We may earn a commission if you click on a link, but at no extra cost to you. Read our disclosure policy for information.
This article discusses the best archery accuracy tips to help you improve your archery.
The ultimate goal for archers is to hit the target.
Nothing more nothing less.
This is accuracy – the ability to condition yourself to prepare for shooting.
Adapt to your environment and successfully land an arrow where you want it.
It is always a must to practice.
Continuously improve your ability to hit the target and aim for that bull’s eye through this archery accuracy tips we’ve listed for you.
Table of Contents
1. Know Your Equipment
From the compound, long recurve to crossbows and different styles of bows require certain ways of handling it and setting it up.
If you are a beginner, it is best to know more about your archery gear first.
There are plenty of gears to choose from and you should know the basic types of bows used for archery.
Research about its parts and learn how it works.
This is vital for you to be able to control your bow and your arrow according to your target.
You can try switching between brands and different kinds of bows.
You can also simply learn to set up and adjust your equipment per your preferences and ability to see what fits you and in what set up you’ll perform best.
Bow Tuning & Why You Need It
Tuning a bow might be a lot of work but it helps deliver maximum performance.
It helps you get better in aiming and hitting a target when your equipment is tuned to adapt to your skills.
Make sure that your accessories are properly installed.
It is also best to ensure that the arrows you’ll use have the correct spine.
Tuning, especially for compound bows requires you to make sure that the equipment is at the manufacturer’s specified measurement and specs for the bow to work its full potential.
You will also need to know the timing of your bow to inspect whether the cams in the two cam systems are synchronized or for solo cam.
The cam is set properly for maximum performance.
Walk back tuning is highly suggested to micro-adjust your rest and know whether your vertical center shot should be adjusted left or right. When set properly.
It can highly affect and improve your accuracy in archery.
You may also need to adjust your sight pins.
This can be done through manual trial and error or by using available archery software out there.
Setting the pins perfectly, along with tuning your whole equipment can affect your accuracy and eventually improve your success rate in archery.
Maintaining your bow at its best condition will surely give you the benefit of optimum performance as you use it.
2. Focus On Your Grip
Having the proper grip is critical for both tuning your bow and achieving higher accuracy.
Your grip is where your strategy begins on how you can center your shot.
Relax your hand and your fingers.
The way your hand holds the bow directs how the bow and arrow would react.
So, it is a must to make sure that your hand is conditioned properly and is aiming at what your mind is thinking.
Do not grab the bow during the shot and avoid torquing or applying too much pressure to your bow arm for this can impair accuracy.
Grip Without Gripping At All
Let the bow armrest within the thenar eminence or the palmar crease of your hand without holding it too tightly.
It is only meant to support the bow and not control it.
Such a hand position will help you use more of the bones with sensitive nerve ends than muscles.
Using muscle to grip your bow can eventually cause you to apply unnecessary tension or to tire up easily.
Your release hand must be in charge of applying tension on the string.
You should also apply proper tension on the release by settling the trigger properly and adjusting the release by shortening or lengthening it.
Experiment with different angles on how your thumb is placed.
Find yourself a comfortable grip position that you can easily repeat exactly in every aim and shot you will be making.
This way, you can practice your accuracy with precision.
3. The Anchor Points
You need to remember some strategic anchor points to improve your accurate aim as well as your precision.
Knowing how a specific body part meets a certain bow part during a successful shot will help you familiarize yourself.
Which anchor points give you the aptitude to aim accurately thus enhancing consistency as well.
Your body positioning will greatly help you aim more accurately as it gives you some anchor points to base upon.
So use it to your advantage.
Some Anchor Points That You Should Focus On
Release Hand To The Jaw
First, find a position for the release within your hands where you are most comfortable and you can consistently do.
As you aim and pull the string with a full draw and accurate draw length, the best anchor point will be your jaw just below the ear where you should let your hand (or part of your hand) mount to it gently.
Some might prefer for their index finger, the others their knuckle, it depends on how you place the release on your hand.
Nose & The Bowstring
The next one will be on how the bowstring slightly touches your face which for most people, their noses.
Some prefer to let the string brush the side of their noses and others the tip.
Again, this is just a matter of comfort. Choose the technique that feels comfortable and is easy for you to use every time you aim.
