About Brad Harris

When doing archery, there are a lot of things to think about, but one of the things that are often overlooked, especially by beginners, is the stance.

Standing and holding yourself correctly can make an enormous difference to your overall performance and allow you to improve your aim.

There are several things that you can do to improve your stance, and you should always make sure that you are working on your stance every time you practice.

In this article, we are going to be looking at the correct way to hold yourself when doing archery, as well as looking at some of the common mistakes relating to stance and how you can fix these.

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Why Is A Good Stance Important In Archery?

You may have heard beginners complaining that they cannot consistently get their arrow into the center of the target. Similarly, if you are a beginner, you may have wondered why things aren’t going quite as you had planned them.

The truth is that if your equipment is working well, then it is likely your stance that is the problem.

Having a good stance when shooting a bow and arrow is vital as this gives you a solid foundation for your shot. In turn, this will allow you to have a much more accurate shot. Furthermore, you will notice that using the correct stance gives you much more consistency and, therefore, fewer missed shots.

A Proper Archery Stance

Before we look at tips to improve your stance, it is important to think about what a proper archery stance looks like. In the main, there are four stances that are considered to be correct. However, you should also think about how you feel comfortable. If you are not entirely comfortable, the chances are that your shot will be off anyway as your mind will be more focused on any discomfort you might be feeling.

It can be challenging to remember the finer details of each of the main archery stances, but there are some basics that you can keep in mind to give you a perfect stance.

  • Your feet should be shoulder-width apart, and you should not be slouched – stand up straight.
  • Try not to lean to one side or another; this can be done by making sure that your weight is evenly distributed between both feet.
  • Make sure that your legs are relaxed and that you do not lock your knees.
  • Don’t let the weight of the bow cause you to lean back or forwards; this can be tempting but try to remain perfectly upright.

Once you have got the basics to a proper archery stance covered, you can begin to look at the four main stances and really start to get a feel for how you should compose yourself.

The Square Stance

This is a great choice for those who are just getting started as it is the most simple. When you begin doing archery, it is crucial to choose one stance and stick with it. You can change this or experiment with others when you are more confident.

The square stance involves standing sideways on to the target. It is essential to make sure that your bow arm is closest to the target. The feet will be perpendicular to the target, and the shoulder and hips side-on.

The Open Stance

Once you have gotten familiar with the square stance, you will likely feel that the open stance is the natural progression from this. The two are very much the same only with the open stance, your front foot will be pointing outwards slightly.

The foot will typically point out at a 25-30º angle, and this will cause the shoulders and hips to open up towards the target a little more. What’s more, when using this stance, archers typically find it easier to keep the shoulders back due to the back muscles being freer to work.

The Natural Stance

This is a good choice of stance for those who want to use an open stance but face towards the target a little more.

In this instance, you will place the feet in a similar position to the open stance but with the back foot pointing more towards the target as well.

Using this stance will open the gap between the bow and your body, which some people find a little easier to work with.

The Closed Stance

For people who find that they need a longer draw length, the closed stance is often a good choice. In this variation, the feet are positioned in the opposite manner to the open stance, with the back foot pointing away from the target.

The Components Of A Proper Archery Stance

Of course, the above stances are a great place to start, but if you really want to get your stance on point, you must practice some of the finer details. It can feel intimidating as an amateur but getting off on the right footing is imperative.

Take a look at these top tips for ensuring that your stance is always spot on.

  • The torso should remain in an upright position so that the collarbone is level with the arrow.
  • If you find that you have problems with leaning forward, backward, or to the side, it may be that your bow doesn’t fit you correctly, so you should be seen at an archery shop.
  • The head should be facing downrange, and your chin should always be level with the ground.
  • The release arm elbow needs to be pointing directly away from the target, and the forearm should be parallel with the ground. The bow arm elbow must be pointing outwards and slightly down.
  • The shoulder should position naturally if your arms and elbows are positioned correctly. But it is essential to make sure that your shoulders are not leaning forward or backward as this can drastically affect your shot.
  • You will also want to think about your anchor point. The type of bow you are using will have an effect on this. If you use a recurve bow, your anchor point will be on the chin, or the corner, whereas those using a compound bow will anchor along the jaw.

Archery Stance Mistakes And How To Fix Them

If you begin your archery journey without ensuring that you are using the correct stance, this can lead to your overall performance being affected every time you shoot.

Whether you have fallen into bad habits from the get-go or want to make sure that you don’t develop any from the beginning, it pays to be familiar with some of the most common archery stance mistakes.


One of the biggest problems that archers face is that they do not use a consistent stance. Imagine trying to write your name with a different hand or even different fingers every time; you can imagine that the results would vary immensely each time. The same is true for your archery stance.

It is important to find a stance that you feel comfortable with and stick with it. Your center of gravity will change with even the slightest adjustment of the feet, so it is vital that you practice staying in the same position for every shot.

If you struggle to do this, you can place some tape on the ground where you normally practice, and this will give you a reference point for each foot. You won’t always need this. After you have practiced for a while, your stance will become second nature for you.

Elbow Rotation

The elbow may seem like a small and even insignificant part of the body, but it is one of the most important when it comes to archery.

You should always make sure that your bow arm’s elbow rotates straight and not at an angle. Not only can this have an effect on your aim and accuracy, but you could also stand to become injured shooting this way.

The best way to ensure correct elbow rotation is to rotate it before you raise your bow; this way, it will be in position from the off. This will also help the rest of your upper body remain in the correct position.

A Strong Shot

It is not uncommon for archers to aim too soon and, therefore, sabotage what could have been a very effective shot. This happens when you do not produce a strong shot, and in turn, you will notice that your arrow flies lower or veers off to the side.

What’s more, this is something that can be easily resolved. Many archers find that the cause for this is that they are focused too much on their aim and omitting to concentrate on moving in the correct way.

All you need to do is shift your focus, and you will likely find that the problem does not persist.


Your hook relates to the finger position on the bowstring, and this is an important part of your overall stance. It is a good idea to pay attention to where you place your fingers rather than blindly grabbing at the bowstring.

Doing this will ensure that your shots are always accurate and will prevent you from developing blisters on the fingers, which can be uncomfortable at best, painful at worst.


There is no denying that there are plenty of intricacies involved in archery and getting everything lined up correctly is the secret to a good shot.

But while beginners could be forgiven for thinking that how you hold your bow and how you fire are the most important things, it is a lot more simple than that. The way that you stand, or your stance, is one of the most important parts of archery.

There are several different stances that are commonly used, and it is important to find one that feels comfortable and works for you. However, it goes further than merely your feet; your entire body will need to be perfectly aligned to make sure that you achieve consistency, accuracy, and the best performance.

In modern archery, there are two main types of bow that are used; the recurve bow, which is more reminiscent of a traditional bow and the compound bow which is a more mechanical and modern piece of equipment.

Many archers opt for a compound bow due to their ease of use and great build quality. However, if you really want to get to know your equipment well, learning how it works is a great step forward.

In this article, we will be looking at how a compound bow works as well as everything you need to know before using one.

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What Is A Compound Bow?

A compound bow is a modern piece of archery equipment that is used to shoot an arrow at a target; they are frequently used in both target archery as well as out in the field for bowhunters.

This type of bow operates on a system based around a series of cables and pulleys; this might sound complicated, but the technology behind it might not be as mind-boggling as you might first think.

What Is The Difference Between A Compound Bow And A Traditional Bow?

Humans have been using a bow and arrows for as long as 60,000 years, potentially more so it stands to reason that when we talk about ‘traditional’ bows, we could be referring to a vast number of items. For the purposes of this article, the traditional bow is a longbow or a recurve bow. These pieces of archery equipment are very useful and are favoured by many archers the world over. However, the energy is stored within the bow and in short, the further back you draw the bow, the more energy is transferred into the arrow; thus sending it further. However, if you have ever used a recurve bow, you will know that you, the archer, are responsible for taking the entire weight of the draw and this can be something of a challenge, especially if you aren’t going to release the arrow right away.

In contrast, a compound bow features an intricate system of pulleys and cams, and these will take much of the weight of the draw. This makes it far easier to hold the bow steadily and release an arrow that hits the target. In most cases, a compound bow will take as much as 80% of the total draw weight, so it isn’t difficult to see how much simpler it can be to use one.

Where Did The Compound Bow Come From?

As far back as time itself, men and women have been using bow and arrow equipment for hunting and for sport. However, it was not until quite recently that the compound bow was developed and it has undoubtedly changed the way that we shoot.

In the 1960s, a man named Holiss Wilbur designed the compound bow and in 1969 was given a patent for this design. Since this time, the compound bow has grown in popularity, so much so that in the Olympic games, archers are required to use this type of equipment if they want to compete.

But the original compound bow differed rather significantly from the compounds bows that we are used to working with today. Initially, Mr Wilbur simply removed the curved ends from the recurve bow and attached a simple pulley system. Unfortunately, this did not function in the way he had imagined, and he needed to go back to the drawing board. At this point, he started working on the pulley system that we are familiar with today, and despite having undergone several updates throughout the last fifty years, the compound bow he created then is much the same as what archers are using in modern times.

