Imagine you are on an expedition or out hiking in a forest. This is not just a regular hike with friends because you have your bow in hand and arrows in the quiver. You are thinking of the various games from stump-shooting to hunting and outdoor archery competitions among your friends. Rewind just a little because the trip can be a disaster if you do not have the right type of bow suited to these conditions. What is the best type of bow for you? There can not be a perfect bow because it depends entirely on personal preference, shooting conditions, and style.

Below are some common bows explained and the favorable conditions where they serve well. You can also get more than one type of bow if you like to explore various shooting styles. However, this may ask for dedicated practice sessions to master all. However, beginners are recommended to start with a simple bow and get one after the other.

What are the Different Parts of a Bow?

Before we delve into the details of the types of bows, let us first see the parts of the bow. These parts are constant to all the bows; however, their style and shape may differ.


The limbs refer to the extremes of your bow. They are the part of the bow that flexes and create the force necessary to push the arrow out. The bowstring is attached to the limbs that hold the nocks.


The bow part containing the grip, arrow rest, and the sight window is called the riser. It is the center part of the bow and is often made of wood or composite material. A riser may differ depending upon your dominant hand.


The bowstring is a string made of various materials that transfer the force from limbs to the arrows. It plays a crucial role in producing an adequate force and balancing the shot.

The Right Bow For You

Bows have come a long way in material, design, and technology. However, it would not be untrue to say they have not strayed from their origin and basic styles. Here are some of the best types of bows and reasons to choose them both as a beginner and experienced archer

Recurve Bow- Classic and Good looking

Recurve bows are well known for their good looks and classic design. They have been transformed from wooden frames to now carbon glass or fiber. Nevertheless, you still find them in wooden forms. To add to their popularity and style, they have been vigorously used in various movies, including “The Hunger Games.” The best part of the recurve bow is that it can be used with or without sight. In so-called barebow archery, archers use recurve bows without sight. According to many archers’ recurves offer you such a natural shooting style that they may feel like an extension to the body itself. They are ideal for hunting, but only experienced hunters prefer to use them for hunt due to the difficult techniques. They may ask for learning the technique at the start, and you will need to do a lot of practice to shoot smoothly with this type of bow.

Crossbow- Cool and Futuristic

Crossbows still have their origin in traditional archery style but have added a futuristic touch. The advanced mechanism called the trigger-release function makes these bows easier to operate and shoot. Due to their particular style, the point and shoot or trigger release mechanism has worked better than the other bows.

This type of bow is ideal for archers who want to learn archery quickly because it is less technique sensitive. They have shorter limbs and very small or no risers. Their most common use is in hunting.

Compound Bow- Forgiving and Easier to Operate

Compound bows are more like a combination of recurve and crossbows. They are simpler and easier to shoot than many recurve bows; however, they are more complicated than the crossbows. They have a feature known as the let-off. They use a pulley system that allows the archer to hold some of the bows’ drawn weight. Compound bows are manufactured keeping in view the purpose of ease and accuracy.

They can be an ideal option, especially if it is the first time you are buying a bow. The purposes they serve well include hunting, recreational shooting, and archery competitions. Even the compound bows today come in varieties. After trying some test shots and assessing which might go well with your style, you can pick one.

Longbow- Minimalistic Design

A longbow is a type of bow known for its simplicity and is more prevalent among old-school archers. It has a long wooden pole with a string attached to both ends to describe it. Though simple, it is the most technique sensitive. It requires a great deal of practice to master shots using a longbow. It is mainly due to fewer technological advancements with the longbow that beginners less prefer it. Since the bow is longer, it requires greater draw weight, and therefore, strong men, especially soldiers in warfare, use them.

But more commonly, it is used in archery competitions or target shooting. Again, however, it all comes down to preference, as many skilled archers like to take longbows to hunt.


The type of bow you select to begin with archery or before going hunting determines how well you will do in both fields. The bow you choose can make you an Olympics Archery winner, or you can be confined to your backyard for fun and games. A wise choice is difficult, but only effort and testing different bows can get you through. It is better to decide what type of archery you will do more and choose a bow that works well in that condition. If you want to explore other forms, you can add extensions to your last bow or buy a new one.