Posted on Leave a comment

Recurve vs Compound bows – Choosing the right bow for you

Compound Bows

We all watched the joys of Robin Hood firing arrows at seemingly impossible targets to win the crowds and beat the Sheriff of Nottingham. As children we made bow and arrows, raced around the fields and woods living out our childhood thrills and dreams. At Chiltern Archery, the thrills and excitement of shooting a bow and arrow are real and ready for those who want to find their passion and hobby with a bullseye target. 

When learning your new archery passion, its important to understand the types of bows available and how they work for you – your position, stance and aim. When you choose a bow, it should be an extension of your arm, and Chiltern Archery have the bows and the experience to help you decide on the best bow to hit your target. 

An introduction to archery bows

Originally the weapon of choice for hunting, archery has been a part of worldwide culture from ancient times. Bow designs, types of wood and bow styles have modernised and adapted as archery has been made more ‘fashionable’. 

There are 4 main types of bow that are popular in todays culture: 

The type of bow you choose will depend on the look and feel you are going for, as well as the type of shot, draw weight and style you like. 

Ultimately, no matter the bow you decide upon, you will definitely have fun when you decide to take archery up as a hobby. Great for stress relief, exercise and as an all year round hobby, why not look into archery classes with Chiltern Archery to see which is the perfect bow for you?

Recurve Bows

Used by archers in the Olympics and other competitive events, a modern recurve bow has limbs that curve away from the archer unstrung. When strung, a recurve bow has a powerful shot delivered in a more efficient way than a straight limb bow will be able to offer. 

Recurve bows are built for both beginners and experts and are one of the earliest bows, dating back to 800BC. Modern Recurve bows are generally made from several layers of fiberglass, wood or carbon with a wood or composite rider. Stringing a recurve for the first time can often be confusing due to the nature of limbs pointing away from the riser. Its tool-free takedown however makes it much easier to carry when travelling around! Luckily, when you choose to have archery lessons with Chiltern Archery, you will be taught how to string and build your recurve safely and effectively, whether you are choosing to use accessories or not. 

As recurve bows are built in 3 parts, they are often customisable, both in their material and their colour. Recurve risers (also known as the handle) is the main focus of your bow – aesthetically. Choose your ideal colour and material to truly make your bow your own. 

Compound Bows

For a bow that is shorter and more aesthetically outrageous, a compound bow offers shorter and stiffer limbs than a recurve bow. The string is connected to a pulley system that is mounted on wheels for a shot using a release aid rather than ‘fingers’. This makes the compound bow more energy efficient due to less limb movement. 

The pulley system in a compound bow is the mechanism that sets it apart from other bow types. When drawing a compound bow, the limbs are pulled together by the cables – unlike the limbs of a recurve bow whose limbs are pulled towards whichever direction the string is. The benefit of the compound bow is the reduced recoil produced when the arrow is fired. 

Currently, a compound bow is not used in the Olympic events, but has been previously used in the Paralympics. First developed in 1966 in America, the compound bow is fast becoming the most popular type of bow across America for its target and hunting capabilities. 

You may also be interested in

Coaching and Events at Chiltern Archery

Learn more about Chiltern Archery

Speak to Chiltern Archery Today

Chiltern Archery – your local friendly experts

Chiltern Archery, based in the quiet village of Buckland, just outside Aylesbury has everything you could look for in an extensive archery shop and training centre. Set in beautiful grounds with a great space for practicing your field archery shot outdoors in sunny weather, Chiltern Archery has been home to many professional archers since opening its doors in 1963. 

If you’re new to archery, book some archery lessons with one of our qualified instructors and be guided expertly through the introductions to archery and hitting your target. 

No matter the weather, with our large indoor archery centre, well stocked shop and outdoor arena, Chiltern Archery are the perfect choice for anyone looking to learn or brush up on their archery techniques. Let out your inner Robin Hood!