Archery Equipment List

archery equipment

Archery is a team and individual sport in which competitors use bows to shoot arrows at targets. Archery dates far back in human history, with humans using it for sport and hunting in ancient times. Archery is performed by attaching an arrow to the bowstring, then drawing the arrow back into an anchor position by the archer’s face, which provides tension on the bowstring. Then the arrow is released, flying through the air toward the target, earning a better score for being closer to the center.

Archery is a family of sports and activities that require a bow and arrow, as well as any of their accompanying accessories. Unlike other target sports that rely on guns or human arms to launch projectiles, archers use the tension of the bowstrings to force the arrow into a target.


Accessories

Professional archers use many additional items to improve their bows and arrows. These accessories are not necessary, but they can help an archer shoot more accurately and organize their materials. It should be noted that most professional archery competitions will require standardized equipment to ensure fairness. Archery accessories include fletchings, kisser buttons, peep sights, string wax, spotting scopes, and vibration dampeners.

Arm Guards

archery arm guards

Arm guards are attached to the forearm area just below the elbow of the shooting hand. They are considered to be a vital piece of safety equipment, as they protect the archer from any bruises or other injuries that might occur as a result of backlash from the arrow being shot from the bow. Arm guards cost anywhere from $10 to $30. 

Arrows

archery arrows

Archery arrows are long rods with feather-like attachments at the back end and sharp, pointed tips at the front. Most arrows are made out of specialized carbon fiber because the material rarely bends or cracks, although aluminum, fiberglass, and wood can also be used. Arrows are an essential piece of archery equipment, as they are shot at the target in order to accumulate points during an archery competition. When used for hunting, arrows can be specialized based on the type of animal being hunted. For example, there is an entire class of arrows specialized for bowfishing. Arrows usually come in packs of 6, 12, or more and cost $40 to over $150 for a pack. 

Bows

archery bows

Aside from the arrows, archery bows are among the essential pieces of archery equipment. They hold the arrows in place prior to being shot and are gripped by the archer’s non-shooting hand in order to properly aim at the target. Once the bowstring is released by the archer, a bow is what propels the arrow toward the target. There are two main types of archery bows called recurve bows and compound bows. Recurve bows form an arch that extends away from the archer. Compound bows have rigid shafts that contain a low-situated notch to rest the arrow atop. You can read more about the types of archery bows and their differences. Archery bows have a wide range of prices, from $100 to upwards of $1,000 or more.

Take a look at the Best Archery Bows of 2021!

Chest Guards

Archery Chest Guards

Generally strapped to the body and worn over the archer’s shirt or uniform, chest guards keep the chest area protected in the event that a misfire results in an arrow or string contacting the body. The guard is fastened around the archer’s body using an adjustable strap. It extends from the archer’s non-dominant shoulder to the opposite pectoral muscle for maximum protection. Unlike other forms of padding, archery chests guards are extremely lightweight so that the archer is uninhibited when performing a shot. They contain a soft mesh layer that is enclosed by a harder, padded area that absorbs the blow following a mishap. Chest guards typically cost anywhere from $15 to $40.

Gloves

archery gloves

Gloves are used to assist with grip and comfort in archery. The main function of archery gloves is to protect against minor finger injuries such as blisters, although more serious injuries such as nerve irritation can occur over time without proper protection. Most archery gloves are made out of leather to ensure long-term durability. The most important thing to consider when purchasing archery gloves is the overall fit and feel of each pair. Archery gloves should fit fairly snug while also having enough wiggle room in the fingers to easily handle the equipment. A pair of quality archery gloves costs between $20 and $35.

Quivers

archery quivers

Quivers are very similar to archery arrow cases in that they allow archers to store any arrows that are not in use. The difference is that each quiver comes equipped with a strap, which rests on the archer’s shoulder while the actual case dangles off to the side to allow for easy access to the spare arrows. It is for this reason that quivers are often preferred over traditional arrow cases, as they allow archers to keep both hands free in between rounds of competition or target practice. Quivers cost between $30 and $100.

