There are a lot different kinds of people who are beginners in archery and bow hunting. A lot of children and grown adults take up the endeavor every day. Some want to compete in matches, some want to hunt and some just like the idea of learning to shoot an arrow at a target. Thousands of bows are purchased every year. Thee are hundreds of manufacturers worldwide. But for the new archer the best beginning recurve bow will have a few special features.
What features, you might be asking yourself. One feature is Adaptability. A versatile bow is one that would be at home on a target archery range, on a field shooting course, shooting stumps in the back lot and cruising through the woods in pursuit of dinner.
Say you were to buy a highly specialized target bow, it might be greatly suited to precision target practice with a stabilizer, weights and extreme sights which all contribute to great precision but it might not be that handy trying to slip through the undergrowth in a realistic 3-D hunting simulation course.
Try to find a bow with a lot of built in mounting points for accessories that make it easy to switch them around. You might not want to have a permanently built in arrow rest because down the road you might want to put in a new arrow rest that the pro shooters all use.
Affordability (relatively speaking)
If you are like me, you often get excited about starting something and cant wait get into it. Sometimes I spend a while learning something new only to find out it isn’t for me. If you have already taken a few archery classes and still have that burning desire to get your new bow just remember this. Your first bow will probably not be your last and if you buy a reasonable quality bow you can always resell it to help you offset the cost of your newer bow.
With that in mind and an eye on your budget try to find a bow with a lot of features and an accessory package to help you keep the costs down. If it is sized to you as an adult or readily adjustable for growing children then get it with arrows, a release, an arm guard and quiver in the package. This will save you a little money and save you from having to hunt down accessories before you can even shoot the bow.
Let’s face it, if you are looking for a bow for your kid then you want it to last same as if you are buying it for yourself. Being a budget conscious buyer, you are looking for the best value. Don’t go too cheap because as with everything else, you get what you pay for. (within reason) A tough bow with a good reputation is more than enough and shouldn’t cost you an arm and a leg. Overspending isn’t going to magically make you a better bow shooter. Practice is.
Some beginner bows are one size fits all but unless you are that one size then the bow is a compromise you shouldn’t have to make. Children especially, outgrow things fast. Modern beginner recurve bows have the ability to grow with the kid. Adjustable draw weight (force needed to draw the arrow back) is important to get the most out of your bow. Usually you have to buy new longer, stronger limbs. Some use a bolt to tighten the limbs and add more tension. As children get taller and stronger their draw length and draw weight can be adjusted on the bow with new limbs to match their longer, stronger arms. Recurve bows can be drawn to a variable draw length but all have an optimum draw length. If you under-draw the bow it wont reach it’s maximum draw weight and if you over-draw it will shoot harder but you risk breaking the limbs.
Growing children also get stronger and if the first bow is fixed at a low draw weight then the child will rapidly outgrow it and you’ll have to buy another bow. If you buy a bow that offers adjustability for size and strength it will be easier to tailor the bow to the child from year to year, heck, sometimes from month to month.
Full grown adults are not going to grow out of their bow. It is a good idea to buy an appropriately sized bow that still allows for adjusting both draw length and the draw weight. As beginning adults progress and get stronger they might wish to increase the draw weight of their bow and when their form improves they might need to tweak their draw length. If you are just starting out be sure to get a bow with replaceable limbs that will allow you to go up in draw weight and power.
Things are prone to breaking and kids are especially good at helping things to their final destiny. When your beginning archer or hunter is finally enthusiastic about their skill improvement and excited, then the last thing you need is a catastrophic equipment failure.
If your bow doesn’t have replaceable limbs you’ll have to lay out a lot of money for a whole new bow. If the riser (the handle of the bow where the limbs attach) breaks, then it is game over until the new bow can be located and the budget allows for its purchase.
A high quality name brand bow today from a reputable builder like, PSE Archery, Mathews, Hoyt and a number of others will be tough enough to last a number of years. and that durability will save you money for when it is time to grow the bow along with a growing shooter.
There is one more factor that goes into making a great bow for beginners. The satisfaction you get from owning it.
You should always do as much research as you can. Compare models and features, check out specific reviews for your favorite model and then imagine yourself stepping up to the shooting line and letting an arrow fly. If the bow in your imagination makes you smile from ear to ear and you can find it with all the right features for you, then you will have found the absolute best beginning recurve bow.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below in the comment box.
Remember, have fun and always stay safe.