers will detail in the user manual that waxing the bowstring will lengthen its lifespan and this should be another key aspect of your bow maintenance.

Furthermore, you will need to lubricate various components of the bow, particularly the trigger box and axles. This will give it much smoother operation and help to prevent jerking or unnecessary movement when firing it.

Using The Right Arrows

Something that not a lot of people think about is the type of arrows that they are using. Sure, you might switch up the arrow type depending on the type of archery you are doing but have you ever considered that your arrow choice might impact your ability to maintain accurate shots?

When you purchase your crossbow, one of the first things that you should discuss with the person in the store is which arrows are recommended for your crossbow.

Unlike other types of bows, these often come with a specific type of arrow that is perfectly designed to be used with that exact bow. The things that might be different from one bow to the next in terms of what arrows are suitable could be the length of the arrow, the fletching, the weight, and even the materials.

Many are tempted to go for lighter arrows because these have a much faster flight. While this is true, it is better to have a more accurate arrow than one that flies quickly but never hits its target.

You should also make sure that, before every shot, you inspect your arrow to make sure that it is fit for shooting. If there is any damage, particularly if the arrow is bent or misshapen, this can result in it flying off course.


Firing a crossbow is an extremely rewarding activity, especially when you hit your target in just the right place. However, getting this level of accuracy every time you shoot requires a decent amount of practice.

But for some archers, this practice is not enough and this is because there are other aspects of shooting a crossbow that must be considered if you want to get it spot on.

This includes things such as correctly maintaining your bow, cocking it correctly and making sure that you have good form. Furthermore, you will also need to think about the type of arrows that you are using as most crossbow manufacturers recommend specific ones for their equipment.

All of this together, along with plenty of practice will help you to ensure far greater accuracy.

Without sighting your bow, there is a very high chance that you will not hit your target; at least, not without some kind of miraculous luck.

Shooting a bow requires a serious degree of consistency and precision if you want to get it right every time and having the right equipment, properly set up can make a significant difference.

When you shoot the arrow, gravity will pull at it from the moment it leaves the bow and this can cause it to drop. If your bow is not sighted in correctly, gravity will take over and you won’t be on target.

Taking the time to properly sight in your bow will improve your accuracy and consistency, making you a better archer.

In this article, we are going to show you how to effectively sight in your bow.

You may have noticed that there are a lot of laser devices out there to help with this. However, these are not typically recommended since manually sighting your bow is always going to yield the best results.

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How To Sight In A Bow

If you are new to archery, you will likely have never sighted in your bow until now. But we have put together these detailed sets of instructions to take you from beginning to end easily.

In order to correctly sight in your bow, you will need to fire some arrows. There may be claims out there telling you that you can sight in your bow without shooting it but you will never get the accuracy you need without testing the shots.

Getting Started

Before you even touch the bow, there are a few things that you will need to consider. Primarily, you will want to make sure that your bow is well-tuned; if it is not, there is very little point in trying to sight it.

Furthermore, you must make sure that your shots are consistent. If you do not then you will not be able to properly sight the bow, so if this needs work, it is worth working on this before getting started.

Secondly, you should make sure that you have your target prepared. In this instance, we would recommend using a large target, preferably a block. This is because you will need room for error when sighting in your bow and having a larger target will prevent lost arrows, especially at further distances.

Once the target is in place, you will need to mark up distances moving away from it. The best way to do this is by using a RangeFinder which can be easily sourced online.

You will need to place markers every ten yards up to 40 yards.

Never attempt to sight a bow if you are tired, you just won’t get the results you are looking for. If you begin the process and feel like you have had enough, don’t try to push it. There is no shame in leaving a pin or two for another day.

It is better to do this over the course of a couple of days that push yourself and get it wrong.

When you are tired, your shots are likely to be off and this won’t do you any favors.

Preparing The Sight

Before you can sight in your bow, you will need to find the right sight to use. Sights can be purchased online or at your local archery shop and are not incredibly expensive with most decent sights coming in around the $50 mark.

Now you will need to install the sight. In most cases, you will notice that your bow has pre-drilled holes for the sight to be attached. This will be held in places with screws, although it is important not to do this too tightly or it could damage the bow. But then again, you need to make sure that they are tight enough to hold the sight in place.

The sight will have a series of pins and you should always make sure that these pins are vertical to the bowstring once the sight is installed.

Sighting In The Bow

Now that you have everything prepared, it is time to get on with the actual sighting in. This is done by setting each pin at a different distance. This will take some time, so as we have already mentioned, if you get tired at any point, take a break and come back to it later.

