The different types of bows and their benefits are must-know knowledge for every bow hunter. Why? Because every bow is different and it is important that you know which one will be more effective for your needs. If you’re not sure which type of bow is right for you, read this article in its entirety to gain more knowledge essential to all bow hunters.

There are four main types of bows: recurve bow, longbow, crossbow, and compound bow. If you are a bow hunter, you would know that there are small, albeit significant differences between these bows. Moreover, you should know that there are types of bows more appropriate for hunting certain types of animals.

Recurve bow Recurve Bow

Recurve bows have a unique curved shape that allows the hunter to store and deliver a higher amount of energy in the bow than other types. Thus, it allows for increased speed of the arrows when shooting.

This type of bow was used by our ancient ancestors who required a bow that shot fast arrows but did not put a heavy burden on the hunter, especially during circumstances where the terrain is unfavorable or when the user is on horseback. In modern hunting, this type of bow can be used but requires great skill and lots of practice to shoot accurately with it.

Benefits of the recurve bow:

  • The recurve bow can shoot faster and straighter arrows
  • It can be easily stored and transported due to its collapsible feature
  • They can train the hunter on accuracy and precision of shots without the help of bow sights or any other accessory except the eye
  • Recurve bows are generally more affordable and are great for beginner archers.

Recommended for:
If you are a bow hunter who’d like a bit more challenge and excitement, I recommend getting a recurve bow to practice your innate skills as an archer. Without sights, this will surely be put to the test. For bow hunters, this bow will also benefit you if you’re going to be hunting in rough terrain as well as thick brush. Moreover, I recommend this type of bow for beginners and also for those who are keen on target practice. Because of its affordability and features, it’s a great way to start out on the sport of archery before you move on to other types of bows.


Longbow Longbow

The longbow also dates back to ancient weaponry along with the recurve bow. It is simply composed of a slightly curved bow with narrow limbs and a height that is more than half of the archer. Not many hunters use the longbow because it requires more strength, as is more difficult to aim. Therefore, the longbow tends to have less speed and accuracy when shooting compared to other types of bows. Even so, a lot of traditionalists still use them.


Benefits of the longbow:

  • The longbow is lighter than other types of bows
  • It can be prepared more quickly for shooting
  • Longbows are quieter
  • They can cause less hand fatigue.

Recommended for:
Longbows are handy and light, and if you’re not aiming to shoot large and wild animals with it, it can be a great bow for hunting small ones. Furthermore, because longbows are more challenging to aim and shoot, you can use them to further enhance your skills as an archer.
If you also want to feel a bit more traditional and imagine yourself in ancient warfare, a longbow would do the trick, especially one that’s made of hardwood.


Crossbow Crossbow

We’ve seen crossbows in many action movies and TV shows. To briefly describe it; it is a horizontal bow attached to a gun-like handle that you can shoot with a trigger mechanism. It can be used for both target practice and hunting. Aside from looking cool, crossbows have a lot of benefits that you may not realize. As a bow hunter, you may be interested in what they have to offer.


Benefits of the crossbow:

  • A crossbow can be easily used by a hunter who is not too tall nor too strong because 1) a crossbow doesn’t have the same height as other bows, and 2) it can be drawn easily without using a lot of strength
  • The arrow can be drawn readily so you won’t need to do it before shooting
  • For some hunters, a crossbow can be easier to aim
  • It can also be easy to carry around
  • Crossbows can be braced against a pedestal for easier aiming (e.g. a rock).

Recommended for:
Crossbows have become a popular option for hunters who live for the chase. Because the crossbow would allow the user to be more mobile (unlike vertical bows), crossbow hunters can have an easier time running around and stalking their prey. If you have similar preferences and would like to have more mobility as well as easier portability and accuracy of the bow, why not try out a crossbow to see for yourself?


Compound bows Compound Bow

Compound bows are perhaps the most popular bows for both hunters and archers alike. Simply put, it is a type of bow that uses a levering system composed of cables and pulleys to bend the limbs of the bow. The stiffness of the bow caused by the levering system allows for more energy-efficient and more accurate shooting.



Benefits of the compound bow:

Recommended for:
I generally recommend this type of bow for all types of hunters and casual archers, too. Because of its great features that benefit both accuracy and ease of use, this type of bow is great for almost any type of purpose. If you also prefer on building your own bow, the compound bow can be a great starter for you to attach the accessories you prefer.

The Bear Archery Apprentice 3 compound bow is a fantastic bow for beginners and advanced archers. You can adjust its draw weight from 15 to 60 LBS and its draw length from 15″ to 27″.



Not all bows are the same, so your preference and intended use will greatly matter when choosing a bow. Whether it be a new bow or your first bow, you need to put a lot of thought into it before buying one. If you’re still not sure, re-read this article and evaluate your intended purpose for the bow.

I hope you liked this article as much as you learned from it. If you have any comments or questions, feel free to leave them in the comments below. Do us a favor and share this with your archer friends as well. Thanks for reading!

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