Kisser Button On The Corner Of The Lips
The kisser button is a small plastic accessory that you can clamp into the bowstring.
At full draw, it touches the corner of the lips for a good anchoring point.
This can help you to easily guide your hands and the bowstring towards the other anchor points mentioned.
4. Finding The Right Stance & Posture
Postures and stance go hand in hand.
As archers need to maintain them both when executing a shot for accurate aiming and both should be set properly according to your body’s point of aim.
Your posture, in coordination with the stance you use, affects the tension you apply to the bow upon aiming and execution.
Thus, dramatically affecting your accuracy.
Your stance will determine how you channel to control from the lower part of your body from the hip down to support your upper body in executing a shot.
Therefore, it is important to know the best comfortable stance for you that you can use every single time.
There are few stances that archers use including open stance, square stance, closed stance, and neutral.
Meanwhile, it is necessary to maintain proper posture at all times for a consistent target shooting.
Starting from your stance or the way your feet are placed, to your torso, head, shoulders, and arms’ position, there is always a need to observe your posture.
Achieving Proper Posture
Keep your torso straight, not bending towards the left or right and your hips neutral, not bending forwards or backward.
Hold your head up straight with the chin parallel to the ground and slowly turn your face towards the target.
For your release arm, your elbow must point straight away, against the target.
Meanwhile, the elbow on your bow arm should be a bit bent pointing outward against the bow.
More detailed instructions on how you can obtain the best posture for archery are widely available on the internet.
You can consult experts as well to guide you in a 2nd person’s point of view.
5. Knowing Your Draw Length
The draw length is the distance from the nocking point at the string to the pivot point of the grip when you are in the full draw or simply how far you pull back the string.
Your draw length dramatically affects your accuracy so it is best to always be mindful of how you’re pulling your bow’s string.
There are plenty of ways to measure your draw length.
The most basic one is by standing straight against the wall with your arms spread and measure or having someone measure your wingspan.
Note the numbers and divide it by 2.5 and there you have it.
This measurement works best if you are using recurve or compound bows.
After knowing your draw length, you will need your bow to correspond to this measurement.
Is Your Bow At The Right Draw Length?
You can assess if your bow is set with the right draw length initially by taking note of how your arms and muscles feel when you execute a shot.
If the bow falls or swings to the side after the shot, probably, the draw length is too long for you.
Also, observe if you struggle to maintain pressure when you pull the bowstring or the string is hitting the bow arm when you shot.
On the other hand, the draw length might be too short if you feel uncomfortably too compressed.
Some archers can shoot good groups with a draw length that’s too short but can perform better and aim with much more accuracy consistently with just the right measurement.
6. Shoot The Draw Weight That You Can Support
Measured in pounds, the draw weight is the force that you need to exert when pulling the bow.
Along with the draw length, it also influences your form, thus affecting your accuracy.
Different arrows have differences in the draw weight that they can support and to determine this, you will need professional help from bow technicians.
There are some recommendations in determining the correct draw weight for you based on your body built, especially for recurve and compound bows.
However, keep in mind that it still depends on the level of comfort you feel on exerting a certain amount of pressure as you always need to relax as you aim for that accurate shot.
Find the weight that will still allow you to keep proper form.
Your overall physique as well as your experience in archery are also factors in deciding the draw weight that you can support.
As you keep practicing, you’ll know the draw weight that will let you get more accurate shots.
The limit of the draw weight that you can support does not limit your skills at all.
Instead, it optimizes your shot.
It is just a matter of preference and comfort and there’s no need to compete if other archers can pull more weight than you.
7. Controlling Your Breathing
If you haven’t noticed, we’ve been mentioning the words “relax” and “comfort” relentlessly.
This is because it is that important in archery that you bear a sound mind and body as you aim for that accurate shot.
Relaxing and breathing properly goes both ways.
You can relax to feel your breathing and control it as much as you also have to do it the other way around.
You will need to relax, try to put all your worries aside for a while, and focus on your target because worrying and anxiety affect the heart rate, blood flow, breathing.
The tension on the muscles hence might cause the accuracy to plummet.
Calmness and concentration will allow you to fully control your bow and arrow as pressure is barely needed on very specific points and time of a shot cycle only.
You need to get in such a level of calmness and maintain it throughout the whole execution.
The key to this is proper and controlled breathing – an archer’s initial point of control.