Sight The First Pin

You will sight the first pin from the ten yard mark, but it will be sighted at 20 yards. Find a stance that is comfortable, most commonly this is with the body turned at a right angle from the target.

Look through the top pin of the sight and let a few arrows go. You will need to look at where the arrows landed in comparison to where the sight was. If they landed slightly above where you had intended, you will need to move the sight box up.

This process can then be repeated at the 20 yard mark. Once you are confident that the arrows are shooting in line with the sight, you can start to look at whether they are moving too far left or right.

If you notice that they are, then you can adjust the sight by moving it side to side. It is important to take your time with this to ensure that you get it spot on as once you are out in the field, you do not want to be off target.

Sight The Second Pin

When you are happy that the top pin has been successfully sighted, you will need to move to the 30 yard mark on the range. It is here that you will sight the second pin.

This time, you will look down the second pin and fire off a few arrows to judge where they land in comparison with the pin.

Now you will repeat the same process of adjusting the sight box and checking this against arrows fired until you are happy with the placement.

The second pin is of extra importance as it is used as the anchor of the bow and this means that once all the other pins are in place, it cannot be changed. For this reason, it is worth taking that little bit of extra time to get it spot on.

Sight The Third Pin

When you are ready, and you may have needed to take a break by this point, move to the forty yard mark and again, fire off a few arrows looking through the third pin.

Now take a look at where the arrows have landed and decide whether the sight needs to be moved up or down. The difference here is that unlike the others, where you moved the sight box, you will now only move the pin.

If your arrows are still too far to the left or right, this cannot be adjusted here. So, you must return to the thirty yard marker and adjust this here.

Go Back To 20 Yards

Now, you will need to go back to the twenty yard marker and test your shots again. Take the time to fire a group of arrows and make sure that everything is still in place.

If you need to make any further adjustment, you should do so by adjusting the pin and not the sight box this time.

Extra Pins

Some sights have more pins which are designed to be used from even greater distances, 50 yards and even 60 yards. If your sight has these, you should repeat the steps to sight these pins accordingly.

Can I Shoot A Compound Bow Without A Sight?

The truth is that it is entirely possible to shoot your compound bow without using a sight but that does not mean to say that it will be easy. In fact, this is something that new archers will almost certainly find extremely challenging.

That being said, practice makes perfect and there are several things that you can do to improve your shot when not using a sight.

  • Always make sure that your stance is correct. This is the foundation for a good shot and every expert archer will tell you that if your stance is off, so too will your shot be.
  • You must ensure that your grip on the bow is not too tight. If it is, this can create torque and throw off your accuracy. Instead, make sure that the weight of the bow is distributed evenly in the space between your thumb and forefinger.
  • Don’t rush the preparation for the shot. Take time to make sure that the arrow is properly nocked and not making contact with any other part of the bow.
  • Make sure that you practice your draw. Some people think that this merely involves pulling the bowstring back, but there is a technique and learning this will ensure a good draw every time.
  • Keep your eyes on the target in as straight a line as possible and ensure that your chin is parallel to the ground. Keeping the head in this position will further add to your ability to fire without a sight.
  • Don’t twist your body when firing the arrow as this will throw off your accuracy.

The above steps will help you to shoot your bow accurately without using a sight but it is important to keep in mind that this takes an intense amount of practice.

When you first begin archery, it is wise to use a sight as well as a peep sight to get your used to aiming. Once you have practised using these, you will be ready to move on to using a compound bow without a sight and take your archery skills to the next level.


While there may be people that tell you that you can sight in your bow without shooting it, doing this will likely result in a sight that is off. If you want the best results, you must release a series of arrows while adjusting the sight.

This can be a lengthy process so you should be prepared to dedicate time across a few days to do it. If you do not, you may find that your shots are off and the bow will not be sighted in properly.

If you have never shot a bow before, you could be forgiven for thinking that it was an easy task; surely all you need to do is pick it up, draw it and let go, right?

But that is not the case. Drawing a bow is not the easiest thing in the world and there are certain techniques that you must use if you want to do it successfully.

In this article, we are going to look at ways to make a compound bow easier to pull back.

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Are Compound Bows Hard To Pull Back?

Due to the cam and cable system on a compound bow, the draw weight is much easier to hold. However, don’t be fooled into thinking that just because of this, the bow will be easy to pull back.

A lot of people are under the false belief that buying a compound bow will mean that they do not have to put in as much effort. In reality, it is very different.

