Hitting the Bullseye: How to Choose the Best Bow for Your Needs

Archery is one exciting sport, especially when you find just the right bow. But how do you hit the bullseye when it comes to finding the right bow for you? Read on for a few tips on how to buy a bow that will hit the mark. 

Different Bows Have Different Uses

The first thing to note is that you use every type of bow for a different purpose. That also means that other people may require different bows for functionality and comfort.

For example, a classic longbow is an excellent fit for people looking for a challenge. They do not typically come with extra tools or modifications to make shooting easier.

However, a compound bow has plenty of modifications for the aspiring hunter. It’s also vital to remember that, depending on your desired usage, a bow may work best when paired with other tools. For example, pairing a hunting bow with a set of bow hunting camo will make your hunts more successful than a quality weapon alone. 

Decide on a Budget

Once you know what kind of bow you think will suit you, decide how much you are willing to spend. Knowing this number will help archery shop employees or fellow archers direct you to bows within your spending limits.

Keep in mind that you might have to also purchase gear to go with your bow, such as an armguard, quiver, shooting tab, etc. It might help to start between $200 and $500 for your first bow.

You can also see which archery brands offer beginner’s packages. These might include a bow and starter materials, like a shooting tab, glove, or armguard. You can typically find these at camping or outdoor stores.

Try Different Bows

The fun part about finding your first bow is simply trying things out. You will get to know how much tension you can take in the string and how much of a valley you may need.

A valley indicates how far you can comfortably draw your string back. If you have a shallow valley, you will need to keep your muscles taut and engaged at full draw. A deeper valley allows your muscles to relax and hold your string back for a more extended period.

Either one can work well for either a hunter or a recreational archer. It all comes down to how comfortable you hold the string at full draw.

You can also experiment with different draw weights. Remember that recurve bows or longbows will have only one draw weight, whereas you can adjust the draw weight on a compound bow. 

You will also want to choose the heaviest draw weight that you can handle, which, for an adult male, would be between 60 and 70 pounds, for example.

A general rule is to choose the bow where you can hold the string back for 60 seconds. For a hunter, this comfort is critical, especially if you are drawing back a heavier weight for quicker, deeper animal penetration. 

You will probably take comfort in how fast or deep your arrows will fly for recreational archers.


Choosing a bow can be tricky with the hundreds of bubbles available. The trick is to set a budget, decide whether you will shoot for hunting or recreation, and then begin playing with different bows from there. 
You can then take your bow out on the shooting range or on your next outdoor adventure.

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