What Are The Benefits Of Using A Compound Bow?

There are people who prefer to use a more traditional type of bow, and this is mainly because they choose to go for a more conventional type of archery, and there are many benefits to this.

However, there is no denying that the unique and modern technology that is used on a compound bow delivers an incredible number of advantages.

Primarily, you will notice that when shooting a compound bow, the speed at which the arrow travels is far greater than a recurve bow. Furthermore, a compound bow has a much more significant amount of power, and this directly translates to arrows being able to travel over a further distance. In fact, it is commonly accepted that while a recurve bow can fire an arrow to around 30 yards, an archer using a compound bow might be able to fire their arrows double this distance, with an average of 60 yards.

In addition to this, a compound bow offers a much more accurate shot, and this is mostly in relation to how the bow works. When you draw your compound bow, the cams and pulley system takes much of the draw weight. With you less focused on maintaining this weight, you are able to hold the bow more steadily and for a longer time. This gives you the chance to perfect your aim and keep each arrow precisely on target.

A compound bow is far easier to use, and many modern archers go straight to this type of equipment when starting out in the sport. You would not need anywhere near as much practice when using a compound bow, and this relates, once again to how the bow functions.

Finally, since these bows are built with the modern archer in mind, they are a lot easier to customise meaning that you can add a variety of different sights and other accessories far more easily than on a recurve bow.

How Does A Compound Bow Work?

Admittedly a compound bow is a little more complex than any other sort of bow, but in order to understand how it works, it is essential that we look at the various parts of the bow. Once you have an understanding of these, it can be far easier to get to grips with the operation and function of the bow.

The Pulley System

As we have discovered, the compound bow uses a pulley system which is hugely adept where shooting arrows is concerned. The reason for this is that regardless of the poundage of the bow, you won’t need to take the draw weight, at least, not the pull draw weight and this is where the pulley system comes in.

Where a recurve bow would have the archer taking the weight of the draw, a compound bow has what is known as a ‘let off’ and this is the amount or percentage of the draw weight that it will take. The pulley system takes a lot of the stress off the other parts of the bow and therefore, off the archer.

The Cams

When you go to purchase a compound bow or move in archery circles, you will frequently hear talk of cams. The cams can be found at the tip of the limbs and in general, are asymmetrical in shape. These are small mechanisms which slide as you draw the bow.

Whilst these are small components of the compound bow, they are potentially one of the most important. The reason for this is that the shape of the cam can drastically affect several things. Primarily, the shape of the cam will determine the speed of the arrow, but it can also count towards how comfortable the bow is to use. This means that when making a compound bow, manufacturers must think carefully about the shape of the cams.

The cams further contribute to an overall lower drawing weight but also make it easier to continue drawing the bow as it reaches its peak. Conversely, when you use a recurve bow, you will notice that the draw begins relatively easily but the further back you draw the bow, the more difficult it becomes.

This makes compound bows an excellent choice for archers who are lacking in strength, younger archers or those who do not want the added pressure of drawing a high-poundage recurve bow.

One of the most important aspects of purchasing a recurve bow is choosing the right cam; there are a lot of factors to consider, and this is something that should take priority.

Cam Systems

There are various setups that can be used where cams are concerned on a compound bow and which you choose will largely depend on your personal preference. However, it is worth being aware of each of them so that you can understand the benefits or drawbacks associated with them.

To begin with, there is a single cam system, and this is widely accepted to be the least complex setup owing to the low amount of maintenance that is required. In this system, the compound bow would feature a unique cam that is located at the top limb and a conventional cam located on the bottom limb. The cam at the top is generally referred to as an idler, and this is because it does not take any of the draw weight but rather unravels as you pull the bow back. In contrast, the bottom cam will take much of the draw weight and stabilise the bow.

This is a good option for bowhunters as it will deliver an exceptionally quiet shot when the arrow is fired. However, the arrow will travel at much slower speeds.

Secondly, there is the twin-cam system, which, as its name may suggest, makes use of two cams at either end of the bow – located on the ends of the limbs in much the same way as the single cam system.

Whilst this is a superior setup where speed and accuracy are concerned, you will likely notice the increased noise when shooting the arrow, therefore, if you are shooting wild game, this may not be a preferable setup.

Furthermore, if you are not experienced in archery, this type of system may serve as more of a hindrance. This is because it requires far more maintenance than the single cam system. If you do not perform this maintenance when it is needed, this could mean that the cams do not move in unisons and this can be disastrous for the arrow.

A binary cam system uses a similar setup to the twin system but rather than the cams being attached to the bow limbs, they are connected to one another. This is great if you want to make use of the speed and accuracy of such a system but want a quieter shot. Furthermore, where you may have issues with the cams syncing up with one another in a twin system, this problem is eliminated when using a binary system.

Finally, archers have the option to use a hybrid cam system which gives the best of both worlds – it would seem insane, would it not, not to use this system? And whilst this is true to a degree, this could be seen as the most complex setup and therefore, not ideal for less experienced archers.

This type of system uses both the idler from the single cam system as well as the linked nature of the binary system which, when combined, come together to deliver one of the most accurate and speedy shots out there.

The Limbs

Since a compound bow operates on a pulley system, it is essential that the limbs are durable and able to withstand an incredible amount of pressure. These lengthier parts of the bow are responsible for storing the energy that is built up when the archer draws the bow.

The Riser

The riser can be seen as the backbone of the bow. It is the point at which everything is held together and is positioned in the centre of the equipment. Everything comes back here, the limbs, the pulleys, the sight – everything.

For this reason, it is crucial that the riser is solid yet flexible and able to withstand the incredible amount of pressure that is put on the bow.

Other Essential Parts Of The Compound Bow

When you purchase a compound bow, you are getting exactly that; a bow. However, any experienced archer will tell you that there are some optional accessories on the recurve bow that when using this type of equipment, could be seen as mandatory.

  • An arrow rest is a small accessory that attaches to the bow and keeps the arrow in place while you draw the bow. There are several types of arrow rest, and we have written a more in-depth guide on this. But in the main, if you are practising target archery, you will need a minimal contact arrow rest, whereas bowhunters will do well with a whisker biscuit.
  • A D-loop is used to nock the arrow.
  • A peep is attached to the bowstring and can be used as a rear sight which will allow you to align the bow correctly.
  • A release is not a crucial piece of equipment for any type of archery, but it certainly does make the process far simpler. There are two main types of release; the hand release and the wrist release, but for the most part, archers using a compound bow will fare better with a wrist release. In short, this small accessory is attached to your wrist and can connect to the bow, releasing it as opposed to using your fingers to draw.

The Process Of Shooting A Compound Bow

Now that you are familiar with the various components that make up the compound bow, you are ready to start shooting. If you have ever used a traditional bow before, you will be familiar with the overall process of firing an arrow; that being said, shooting a compound bow is vastly different, and you will likely notice this.

  • To begin with, you will arm the bow with the arrow. For the most part, you will have installed an arrow rest, and this makes it far easier to keep the arrow in place while you find your aim. However, there are some cases that archers prefer not to use an arrow rest, and in this case, you would arm the bow using a traditional method.
  • The next step to firing a compound bow is to bring it to full draw. Unlike a recurve bow which will rely on your strength and power to draw it, your compound bow will likely feel much easier. This is because, as you pull the bowstring back, the cable which is connected to the cams, moves back as well, therefore dispersing the energy across the entirety of the bow. As this happens, the limbs are compressed, and these take a huge portion of the draw weight.
  • You might imagine the limbs as being similar to a spring, the energy is stored within them, and this causes them to flex. In a similar way to a coiled spring releasing its energy and bouncing back, the limbs of your compound bow will spring back to their default position once the arrow is fired and the energy is released.
  • This is the point at which you will notice the let off; this is the amount of weight that the compound bow can hold. If you have been used to using a traditional bow, this can feel strange at first but try to go with it. This is all basic physics and is thanks to the cams moving with the bowstring and taking that high poundage, making it easier for you to gain control over the shot.
  • Once the arrow is released, you will notice that the limbs flex once again. This is down to the energy being transferred into the arrow and what is responsible for the extreme speed that can be achieved when using a compound bow. But potentially the most exciting thing about this process is that in the few minutes that it has taken you to read these steps, this process could have been repeated multiple times. That is down to the fact that this process happens over an extremely short amount of time; that’s quite incredible when you think about it.


The compound bow was invented in the 1960s, so has not been around all that long, especially when we compare it to the more traditional styles of bow that have been around for many thousands of years.

However, due to modern technology and the use of a simple yet effective pulley and cam system, the compound bow is much easier to work with and will take most of the draw weight, leaving the archer free to concentrate on his or her aim.

This system works because when the bowstring is drawn back, this causes a system of cables and cams to move with it, therefore dispersing much of the weight across the limbs of the bow. This allows for more incredible speed, accuracy and consistency, all of which are important elements of archery.