When you pull the compound bow back initially, it will be just the same as pulling back any other type of bow. The difference comes when you are at full draw. At this point, your bow will take most of the weight and you will be able to keep it drawn for longer if you need to, of course.

It is vital that when choosing a compound bow, you look at the draw weight and you should always make sure that you test the bow before purchasing. The last thing you want is to be working with a bow that is too heavy.

Many people think that because they are fit and healthy, they will be able to draw a heavy bow, but you shouldn’t make this decision until you have tested the bow.

We all have different abilities and there is nothing wrong with going for a lighter bow and being successful in shooting it. Rather that, than go for a heavy bow that is difficult for you to use.

It is also worth considering how the body works when doing archery. Even if you are adept in other sports, you should still go for a lighter bow, to begin with. This will allow you to build the muscles that we frequently use in archery and then when you are able, you can move on to a heavier bow.

The Correct Way Of Drawing A Compound Bow

The accuracy and precision of your shot begin from the moment you pick up your bow. It is not by chance that pro archers are able to hit their targets every time. This requires practice, patience and above all, the right techniques.

It might look easy but there is a right way to draw your compound bow and doing this is something you should learn right from the beginning.

You will need to begin by having the hands in line with the nose, extended in front of your face. Your release hand and your grip hand should also line up with the target.

The grip hand will need to stay at the same height as the nose; try to stay as steady as possible. The release hand will be used to pull the bowstring back.

Your body will tell you whether you are drawing the bow correctly, so pay attention to how the muscles in your arm and back are feeling; you should feel them moving as you draw.

 It is important not to lead with your upper arm muscles as this is an incorrect technique and could result in you becoming injured. Always be sure to let the elbow lead the draw.

However, you will also notice that your release hand follows a downward line as you draw the bow and your shoulder rotates inwards towards the back.

Once your hand comes in line with your jawbone, you must locate your anchor point, doing this will allow you to aim safely for your target. You will also need to make sure that you pay attention to your stance as this can have a dramatic impact on how well you shoot.

Ways To Make A Compound Bow Easier To Draw

Once you are aware of the correct technique for drawing your compound bow, you can begin to work on making the task easier.

What a lot of people are not prepared for when they start archery is that they will need to work on their strength. It takes a lot to pull back the bow and doing exercises can go a long way in ensuring that you are strong enough for this.

One of the best ways to strengthen your muscles and become more easily able to draw your compound bow is to work with a resistance band. These can be picked up from most fitness stores and online. Let’s take a look at how you can use one.

Bow Drawing With a Resistance Band

This is one of the easier yet most effective methods and will also help your technique no end.

To begin with, you will need to fold the resistance band in half and take each end with each of your hands. Move your shoulder blades into the centre of your back and keep pulling on the band.

Extend the right hand while you keep your left hand drawn tightly to your face; now swap. Keep repeating this as many times as you need.


Holding a plank can take some serious strength and a lot of people dread doing this move in their work out sessions.

However, this is one of the best exercises for building and maintaining strength, both in the upper body and in the core. These are key areas when it comes to archery so it is vital that you take the time to work on them.

You might begin with holding your plank for thirty seconds and then taking a thirty-second break. As your strength builds, you will be able to hold the position for longer periods.

Arm Spreaders

It might sound like some sort of medieval torture method but this exercise is essential for archers who want to be able to draw their bow effortlessly.

Take your resistance band and hold it with one hand at either end; place it in front of your chest. As you pull the band outwards, your shoulder blade will come together

Once you are at your limit, begin to slowly bring the band back to the centre. You can repeat the motion as many times as you please.

This one is great for building the muscles in both the arms and the shoulders; you will soon notice how much easier it is to draw your bow.

Muscle Strength

You’ve worked hard so far building your strength, so why not take a seat for this last exercise?

But don’t be fooled into thinking that it will be easy, you are still going to have to do some work.

Take your resistance band and pop it under your legs with each end sticking out so that you can take hold of them with your two hands. Now pull the band upwards to your limit and hold it here for a second before releasing it back down again.

Some people go into this exercise thinking that they will be able to pull the resistance band all the way up, and for some, this will be the case. However, don’t be disheartened if you can only pull it a short way on your first try. That’s the point of doing these exercises; to improve, you will get there.

This is another great exercise for building the muscles in your shoulders and arms. The number of reps you can do may not be very many, to begin with, but as you keep at it, you will notice how you are able to do more and more.


