Bow Types

Almost all types of bow are used at Cleadon Archers, from Longbow to Compound. For those keen to learn, here is a brief guide to the bows used:

RECURVE is the most commonly-used type; beginners are trained using these and most archers continue to develop their shooting skills with recurve bows to reach the pinnacles of archery at the Olympic Games and World Championships.

The bow generally has a metal or wooden centre-section (riser) with flat limbs that, without the string attached, would curve forwards. These bows range in price from under £50 to over £1000.

COMPOUND bows have wheels and pulleys which lessen the force needed to hold the bow at full-draw. They often have magnified scopes with spirit-levels for aiming and represent probably the most mechanical and technical form of archery.

LONGBOW is one of the most traditional forms of archery. Whilst the bows may be made of various laminates of wood these days, longbow archers use no sights (other than a small mark or band on the bow limb), stabilisers or technical aids. Longbows are becoming increasingly popular here at Cleadon.

BAREBOW RECURVE is becoming increasingly popular. For those thinking of shooting their recurve ‘bare’, the definition (from GNAS rule 204) is as follows:

  • The bow must be bare, except for the items mentioned below and free from protrusions, marks, blemishes or laminated pieces that could be of use in aiming. Multi-coloured risers are permitted.
  • Integrally fitted torque compensators are permitted provided that they are not fitted with stabilisers. Weights may be added to the lower part of the riser. All weights, regardless of shape, must mount directly to the riser without rods, extensions, angular mounting connections or shock absorbing devices.
  • Bowstring. There shall be no attachment on the string to serve as a lip or nose mark. (kissers etc.)
  • Arrow Rest. The arrow rest must be attached only to the window side of the bow. Any moveable pressure button, pressure point or arrow plate shall not allow any (adjustable) overdraw.
  • Normal pressure buttons are allowed.
  • Arrows may be metal or wooden.
  • EXCLUSIONS: Recurve Barebow archers must not use; Sights, Draw check indicators (clickers etc.) or Stabilisers.

AMERICAN FLATBOW (AFB) was the first category of bow to be invented following scientific trials. Developed in the USA in the 1930s, it pioneered the recurve-style limbs so common today. These bows are, as their name suggests, flat when unstrung; they do not bend forwards like recurve bow limbs. They are not officially recognised by the GNAS as it is in field archery is that they are most prominent.