There are different ways on how you can control your breathing during the shot cycle and it also takes plenty of training to master them.
Two Basics You Can Practice
This is just similar to normal deep breaths that you might have done to relax every once in a while and yes, you can use this in archery as well.
Just take a full deep breath, completely exhale, then take half of the breath and breathe out slowly.
This breathing practice lets you breathe a bit slower and deeper with only 5 to 6 calm deep breaths.
To enhance your skills, apply this by taking a deep diaphragmatic breath before raising the bow.
Another option is to take a deep breath then exhale as you bow.
This will give you a settling feeling and a sense of accumulating strength.
Most archers use deep diaphragmatic breaths in cooperation with certain other breathing techniques that help them achieve the relaxed state that they need.
8. Minding The Execution
As you gain proper preparation and form, you need to remain calm and in control, as you pull the string and execute your shot.
As much as it seems as easy as drawing your arrow, aiming, and finally releasing that shot, there is far more beyond it than you know.
Try to not time your release and instead, focus on your proper form.
You need to put all your preparations together to ensure accuracy because, in archery, there is no such thing as luck.
Accuracy takes so much more than thinking you can hit the target.
It is setting your body in coordination with your mind to execute a shot that’ll hit the target accurately.
Basic Steps For Proper Release & Execution
- As you aim, breathe, keep yourself focused yet relaxed
- Observe your overall form once more including your posture, stance, and anchor points
- Once you feel that everything is in place as you would want you will naturally know when it’s time to release
- Commit to completing the shot. Extend your chest and intentionally relax your release finger to shoot
- Maintain your breathing and strengthen the back muscles to support the release and let the tension flow
Using release aids are optional but can help you to get a good clean release.
Whether you use compound, recurve, or longbow, there are various release aids that you can choose from.
The four basic classes of release aids for compound shooters are:
- Index finger
- Thumb trigger
- Back tension
- Resistance activated
While for recurve and longbow archers, there’s the finger tabs and gloves.
9. The Follow Through
After executing the shot, it is a must to remain calm and maintain your composure, breathe a couple of times more without a move, and watch as the arrow approaches the target.
Observe your shot as you stay in your form without putting the bow down just yet.
Keep proper form and retain the back tension until your arrow hits the target and then you can lower your bow.
The follow-through might be the finishing point of the shot cycle, but it is as crucial as the preparations.
A good follow-through will ensure that you won’t suddenly tweak the bow too early or distract your form that may negatively affect your aim.
A good follow-through will also help you evaluate whether your form and release were good and worthy of repeating or it could still be optimized towards better and sharper accuracy.
10. Keep Practicing
The bottom line, to exponentially enhance your accuracy you have to master your control.
You can achieve this by consistently practicing.
When you are used to taking control of your posture, stance, and all your form for accurate shooting will be natural.
You will reap the benefit of precision as you go along, and little do you know.
You’re shooting tighter groups in no time.
Developing Your Routine
Some might suggest that as you practice, try to develop a shooting routine or your very own ritual:
The combination of your sequential preparations breathing before, during, and after releasing and your follow-through.
Find a single flow that works best for you, where you achieve better accuracy and try to repeat that routine every time you take a shot.
To keep track of your progress on the preparations and techniques you choose to use for certain days and how they affect you and your accuracy.
A record, such as a notebook will be a good option.
Document your training, your breathing, your state of mind, your body condition, and everything that might affect your shooting cycle.
This will help you evaluate and find that comfortable form, stance, techniques, and styles that may be efficient to eventually improve your accuracy.
To get that accurate shot, you need to commit to it.
It might be contradicting to have so much to prepare for and think about during a shot cycle yet you need to be relaxed while doing so.
This, as successfully achieved by many archers, just needs a great amount of discipline.
The truth is that you can’t execute every single tip for an accurate shot in one go, especially if you’re just starting.
But you can choose to focus on one factor at a time.
Let your body get used to it until it becomes your instant reflex whenever you hold a bow.
Even the greatest archers took their time to train and made sure to feel the tensions on their back before they got comfortable with every shot.
Archery is an art, a sport, and a practice and it may require a lot and demand so much from you but try and remember to still enjoy it.
With great focus and dedication to the sport, your accuracy will surely improve over time along with your precision.
Make sure that you go through all the mentioned archery accuracy tips.