Choosing the Right Gear

Choosing the right archery gear is not difficult as there are archery coaches and professional retailers with the expertise to help you. Neither does the gear have to be expensive.



Choose your bow first. Most popular are compound bows and recurve bows. Visit your local archery pro shop to try lots of different bows and bow types where you will find the necessary help to choose the right one for you. Then you can get fitted for your final choice.

Online charts will help you determine your draw weight limit, based on your own body weight and gender. As you gain more experience shooting, and gain strength and will be able to handle more draw weight that you can assess for yourself.

Once a suitable bow length has been decided, bow scales can calculate your bow weight. Bow weight is a measure of the "stiffness" of the bow limbs. A bow with a heavier draw weight will feel stiffer to pull back than a bow with a lighter draw weight.


Most people start with aluminium arrows. More advanced arrows are made of carbon or a mixture of carbon and aluminium resulting in a much faster arrow, capable of greater consistency over the longer distances. As arrows flex when you release the bowstring, your archery coach or retailer will help you choose arrows that flex just right for your draw weight and draw length.

Spine rating

The spine rating of an arrow is an indication of stiffness, which translates to how much power is needed to propel the arrow out of the bow in a straight line. Too much power and the arrow will be whippy. Too little and the arrow will not bend enough when clearing the bow and will drift off course.

All arrow manufacturers publish a selection chart where you can read off the size of arrow you need. If there are two values for your arrow type, note the lower value one and try these out at the club before making a purchase.


Not every archer chooses to use a sight, though it can help beginners shoot more precisely with a compound or recurve bow. Sights are adjustable, durable and inexpensive.



Every archer requires an arm-guard, quiver, and finger tab or release aid. These may appear to be basic additions to your gear, but they are important. The arm-guard protects your arm from grazing by the bowstring when you shoot, while for recurve archers, the finger tab puts protective leather between the bowstring and your fingertips. For compound archers a mechanical release helps release the bowstring cleanly. The quiver is a convenient, easy to use carrier for your arrows.

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