If you have just started with archery, you may believe that pulling your compound bow back is easy; but you will soon find that there is a level of strength required to do this.

One of the best ways to make pulling your bow back as easy as possible is to make sure that you have a bow that is the correct weight for you. You can do this by talking to a professional at your local archery shop and trying out the bow before you buy.

However, it is also very important to work on your strength, and there are several exercises that you can do to build strength and work out your muscles.

You will then notice how much easier it feels to draw your compound bow and get your arrows on target every time!

Depending on where you take your bow, and the type of equipment you are using, the price that it will cost to restring may vary.

One of the most important things is to do your research and fully understand the ins and outs of restringing a bow, as this will allow you to source the best deal for you and will prevent you from overspending.

This article will give you all of the information on how much it costs to restring a bow and any variants on this.

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Why Is It Important To Restring Your Bow?

There are several reasons why bow maintenance is essential; of course, the most obvious thing would be that the device’s performance would be adversely affected if it is not well-maintained. Furthermore, you will find that your bow remains much more consistent with each shot when the strings are in good condition.

What Does Restringing Mean?

Restringing your bow simply means to replace its strings. As you use the bow, you will find that the quality and effectiveness of the strings will deteriorate. Replacing them regularly is the only way to ensure that your bow’s performance remains where it should.

There is no right or wrong time to restring the bow, and you will need to learn when it is time, but you might consider how much it has been used or whether you feel that you can continue shooting it effectively. Some people schedule in a restringing every so often as part of their overall bow maintenance, and if you use your bow consistently, you may be able to work out how frequently it needs doing. However, there is some suggestion that as little as every two years is acceptable.

How Much Do Bow String Cost?

One of the most important things to think about when getting new strings for your bow is the cost of the strings themselves. If you can do the work yourself, then the overall cost will be much less because you won’t need to fork out for labor –  but we will look at that in a little more detail later on.

As with anything, you will pay for quality, and so it is essential to look at the different strings on offer. Sadly, it is unlikely that you will find exceptionally durable strings and sound quality without spending a little more. In contrast, you might consider that since this is something that does not need to be done very often, investing in top of the range strings could be a sensible idea.

It is entirely possible to pick up a set of bow strings for as little as $60; however, if you want something a little more high-end, you might expect to pay in excess of $200. But as we have mentioned, going for quality will ensure that the strings last longer, and you will likely spend less over time than if you have to keep replacing less durable strings.

How Much Does It Cost To Restring A Bow?

If you are going to be using your bow a lot, it may be a wise idea to learn how to master the art of restringing yourself. This will save you a lot of money in labor costs.

However, it is essential to remember that this process does take a certain degree of skill and at times, many even be risky – if you are in any doubt whatsoever, it is a better idea to take your bow to a professional who will ensure the work is carried out safely and correctly.

It is also worth considering that if the strings are not correctly fitted, the performance and longevity of the strings will be vastly compromised.

But when you learn that it can cost as little as $20 to have a new set of strings installed on your bow, you begin to appreciate that this is a very affordable price, especially considering the frequency of the job.

What Factors Affect The Cost Of Restringing A Bow?

Of course, there are things that will affect how much it costs to restring your bow, and this could be a minor consideration, such as your location.

However, in the main, there are three things that will affect how much you are expected to pay to restring your bow;

  • The quality of the strings, as we have learned, will massively affect the cost. This is potentially the factor with the most considerable difference.
  • The service you receive may depend on the experience of the person fitting the strings as well as where the store is located.
  • Customizing the strings may also impact the price. It is possible to choose custom colors, and depending on the brand, you might pay varying costs. However, it is crucial to keep in mind that the brand does not always have a bearing on the quality of the strings. It is far wiser to test the strings and make a decision based on user- experience over a well-known name.

All in all, thinking about the cost of the strings and the service to install them onto the bow, you can expect to pay an average of $150, assuming that you have not opted to top of the range strings. Even at this price, you would expect to receive a service that is second to none and strings that will perform for a lengthy period of time.

Can I Restring My Bow At Home?

It is absolutely viable to restring your bow at home, although because this is something of an art, you may need to practice a little before you get it right. Over time, however, this will save you a little cash since you will avoid paying a fitting fee.

As we have already discussed, not fitting the strings properly can be very problematic, so following our top tips for restringing a bow is essential.