If you are looking for extreme accuracy and precision with every shot then using a bow sight is essential. But there is now a way to take this up to the next level and get accuracy beyond your wildest dreams.

This can be done by using a bowsight with a built-in rangefinder and many modern archers are beginning to favor this type of equipment and wondering how they ever got by without it.

In this guide, we are going to be looking at how a rangefinder works and the benefits of using one with your bow sight as well as showing you our top picks.

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What Is A Rangefinder?

A rangefinder is a piece of equipment that is designed to improve your accuracy. Even if you are a novice archer, using a rangefinder will give you an incredible boost in your shooting skill.

Many people choose to use this type of equipment because it can give you the accuracy of an archer who has been practising for many years.

Typically, you would just use a bow sight when lining up your shot and while these are good, adding in a rangefinder will allow you to more accurately line up your pins for the most spot on shot.

The problem is that rangefinders on bow sights are still relatively new pieces of equipment and while they are, without doubt, innovative, a lot of archers are still getting to grips with how to use them.

How Does A Rangefinder Work?

When you look back over the recent history of archery, it doesn’t seem that long ago that the brass pins we are now so accustomed to using were the height of bow technology. But would you believe that was 25 years ago?

Since then, things have taken huge leaps to bring us technology that makes accurate archery possible even for someone who has never picked up a bow in their life. Well, almost, we’re sticklers for good technique and practising your stance.

But using a rangefinder will enable you to discover the exact distance between yourself and the target from the place where you stand. Surely, this requires some profound technology?

Not necessarily.

A bow sight with a built-in rangefinder is a great piece of equipment and when you first start using one, you may feel a little overwhelmed. It might feel alien and take some getting used to. But once you understand how these devices work, it becomes a lot easier.

When you look through the rangefinder at your target, you will see two dots; one red and one green. These both have different functions and can be confusing for archers who have not used this type of equipment before.

The red dot is what you will use to get the range; on the display, you will see the distance between you and your target. Once you are happy with this, you can begin using the green dot.

The green dot is what you will use to take your aim. In short, this dot will let you know where your arrow is going to land once it is fired.

A lot of people find it confusing because the green dot is not in the middle, where one might expect it to be. But this doesn’t mean that your aim is off. The green dot will only be in the middle if this is where the range you zeroed in on is located. Otherwise, it will be elsewhere.

But try not to let this put you off and see the green dot for what it is; a marker for where your arrow will land.

Using a rangefinder will allow you to combine your knowledge of the target distance with using the right pins and the correct power for the shot. Those who have switched to using this type of bow sight have talked about how easy they are to use and how often they are spot on target.

The Best Bow Sights With A Built-In Rangefinder

Once you understand the effectiveness of this type of archery equipment, we wouldn’t be at all surprised if you were ready to rush out and find one for yourself.

But don’t go anywhere just yet; we have looked at several bow sights with built-in rangefinders and have picked out our favorites.

Whether you are looking for something a little more affordable, or a rangefinding bow sight that is a bit more high tech, we have got you covered.

Garmin Xero A1i – Top Pick!

Garmin is perhaps one of the most well known names when it comes to this type of equipment; SatNav systems, rangefinders and other location devices. It stands to reason then that this is one of the most popular bow sights with a built-in rangefinder on the market today.

The range on this one is impressive with 100 yards for a regular target and up to 300 yards for a reflective target. Not only this but you are getting an automated ranging function and unobstructed view. This is thanks to the use of LED pins.

Furthermore, there are settings for both single and multi-pin use making this an incredibly diverse piece of equipment. The clear digital display lets you see all the information you need without having to take your eyes off the prize.

If you are zeroed in on a live target, the last thing you want is to startle it with noisy equipment. Fortunately, the Garmin comes with a silent button that is conveniently located for even greater ease of use.

There is a level included which helps to configure your orientation and there will be no light reflected towards the target so you get a crisp view at all times. And if all of that wasn’t enough, it is easy to clean and water resistant.

This one may be a little on the pricey side but with the range of features you are getting, this is indeed a wise investment.

IQ Define Pro – Best Value

If you want to dip your toes in the water without breaking the bank before deciding whether a bow sight with a built-in rangefinder is for you then this is an excellent choice. But just because this is great value for money, that does not mean that it is lacking features.

This is a 7 pin bow sight with an amazing degree of accuracy. What’s more, it is easy to use, especially if you are new to this type of bow sight.

The reason for this is that you would sight in the pins in the same way that you would on any normal bow sight, so there is a degree of familiarity to using this one. Once you have done this, the rangefinder kicks in and gives you an accurate reading, leaving you to choose the correct pin.

Typically IQ models can only range to 99 yards but this one has been drastically improved giving you the ability to range out to 125 yards. The clear OLED display makes it easy to see the information and the device has a useful battery saving feature.

If you want consistency then the IQ makes a great archery companion. This is mostly because you have the option to choose the type of archery you are doing and the rangefinder will work alongside this.

With the Retina Lock function, you will also have much better hand placement on the bow as well as significantly reducing bow torque, further improving your accuracy.

How To Choose A Bow Sight With A Built-In Rangefinder

Since this is still a relatively new type of archery accessory, many people may find themselves struggling with what to look for. The options are still pretty limited and unlike other types of equipment, you won’t find yourself flooding with hundreds of choices.

That being said, there are enough choices to make it a good idea to check out certain functions and features before committing to any one model.

Now that you have seen our top picks, take a look at our tips for finding the right gadget for you.


There is no denying that archery is not the gentlest sport and there is a good chance that your equipment will be exposed to some heavy use and extreme conditions. The last thing you want is to invest in an expensive piece of equipment that breaks at the first sign of any wear and tear.

Of course, we are not suggesting that you mistreat your bow sight with a rangefinder, but we would recommend looking for one that is going to stand up to the challenge of bowhunting.

One of the best ways to determine if the bow sight will be of a high quality is to look at the materials from which it is constructed. Typically, a good bow sight with a rangefinder will be made from metals like aluminum and stainless steel.

These metals are lightweight but extremely robust. When used for external casing, you will find that they offer a generous amount of protection for the internal components and are often water-resistant.

Warranty And Customer Support

The bow sights that we have looked at in this article are made by extremely well-recognized and reputable manufacturers. But there are those out there that come from lesser-known brands. We are not saying that you should not consider these, but do be mindful of the warranty period and after sale support.

Since these rangefinding bow sights are relatively expensive, you want to be sure that you are covered in the event that anything goes wrong. Most products will come with a warranty but it is worth checking. Furthermore, you should look at what support is available from the sales team after you have made your purchase.


The entire point of using this type of equipment is to improve your accuracy, so if you have a rangefinder that is anything but precise, you may as well not be using it at all.

You should look for a model that features laser calibration as this will allow the device to ‘learn’ the dynamics of the bow that you are using.

Before you commit to a bow sight with a rangefinder, you should test it out. But do not do this without having something to compare it to. The best method to use is to compare the accuracy with ranging devices that you know to be accurate.

If anything is off, put it aside and try another model.


We have already talked about the fact that a bow sight with a built-in rangefinder is not the cheapest piece of equipment. That being said, there are budget options out there; but does a lower price mean diminished quality?

Not necessarily. The best value IQ rangefinder that we looked at earlier has an impressive wealth of features for a fraction of the cost of some of the more high-end options. However, you will find that some cheaper rangefinding bow sights are not up to standard. Again, the best way to find this out is to try before you buy.

The truth is that even those at the more affordable end of the range will be at least a few hundred dollars. You should consider your budget but we would recommend thinking about making the investment if you can.

Type Of Bow Sight

There are two main types of rangefinding bow sight; single pin and multi-pin; this is much the same as a regular bow sight. But the type that you use will depend on certain things. Understanding how each one works will help you decide on the type that will work best for you.

A multi-pin bow sight will usually come with the laser calibration that we discussed earlier on and has pins that you can move.

Conversely, a single-pin model feature, as their name may suggest, one pin. There is a notable advantage here in that your view will not be obstructed as with a multi-pin model.

Alternatively, you might decide to go for a model that uses LED pins which allows for either a single or multi-pin setting, making these a lot more diverse. Furthermore, regardless of which setting you use, your vision will not be compromised.


Modern archers have the advantage of many different types of aids that can help to improve their aim, accuracy and consistency. One such piece of equipment is the bow sight with a built-in rangefinder.

These devices are relatively new and a lot of archers might find using them a little intimidating. However, once you get a feel for how they work and get used to sighting your target in a new way, they will help make a huge difference in your performance.

There are several things you will need to consider before purchasing your now rangefinding bow sight but once you are aware of what you need, there are some excellent pieces of equipment out there.

Doing traditional archery and hunting requires a lot of specialist equipment if you want to make sure that you get a good shot every time.

However, a lot of the time, we focus on tuning our bows and making sure that all the components are in good working order. But what new archers don’t consider as frequently are the types of arrows that they are using.

