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How to Tell the Difference Between Left- & Right-Hand Bow & Arrows

Updated July 20, 2017

Regardless of whether you use a bow and arrow for target practice or for hunting, having equipment that fits you is vital to your success. One aspect of a proper fit that almost goes without saying is to make sure your equipment matches your dominant hand. If you are right-handed, you will need right-handed equipment, and the same goes for those who are left-handed. By taking the time to make sure your equipment is correct for your shooting style, archery will be a more enjoyable and safe pastime.

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  1. Examine the grip area on the handle of the bow. The handle is the thicker part at the centre of the bow. The thinner areas that taper at each end are called the limbs.

  2. Grasp the grip with your left hand. A right-handed bow is held with the left hand while the right hand draws the bowstring backward. Determine whether the grip is comfortable in your hand as you hold it with your left hand. If not, switch hands and see whether the bow is more comfortable in the right hand. A right-handed bow will be more comfortable held in the left hand, and the opposite is true for a right-handed bow.

  3. Examine the area just above the grip. This is the area where the arrow is placed before and during the shooting process. It is called the arrow rest. As you hold the bow in front of you, with the string closest to your body, the arrow rest will be on the left side of the bow on a right-handed bow, or on the right side for a left-handed bow. Arrows are the same regardless of which hand the bow is designed to fit.

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About the Author

Brandon Maxwell

Brandon Maxwell began writing professionally in 2007 by creating how-to articles and tutorials for production software within the design industry. In addition to the training guides and technical resources he has written, Brandon also has in-depth knowledge of home improvement and repair; landscaping and outdoor maintenance; and various subjects involving outdoor recreation. He graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture degree from Virginia Tech in 2007.

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