  • The first step is to locate the limb bolts that connect to the riser of the bow and insert an Allen wrench into them. You must turn the wrench counterclockwise until the pressure is released, then step onto the bow riser so that it remains in a fully drawn position.
  • Next, take the bow with one hand and use your other hand to insert the strings into the teardrop fittings at either end of the device. You can then begin to lower the bow until such a point that the limbs return to their normal position.
  • You should be sure to place the strings into the correct grooves and then prepare to remove the old ones.
  • Once again, you will need to step onto the bow and achieve a fully drawn position before removing the old strings and lowering the bow back down.
  • The final step is to retighten the bolts and ensure that everything is firmly in place.


Many people may be under the impression that restringing a bow takes a lot of time, effort, and cash. But this could not be further from the truth.

Fortunately, you will only need to restring your bow every two to three years, unless you are using it very heavily. This means that the small cost of restringing a bow does not come very often.

On average, and with all things considered, you can expect to pay around $150 to restring your bow, but this may alter slightly depending on certain factors like whether you can do it yourself and the quality of the strings.


An arrow rest is a great way to ensure accuracy and efficiency with every shot of the bow. What’s more, these small yet incredibly significant devices allow you to keep your bow in better condition for longer, since the arrow will not make contact with it and will, therefore, not cause it to wear.

There are two main types of arrow rest; the static rest and drop away rests. But is the latter worth investing in? Many would argue that yes, it is whereas others would say that a static rest is preferable.

In this article, we are going to be looking at the many reasons why drop away rests are an excellent choice for both experienced archers and those who are new to this activity. We will also be showing you a selection of our favourite drop away rests that are sure to improve your hunting skills.

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What Is A Drop Away Rest?

Unlike a static arrow rest, which remains on the bow at all times, a drop away rest will drop away from the bow as soon as the arrow is released. Some models will fall away entirely, whereas others are designed to rotate or allow the arrow through without interference or may be pulled down to achieve the same result.

It is important to remember that a drop away arrow rest will do the same job no matter which type you select; that being said, there are two variations on this type of device.

Limb Driven Drop Away Rests

A limb driven arrow rest features a cable that runs from the arrow rest to either the bottom or top limb of the bow. When you draw the bow, this cable will draw the limb inwards, and in turn, it allows the arrow rest to move into position. Once the arrow is released, the drop away rest will move back down again thanks to the cable being released.

These are a great choice if you are new to archery since these drop away rests are very easy to install and even easier to maintain. Primarily, you will notice that they do not need a bow press should the cable snap, but they are also easier to use as they do not need to be as precisely set up as some other options.

Cable Driven Drop Away Rests

It may sound somewhat confusing since the limb driven rest uses a cable to operate; however, while the two work similarly, there is a crucial difference with the cable-driven rest.

Where a limb driven rest would attach to the bow via the limb, a cable-driven rest is attached to the bow’s bus cable. When you draw the bow, and the line moves downwards, your cable driven rest moves with it, thus bringing the rest into the correct position and falling away again once you release your arrow.

These drop away rests can be a little more tricky to use and so may not be suitable for beginners or anyone who wants something easy to maintain. They must be set up far more precisely and are a lot more challenging to mend in the event that they snap.

The Benefits Of Using A Drop Away Rest

There are many benefits to using a drop away rest and millions of archers around the world swear by these handy little devices. If you are unsure whether to install one on your bow, it can help to explore some of the advantages.


When using a static rest, particularly if you are using a full-capture rest, there is the chance that the flight path of the arrow could be affected. This isn’t a common problem since so many people still use these rests without issue. However, if you want to be sure that your accuracy will always be spot on then using a drop away rest may be the solution.

Less Contact With The Arrow

One of the main benefits with a static arrow rest is that it prevents the arrow from having any contact with the bow. This is beneficial for both the bow and the arrow since both are subject to wear if they are allowed to rub against one another frequently enough.

However, a static rest will have quite a lot of contact with the arrow, which will not only affect the accuracy as we have already discussed, but this may also damage the arrow.

A drop away rest has the least contact possible with the arrow so you can feel confident that your arrows will remain intact for much longer.

When you are ready to release the arrow, the drop away rest will move out of the way just before the fletchings, so there is minimal, if any contact with the arrow.


Due to the increased contact of the static arrow rest, there is a small chance that this could affect the speed of the arrow. This is even more true if you are using a whisker biscuit, whereas, with a drop-away rest, the speed of the arrow won’t ever be affected.


Drop away rests are a great choice for archers who want an arrow rest that offers improved precision, unparalleled speed and ease of use. They have far less contact with the arrow than a static rest and so many improve your accuracy and will do less damage to your equipment.

