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Understanding the Draw between 30lbs and 50lbs on Bows
This is a discussion on Understanding the Draw between 30lbs and 50lbs on Bows within the Crossbows, Compound, Longbow, Slingshots, Airsoft, Slings, Blowguns forums, part of the Weapons, Protection, Self Defense, Hand to Hand Combat category; Greetings:
Ok here is my situation. I went up to LL Bean in maine and went to their archery day camp and enjoyed it so ...
Understanding the Draw between 30lbs and 50lbs on Bows
Ok here is my situation. I went up to LL Bean in maine and went to their archery day camp and enjoyed it so much I went back and bought the 30lbs draw bow. I know it is a fairly cheap type of bow but I think I probably should have gone to 20 lbs as it is harder for me to pull back and then I get a horrible slap on my forearm and had to buy a very long arm guard to help me with deflecting the pain.
Well then I saw the 50lbs break down bow on a thread here last night. I was like dang, if I have a hard time pulling the 30 all the way back how the heck can I do the 50. But then I noticed he didn't seem to be pulling it all the way back he just seemed to pull it back half way or maybe a quarter of the way and let it fly without going full extension. Is that my problem? Am I trying to pull it too far back and that is why it is kicking my butt?
The other problem is that I'm left eye dominant and right handed so I was told to pull with my left hand which i'm not nearly as string with. So am I just doing it wrong or should I switch to right handed even though I'm left eye dominant? I don't want to sacrifice my accuracy but struggling here! Thanks for help!
Like ANY weapon, there is both a learning curve and strength-building exercises required. Most folks are simply not as strong as they think they are because they compare themselves with other soft people around them. Further, there is a difference between "show muscle" and working muscle in the real world. One is pretty in a tight shirt, the other pulls fence posts out of clay soil for a living. Just mess with a farm boy and learn the difference.
With the bow, most beginners mistake the draw as a "hold the bow out and pull back the string with brute force ". No true archer does that. They "push and pull evenly" in one motion, thus leveraging their pulling force. Also, with a compound bow, a quick snap will get past the max can weight to the considerably less hold weight. No such luck with a recurve. One just must be strong enough to do it.
If you're slapping your forearm everytime,you are holding the bow wrong,in a sense.After building up with practice,you'll be able to keep a slight (very slight) bend in your arm and wrist,instead of locking it out straight,which will provide the clearance needed to not get slapped (I know that feeling all too well and it stings like nothing else).
The poundage is of coarse how many ft lbs of force that is required to pull back to the holding position.The higher the poundage,the harder the pull,the faster (fps) the arrow,the further distance and accuracy as well as penetration of the target.
When my 13yr old took up archery at his school,he had the same trouble you face.Hard to pull and slapped everytime which really threw off his accuracy and made him "scared" of the bow,the long armguard helped with that,he still struggles with the recurve,but has greatly improved.Since then,we've moved him up to a compound bow set at 45lbs with a trigger release.Thanks to the cams of the compound,he can get past the "break point" to the holding position much easier and eliminated the arm slap all together.
Now after being in archery for close to 2 years,he has won two local competitions between seven schools with his recurve and has robin hooded an arrow at 40 yrds a few months ago with his compound,it just took awhile for him to build up,find his form and lots of practice to get there.His recurve for school is a 25lb draw.
Practice, Practice, Practice......
The more your practice the less you will need the arm guard and the stronger you will become. I would suggest a Compound that you can adjust the draw weight on. set it to something you can handle and the more you use it you can adjust it up as needed.
I have a standard bow I guess they are called Recurve? The compound is the one with the pully type system right? I might go to one of those. I may also try to switch to pulling with my right hand I know I'll do better but was told that since I'm left eye dominant it will throw off my accuracy. Any thoughts on that?
I would try and stick with a left handed bow if you can. Grab a dumbbell about 20 lbs or so and do some lifting exercises to build strength it's kind of a rowing motion. I'll look for a link for you.
Boy Scout Motto.
Bows are all about form. I used a compound for decades until I transitioned over to a crossbow a couple of years ago. If you can consistently use the exact same anchor points with every shot your form will improve dramatically. The same fundamentals apply with a bow that apply with a firearm. Trigger control, sight alignment and breath control. set up pins for 20 yards and in, 30 yards and 40 yards. Don't clutter your view with 10 different pins. I used a sliding sight with one pin. You can kill a deer with less than 55 lbs. but I usually considered that a minimum. If you are shooting a lighter poundage get a good 80% letoff, single cam bow (less wall and very forgiving) and keep the string clean, no string leaches, spiders etc. Maybe just a knocking loop, a peep sight and a kisser button to help with your anchor point. This will increase your speed a great deal. Get a good carbon arrow and have a pro shop set everything up for you. They'll check your draw length, arrow spine and even paper tune everything so it's all optimized. When you are done have your setup chronographed. 300 feet per second is a good rule of thumb for a target speed, but 260 and above will get the job done. I took deer with an old Bear compound bow lobbing aluminum shafts at 240 f.p.s.
Archery is a blast, but practice is paramount. I miss my compound bow days. I'm glad I can still get out there though.
Gives you a little insight why it took so long to learn how to use the English Long Bow of the Middle ages that had a draw pull of between 100 to 185 lbs.
Last edited by rickkyw1720pf; 05-31-2013 at 01:58 PM.
At full arm extension rotate the point of the elbow of arm holding the bow outward. It will help with string slap. Also check and make sure your string is the right height/distance from the riser. If it is low (too close to the riser) you cannot help but get string slap.
Try starting here if beginning archery. Great resource for compound shooting. Most of the basics are the same between traditional and compound shooting. I don't agree that blind practice is a with while investment. Blind meaning practicing with no direction or coaching. This will just turn bad habits to your muscle memory. Go find a coach, you'll be tons better for it.
Here is a great eye on cross dominance in shooting.
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