What Are Archery Gloves For? (The Answer)

By Andy Ryan


Updated at

Archery gloves are an important piece of equipment for anyone practicing the sport. They serve a crucial purpose in protecting your hands, providing a better grip on your bow, and enhancing your overall aim. As you delve further into the world of archery, it’s essential to understand what archery gloves are for, and why they are a vital component of every archer’s gear.

There are various types of archery gloves made from different materials, and each one caters to specific needs and preferences. The design, durability, and extra features can vary, so finding the right fit and style for you is crucial in ensuring a comfortable and efficient shooting experience. Caring for your archery gloves is also essential, as proper maintenance can prolong their lifespan and keep them in optimal condition for use.

Key Takeaways

  • Archery gloves enhance grip, aim, and protect hands during the sport.
  • Several designs and materials cater to different needs and preferences.
  • Choosing the correct fit and maintaining the gloves contribute to better shooting experience.

Purpose of Archery Gloves

Archery gloves are an essential piece of gear for anyone practicing the sport. They serve various functions that contribute to better shooting experiences and overall performance. In this section, we’ll discuss three main purposes of archery gloves: protecting fingers, improving grip, and increasing shot consistency.

Protecting Fingers

You may encounter minimal damage, such as blisters and itchiness, in your fingers while shooting arrows. Wearing archery gloves helps prevent damage to your nerves, ensuring that you don’t experience pain even after long hours of practice. Also, these gloves safeguard your hands from calluses and blisters so that you can focus on improving your shooting skills.

Improving Grip

A good grip is crucial in archery, as it gives you more control over your bow and ultimately affects your accuracy and precision. Archery gloves are designed with materials that enhance your grip, allowing you to shoot confidently and consistently. With an improved grip, you can avoid potential slips and mishaps, resulting in better shot execution.

Increasing Shot Consistency

Shot consistency is vital to achieving success in archery. Inconsistent shots can negatively impact your performance and overall progress. By wearing archery gloves, you can maintain better control of your bow and arrow, leading to more consistent shots. Greater shot consistency will help you develop muscle memory, hone your skills, and gain confidence in your ability to perform well in archery.

By understanding these purposes of archery gloves, you can invest in a pair that best suits your needs and enhances your experience on the range.

Materials Used in Archery Gloves

When choosing the perfect pair of archery gloves for you, it’s essential to consider the different materials used in their construction. In this section, we’ll discuss three popular materials: Leather, Nylon, and Synthetic Fabrics.


Leather is the primary and most preferred material for archery gloves due to its quality and durability. It offers excellent protection for your fingers while shooting, giving you a comfortable and secure grip on the bowstring. Leather gloves come in various qualities, but even lower-quality leather still provides durability and protection. Keep in mind that leather gloves may require some break-in time for optimal comfort.


Nylon is another material used in archery gloves, known for its lightweight and quick-drying properties. Nylon gloves can be more affordable than leather gloves, making them a suitable option for beginners or those on a budget. However, they may not provide the same level of durability and protection as leather gloves. It’s essential to weigh the pros and cons when choosing between leather and nylon archery gloves.

Synthetic Fabrics

Synthetic fabrics such as polyester and suede can also be found in archery gloves. These materials offer a balance between the durability of leather and the lightweight nature of nylon. Synthetic fabric gloves can be more affordable than leather gloves, but they may also be less durable in the long run.

When selecting your archery gloves, consider your needs, skill level, and budget. Each material has its advantages, and finding the right pair of gloves for you is crucial for an enjoyable archery experience.

Types of Archery Gloves

When protecting your hands while practicing archery, you’ve got a few options. Let’s take a look at the three main types of archery gloves: Full Gloves, Finger Tabs, and Thumb Rings.

Full Gloves

Full gloves are the most common type of archery glove and provide excellent protection for your entire hand. They’re made from various materials like leather, suede, canvas, or nylon. However, leather is the primary and preferred material for archery gloves as it offers great durability and comfort.

Some gloves come with a thin lining to reduce friction between the bowstring and your fingers, so you can focus on your aim without worrying about discomfort. Full gloves are easy to put on and take off and provide an excellent feel of the bowstring, enabling a more precise shot.

Finger Tabs

Finger tabs, on the other hand, are small pieces of durable fabric or leather that cover the top of your fingers, shielding only the three center fingers. This type of glove is perfect if you’re looking for something minimalist and lightweight to protect your fingers without covering your entire hand.

Finger tabs usually have a split design, allowing for separate positioning of the index and middle fingers. This offers you more flexibility, which can improve your shooting technique. Finger tabs are often adjustable and can be custom-fit to your fingers, ensuring a snug and comfortable grip.

