Bows come in all shapes, sizes and colors but they all work on the same principle of potential and kinetic energy. When the bow is drawn the limbs are pulled inward creating energy that is stored in the limbs of the bow as potential energy. When the string is released the stored energy from the limbs are transferred to the arrow in the form of kinetic energy.
The compound bow is one of the most popular bows that archers use this is because it offers more accuracy, speed and distance than other bows. The compound bow also offers something called let off. This is where at full draw the weight that is needed to draw the bow is dropped by 60%-80% so the archer can hold the string back without having to fight a great amount of weight
The crossbow comes in as a close second to the compound bow for popularity. The crossbow is actually very close to a gun without the fire power. A crossbow takes the least amount of skill to operate as the string can be pulled back and locked into position and then fired using a trigger when the time arises. Crossbows because they have smaller limbs usually have a draw weight of 150+ pounds. This is a perfect transition bow for the avid gun hunter.
In today’s archery world speed is a huge marketing topic for a bow, the speed of any given bow is called the IBO speed. This is calculated by using a 350grain arrow at 60lb draw weight and a 30inch draw length. The speed of a bow is greatly affected by these three issues (draw weight, draw length, weight of the arrow).
Two common ways to shoot a bow are with what is called a release and fingers. Shooting with a release makes drawing a bow fairly simple because it puts less stress on your finger joints as well as providing a smooth release that will undoubtedly increasing the accuracy of the arrow.
Shooting fingers is tougher in that your fingers are holding the weight of the drawn string and when the string is released from your fingers it tends to rotate the string around causing a loss of accuracy.
When it comes to shooting a bow there are a couple of things you have to watch for so as to avoid serious injury.
1. Before shooting an arrow you must make sure to look it over for any potential cracks or splinters that may be in the shaft. Shooting an arrow with a crack or splintered area could end up shattering into a million pieces and more often than not end up embedding themselves into your arm.
2. Never under ANY circumstances shoot a bow which does not have an arrow loaded into it. Doing this will most definitely crack the limbs causing the bow to potentially shoot pieces of bow back in your face. Even if in the event that you’re lucky enough not to get injured your bow will be rendered useless.
3. When shooting in wooded areas make sure that branches and twigs don’t get under the string. If this happens when the string is released and wraps back around the cam if there is a branch under the string it could get caught and cause the string to fall off the cam track.
4. Not all arrows are compatible with your bow, if you shoot an arrow that is not stiff enough then when the arrow is shot it will bend too much and the arrow could shatter causing bodily harm.
5. Never under any circumstance shoot straight into the air. You never know where the wind will take it or will it will land and you could seriously injure somebody.
Today there are two main types of shooting in the sport of archery and those are competitive shooting and hunting.
With competitive shooting the archers goal is to shoot arrows at a given target aiming at the bull’s-eye of the target or as close as possible so as to beat the other competitors. In competitions accuracy is everything, even being off on your shot by a quarter inch could be disastrous, due to this the equipment needed for this type of shooting has to be very precise and accurate and therefore the price of competition shooting equipment is a little more than hunting.
Hunting has been around since the dawn of time and simply involves the archer shooting at animals for the purpose of food This type of archery needs less accurate equipment than target shooting as the as you are not trying to shoot for quarter sized bullseys.
Aside from the accuracy difference of the equipment hunting also requires the use of broadheads which are razor sharp blades the screw on to the front of the arrow. The reason for this is because the biggest goal when hunting is taking the animal down as quickly and painlessly as possible.