Many people around the world have a passion for archery but not all of us are fortunate enough to live on the edge of a hunting woodland or have easy access to an archery club. If you want to practice, why not try your hand in your own backyard?

The problem is that around the world, the laws for backyard archery vary greatly and in some places, there are restrictions that prevent you from being able to engage in your hobby on your own private land.

But this is purely because of safety reasons and the laws are in place to make sure that you and everyone around your property are kept safe and free from harm. So, even if you feel that your local laws are unfair, it is important to abide by them.

But the good news is that, with some restrictions, it is possible to create a backyard archery target and enjoy target practice right on your back doorstep.

In this article, we are going to be looking at how to set up an archery range in your backyard as well as giving you some important advice on safety and the law.

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Types Of Backyard Archery Targets

You might feel that setting up a shooting range in your backyard leaves you with limited options, but the opposite is, in fact, true. There are many different types of backyard archery targets that you can use depending on your space, what’s available to you, and of course, your personal preference.

3D Targets

If you practice bowhunting, 3D targets can make a great choice for your backyard. Even if you do not intend on honing your skills to get out into the hunting field, you may still wish to use this type of target for the fun factor it brings.

What is great about a 3D target is how long-lasting it can be. Unlike other types of target, there is the option to replace the core so you end up getting a lot more use out of your target than you would with say, a block target.

With such a huge range of 3D targets on the market, you can, funds permitting, set up a very realistic and exciting backyard range. You might invest in a few pieces and strategically place them around the garden to imitate conditions in the wild. Or if you just fancy having a bit of fun, there are some excellent novelty 3D targets like the lifesize Sasquatch!

One word about 3D targets; if you choose to use broadhead arrows, there is a chance that they could get lodged in the target and will break as you try to get them out. For this reason, it is best to save these for when you are out in the field.

Block Targets

A block target is an excellent option for beginners as there isn’t much that can go wrong. These classic garden targets are made from several layers of foam and are held up on a stand. They are extremely easy to set up and give you everything you need in one product.

One of the greatest things about these types of targets is that the foam used in modern products is ‘self-healing’ and this means that you won’t need to replace your target anywhere near as frequently as you would have had to have done with older block targets

The downside is that due to the nature of the foam, the block target is quite limiting in how it can be used. You cannot fire from all angles and must only shoot from the front. Otherwise, you risk damaging the foam.

Paper Targets

A paper target is exactly what you would imagine it to be; a target made from paper. Now, of course, you cannot use this alone, it is not designed for use with an arrow. For this reason, you must always use a backdrop when using a paper target – we will talk in more depth about backdrops late in this article.

The good thing about the paper target is that it is extremely affordable. You can buy these ten to the dozen at archery shops, or you can print them out for free. Even if you do not have a printer, you can simply draw a target onto some paper and pop it onto your backdrop – it really is that simple.

However, you must consider how many of these targets you will get through. They are designed to be disposable and you will likely get through at least one in a session, potentially more. We would always advise recycling the paper when you are done.

Bag Targets

A bag target is filled with synthetic material and is a durable target that is designed in such a way that makes it ideal for backyard shooting. The material inside the bag allows the archer to remove their arrows easily without causing damage to either the target or the projectile.

They are great because they are so easy to pick up and move to a new location but also because they have targets on all four sides, giving you a much more detailed practice.

But much like any other type of target, there is a downside. Bag targets don’t tend to be very waterproof so you will need to find somewhere to store them when they are not being used. Most bag targets aren’t huge and will fit in an outbuilding or storage cupboard.

Homemade Targets

Just because there are options on the market for your backyard archery target, that doesn’t mean you have to splash out on one. It is entirely possible to craft your own backyard archery target using things that you already have.

Not only does this save money, but it will also put things to good use that perhaps wouldn’t have seen the light of day otherwise.

If you have some spare hay bales lying around, these can make an excellent makeshift archery target, especially when used with a paper target.

Things To Consider When Setting Up Backyard Archery

Choosing which type of target you would like to use is one of the most important points, but this is, by no means, the only thing you need to think about.

There is much more to setting up your backyard archery target than throwing together a target and drawing your bow. Before you get down to the nitty-gritty of perfecting your aim, you should think about the following things.

Local Laws

Depending on where you live in the world, the laws on backyard archery may be vastly different. There are some places where the practice is permitted but with certain conditions in place. For example, in certain areas, you may not shoot your bow within a certain distance from a dwelling.