Thumb Rings

Thumb rings are a traditional type of archery protection that has been used for centuries, especially in Asian and Eastern European cultures. They’re designed to protect the thumb while releasing the bowstring, and they’re ideal for those who shoot with a thumb draw technique.

Made from materials like leather, metal, or even stone, thumb rings vary in design and style. Finding the right thumb ring for you may take some trial and error, but once you’ve got it, it’ll provide a consistent anchor point and help prevent injuries caused by the string snapping against the thumb.

As you practice your archery skills, be sure to choose the appropriate type of archery glove that suits your needs and shooting style. By protecting your fingers and hands, you can focus on your technique and enjoy the sport without discomfort or injury.

Finding the Right Fit

Sizing Tips

When choosing the right archery glove for yourself, it is essential to know your hand size. Here are some quick tips:

  1. Measure around the widest part of your hand, excluding your thumb.
  2. Compare the measurement with a glove sizing chart, typically provided by the manufacturer.
  3. Keep in mind that some gloves may run slightly smaller or larger than the given measurements.

If you find yourself in between sizes, it might be a good idea to go for the larger size, as you can always adjust your glove for a snug fit.


Archery gloves should offer some level of adjustability to ensure a secure and comfortable fit. Look for gloves with adjustable closures at the wrist, such as Velcro or elastic. This will help you customize the glove’s fit, ensuring that it stays in place during shooting while also providing sufficient finger movement and protection.

Remember, gloves that are too tight can hinder finger flexibility and negatively impact your shooting accuracy, while gloves that are too loose may not offer the necessary protection for your fingers. It’s all about finding the right balance to ensure both comfort and performance. So, take the time to find an archery glove that fits your hand well and allows you the adjustability to fine-tune your glove for optimal comfort and precision during shooting.

Caring for Archery Gloves

Caring for your archery gloves is important to ensure their longevity and maintain their functionality. Here are a few friendly tips on how to care for your archery gloves.

Firstly, after each use, it’s a good idea to wipe down your gloves with a soft, damp cloth to remove any dirt or sweat. Make sure you only use water, and avoid any harsh cleaning chemicals as they might damage the gloves or diminish their quality.

Keep your gloves in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight to prevent them from dry rotting, fading, or becoming brittle. When storing your gloves, be sure to lay them flat or hang them up to retain their shape and avoid creasing.

It’s essential to periodically inspect your gloves for any wear and tear or potential vulnerabilities. If you notice any loose stitching or worn areas, it’s best to address the issue as soon as possible to prevent further damage.

In case your gloves are made of leather or suede, invest in a good-quality leather conditioner to help maintain their softness and flexibility. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the frequency and method of applying the conditioner.

Finally, it’s important not to soak your gloves or put them in the washing machine, as this may cause them to lose their shape and damage the materials. If they require more than a wipe down with a damp cloth, gently hand-wash them in lukewarm water with a mild detergent, then let them air dry.

By following these simple guidelines, you can keep your archery gloves in top condition, ensuring they continue to provide the necessary protection and comfort for your shooting sessions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do archers wear gloves?

Archers wear gloves to protect their fingers and nerves from damage while shooting. This helps to prevent blisters, itching, and long-term irritation of the nerves which could cause pain. Gloves also aid in getting a better grip on the bow and provide a smoother draw of the string.

How do archery gloves improve shooting?

Archery gloves can enhance your shooting experience by offering better grip and aim. They also help to reduce the strain on your fingers when drawing the bowstring, which ultimately leads to improved accuracy and consistency in your shots.

What is the difference between archery gloves and tabs?

While both archery gloves and finger tabs serve the same purpose of protecting your fingers, they have some key differences. Gloves are worn on the entire hand, offering more finger protection and extra grip. Finger tabs, on the other hand, cover only the tips of your fingers that come into contact with the bowstring. The choice between these two options comes down to personal preference and the type of shooting you’ll be doing.

What materials are commonly used for archery gloves?

Archery gloves are typically made from materials like leather, suede, and synthetic fabrics. Leather is a popular choice due to its durability and flexibility. Different types of leather, such as cowhide and deerskin, can offer varying levels of protection and comfort.

How to choose the right size for archery gloves?

To ensure a proper fit, measure the circumference of your dominant hand around the knuckles, not including the thumb, using a measuring tape or a piece of string. Compare your measurement with the manufacturer’s size chart to find the best fit. A well-fitting glove should allow flexibility and movement while providing protection and a secure grip.

Are there specific archery gloves for different weather conditions?

Yes, some archery gloves are designed to adapt to different weather conditions. For example, waterproof or water-resistant gloves can be helpful during rainy or damp conditions. Similarly, gloves with breathable materials and moisture-wicking properties can keep your hands dry and comfortable in hot or humid conditions. Always choose gloves that suit your specific needs and the environment you will be shooting in.