Archery is an exciting sport to learn, whether you’re interested in hunting or just like going to a practice range. But if you’re ready to move from renting bows to buying your first one, it can be overwhelming trying to navigate all the options. Below are some factors to consider before you make a purchase. 

How to Choose Your First Archery Bow

1. Recurve vs. Compound

The first decision to make is between a recurve and a compound bow. When you think of a traditional bow from centuries ago, you’re probably picturing a recurve. It’s a simple construction made up of a strong and piece of wood. These bows are lighter and easy to use for beginners—and cheaper—so it’s a good place to start. 

Compound bows, on the other hand, are more complex, consisting of a system of strings and pulleys. The pulley takes the stress off the bow, which makes them more accurate for hunting and competitive archery. They’re easy to maintain but are more expensive. 

2. Bow Length 

Once you’ve figured out a type of bow, you need to find the right length. To find your fit, stretch your arms in front of you with your palms together, and measure from the middle of your chest to your fingertips. Then, add an inch, and this should be your desired bow length.

3. Choose a Wide Weight Range    

archeryA bow with a wider weight range has more resistance, allowing the archer less force needed to pull back the bow while taking shots. You also want to begin with a lighter draw weight to build strength and precision. Once you hone your skills more, you can adjust the bow so that it has higher draw weights.  

4. Materials

Archery bows can be made of wood, carbon fiber, and fiberglass. Plastic and fiberglass bows are cheaper but less durable and powerful. Wood and metal are sturdier and more reliable materials, though they’re also more expensive. Unless you’re positive you want to commit to the sport, opt for fiberglass as a beginner before investing in a most expensive bow. 


If you’re looking for expert assistance in choosing your first bow, head over to Glauber’s Sports in Carrollton, Kentucky. The shop sells supplies for traditional, target, 3D, field archery, and bowhunting. The staff is ready to help you find the right gear, from bow and arrows to protective cases and apparel. Take a tour of their website, or give them a call at (502) 732-4005 to find more about the services they provide.