What Are Archery Gloves For? (The Answer)

This is why you should use archery gloves while you are shooting archery. It is crucial in order to become a better archer.

Andy Ryan
Updated at

I always shoot with gloves and I get a lot of questions about it. Why I use them and what they are for. So I will explain this in this article and give you an understanding of why it’s important to protect your fingers and if gloves are the right thing for you.

What are archery gloves for?

Archery gloves are for protection. Shooting a lot can cause damage to your fingers, that’s why using protection like gloves is very important. Archery gloves are designed to protect your nerves and prevent any damage to your fingers.

The minimal damage you can get from shooting with archery is blisters and an itchy feeling in your fingers. But if you shoot with your bow for a long time, you can irritate your nerves, and you can start to experience a lot of pain.

Getting blisters can prevent you from shooting archery anymore and can even hinder you from doing other everyday activities. So it is an important thing to have in mind, I will explain how to choose your glove and go into more detail.

The Difference between finger tabs and gloves

You have mainly two types of protection. Either Tab or a glove. Both are used for the same purpose. The only difference is the design. A tab will be smaller is something you thread over your finger with a piece of leather on it that will be enough to protect your main three shooting fingers.

How to know if your gloves are good for archery?

You can see if the gloves you are buying are made for archery by looking at your fingertips. The fingertips on archery gloves have more material and protection than the rest of the glove. This is because the fingertips are the most used area of your hands when you are doing archery.

The glove will come in a variety of different designs and forms. But as long as they are archery gloves and made for the purpose of shooting with a bow, they all will work. Just make sure to find your correct size and fit. Then you will be ready to go.

As I mentioned earlier there is another way of protecting your fingers than gloves, these are called tabs. They have the same purpose. But they still have a few differences in use and feel. I will explain to you when you should use gloves and when to tabs, follow along.

Gloves are great, I just must start with that. I love them, but they are not perfect for every scenario. Using gloves gives you great protection and confidence because when you draw your bow you can feel that it won’t hurt at all because of the thickness a glove provide. This is something I really enjoy shooting with gloves.

They also make it possible for you to shoot for hours without feeling that tiredness and small pains in your fingers. This is because of the thickness the glove provides and the extra protection.


  • Thick – providing a lot of protection and durability.
  • Feels safe – Help you feel confident in your shot and safety.
  • You don`t need to take it off while doing other activities when shooting, such as picking up an arrow or marking your target. Or certain tasks you need to perform while hunting.
  • Comfortable


  • Feeling – You won’t get the same feel for the string because the material is so thick. For competitors, this can be very important because they need all the slight edges they can get.

The tabs are really great for certain things. They are thinner, making you feel the string just like you would with your fingers while protecting them. The tabs create less friction than the gloves because the material is smoother. This will make your shots more accurate.

Personally, I don’t think has much to say for recreational shooters, because the margins are so small. But if you are shooting in competitions and your shots have to be perfect within the millimeters, then, of course, the friction would matter a lot.

Generally speaking, the tabs have less protection than the gloves. The material is thinner and doesn’t protect your fingers as well. There are tabs that have multiple layers and have more advanced features, but if we are looking at the majority of the tabs the protection is not as good. So you won’t have the same feeling of protection as the gloves. If you have a heavier draw weight you will notice this and you will feel the pressure on your fingers.

When you are hunting it can be easy to lose the tabs because you have to take them off during certain tasks. This can be a pain, so either use gloves or just make sure to keep them in a place where you won’t lose them. Or bring a second pair of tabs just in case.

Pros of tabs 

  • A greater feeling of the string
  • Protects your fingers
  • Can give you more fine-tuned shots because of less friction.
  • Easy to take on and off

Cons of tabs

  • Less protection than the gloves
  • Needs to be taken off while doing stuff
  • Can easily be lost


I hope you understood the Importance of using gloves and if you should use gloves or tabs. To write it in short, gloves are for protection. Believe you don’t want any long-term damage because of the shooting. Leave a comment below if there is anything else you are wondering about regarding this topic or any other topic for that matter.

The Tabs are something I usually don’t use, not because I don’t like them, but I find the gloves just better for my archery purposes. So if you should use tabs or gloves is not my decision. It has to be based on your preference and liking. What you are going to use them for and what precision or protection do you need. But here are my recommendations.

  • Hunting – Gloves
  • Competition – Tabs
  • Practicing at home – Gloves
  • Practice for competition – Tabs

(If you are hunting with gloves use gloves when you practice because this will give you the same feel for every shot, which is very important for your accuracy and making you able to shoot with the same precision on each shot. This implies for all categories.)

Why do archers wear arm guards? Archery wears arm guards because of the pain the string can cause when it hits your forearm. The arm guard protects your forearm, removing the possibility for the string to hit your skin.

What do you call someone who does archery? Someone who does archery is called an archer.

When should I start archery? You should start archery as soon as you have the possibility to do so. To become a good archer, you need a lot of practice and time to improve. By starting as early as you have more time

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