But the problem lies in the local laws because, in the USA, where there are more archers than any other country in the world, these laws can be drastically different from one place to the next. There are typically no federal or state laws that dictate that an archer must not shoot in his or her backyard.

However, there may be local laws that place restrictions on this, it is simply not worth incurring a penalty so we would always advise checking your local laws before setting up your range.


One of the things that should be near the top, if not right at the top, of your priority list is making sure that your home archery range is safe. An arrow, when shot, has the potential to seriously injure or even kill anything or anyone in its path. We cannot stress enough the importance of creating a safe environment so that you can enjoy your hobby.

If you have any neighbors, it is vital to ensure that your yard is secure and fenced in so that there is no risk of any neighborhood children or pets wandering into your yard without your knowledge.

That being said, if you have other people living at the property with you, especially children, it is crucial that you lay out ground rules for the archery range. These rules might include any or all of the following:

  • There will be a shooting line, and no-one is to cross that line while bows are in hand.
  • Pets will be secured on a leash or kept inside the house while shooting is taking place.
  • Give a verbal signal to anyone in proximity when you are about to shoot your bow.

As well as coming up with some important safety rules for your backyard archery range, it is a wise idea to speak to your neighbors about your intentions. While there is potentially nothing that your neighbors can do legally about you shooting in your yard; provided you aren’t breaking any laws, they may be concerned about it.

Giving them a heads up that you intend to practice is the decent thing to do. Furthermore, if your neighbors do have any worries, you will be able to discuss these and put their minds at ease. Perhaps explaining the setup and how you intend to keep everyone, including them, safe, will be enough to sate their anxiety.

In terms of other people, you should also be mindful to never shoot in the direction of a public walkway or towards the road. There are many local laws that will state this.


It can be easy to assume that creating a backyard archery range is as easy as placing your target wherever there is space and getting on with it. But this is not the case, if you want the best shooting experience that will give you the most effective practice, then it is crucial that you measure out the area.

The first thing that you will need to do is to work out the distances from which you are going to shoot. Depending on the type of archery you prefer, these distances may vary.

If you play competitive archery, you will only need to look at the rules of your competition to determine the distances. However, for bowhunters, you may wish to go for a variety of distances; we will look at the importance of this a little later on.

Depending on the space you have, you may wish to make the most of all areas. Some archers will open a side gate and shoot from the front of the property, all the way through to the back end.


Backstops are essential for several reasons but primarily, they are there for safety and no backyard archery target would be complete without one.

While some seasoned archers may feel that they do not need a backstop, you can guarantee that a friend or family member will want to try their hand at backyard archery so it is vital that you have one in place.

The idea of this type of equipment is to stop any arrows that do not hit the target. Not only will the backstop prevent these rogue arrows from flying into the neighbor’s yard or hitting a passerby, but they will also stop you from losing your arrows.

Many people choose to use their regular garden fence as a backstop and while this would do the job effectively, it may serve as a way of damaging your arrows. Typically, something a lot softer is preferable.

Furthermore, when the arrows hit the wooden fence, this can be quite noisy and may be enough to irritate your neighbors to the point that they begin complaining. If you must use your fence as a backdrop, it can be a good idea to put something over it to prevent noise or damaged arrows. A rubber mat or old piece of carpet is a good choice.

Many people choose to use bales of hay stacked up on top of one another as their backstop. If you live in a farming area, these may be very easy to come across and will not damage your arrows as a wooden fence would.

Alternatively, you might choose to invest in a flexible backdrop that can be hung in the backyard. These are usually made from a flexible material that is specifically designed for stopping misfired arrows. That being said, while it is a very effective option, it is also quite pricey so you will need to be prepared to fork out for this.

Additional Equipment

While your target and backdrop will be enough to get started, many archers like to add some additional equipment to get the most from their backyard shooting experience.

One of the most common types of this equipment is a bow stand. Once again, you can purchase this purpose-made or you may decide to fashion your own and there are many instructional videos online to help you do this.

Sometimes, you will find that your arrows get so lodged into the target that they are almost impossible to pull out. But an arrow puller can aid you with this and will stop you from having to lose stubborn arrows. This simple piece of equipment is designed to get a better grip on the arrow making it easier to remove.

Realistic Practice

Earlier, we mentioned how bowhunters should be prepared to practice at varying distances. The main reason for this is that when you are out hunting, it is highly unlikely that your prize target is going to be at exactly 20 or 40 yards. For this reason, you should always set up your backyard range with a selection of distances. This will allow you to become adept in various situations.

