How to Use a Recurve Bow Effectively

If you’ve finally bought a recurve bow and want to get started, here are some basic shooting tactics to assist you in learning how to shoot a recurve bow.

You’ll be able to confidently add more complicated shooting techniques after learning the basics we teach you here with the appropriate shooting form. So stick with me, and I’ll break it all down for you.

How to Shoot a Recurve Bow Effectively

Shooting a recurve bow involves physical training, control, and the ability to consistently repeat the same technique and timing each time an arrow is shot – even in difficult situations. It is pretty simple to shoot a recurve bow properly, but achieving consistent accuracy needs practice.

There are several elements to consider while shooting a recurve bow accurately, and I’ll break it all down to you below:

Proper Stance

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Place both feet shoulder-width apart and on both sides of the firing line in the square stance. Make sure your left foot is ahead of your right foot and perpendicular to the goal.

Take a half-step backward with your left foot in the open stance, pointing it slightly towards the target. When standing on sloping ground, this is the best option.

A solid stance is essential for stability, posture, aiming and drawing, and releasing the bowstring without hurting yourself. (1)

The Correct Nocking

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Put the arrow on the arrow rest on the left side of your bow while holding it in your right hand. The index fletching of the arrow should be facing away from the bow. Push the arrow’s nock with your fingertips into the bowstring.

Take note that you should not wrap the index finger of your left hand around the arrow shaft. Allow the arrow to settle on its own on the bow.

Hook the Bowstring

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The Mediterranean Draw is the most popular manner to hook a bowstring. Put your index finger on the upper finger guide and the other two fingers on the lower finger guide with three fingers. The first joints of the fingers are the best for hooking the string.

Remember to avoid squeezing the string with your fist or pinching the arrow.

Proper Holding of the Bow

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Hold the bow so that the grip sits between your palm and thumb on the big padded surface. Rather than grasping the bow tightly in place, the objective is to pull it into place.

If your knuckles form a 45-degree angle to the bow’s centerline, you’re gripping it correctly.

Elbow Rotation

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An appropriate grip of the bow is necessary for proper arm rotation. If you don’t wear arm protection, gripping too hard will cause your forearm to rotate in line with the bowstring, which will hurt you. Your elbow should point away from you. Your forearm will clear the string if your arm is appropriately bent.

Correct Shooting Form

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Raise your left arm to shoulder height and hook the bowstring to brace your shot. When pulling the arrow back, make sure your right elbow is high and parallel to the arrow. The ideal way to draw the bow is to use your back muscles. Imagine pressing your shoulder blades together; you’ll be exhausted if you use your arms.

Gently Release the Arrow

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It will be best if you release the arrow slowly and smoothly. Loosen up your right hand and gently pull it back till the bowstring slides between your fingers. Maintain and relax your hand until it hangs by your ear after releasing the string. During the follow-through, the bow will naturally slant forward a little.

Recurve Bow Shooting Tips

It’s tiring and disappointing when you don’t hit the target. You’ve probably faced one of these common archery mistakes, whether you’re new to the sport or have been doing it your whole life.

So keep on reading as I show you some recurve bow shooting tips. I guarantee you that these bow shooting techniques can help you improve your game.

Take your Time in Shooting

Instead of going fast, take it slow and steady. Slowing down your movements will let your brain properly assess the target and compensate for any errors, allowing you to improve quickly. So take your time, relax, and think since a good shot can easily take up to 15 seconds to execute.

Follow Proper Gripping

Beginner archers frequently make the mistake of clutching their fists tightly and tensely, as if they were holding a handle of a hammer. One of the most crucial recurve bow shooting tips is to relax your fingers and hand and avoid causing the bow to tremble or generate tension. For a good grip, you should rotate your knuckles at an angle of around 45 degrees to the ground.

Correctly Position your Fingers on the Bowstring

Hooking the bowstring with too much force or in the wrong spot on your fingers can result in not only missing a shot but also in severe finger blisters.

One finger should be above the arrow and two below it for an excellent split-finger hook, emphasizing proper finger placement on the string. Maintain a steady and adequate hooking position with the bowstring.

Perform a Proper Draw Length

You will lose accuracy if you’re shooting a bow with an inappropriate or unsuitable draw length. So, to avoid this from happening, take some time to measure your draw length.

You should stand with your arms spread out and face towards the wall to determine your ideal draw length. Subtract 15 from a distance between your two middle fingers and divide by two.

Do Not Drop your Arm After Arrow Release

Many novice archers have problems with their arrows flying low and missing the target. This is due to the fact that after their arrows leave the bow, they prefer to drop their arms. At the same time, expert shooters keep their stance upright until the arrow hits the target with a thump.

It could be due to gravity, so select the appropriate weighted bow and practice keeping your arm straight.

Keep Practicing

Anyone can learn to shoot an arrow, but it takes a lot of practice. Every archer has their distinct style. Shoot with a single back shoulder movement, maintaining an upright posture and a more solid front arm to target your goal, and the arrow will fly and hit the bull’s eye.

Learning from History

As said, to properly use a bow is to be comfortable with it, and one way to do this is to get to know your bow more.

Since archery’s reinstatement to the Olympic program in 1972, recurve those have been the favored bow style. When World Archery was created in 1931, the rules for the recurve bow have grown with technology and competition standards but have stayed mostly intact. (2)

An archer shoots a recurve bow by gripping the bow, raising their arms to shoulder height, and then pulling the string back to their face with their fingers. They use the site to aim at the target and open their fingers to release the string at full draw. The force held in the bent limbs is transferred through the string and into the arrow. It is directed downrange to the target. 

A competitive recurve bow can take more than 20 kilograms (50 pounds) of effort to draw, and an arrow shot with a recurve bow can travel at speeds of more than 200 kph.

The Components of a Recurve Bow

Since it has a recurve, it is named a recurve bow. What occurs with this recurve is that it provides extra bow power. So, as you open it up, the recurve’s spring effect propels the arrow out far faster than a straight bow. It has a wood grip and limbs that link to the handle. Since it is possible to change the limbs to different poundage, it is a handy bow for a novice.

As the beginner learns and strengthens, they can adjust the poundage of the bow. The riser is the bow’s principal component. It’s a raised arrow rest, so the arrow doesn’t interfere with the bow as it passes by, or the bow doesn’t impede with the arrow. Recurve bows are also known as primary bows.

If you’re looking for the best recurve bow in the market nowadays, you may click here.

(1) posture –
(2) Olympic –

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About Andy Ryan

How to Use a Recurve Bow Effectively 8Certifications: Sc. Kin. - Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology
Education: University of Denver
Lives In: Denver

My name is Andy and I am the author and creator of Archery Power, I have been in the archery industry for many years and it’s my true love and passion. I am an instructor and maintain a Certification. It all started as a kid where me and my dad used to go hunting with a crossbow, since that time I have been obsessed with the sport.