As far back as the Peleolithic era, man learned to used stone tools and eventually developed a crude bow for hunting and gathering of their food. Ancient Assyrians and Babyloians practiced archery as a sport and used bows heavily in warfare. Today, though, we have the know-how to select archery bows that work best for our modern needs.
The three basic types of bows that exist today are the traditional longbow, recurve bow and compound bow. In medieval combat, the longbow was the archers weapon of choice because it shoots straight and hard. In many cases, the actual bow is taller than the archer using it. Being able to take aim and shoot over long distances is an appealing feature of this bow with the only downfall being it is cumbersome and large. During hunting, the longbow has it’s advantages and drawbacks.
The recurve bow is shaped differently than a longbow. Often, the tips of the bow will curve away from the archer. With these curves set against the natural curve in the bow, it provides more power with a lighter bow weight. Quicker turning and maneuverability makes the recurve bow especially good in woods and forest. When the recurve bow is strung (unlike the longbow), the string will actually touch the upper portions of the bow itself.
Compound bows use modern technology combined with age-old wisdom. When the shooter pulls back on the string, two cams shift holding the string taut which allows the archer to hold it easier. Not only does this provide more let-off (holding weight from pulling weight) and power, but equips the bow with more stability. This affords greater sight and aim for the archer.
Having a basic understanding of the types of bows available will help in you decide which is advisable for your needs. Another factor to consider is how much the bow cost and what is your budget for buying one. Bows can go from 50 to over a 1000 dollars just depending on the type of bow your looking at so it’s best to know what your looking for before you buy it.
It is wise to have a basic understanding of the techniques for each style of bow. You can often join a club or take lessons where the bow(s) will be provided. Moreover, buying a used bow for the first few months may save you several hundred dollars should you change your mind later. Go with the bare basics and move to the more luxurious later.
In addition, it is smart to buy an archery bow that will benefit your cause. There are different reasons to use varying types of archery bows: These include but are not limited to hunting (such as deer hunting), competition (such as field archery and 3D archery) or simple personal enjoyment (such as at home target practice).
If you’re going to be charging through the woods trailing small woodland creatures, you won’t want the same bow as used in target archery competition. Be sure to speak to club members, store staff and experienced archers before you select your personal favorite bow. Research before selecting your perfect archery bow will save you money and keep you from learning the hard way (more expensive way) later.