Modern arrows are made from a variety of materials and the type that you use will vastly depend on the type of archery you do. But carbon arrows are excellent for both target practice and hunting, making them one of the most diverse types of arrow on the market.

But which is the best one?

In this article, we are going to be looking at some of our top picks for carbon arrows and giving you all the information you need to know about these essential pieces of archery equipment.

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Why Use Carbon Arrows?

One of the major advantages of using carbon arrows is their durability. Carbon is a very lightweight material so you could be forgiven for thinking that it isn’t very good in terms of being robust.

However, the opposite is true and carbon is one of the most durable materials known to know; diamonds are a form of carbon and they are the hardest material in the world. It isn’t, therefore, difficult to determine that carbon is an excellent choice of arrow material.

You will, however, notice that the cost of carbon arrows is significantly higher than those that are made from other materials such as wood. While it is true that they require a larger initial investment, these arrows will be able to endure a lot more.

Carbon arrows can be fired hundreds of times without sustaining anywhere near as much damage as their weaker cousins and for this reason, you will likely save money in the long run.

This heightened durability also makes the arrows perfect for hunting large game. Other materials may not be able to handle hitting such a beefy target and may break easily, especially when they are being pulled out. Furthermore, when you are out in the wild, there are several ways an arrow could become damaged, carbon will withstand a lot of this.

Another reason that they will take a lot of battering is that this is a much more flexible material than some of the other things used in making arrows.

This means that even though they will bend slightly when hitting their target, they will return to their original shape very easily.

Arrows are meant to be straight but this is more easily achieved during the manufacturing process than some other materials. For this reason, carbon arrows tend to be a lot more accurate. If you are familiar with archery, you will know that accuracy is key and while practice makes perfect, a lot of how accurate your aim is depends on your equipment.

Carbon arrows are typically more expensive than other types of arrow but that doesn’t mean that they are unobtainable to all archers. There are very high-end examples of the carbon arrow but also those which are much more affordable and still produce excellent results for both hunting and target practice.

With this in mind, it is also worth pointing out that carbon arrows are one of the most versatile types of arrows. They are fast-flying and accurate which makes them perfect for use at the shooting range.

On the flip side, their durability and long life span make them ideal for bowhunters.

The Best Carbon Arrows

It doesn’t take a huge amount of searching to find that there are thousands of different carbon arrows on the market.

Manufacturers are always competing for your attention and so you will often see claims of pinpoint accuracy, excellent durability and quality craftsmanship; but can you trust this?

Most of the time, these claims will be backed up by an arrow that lives up to expectations but occasionally, manufacturers will try to sell you an inferior product.

For this reason, we have put together details on two of, what we consider to be the best carbon arrows currently available.

Carbon Express Maxima – Top Pick

These arrows are designed for maximum accuracy. They have a unique nocking system that is designed to the ultimate precise release. Not only this, but the design means that every shot will remain consistent; no more missing your target because of substandard arrows.

We all want an arrow that is perfectly straight and the technology used to make these results in an arrow that is straight to 1/10,000 of an inch. This straightness is laser checked and demonstrates the superior quality of these arrows.

These arrows are dynamically designed with precision in mind. They are made from the highest quality carbon and have been manufactured with improved spine control.

They are incredibly flexible and the patented material that is used in crafting these arrows means that the flight is massively improved. This is achieved by containing the flex of the arrow to the Red Zone, with the ends of the arrow remaining much stiffer.

These arrows are much narrower than others meaning that the rate of penetration is vastly improved and they will not be as affected by wind and other factors during flight.

This is a high-tech arrow, available in sets of 6 or 12 that will astonish you with their accuracy and consistency.

Linkboy Archery Carbon Arrows – Best Value

Not all carbon arrows have to break the bank and the good news is that there are many fine examples of this. The LInkboy carbon arrows come in a striking green colour so you won’t ever lose sight of them and perform just as well as some of the higher-priced options.

These are 32-inch arrows but one of the best things about them is that they are fully customisable. Upon purchasing, the manufacturer will adjust the arrows to suit your needs, completely free of charge; it’s all part of the service.

Choose from any length shaft, various colours for the vane and nock as well as adding weight points depending on the type of archery you will practice.

The Linkboy carbon arrows are crafted from one of the best quality carbons we have seen in a more affordable arrow. This means that they remain durable whilst being incredibly flexible; perfect for bowhunters and target practice alike.

They are also extremely straight which will help you to achieve pinpoint accuracy with every shot. Consistency of the aim of the game here and these arrows deliver perfectly on that.

One of the most notable things about these arrows, however, is their versatility. They have been designed to be used with compound bows, recurves and longbows so no matter what your equipment, you can benefit from their excellence.

Things To Consider When Buying Carbon Arrows

When choosing which carbon arrows to purchase, there are several things that you will need to think about. This will help to ensure that you always get the best bang for your buck and a product that will stand the test of time and quality.

With that in mind, let’s look at what you should expect from a good carbon arrow.


We have talked a lot about how durable carbon arrows are and for the most part, your arrows will last a long time.

However, there are manufacturers that do not use the best materials and this can drastically affect the overall lifespan of the arrow. Many archers are tempted into buying cheaper carbon arrows but soon find out that this was at the sacrifice of better quality carbon and the arrows will need to be replaced much more quickly.


It is entirely possible to cut an arrow yourself after you have purchased a set. However, this often means investing in an arrow cutter, especially when they are made of carbon.

It is far easier to select the length of your arrow before you buy; manufacturers will often cut them to size for you.

The length of your arrow will depend on the type of archery you do and the conditions in which you shoot. For example, a longer arrow might be more adversely affected in windy conditions, especially over longer distances.


Carbon is typically pretty lightweight by nature but there are varying weights when it comes to carbon arrows.

You should be very mindful of this when choosing your arrow as the weight can have an effect on the performance. Once again, you will need to consider which type of archery you do.

Bowhunters will do much better with a heavier arrow whereas those practising target shooting will likely find that lighter arrows serve them better. This is because a bowhunting arrow will need weight behind it to penetrate the target and kill it. Conversely, a target arrow will need to be light to get a greater flight.


The thickness of the spine is the most important consideration here. A narrow arrow will be far more accurate. If you have problems with your accuracy, it could be because of the thickness of the arrows you are using and moving to something smaller could solve the problem.


We have mentioned that there are options when it comes to price and if you are short on cash then you will be able to find some decent budget-friendly carbon arrows.

However, like most things, you often get what you pay for and some of the more expensive carbon arrows deliver impeccable performance.

For this reason, we would always recommend going for the best quality you can afford.


In the main, fletchings or vanes come in one of two forms; plastic or feather and these have an incredible impact on the accuracy of your arrow.

There are pros and cons to both kinds. While plastic vanes tend to be much more durable, they don’t have the adjustability of feathers. That being said, a lot of pros will lean towards using feathers since they tend to make the arrow that little bit more accurate. But you will need to be prepared for the fact that they are much more delicate.


There are arrows that come with the nocks already attached and those that require you to fix the nock to the arrow after purchase.

If you want to adjust the length of the arrow then you might be better buying it without a nock. You should also keep in mind that some arrows have nocks that are poorly attached and can come off.

This is another important aspect of quality and in more expensive carbon arrows, you will notice the quality of the nock is far greater.


Carbon arrows are one of the most expensive types of arrows on the market but they are also one of the most durable and accurate. This makes them a favourite of both bowhunters and target archers.

Not only are they diverse but carbon arrows offer some of the greatest precision in archery. Even for traditional archers, shooting longbows or recurve bows, carbon arrows offer a modern take on a traditional method.

While there are a lot of carbon arrows available, it is important to check the various features of the arrow to make sure that it will be fit for purpose. Look at the arrow length, weight, fletching and its durability. This will give you a greater idea of the quality and suitability of each product.

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.

Let’s face it, a bow is not the smallest piece of equipment but when you are out in the field, you must be able to comfortably carry it.

One of the best ways to do this is to carry the bow on your back, but a lot of people want to know how to do this without it being difficult or causing strain.

In this article, we are going to be looking at the best way to carry a bow on your back, freeing up your hands and giving you a more comfortable archery experience.

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Why Carry A Bow On Your Back?

One of the main reasons that carrying your bow on your back works so well is that it is easily accessible. If you are hunting game, you never know when a target might appear. You will need to be able to access your bow quickly and more important, quietly. When it is on your back, this is easily done.

On top of this, when you are out and about, you will not want any extra weight dragging you down. If you have to carry your bow in your hands, you will quickly become tired and this can have an adverse effect on your shot.

Furthermore, your hands will be free to do other things. This is so important for bowhunters because out in the wilderness, you may need to climb or use your hands to support yourself over uneven ground and this is almost impossible when you are carrying a bow in them.

However, a bow is not designed to fit onto the back without using the correct equipment and if there is an issue with height, the task can be almost impossible.

Before you get started, you must ensure that you have been properly fitted for your bow. You wouldn’t believe how many new archers pick up any old bow and assume that they will get on well with it.