Spotting Scopes

archery spotting scope

Spotting scopes are not directly attached to the bow. They work much like a camera atop a tripod. Using the lever attached to the side, archers can maneuver their spotting scopes across the landscape while looking through a lens that allows for easy zooming in and out. This enables archers to get a detailed, close-up view of the target without having to actually approach the target on foot (an action that is outlawed in most competitions).

Whether the archer is merely trying to get a better look at where the bullseye is located or trying to see where holes already exist that might prevent an arrow from sticking to the target properly, spotting scopes can help spot these dilemmas prior to shooting. As with most optical equipment, price varies in accordance with quality and magnification. Consequently, archery scopes range in price from $50 to over $3,500. 

Targets

archery targets

The sport of archery could not exist without targets, which are usually round foam pads that sit atop two wooden pegs. Painted on each target are five rings, which form circles that become increasingly smaller the closer you get to the center. Traditional archery scoring systems are dependent on where the arrow lands within the target. Arrows that stick to the outermost ring result in the fewest number of points being awarded to the archer, while arrows that manage to find the center of the target (known as a bullseye) are worth a maximum of 10 points. There are also targets shaped like specific animals commonly hunted with a bow. Depending on the size and configuration, archery targets cost between $50 and $300. 

Related: A look at the Best Archery Targets of 2021.

List of Archery Equipment

archery equipment list
  • Arm Guards
  • Arrows
  • Arrow Cases
  • Arrow Lube
  • Arrow Pullers
  • Arrow Rests
  • Arrow Shafts
  • Arrow Tips
  • Applicants
  • Bows
  • Bow Cases
  • Bow Lube
  • Bow Releases
  • Bow Sights
  • Bow Slings
  • Bow Strings
  • Bow Stringer
  • Bowstring Wax
  • Chest Guards
  • Compound Bows
  • Crossbows
  • Finger Tabs
  • Fletchings
  • Gloves
  • Kisser Buttons
  • Limbs
  • Nocks
  • Peep Sights
  • Props
  • Quivers
  • Risers
  • Silencers
  • Speed Studs
  • Spotting Scopes
  • Stabilizers
  • Stabilizer Rods
  • Targets
  • Vibration Dampeners

FAQ

What is the most important archery equipment?

Basic archery equipment includes one bow and multiple arrows per person, as well as targets to shoot the arrows toward. The bow and arrow are the two most critical pieces of archery equipment. However, archers may need many more accessories to optimize their performance as well as properly maintain and transport their bows and arrows. Archery is both a simple and a very customizable sport.

How much does archery equipment cost?

As with most sports equipment, the higher the quality equipment you buy, the more expensive it is. Archery bows are usually the most expensive equipment required, and those typically range from $100 to $200 (although higher-end models can go up into the $1,000 range). Arrows can be found for $10 to $15, but high-quality ones are around $30 to $80. 

Certain archery accessories can be very expensive. Smaller, simpler items such as peep sights, strings, finger tabs, and vibration dampeners can be found for less than $10. Other items like releases, spotting scopes, and quivers can draw anywhere from $20 to over $100, depending on brand and quality.

What type of bow is best for beginners?

A simple recurve bow is the best for beginners. While compound bows have a complicated system that adapts the pressure needed to pull the bow back, a recurve bow functions simply by the force of how many pounds of pressure the archer uses to pull back the bowstring. Using a cheap recurve bow means fewer parts to maintain and understand, perfect for someone just getting into archery.

How much do bows and arrows cost?

Beginner bow and arrows will cost about $200 to $400. High-end bows can cost upwards of a thousand or more dollars. Depending on the quality and package quantity, a set of arrows can cost anywhere from $40 to $100 or more. A good bow will cost anywhere from $500 to $1,000.