You should also think about where you are shooting from. When you are out hunting, you are going to be presented with so many different situations and it is good to practice all of these. You might practice shooting downhill by setting up a platform somewhere in your range and placing 3D targets lower down.

While we wouldn’t suggest using broadheads as your usual backyard arrow, it is a good idea to practice with these from time to time to get a feel for how they work. Target arrows are great but they do handle differently to broadheads.


Archery is not a sport that you can pick up whenever you feel like it and still be as good as the last time you picked up a bow months ago. To be successful, you need consistent practice. However, this may not always be possible, especially if you live in a place where archery cannot be easily practiced.

But there is a potential solution to this problem; setting up a backyard archery target. Whether you choose to install a single target or create an elaborate shooting range, this is a great way to maintain a regular practice.

You must be sure to check your local laws and make sure that you keep safety as your main priority. You are then free to choose from one of the many types of backyard targets and let your imagination run wild.

Why Is Follow-Through Important In Archery?

If you shoot a compound bow then you will have likely been told about the importance of follow-through. Sadly, a lot of archers don’t put enough focus on this and do not realise that this may be having an effect on their overall performance.

In this article, we are going to be looking at why follow-through is important and how you can make sure that you always use it.

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What Is Follow Through?

One of the most common mistakes made by new archers, and sometimes, even those who have been practising for many years is that they believe that the shot is over once the arrow has been released.

There are ten main steps to an archery shot, and follow-through is the last of these, and it occurs after the arrow has been released. If the follow-through is not executed correctly, you will likely notice that your shot has much less power and your accuracy may be affected.

As you draw your bow, a lot of energy and tension builds up in both the arm and the bow; this needs to be allowed to naturally expand after the shot has been fired. Unlike some of the other positions that you might have practised in archery, the follow-through is not a static pose but more of a flowing action.

If the entire shot is done correctly, you will notice how the release and the follow-through form one movement.

How To Do An Archery Follow-Through

Each step of the archery shot is just as important as the one that preceded it and the one that will come after.

The tenth and final step, the follow-through is much more crucial than a lot fo newbie archers first suspect; they might even feel that it requires learning something that doesn’t really matter.

But that is not the case. With that in mind, let’s now take a look at the essential components that make up a successful follow-through.

  • Before you release the arrow, you must be prepared to complete the release and follow-through in one smooth motion, so give yourself a moment to check your stance.
  • Keep your fingers on the drawing hand nice and relaxed. Make sure that you keep your back muscles engaged as this is an important part of your drawing stance. The shoulder blades will move in towards the spine as your drawing arm will move back.
  • The hand on your drawing arm should be located near to the face, just at the back of the ear.
  • Even after the arrow has been fired, you will need to remain in the same position, keeping the bow held up by the bow arm.
  • Keep applying back tension until such time that the arrow reaches the target. You can now lower your bow arm and your drawing arm.

Mistakes That Are Made During Follow Through

Much like any other step in releasing a bow, it is important that you practice your follow-through and learn from your mistakes. But if nobody ever tells you where you are going wrong, how are you supposed to know?

It may surprise you to learn that many archers find the follow-through one of the most complex things to learn. Oftentimes, this will be the last thing that they get right, so looking at your errors is even more crucial if you want consistency and accuracy.

To help you, we have put together a list of some of the most common follow-through mistakes and how you can rectify them.


If you have only just begun to use a bow, you have probably done what is known as peaking, and you won’t be alone. A lot of beginners find that they do this, but once you are aware of it, it can be much easier to stop.

Peaking happens when you release the arrow and tilt your head, and the bow, to one side to look at where your arrow has gone.

Try to resist this urge to take a look and wait until the follow-through is complete; you will likely notice vast improvements in your consistency.

Lowering The Bow Too Soon

The other common mistake that new archers make is that they lower their bow too quickly after firing the arrow. The reason that this can cause a problem is simple when you think about it.

If the arrow has not fully cleared the bow, drawing it down prematurely could affect the course of the arrow, putting it off-target. This doesn’t mean that the bow even has to touch the arrow, but the mere energy of the nerdy movement could be enough to throw the arrow off-course.

The best way to avoid problems here is to keep your bow in position until you are sure that the arrow has hit its target.


Archery is a very intricate sport and requires a lot of dedication from people who wish to practice it to a high standard.

Releasing the arrow is not the end of the shot, and the follow-through is also an important aspect. This fluid movement between releasing the arrow and lowering your bow should not be taken lightly and is something that, when done correctly, will massively improve your accuracy and your consistency.