There are many things to think about when it comes to choosing the right bow height, and we have written more detailed guides on this. But for the purposes of this article, all you need to know is that a professional archery shop will be able to help you find the right size.

Not only will this make it easier for you to carry the bow on your back but it will also make it easier to use.

The Best Way To Carry A Bow On Your Back

Whether you are using a recurve bow or a compound bow, you should be able to comfortably carry it on your back. Using a bow sling is the best way to do this without damaging the bow, or yourself.

But before you choose your sling, it is vital that you measure your bow to ensure that you will find a sling that fits. If the sling is too big, you will find that the bow moves around and this defeats the point of carrying your bow on your back for convenience.

To measure for the sling, you will need to know the length of the bow, preferably in inches. To do this, you will measure the distance between your chest and fingertips of an extended arm, before adding one inch to this measurement; this will be the size of the bow sling.

Homemade Bow Slings

You can, by all means, purchase a bow sling but the truth is that it is incredibly easy to make your own. All you need is a piece of material that is soft and durable, such as a cotton towel, and the knowledge of how to properly fit it to your body.

  • Take the towel and gather it together before wrapping it around the bowstring.
  • The sling should be fitted across your back and under your shoulder. You will see how the bow sits at an angle, making it much easier to carry.
  • You should test the bow to make sure that the string does not move around. If it does, you may notice that it irritates your throat or neck. If everything is correctly positioned, the bow should rest on your back without moving around, even as you move about.
  • When it comes time to use the bow, you will need to take the bow by its bottom end and bring it over your head and arm.

Testing The Sling

Once you have gotten your bow sling and fitted it onto your body, you must test how it feels before going out on a hunt. The last thing you want is for the bow to slide around or for you to be uncomfortable.

You can easily test the bow sling by walking around and moving as naturally as possible. Some people like to exert themselves a little but running or jumping, as you never know when you might need to pull out these moves when out in the field.

Once you are confident that the bow feels secure and that you are comfortable, you are ready to try it out for real.

Pros And Cons Of Carrying Your Bow On Your Back

Carrying your bow on your back is one of the most convenient methods, however, as with anything, there are pros and cons to this way of transporting your bow.

In favor of carrying your bow this way, the most obvious plus point is that you will have your hands free for other tasks.

Furthermore, if you are hiking over long distances, having your bow on your back will be much more comfortable. It might be easy to carry a bow in your hands for a few minutes but try doing it for a few hours and we guarantee you will feel the burn.

However, in contrast, when you carry the bow this way, there is room for the limbs to be damaged since they are completely exposed. You will need to be mindful of hitting the bow against things.

In line with the above point, carrying a bow on your back can take a little getting used to. You will need to learn how to move around with this extra piece of equipment in the way. For example, if you duck under a tree branch, you will need to do this so that the bow does not make contact with the branch.

Finally, if you do not take the time to adjust the sling properly, it could chafe on the skin.

Tips For Carrying A Bow On Your Back

While there are some downsides to carrying your bow on your back, in the main, this is an excellent idea. That being said, we have some great tips to help you to make the most out of the experience as well as making it much safer for you.

  • Make sure that you take the time to size up your bow and sling so that there is no chance of your becoming injured or experiencing pain.
  • When wearing the bow on your back, be sure that the sling fits snugly against your body. This will stop the bow from moving around but will also help to prevent chafing which can be terribly uncomfortable.
  • If you feel that a back sling won’t work well for you or will be uncomfortable, there is the option of using an over-the-shoulder method which some people prefer.
  • Never attempt to use the bow when carrying it on your back. When it is time to shoot, you must remove the bow and use it in the normal manner.


When you are out on a bow hunting expedition, you could be out for hours, or even days at a time. This is a long time to have to carry a bow in your hands but there is a solution. Carrying your bow on your back.

Doing this will mean that your hands are left free to do other things and transporting the bow will be much easier. You will certainly not feel the fatigue that you would as quickly as when carrying the bow in your hands. Furthermore, your equipment will be much easier to access when a game target appears.

The best way to do this is by using a bow sling. You can purchase these but you can just as easily use a towel or other material and create a makeshift bow sling.

However, since the bow will be exposed, you must be mindful of your environment. If you are not, this could result in your bow becoming damaged.

If you use a recurve bow, you have probably wondered whether you need to use an arrow rest. You will likely have seen other archers utilising this piece of equipment, whilst some might be entirely against the idea. But what is the truth? Do you need an arrow rest on a recurve bow?

In this guide, we will be looking at the answer to this question as well as looking at some of the benefits are drawbacks of using an arrow rest on a recurve bow, giving you the option to make a more informed choice.

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What Is An Arrow Rest?

An arrow rest is a small attachment that can fit onto your bow and is used to offer support to the arrow while you get the bow to full draw. Many people use an arrow rest for the extra stability but also because you are almost guaranteed to get a straight and accurate shot every time.

Arrow rests, whilst all very similar may come in different materials, and the way that they attach to the bow may vary; other than this, there are no complex variations between products which is great news if you are looking to purchase one.

Types Of Arrow Rest

The only variation you will see between arrow rests is how they attach to the bow and the material that they are made from. However, it is essential to familiarise yourself with these as there are some advantages and drawbacks to each arrow rest.

  • Thick plastic arrow rests are great for beginners, and you will often see them being used at newbie archery events. Not only are they sturdy and offer an adequate level of stability for the arrow, but they are far less likely to break thanks to their durable nature. However, you should keep in mind that since they are much thicker, there is more chance that they will interfere with the arrow.
  • Alternatively, there is the thin plastic arrow rest which is ideal for more experienced archers. They are similar to the thick plastic arrow rests that we have discussed but are more delicate. You must ensure that when you attach the arrow rest to the bow, you do so precisely as these rests cannot be adjusted once they are in place. Furthermore, they are less durable and may break if you are not gentle with them.
  • Metal arrow rests are very common and come in two forms; stick on and screw-in. Naturally, they are much more durable and will last a long time and are fully adjustable. Screw-in metal arrow rests will fit into the second screw hole of your bow and are prefered since there is not the risk of them falling off like the stick on models.
  • Whisker biscuit arrow rests are incredible for short-range hunting since they can retain the arrow far better than other types. However, they do cause a lot of interference, so they are not a good choice if you enter archery competitions.

Do I Need An Arrow Rest For A Recurve?

Recurve bows are designed so that the shooter can fire the arrow off the shelf, so in short, you do not need to install an arrow rest. However, this is mostly down to your personal preference and using an arrow rest on your recurve bow is an entirely acceptable thing to do.

When we talk about shooting off the shelf, we are referring to releasing the arrow from the bow shelf; you will find this in the middle of the riser. This is how these bows were meant to be fired, but that does not mean that this method is without its problems.

In fact, shooting off the shelf might cause more problems than it is worth. For example, firing in this way will eventually cause wear and tear of the bow where the arrow brushes against it. This will take quite some time and quite a few shots, but it will become an issue at some point or another.

Furthermore, when you shoot without an arrow rest, there is no denying that your shots may not be accurate; this is particularly true if you are new to archery or do not have a steady aim.

Without an arrow rest, you may notice that there is a higher level of interference when shooting. This is because there is a tendency for the arrow to hit the bow and this can cause both damage to the vanes of the arrow but may also throw it off course, further reducing the accuracy of each shot.

Pros And Cons Of Using An Arrow Rest

It is clear to see that using an arrow rest is not a necessary part of using a recurve bow; however, many people would argue that it is undoubtedly advantageous.

But to further aid you in your decision as to whether to install an arrow rest on your recurve bow, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of this small, yet effective piece of equipment.


  • Your accuracy is much improved. Using an arrow rest allows the arrow to be held firmly in place as you draw the bow. Once it is released, you will notice that your aim is almost always on target. If you are new to the sport of archery, using an arrow rest might be a great way to practice before moving onto a more freestyle type of shooting.
  • The cost of your recurve bow will depend significantly on the brand, craftsmanship and other factors and while you can pick up a bow for as little as $150, some prices can vastly exceed this, and go into the thousands. Either way, you will have invested some money into your bow, and you will want it to last as long as possible. When you use an arrow rest, this prevents the arrow from having contact with the bow and stops it from wearing it away and leaving unsightly marks.
  • You will also notice that the condition of your arrows is improved when using an arrow rest since the lack of contact with the bow will keep them intact more easily.


  • An arrow rest means adding another piece of equipment to the bow.
  • Some people prefer a more traditional method of shooting, and an arrow rest is not conducive with this.


It is not necessary to use an arrow rest with a recurve bow, and some people never use them since they like to shoot in a more traditional manner.

However, it is not difficult to see that an arrow rest provides a lot of benefits such as retaining the quality of both the bow and arrow as well as giving you a more consistent and accurate shot.

Bowfishing has risen in popularity in recent years and more and more places are starting to sell all of the necessary equipment for this activity. However, if you have never purchased this type of equipment before, it can be challenging to know whether the products you are choosing will work for the intended use.

