One of the most difficult challenges for a new archer purchasing their first bow is getting the correct draw weight. It shows how much force is required to return the bow to its anchoring position. They don’t just need to know the drawing weight, but they must also ensure that they are using a bow weight that is suitable for them. You’ve come to the right spot if you are new to this and want to learn drawing weights’ specifics.

What is Draw Weight?

The drawing weight of a bow, also known as poundage, determines the amount of force needed to draw the bow. The measurement is measured in pounds. For example, a bow draw weight of 70 pounds will require 70 pounds of force to fully drawback.

Why is Drawing Weight Important?

Following things are affected by drawing weight, which clarifies that it is an important metric.

Draw Strength

Increasing the drawing weight will make your bow more precise. However, if you’re not strong enough to pull it back quickly, your bow will begin to shake. This can significantly reduce your accuracy.

It is, therefore, crucial to select a drawing weight that is easy to manage. It is recommended to choose a high draw weight over a light one. If you are forced to shoot a too heavy bow, it will affect how you shoot, your form, and your overall performance.

Arrow Speed

If you shoot with an arrow with greater drawing weight, the arrow can fly higher. Following are some benefits that include:

  • More resistance to wind
  • Arrow flight that is more stable
  • Reduced arrow drops

Arrow Spine

You must determine your draw weight before you select your arrow. If you carry a high drawing weight, you will require stiff arrows, and if you’re carrying lower drawing weights, you need more flexible arrows.

If the arrow’s spine does not match your draw weight, your bow won’t shoot correctly. Therefore, you must measure your drawing weight when you purchase new arrows.

How to Determine your Bow Drawing Weight?

To determine the bow’s drawing weight, it is necessary to use a bow weight scale. There are scales specially created for this purpose at bow stores and online archery stores. If you decide to buy a digital scale, attach the scale to your bowstring, pull it back, and then read the weight.

Finding Bow Weight on Different Bows

What is the drawing weight of a bow? Finding the right draw weight for your needs is significant. The correct draw weight will allow you to shoot longer and avoid muscle fatigue. On the other hand, the heavy draw weight can make your bow challenging to hit. Therefore, experts recommend starting from low poundage and working your way to the heavy ones.


Longbows are measured at 28 inches. It is crucial to keep in mind that longbows require that you be able to hold your weight for the entire shooting procedure. You can determine the draw weight using the digital scale.

Recurve bow

Similar to longbows, recurve bows are also measured at a standard length of 28 inches. They also require the archer to hold the entire draw weight when shooting.

The recurve bow drawing weight is measured using a digital scale using the same draw length calculator as discussed above. Attach the scale to the bowstring, pull it back to the preferred draw length, and check the draw weight.

Compound bow

Compound bow drawing weights are quite different from recurves and longbows. Although they may be difficult to drawback, this is only when you get to the “let-off.” Once you have reached this point, it’s much more comfortable to hold when you are at full draw. The holding weight is just a tiny part of the bow’s weight, making it more comfortable to hold. Most compound bows feature an 80-90 percent release, meaning that you’re only holding a small amount of weight when you draw to full capacity. This makes it much simpler for an archer to be patient and precise with their target.

Compound bows also come with set draw weights and draw lengths, making it easier to determine the drawing weight. You can then adjust the draw weight and length to suit your needs.

For Hunting

In contrast to target archery competitions with a maximum poundage limit, most states have bow drawing weight limits that you must meet for hunting. This ensures that the hunter uses sufficient draw weight and speed to capture the animal they are hunting.

The minimum draw weight for bows varies from state to state and even on the species. However, the most commonly used is 40 pounds, required to hunt large species regardless of the kind of bow you are employing.

For Target Archery

Target archery has specific restrictions on the bow drawing weight, especially on compound bows. Compound bows can’t exceed 60 pounds or 300 feet per second in most of these events. So if you plan to compete, make sure you read the rules and know the limitations.


The choice of the best drawing weight is among the most crucial decisions archery players can make. So, make sure you do your research when selecting the right drawing weight for your needs.