ARCHERY EQUIPMENT LIST: What specialist equipment do you need to play archery?
We use the word ‘play’ to describe participation in the game. But, target archery is a skilled sport played by serious competitors.
The modern version has transformed the traditional hunting archery technique from long ago.
Olympic archery rules and regulations have since become a challenging and popular competitive sport. The specialist equipment for archery is minimal in most cases.
The various types of archery bows and arrows can easily overwhelm beginners in the sport. You may also need to buy some protective archery gear and accessories besides the bow and arrow equipment.
Archery Bow Types
An archery bow is a tool used for aiming and propelling an arrow towards the target. There are three common archery bow types:
- The longbow
- A recurve bow
- Compound bow
The simplest and most traditional types of archery bows is the longbow. It features a curved limb measuring close to 72 inches (189 centimeters) from tip to tip.
On a longbow, the bow string runs all the way from the upper to the lower notch. Longbows do not have cams or pulleys like other types of bows. This limits the longbow on power and often makes it difficult to aim and shoot.
In terms of power, the recurve bow falls mid-way between the longbow and compound bows. It also offers some middle ground compromise on accuracy and complexity.
A noticeable feature of the recurve bow is its curved limb tips. The tips angle in the opposite direction to that of the bow limb.
The main advantage of curved limb tips is storing power on the draw back. It also releases the arrow with more energy compared to a traditional longbow.
As a rule, recurve bows are lighter in weight than most compound bows. But they generally provide more accuracy in shooting than archers will find in a longbow.
Archery beginners will rarely use a compound bow. You will find almost all compound bows heavy to hold and somewhat complicated to shoot.
Archery hunters often use compound bows when they are hunting or shooting wildlife. That’s because these archery bows deliver tremendous power behind the arrow.
Almost all archery arrows comprise the same basic components of a shaft, tip, and a notch. Archery arrow shafts range from 26 to 28 inches long for most competitions. The arrow tip is a sharp point at one end and there is a notch, or nock in archery terminology, at the other end.
It is only the notched end which features a trendy trio of real or imitation feathers. The feathers, called fletching, make arrows spin as they get projected through the air.
Archery arrows vary in material components as well as length. Fiberglass is by far the most common material used for making modern archery arrows. It is robust, lightweight, and relatively inexpensive to produce for archery equipment manufacturers.
Despite aluminum or carbon arrows being more expensive they tend give better accuracy. Manufacturers produce them in a variety of weights and shapes. The most common options for target shooting are the weighted field or target point.
Quivers is one of the common terms used in archery. An archery quiver is a sturdy cylindrical container used to hold arrows. It also protects arrows from damage when you transport them.
Different types of archery quivers have different features. Some include a stake or rod which probes the ground. This means your quiver is upright while you shoot. Whereas, other quiver models have loops or ties to affix it to the archery bow or the archer’s belt.
Archery Targets and Aiming
A concise archery equipment list for beginners must explain about archery targets. The two different types of archery targets affect the archer’s method of aiming.
Official Competition Archery Targets
There are a total of 10 scoring zones in official competition archery targets. Five coloured target zones comprise two separate scoring areas each. The coloured zones are circular white, black, blue, red and yellow. That makes a total of ten available scoring zones.
Archery targets are usually printed on simple sheets of heavy paper and hung from a frame. In some competitions they print out foam blocks or canvas bags and then fill them with saw dust.
Unofficial Archery Targets
Recreational archery competitions use unofficial targets. These targets often include three dimensional animal forms such as deer or turkeys. It’s not uncommon for competitive archers to add sights and scopes to their bows. As a rule, adding these archery accessories improves archers’ aiming capabilities.
Archery Health and Safety Protection
Archers often wear a bracer or arm guard for protection. It is a plastic or leather panel worn on the inside of your stabilizing arm. Bracers help to protect your skin from scrapes off the string on draw release.
Wearing archer’s finger tabs will provide similar protection against skin injuries. They are small finger coverings designed to prevent severe callouses on your drawing fingers. A callous is an injury caused by friction of the bow string.
Note: Participants and spectators of archery have some slight risk of injury. Accidents happens even if you are not in the direct path of an arrow.
Olympic Archery Equipment List: Bow and Arrow Gear used in the United Kingdom