Bowfishing reels are an essential part of bowfishing, and it is vital to source an excellent product to ensure that it will stand the test of time.

In this article, we will be looking at some of the best bowfishing reels as well as discovering some handy buying tips to help you find the best reel for your needs.

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What Is A Bowfishing Reel?

A bowfishing reel is a small piece of equipment with a line that goes into the water with your arrow, allowing you to reel in the catch in a similar way that you would in regular fishing.

There are several types of bowfishing reel, and the style that you use will depend on several factors but mainly your level of experience in the activity. Let’s take a look at the three main types of bowfishing reel.

The Spincast Reel

If you are new to bowfishing, then you will need to use a simple type of reel, and that is precisely what you will get with the spin-cast reel. But just because this one boasts a straightforward design and easy to use nature, that is not to say that it is not extremely effective. It is so effective, in fact, that it is the most commonly used type of reel on the market.

Using a spin cast reel is very similar to the way that you would use a regular fishing reel, and it even features traditional fishing wire – if you have moved to bowfishing from regular fishing, you will likely be very familiar with this piece of equipment.

These pre-round reels are convenient, but it is also worth keeping in mind that they tend to be far less durable than other types of reel so you may find yourself investing in a new one more regularly.

Drum Reels

You might sometimes hear this reel being referred to as a hand-wrap reel and this is because of how you use it. This one is slightly more complicated; the user must wrap the line around the reel with their hand and hold it in place. After you have shot the arrow and wound the reel in, you will need to repeat the initial process.

This may be a little more work, but these reels tend to be a lot less expensive and so are great if you are working on a budget or are new to bowfishing and want to test the water.

Retriever Reels

These are, without a doubt, the most durable type of reel used for bowfishing and have been employed to catch colossal game fish and in some cases, larger animals like alligators. It isn’t hard to see how powerful they are, but they also require a degree of experience if you want to use them.

Other lines are kept on a reel whereas this type is held within a bottle, and this is ideal since it prevents the line from becoming tangled. Furthermore, the type of line used on these reels is far denser and more robust.

There are far more advantages to this type of reel, but the one major disadvantage is that owing to the thicker line, you may not get as much speed as you would with other types of reel.

What Are The Benefits Of Replacing Your Bowfishing Reel?

Aside from the excitement that anyone experiences when purchasing any new piece of equipment; that eagerness to try it out and the thrill of seeing how much better it is, there are many other reasons why you should invest in a new bowfishing reel.

  • Newer bowfishing reels tend to be far more durable than older ones, and this means that you will get a lot more use out of it.
  • As you use your bowfishing reels, they will understandably go through a lot of wear and tear, and this can cause them to lose their function. Over time, the elements will get to them, and you will notice that they do not operate as smoothly as they once did. For this reason, many people choose to update their equipment and get a smoother and more enjoyable fishing experience.
  • If you have been using the same reels for a long period of time, it is likely that you will need to continually maintain them and this can be time-consuming as well as costly if you are replacing new parts. Therefore, it would make sense to simply replace the entire reel for one that will not need any maintenance at all.

What Should You Look For In A Bowfishing Reel?

Before you commit to purchasing a particular bowfishing reel, there are certain things that you should consider. Many people make the mistake of thinking that you can simply pick out any bowfishing reel, and it will do the trick; however, this could not be further from the truth.

As with any product, bowfishing reels come in varying degrees of quality, and some products are very inferior and will not last nor be very effective.

Type Of Reel

We have already looked at the different types of reel, so we will not go into detail about them here. But it is essential to point out that you should select a type of reel that will meet your needs.

For example, if you are an experienced bow fisher who would like a reel that is durable and gives you the ability to catch larger game fish, then a retriever reel might work best. In contrast, if you have never done bowfishing before and want to try something inexpensive and easy to use, you might be better with a spin-cast reel.


Looking for a durable bowfishing reel is an important consideration, especially if you plan to get some pretty heavy use out of the equipment.

In the main, you will find that all modern reels have a reasonable degree of durability, but there are some that will be superior to others. As you go on with the activity, you will come to learn which reels last the longest and can handle the most abuse but, to begin with, you will want to look for something that is made from top-quality materials.

Easy To Use

Nobody wants a piece of equipment that is complicated to use; that would take up too much time that could be spent fishing. For this reason, it is crucial to look for a reel that is user-friendly.

The type of reel you choose will have a bearing on how easy it is to use, but when you are just beginning, it is a wise idea to choose a simple reel and work your way up.

Strength Of The Line

If the line is not strong enough, it can easily snap, leaving you unable to fish. The strength of the line is usually measured in pounds. Some of the thinnest lines have a small strength of just four pounds. In contrast, if you are looking to fish for much larger species then using something around 150 pounds will be far more effective. There are even retriever reels that feature lines with a strength of 200 pounds; these are ideal for catching small sharks and other large fish.

Gear Ratio

Seeing these numbers might be enough to put a lot of people off; nobody wants a complicated buying process. However, when you learn what they mean, it can make choosing a reel a lot easier and less daunting.

The gear ratio refers to how quickly the reel will pick up the line. The most common gear ratio is 4.3:1. At first glance, this might look confusing, but it merely means that the spool will turn 4.3 times every time the handle is rotated once.

Bowfishing Reel FAQs

Q. What kind of fish can I target when bowfishing?

Bowfishing is a very diverse sport, and as such, you will be able to target various types of fish. These might include everything from small carp right the way through to larger species like sharks and even other aquatic life like alligators.

You will always do better when bowfishing in clear water and should keep in mind that your reel should be compatible with the type of fish you are fishing.

Q. Can You Use A Fishing Reel On Any Bow?

In short, yes you can attach a reel to any type of bow. However, bowfishing tends to be a lot more intense than regular archery, and for this reason, several excellent bows have been designed specifically for this sport. They are more durable and far less likely to become damaged.

Q. How Do You Install A Bowfishing Reel?

You do have the option of purchasing a bowfishing reel kit that will include everything you need to install the reel as well as a set of detailed instructions. It might be complicated the first time, but once you get the hang of it, it will become second nature.

Q. How Deep Can You Do Bowfishing?

The nature of this sport dictates that you cannot fish as deeply as you would when practising a more traditional method of angling. In the main, you can expect to be able to fish around three to four feet in depth.

The arrow would lose speed when going much deeper than this and you would also not have as good visibility of the fish when attempting to fish any deeper.

Q. Do You Need A Sight For Bowfishing?

Bowfishing is much more fast-paced than other types of archery like bowhunting, and for this reason, we would not suggest installing a sight on your bow. You likely won’t have the time to use it, and it will serve as nothing more than an unnecessary addition to the bow.


Bowfishing is a popular sport that requires a specific set of equipment. One of the most critical parts of your setup will be your bow fishing reel which serves as a way to draw the catch, and your arrow, back in to you.

However, there are hundreds of different products out there so it can quickly become confusing when trying to find the right one. Looking at the features of the reel and how well made it is will help you to determine if it will meet your needs. Furthermore, it is essential to choose the right type of reel depending on your level of experience and how you plan to use it.

If you are fortunate enough to live in a location where there are a lot of wild deer, you will surely have a great experience hunting them. Unlike smaller targets, deer require an experienced hunter, a good aim and an incredible amount of skill to kill.

However, one of the most common mistakes that new hunters make is that they do not hit the deer in a place that will quickly and effectively take them down. Just because we are hunting animals, it does not mean to say that we want them to suffer and by killing them quickly, we can make the shot as humane as possible.

In this guide, we will be showing you where to shoot deer with a crossbow and giving you some great tips for getting the most out of hunting these amazing creatures.

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Are Crossbows Good For Hunting Deer?

A lot of modern archers like to use a crossbow over any other type and there is good reason for this. These are incredibly powerful and robust pieces of equipment that can deliver a very effective kill shot.

However, there remains the question of whether these bows are any good for shooting large game like deers. In truth, any bow will serve well as a hunting tool provided that you have the right kind of arrows, typically broadheads but a crossbow would serve you particularly well.

If you are looking for a crossbow that would be effective for deer hunting then one of the things that you need to think about is the weight of the bow. Generally speaking, a crossbow with a draw weight of between 150-175lbs will be best for this type of archery. However, some hunters prefer to go up to 200lbs, and this is better for when you are shooting larger animals.

On top of the bow that you are using, you will also need to think about the distance from which you shoot. Now, it is important to keep in mind that some of the most powerful and impressive modern crossbows are able to fire arrows up to 500 yards; but of course, this isn’t going to be great when you are looking to hit a target.

For very experienced archers with a great level of skill, you might be able to hit a deer from 80 yards, although in the main, we would recommend standing at a maximum of 60 yards. For beginners, this distance should be halved with archers taking aim from between 30 and 35 yards.

You might feel that you want to go for longer distances from the off but there are two problems with this. Firstly, if you do not have the shooting experience, you are likely to make the hunt much more challenging than it needs to be.

