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Youth Archery Questions and Answers
 
This page contains links to our children's department at KidBow.com 

 
 
  • What is the best age to start archery?
    Only you know your child and know when he/she is ready to accept the responsibilities and discipline that archery requires. That said, if your child shows interest and the parent/caregiver can give the time to teach the correct methods and safety restrictions, then the child may be ready. All children should be supervised at all times.
  • What is the best way to learn archery?
    As with so many other things, the best way to learn archery is by the guidance and imitation of a knowledgeable adult. Archery is a staple sport of many camp, school and scout programs. This is a great way to learn the correct procedures and rules. Parents and relatives can be  wonderful teachers, too. There are also many books and videos that can demonstrate and teach. The most important thing is NOT to allow a child to try archery without proper guidance.
  • What makes archery a "family" sport?
    Just about anyone can participate in archery. It can be enjoyed by young and old, the disabled and the athletic. The cost of equipment can be minimal because several participants can use the same equipment. It's a great way for families to share and spend time together.
  • What are the safety precautions for archery?
    As above stated, the primary safety precautions involve both supervision and teaching. 
    The most obvious rule is: do not aim a bow at a person, living thing or breakable object.
    A bow must not be loaded with an arrow unless standing on the 'Shooting Line' and the signal to start shooting has been given.
    When each student has finished shooting their arrows, they should stand back from the shooting line so the instructor or teacher can clearly see that they have finished.
    Only when everyone has finished shooting should the signal to move forward to collect the arrows be given.
    If an arrow or part of equipment is dropped in front of the shooting line while shooting is in progress, it can only be picked up after shooting has stopped.
    Walk forward to collect the arrows, never run.
    ( Keep a eye on the ground for any arrows that may have dropped short of the target and lodged in the ground. Always withdraw the arrows in the opposite direction that they entered, so as not to bend or break the arrow.)
    Always walk up to the side of the target butt, so as to not to accidentally walk into the rear of the arrows lodged in the target.
    One person at a time should withdraw their arrows from the target.
    When withdrawing arrows from the target, make sure no-one is standing in front of the target or in the way of the withdrawn arrows. Withdrawing the arrows may require some force and the arrows may come out suddenly from the target butt and the rear end of the arrow could hit someone standing in front of the target.
    Everyone shooting should help to find any arrows that may have missed the target.
    When carrying arrows, always hold them to the side and never run.
    Everyone must return to the shooting line and the range checked to make sure no-one is behind the target butts or in the safety zone before the signal to commence shooting is given.
    If any person or animal ( eg. dog ) enters the safety zone while shooting is in progress, the emergency signal must be given and all shooting must stop IMMEDIATELY.
    Even if the bow is held at full draw and the signal is given, the arrow must not be released. The bow should be pointed at the ground and the bowstring let slowly forward. The arrow should be removed from the bow until the range is clear.
    ( Many people are unaware of the danger from a shot arrow and may walk behind the target butts.)
    Any student or person failing to abide by the safety rules, endangering themselves or others, should be required to leave the archery range.
    Allow at least 50 metres ( 55 yards ) behind the target butts as a safety zone for misses or arrows that may deflect off the top of the target butts.
    ( When using the stronger draw weight bows ( + 9 kg.), allow 75 metres     
    ( 82 yards ) for safety. The more clear space available, the better.)
    Also: See Archery Instructions
    (PDF) for more rules and general instructions.
 
 
  • What kind of equipment is recommended?
    The basic necessities for archery are a bow, arrows and target. Beyond that, the gear that will make archery safer and more enjoyable are a quiver to carry the arrows in, an armguard to protect from string slap to the arm and some hand or finger protection to cushion the skin from the bow string.
  • How do we measure "Draw Weight" and "Draw Length"?
    To measure "Draw Weight", you will need to try several bows of different weights. A small child (70 to 100 pounds) will be comfortable with a draw weight of 15 to 25 pounds. A larger child (100 to 130 pounds) may be best with a 25 to 35 pound draw weight. An athletic older child may be capable of drawing 35 to 45 pounds. A very small child (55 to 70 pounds) may be capable of pulling 10-15 pounds @18" to 20". These are all rough estimates, but give the idea.
    To measure "Draw Length", you should  take a yardstick and  place it in the middle of the chest bone. Reach out on it in front equally with the fingertips of BOTH hands. Note the inches mark where the fingers touch. 
    That will be your ultimate potential draw length. You will likely pull a little shy of that with the tension of the bow across your shoulders. 
    Both of these measurements will increase as a child grows.
  • Do you supply to groups?
    Yes, we supply groups such as camps, schools, scouts, and youth organizations with all necessary equipment for archery sports. We will be happy to assist you in choosing what you will need. Please EMAIL us with your questions/requests, or telephone us at 781-447-4520. Group pricing discounts are available. Please see our "Orders" and "Policies" pages for payment and shipping options.
 
 
  • What is the difference between "Recurve" and "Longbow"? And what is a "Compound" bow and do you sell them, too?
    Please see our "Definitions" page for the difference between a recurve and a longbow. "Compound bow" refers to a modern type of bow that uses wheels, cables, wheels and sights. The advantage to compound shooting is that it allows the archer to provide more force with less effort. The disadvantages are that they require more maintenance,  take longer between shots and do not give the same reward of true personal achievement. The cost is usually greater, too. We do sell compound bows. Please ask us about availability.
  • What is the advantage to an archery "Kit"?
    The advantage of an archery kit is that all of the necessary equipment is already put together for you to get started with archery. See KITS for choices. Additional targets and/or arrows can be added at extra cost. See our "Arrows" and "Gear" pages for specific options.
  • Can we get upgrades or additional gear in the future?
    Yes, please see the above answer to find what you need.
  • Can being right or left handed make a difference with archery?
    The issue is not so much left or right hand dominance, but "eye" dominance.
    To test, hold your hands out at arms length and with both eyes open, look through the hole formed by your hands at a distant object. Keeping that object in view, slowly move your hands towards your face until they touch your face. The hole formed by your hands should be over one of your eyes. This eye is your dominant eye and will control your aiming. Another quick way to test your eye dominance is to point your index finger at a distant object with both eyes open, then close one eye and see if your finger appears to move away from what you are pointing at. If your finger does appear to move, then the eye that you closed is your dominant eye. Try again with your other eye and your finger should not appear to move. If you are RIGHT EYE dominant, you are a RIGHT HAND shooter and should shoot a right handed bow (the vast majority). The opposite is true with left eye dominance, and a left handed bow would be needed for the best and most natural archery performance. 
    The #36, Bear Wizard, Bear Crusader, and Bear Titan fiberglass bows are ambidextrous and shoot both Left and Right Handed.
 
   
 

 
 
 
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Traditional Archery Supply  --  659 Bedford St. (Rt. 18)  --  Whitman, MA  U.S.A.  --  02382    781-447-4520