Best Way To Begin Barebow Archery

Barebow Archery

Barebow Archery is shooting a bow, with no arrow rest and no sights. You must use your skills as an archer to judge how much you need to aim above the target in order for your arrow to arrive at the point where you want it! The result of this…is that you develop better accuracy and finer tuned form than if you were using any other type of equipment.


There will be hand shock and vibration. This can affect your feeling of how well your grip and release is working below the sight window (as opposed to compound bows). Barebow archery takes more time to learn than recurve or compound bows, because we don’t have arrows nocked and ready for us like they do in the Olympics. We have to knock our own arrow after each shot.


Many people are concerned that barebow archery will be difficult at first because there are no sights or release aids to use as a guide. This is not true…because their very presence distracts us from what needs to be done! The trick with barebow…is to “get out of your own way” and simply let the arrow fly toward the target without any distractions!


Once you learn how to make this happen, everything else falls into place automatically! And you will find that it takes about one-third less time to develop good form than if you were shooting recurve or compound equipment.

How To Teach Begin Barebow Better Than Anyone Else

The best way to begin?

Step 1. Practice a simple form of shooting, where you simply set a target up at a distance that you can hit, and learn how to “call your shot” after each arrow.

Step 2. When you can do this accurately, move on to Step 3…which is the same thing but with a bow weight equal to your recurve or compound bow.

Step 3. After developing accuracy in this way…you will have learned all that you need in order to shoot any conventional bow with ease!

This three step process works for everyone who has ever wanted to try barebow equipment. Even Olympic Gold Medalists use a similar method when they begin a new discipline.

It’s not about what type of equipment we’re using…it’s the form and technique that we use to shoot it!

The most important part is to make sure you have realistic goals for yourself, and do not compare your progress with others. Everyone learns at a different rate…and it’s more important to be consistent than fast.

Step 4. When you reach a level of proficiency where you can consistently hit the target in the gold…then it’s time to challenge yourself with a shot from further away, while still maintaining accuracy.

At this point you will know all of the little things about your form, including how much adjustment you need when making a longer or shorter shot on an animal. You will instinctively know what adjustments need to happen after every single arrow which is why I strongly recommend practicing barebow from a greater distance than you might be used to.

Step 5. When you can do that…you will have reached a level of accuracy and proficiency that is very close to what you would achieve while using recurve or compound equipment!

If your sights are slightly off, or if your release aid has some sort of problem with it…then shooting barebow will help you compensate for these issues because there’s absolutely NO WAY to avoid having good form!

We don’t want our sight pin on the bulls eye, our release aid doing exactly what we want it to at EXACTLY the right millisecond during the shot, and our arrow flying straight without anything happening to disturb their flight. If all of this works perfectly at any given time…then we still have to deal with the wind and the distance, and that’s enough!

There’s no way around it…we must learn how to do this for ourselves without anything or anyone electronic (or mechanical) telling us what happened. That is why I believe that barebow archery can be a better method of training than even compounds for people who want to become good hunters. Learning how to consistently make each shot count helps us develop “field experience” which helps us become better outdoorsmen in addition to more accurate archers!

How To Develop Your Barebow Recap?

1. Set up a target and shoot at it until you get really really good at calling your shots after each arrow.

2. Then set up another target the same distance as the first but use a barebow that weighs the same as your compounds or recurves.

3. Then after that, set up another target even further away from you and then work to shoot at it with the weight of your compound bows.

4. Finally challenge yourself by trying to do all of this off hand…with no rest! The beauty about this method is that there’s really only one way to screw it up throw bad shots or give up which means you might as well keep shooting until you get good enough to make every shot count!

5. And finally remember….that consistency is probably more important than speed. The evidence for this lies in how Olympic archers train themselves with nothing but a barebow and a mat for support!

I hope this helps some of you guys who have been wanting to try it out, or who were thinking about getting into the sport. I’ve found it to be a wonderful experience with lots of room for growth, and I cannot wait to continue my efforts in bow hunting while still honing my shooting skills every time I shoot at the range!

Is barebow archery in the Olympics?

Barebow archery is not an Olympic event.

How do I shoot a barebow?

The type of bow used in barebow is typically a recurve bow, but compound bows with no sights and stabilizers may be used. A belt buckle or shooting glove may be worn if desired for comfort and/or protection from the limbs and string of the bow. Fingers and thumb must be in contact with the correct arrow shelf at all times during the shot, with no “follow through” after release.


Arrows are usually fletched (feathered) to allow them to spin so they fly straight once released, however they can also be shot by placing something like a golf ball directly on top of them at rest to keep them from spinning. It is not unheard of for barebow shooters to shoot both ways (fletched and unfletched) with the same arrow, in order to practice consistency.


The positions used in barebow are standing, sitting, kneeling, and lying on one’s back. The last two positions may be called “prone” positions. Barebow shooting is typically done offhand, although modified versions of these positions can be used when shooting with a rest or stand.

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Is Barebow Archery Good Training For Compound Bow Hunting?

No. While some archers have had success using their barebow to hunt deer while practicing during the off season…these archers are exceptional shooters! By contrast 99% of compound shooters cannot hit anything with a barebow. Barebow archers do not have the advantage of the compound’s “ignition control” feature, which is designed to hold groups very tight for up to several seconds while being shot…so it makes them tough shots for all but the finest shooters.


I don’t mean to imply that barebow practice is a waste of time, only that it should be used as a tool for refining your shooting skills and nothing more! Limit yourself to 3-4 months of bare bow per year in preparation for hunting seasons.. but then put it away until next season.


I know most shooters would like to use their bow all year round, but by trying this…you will find out why seasoned hunters limit themselves this way!! …and one final comment, if your hunting buddies see you shooting a barebow….run as fast as you can away from them!!


Bare bow is good for target practice and not to be used as a hunting bow. I once watched a guy trying to shoot a deer with his bare bow. How sad it was because he missed the deer and hit the bamboo. Now there’s no sign of the deer.


He got lucky that time but next time who knows what will happen? Anybody interested in this sport should look into 3D archery…much more fun than just plinking! You’ll get better too since it forces consistency on an almost daily basis. Good luck!

How much does a barebow weight?

The barebow is generally lighter than a compound. The weight of the barebow will vary depending on what type of bow you want to use and if you’re using it for hunting or just plinking. I hope this helps some of you guys who have been wanting to try it out, or who were thinking about getting into the sport.


I’ve found it to be a wonderful experience with lots of room for growth, and I cannot wait to continue my efforts in bow hunting while still honing my shooting skills every time I shoot at the range!

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