Moreover, you will be extremely unlikely to hit your target from too great a distance and that defeats the entire point of the exercise.

Where To Shoot A Deer

Many rifle hunters make the common mistake of hitting the deer on the shoulder, thinking that this will be sufficient enough to take them down instantly. But this is not the case, the vitals are located beyond this and if you are looking for a quick kill, you need to ensure that you inflict one of two injuries on the animal.

The first is causing massive blood loss, this will quickly kill the deer after it falls. The second way is by suffocating the animal which again, will be a very quick way for it to die.

But there are many things to consider before you take your shot, so let’s take a look at these to ensure that you always get the best kill.

Always Try To Get A Broadside Shot

If you want to ensure that you are going to get a successful hit that almost never fails, you should try to shoot on the broadside. Doing this gives you a much clearer aim at the vitals and just makes the entire experience a whole lot easier.

The reason that it is crucial to get the vitals is because this will cause the most blood loss and cause the deer to die quickly. But we will look at this in more detail later.

Don’t Go For The Shoulder Blades

As we mentioned earlier, there is a common misconception among some hunters that hitting the shoulder blade will produce an effective kill but this could not be further from the truth.

Most hunters use broadhead arrows and while these are incredibly sharp and strong, they are not strong enough to fully penetrate through bone.

They may go part way through and maim the deer but it is extremely unlikely that the arrow will pass through and kill the deer. If it is left injured, you then have the responsibility of finishing it off in a way that you may not have wished for when you set out on your hunting trip.

Don’t Shoot Head On

One of the key aspects to shooting deer is to have patience. Many hunters make the mistake of getting trigger happy, so to speak, and this can cause them to make a premature shot, spooking the deer and going home empty-handed.

While it can be extremely tempting to go in for the kill when you spot a random deer in prime position, you must ensure that you get into the correct position, even if this means stalking the deer and taking your time.

Even if you manage to hit the deer, it is extremely unlikely, unless by some miracle, that your arrow will make enough of a blood trail to effectively kill the animal. What is more likely to happen is that the deer will bolt with a significant injury that will cause it days of suffering before it finally succumbs to death.

Going For The Vitals

You may have heard the saying about going for the vitals and it is likely that this idiom can be traced back to hunting techniques. Hitting the vital organs of any animal is the quickest, most humane and most effective way to take it down without a fuss.

Arrows can cause a significant amount of damage and they do this by creating what is known as a blood trail. This essentially means that they will puncture anything in their path resulting in massive bleeding that cannot be controlled, eventually causing death. Hitting vital organs that cannot function without a good blood supply is the best way to kill.

The best vital organs to go for in a deer are the lungs, this is simply because they are the largest and give hunters a lot of room for error. Furthermore, they do not have a huge amount of protection. Yes, they are covered by the rib cage, but this is certainly not significant enough to resist an incoming arrow, particularly a high-quality broadhead.

In deer, the lungs can be found behind the shoulder and they run from here all the way down to the other end of the deer’s body. Even if you’re a terrible shot, you’re unlikely to miss these huge organs.

Alternatively, you can go for the heart, which is a little trickier but will produce excellent results. The heart is below the lungs and if you want to hit multiple organs, you can also penetrate the liver which lies beyond the heart.

A bigger deer will naturally have bigger lungs so if you are taking aim at a smaller deer then you must keep in mind that your target area instantly becomes smaller too. In particular, the lungs can each be as small as a human head, which doesn’t give you a lot of room for error at all. Conversely, the lungs of a fully grown stag might be twice the size.

Aiming In The Right Spot

Now that we know that it is essential to aim for the vital organs, we need to know where on the exterior of the animal is the correct place to shoot. It can be tempting to give yourself a large target area, but this could be problematic.

If you give yourself a smaller target area, any misses that you make will also be small. The same can be said in reverse when we are talking about a larger target area.

While it might seem intimidating, the best way to aim is to find a very small spot on the deer, around the area of the vitals and line your arrow up with this. Some hunters focus on something as small as a hair or a small shadow that is falling on the deer; in short, the smaller, the better.

The best way to compare this is to imagine shooting at a huge wall, you would almost certainly hit your target but it would be almost impossible to hit a small ½ inch area precisely. If you aim for that ½ inch area, you might not fall exactly inside it, but it would be very close.

The reason that we must be so specific about aiming correctly when shooting deer is because if you are just a tiny amount out, this can completely mess up your kill; resulting in no kill at all.

For example, if you were to miss your target by as little as half an inch towards the deer’s leg, this would injure it, but not even touch the vitals. For this reason, a lot of expert hunters will tell you that aiming for a spot that is four inches clear of the front leg, just behind the shoulder will yield the best results.

As you take your shot, you must take your time and trying to picture exactly where the heart and lungs are will give you the best chance. When choosing where to aim on the lungs, you should go for somewhere in the middle as this will allow your arrow to puncture the lung and then pass through to the other one, rapidly killing the animal.

Shooting From A Tree Stand

There are some hunters who like to get an aerial view of their target and for the most part, you can expect to be up to twenty feet above the deer as you take your aim. Of course, this will mean taking a different approach to hunting although your aim will still be to hit the vital organs.

One of the great things about aiming from a tree stand is that you have the power of gravity on your side. An arrow that is travelling with a downward momentum will create a much more significant blood trail than an arrow that is flying horizontally. This is something that hunters can use to their advantage, but you must remember to aim behind the leg.

We talked about avoiding hitting the shoulder blade and in deer, this runs the length of the top of the body so you will need to take extra care to avoid this. If you hit it, all you will succeed in doing is breaking the bone, spooking the deer and not having a successful hunt.

Tips For Shooting A Deer

You can have all the knowledge in the world when it comes to knowing where to aim but there is a lot more to taking down one of these majestic creatures than just hitting them in the right spot.

If you want to make each shot count, it is important that you take your time and plan your kill meticulously. Otherwise you may find yourself with a wounded deer and nothing to show for your outing.

Try To Use Both Hands

There are not many genuinely ambidextrous people in the world and when it comes to archery, attempting to work with your less dominant hand can often end in disaster. Fortunately, most modern crossbows are designed for both left and right-handed people but this isn’t always a good thing.

If you limit yourself to shooting only with your dominant hand, this will also limit you to how far you can turn your body when hunting. If you want to be able to follow your target in all directions, one of the best ways of doing that is by learning to shoot with both hands.

Of course, this can take a lot of practice but in the long run, it could benefit you when using a tree stand.

The First Shot

Cocking a crossbow can make quite a lot of noise and this can easily spook the deer. A lot of hunters will cock their crossbow before getting to the setting but this means that you only have one shot; and you will need to make it count.

This is another aspect of deer hunting that takes a significant amount of patience. You cannot merely expect to head out into the field, stumble upon a deer, line up your shot and be home in time for lunch. Nature simply doesn’t work that way.

If you are planning a hunt, it is a good idea to dedicate the entire day, because, while you may be lucky to get a kill pretty quickly, it could go the other way.

Furthermore, you should think about the distance from which you are shooting. If you want to make the kill with the first shot then you will typically need to be much closer to your target. Some archers don’t like the idea of this and it can be pride damaging to take a shot from 35 yards when you know you have the ability to aim from 60.

However, if you want to get it right the first time, this is a crucial consideration and will almost always yield a good result.

Practice Makes Perfect

It can be all too easy to get into the mindset of ‘I’ve been hunting for years, I don’t need to practice.’ But even the most skilled and highly experienced archers need to maintain their practice in order to remain skilled.

Bow shooting is not something that you can pick up and drop as you feel like it, it is a way of life and requires archers to pick up their bows on a regular basis.

What’s more, target shooting and bowhunting are two extremely different things. With hunting, you are out to make a kill and that requires a lot more preparation and knowledge of the animals you are hunting. For example, hunting a deer will be hugely different from stalking wild fowl.

Hunting season for deer in the USA runs between August and January but this may vary slightly depending on what state you live in. However, while you can get out and enjoy hunting during this time, for the rest of the year, you will need to keep up the hard work and practice.

One of the best ways to practice is to invest in a 3D target, several if you can. There are those that are shaped just like a deer and this gives you the best opportunity to practice before going out into the field.

You should treat your target as if it is a real animal and plan out the exact same strategies and aims as you would when shooting in the field.

The great thing about these targets is that they can be moved around your outdoor space (be sure to check your local laws on backyard archery) and you can take aim from various positions. You might set up hunting platforms around the yard which is great if you intend on using a tree stand while you are out.


Hunting deer is an extremely rewarding experience and the icing on the cake for many bowhunters is shooting a magnificent buck. However, in order to make an effective kill, hunters using a crossbow must be sure to hit the deer in the right place.

Typically, this means aiming for the vital organs which are located just behind the shoulder. You are best to aim for the lungs as these can be quickly punctured and your arrow will create a blood trail that will rapidly kill the deer.

However, you should also keep in mind that this aim is not the only important factor when hunting deer and you must also make sure to be patient and prepared.

Bowhunters are extremely fortunate in that there are many different animals that they can hunt and depending on your location, you might shoot anything from deer to boar right through to turkeys.

Turkeys can be found in the wild in many places and they make a decent catch. However, if you want to guarantee a consistent kill every time, you must be sure to hit the turkey in just the right spot.

In this article, we are going to be discussing the importance of hitting a turkey properly and giving you some top tips on hunting these gobblers.

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Why Does It Matter Where I Hit The Turkey?

There are two main reasons that you will want to ensure you kill the turkey with your first shot. Primarily, you should always aim for an ethical kill. Many people imagine bowhunters to be aggressive brutes without a second thought for their prey.

But for the most part, we are just regular people and even though we do hunt to kill, we don’t want the animal to suffer unnecessarily. We aren’t heartless.

Hitting the turkey in the right place will ensure that the animal feels as little as possible and takes it down almost instantly.

Furthermore, you need your shot to be quick and effective. The last thing you want is to end up with a turkey that hasn’t gone down or losing your potential kill. Again, if you can learn exactly where to shoot the turkey, you can guarantee that he will fall every time.

Bowhunting Turkeys

Turkeys are one of the most well-loved animals to hunt during bow hunting season and there are many reasons for this. They have delicious meat and plenty of it but they are also exciting animals to watch and will typically respond to being called so hunting them is not as difficult as one might first imagine. In some aspects, at least.

The best time to go looking for turkeys is during the spring when it is mating season. This is because the animals will be much more responsive. You will notice the males strutting about, gobbling loudly to attract a female.

However, while calling turkeys isn’t much of a challenge at this time of year, a challenge certainly presents itself when you start pursuing these amazing animals.

The reason for this is that these flightless birds actually have incredible eyesight which can span 180º. You will need to be more than stealthy when targeting one of these birds but that simply adds to the pleasure of hunting them.

How Shoot A Turkey With A Bow?

This is one of the most commonly asked questions among new turkey hunters but the answer is not as simple as merely choosing a place and going in for the kill. The stance of the bird will depend on where you must aim your arrow.

With that in mind, let’s explore some of the most common turkey stances and what this means for you, as a bowhunter.


If you are used to hunting bigger game than you may not have thought about using a headshot. This is because it is not an effective move with larger animals. However, with turkeys, this is one of the best options because it will kill quickly and there is little chance of wounding the animal.

You might automatically presume that a headshot should be, well, in the head, but for turkeys, you will want to aim a little lower.

The way that a turkey moves can make it very difficult to get them in the head since it is such a small area but if you get it right, you’ve got an instant kill. You are better aiming for the point where the head and neck meet and using a special type of broadhead will typically yield the best results; you can speak to your archery shop about the right type.


When we talk about broadside, we are referring to the side of the turkey, as you might imagine. This gives you a wider space to hit but there is one particular spot that will give you the instantaneous take down that you are looking for.

Many people believe that turkey lungs are at the front of the chest but this is not the case. If you aim here, you will do little more than wound the turkey and you don’t want this type of situation on your hands.

Instead, you should aim for the point where the wing meets the body. This will have your arrow go directly for the heart and lungs which will immediately kill the turkey.

Facing Away, Upright

This is a position that a lot of bowhunters won’t be lucky enough to find a turkey in, unless, of course, they are willing to be patient. The reason for this is that in order to get an accurate shot, the turkey must be standing totally erect and this doesn’t happen all the time.

However, if you have time, you could hedge your bets and wait for him to get into this stance. That being said, you will need him to remain still.

If the turkey is moving around, you will find it extremely challenging to get your arrow in the right spot and do little more than disable the turkey which you will then have to finish off by hand; this is not at all humane.

The reason that shots from this angle tend to be so effective is that you are able to get a direct hit on the spine. Since this is like the highway to the brain, once it is severed, the turkey will die very quickly and more importantly, very painlessly.

One of the best ways to get a turkey into the right position to make this shot is to draw attention by making a few quick putts. This could be enough to get the turkey to raise its head but you will need to act quickly before he lowers it again.

Facing Towards You, Upright

If you find yourself head on to the turkey and he is in an upright position, you might not be in with much luck. Regardless of how well you camouflage yourself, there is still a good chance that the bird will see you before you even have a chance to draw your bow.

But, on the off chance that you are successful, you should try to aim for the area around four inches from the base of the neck where an immediate kill is extremely likely. This is because your arrow will be aiming directly for the turkeys vitals.

Facing Towards You, Strutting

You’re going hunting in turkey mating season, you are going to see a lot of strutting as the animals try to impress in order to mate. This situation presents a great opportunity for hunters since you are almost guaranteed to be able to get a good aim.

Much like some of the other shots we have looked at, you will need to aim for the turkey’s vitals which are located a little way down from the base of the neck.

As you look through your sight, try to aim your arrow at the area where the turkey’s beard begins growing out of the feathers. Hitting here will do one of two things; damage the heart and lungs or break the animals back, killing it almost straight away.

Facing Away From You, Strutting

More strutting means more chances to get a good aim and if the turkey is doing this while facing away from you then you are in with an even better chance as it is less likely that he will spot you.

The best way to get a turkey in this way is by using a decoy and trying to get him really riled up. Once he is in position, you can aim for the vent. This is the area near the anus at the base of the tail. Your arrow will penetrate straight through the bird, cleanly, giving you an excellent result.

Tips For Bowhunting Turkeys

It is all well and good knowing exactly where to hit a turkey to bring it down but there is far more to a successful hunt than just knowing where to shoot.

The best hunters will tell you that they do masses of preparation before heading out into the field. One of the most useful things that you can do is to practice, particularly with moving targets before getting out there.

During non-hunting season, be sure to spend as much time as possible maintaining your skill level and keeping a good feel for your bow. This will ensure that once hunting season comes back around, you will be at the top of your game.

But there are other things that you can do to make sure that every turkey hunting trip yields amazing results.

Get The Right Gear

We talked about the fact that turkeys have incredible peripheral vision and this means that you cannot simply wander into the woods in your usual clothing and expect turkeys to come flocking. Quite the opposite.

One of the most essential parts of your turkey hunting gear is your camo apparel. The more you blend into the surroundings, the more likely you will be to be successful.

It is not enough to wear camo clothing, but an expert turkey hunter will tell you that you absolutely must use camo paint on any exposed skin. Try to cover as much of yourself as you possibly can.

If for some reason, you are unable to use camo paint, you should wear a face covering , gloves and long sleeves.

For safety reasons, you should never wear colors that might attract the turkey, particularly those that are the same as the bird’s head; red white and blue.

Where your arrows are concerned, you would do very well to use something similar to when you are out hunting deer. However, there is the option to invest in some special broadheads, as we discussed earlier. You will need to go to your local archery shop and discuss this with an expert.

Many hunters swear by using portable ground blinds as these will give you the advantage of being totally concealed. Many of these products are easy to carry around and can be moved to wherever there is the most turkey action so it is worth considering investing in this type of equipment.

Turkey Calls

Earlier on in this article, we talked about how easy a turkey is to call and this is true. If you want to hunt an animal that will as good as come straight to you then a turkey is definitely a viable option.

Unfortunately, most of us were not born with the ability to speak turkey fluently so we have to make do with a turkey call. There are many products out there that accurately mimic the natural call of these birds and during mating season, you will find that you are very successful.

There are four main types of turkey calls and the type you use boils down purely to your personal preference and what is available to you.

  • Slate calls are great because they can make a variety of turkey sounds and what’s more, are very easy to master.
  • Diaphragm calls are placed inside your mouth and sit on the roof of the mouth. The idea is that you will force air through the reed but this can be tricky to get right. This is probably one of the most compact and transportable options but you will certainly need to practice before getting out into the field.
  • Push button turkey calls make use of a button and are the easiest type of call to use. If you want something simple, we would recommend this.
  • Box calls do take a little practice to use but once you get to grips with them, they can produce a loud sound which is great if you are at a greater distance from your target.

Turkey Hunting Tactics

Any good hunter will tell you that you cannot merely wander out into the woods whenever you feel like. When you are hunting turkeys, you must go when they are most active; this will massively increase your chances of getting a kill.

In the morning, the turkeys come down from the trees and will often make their presence known by making a lot of noise. This is great for hunters because you can make a noise and listen out for their response, making them very easy to locate.

It can also be very helpful to head out to your hunting location the evening before to pinpoint where the turkeys are roosting. You can do this by using owl or crow calls and wait for their response. You will need to keep repeating the call until you are confident that you know where they are roosting. Come morning, you will know exactly where to go.


Hunting turkeys is a popular activity but getting the shot just right is one of the most crucial parts of this. If you fail to hit the turkey correctly then you risk merely wounding it and this can be distressing for both you and, more importantly, the turkey.

There are several places that you can aim but this will depend on how the turkey is presenting to you. It is also important to make sure that you plan your hunt and have the correct gear, if you want to be successful.