How to Tell if a Compound Bow Is Left or Right Handed?

There are various types of bows available, ranging from recurve bows to longbows and more recently, the compound bows.

The compound bow is now getting more popular amongst archers and its special structure helps to make it very reliable in aiming for various target points, with its many parts working together. In this post, you will learn how to tell if a compound bow is left or right handed.

What is a compound bow?

A compound bow is an archery equipment with a very complex network of different parts that help improve precision. It consists of a riser, limbs, cams, cam systems, bowstring, cables, cable guard, cable slide, arrow rest, sight, string vibration arrester, stabilizer and mechanical release which are the working parts that are coupled together to create a perfect compound bow.

compound bow

The equipment is often used for professional archery competitions or recreational activities due to its incredible accuracy. It differs from the more common recurve or longbows which have simpler parts.

While selecting a compound bow, you would need to have some level of understanding of the parts, as compound bows are not universally structured. You might require a left-handed or a right-handed bow, and this depends on a number of factors including your dominant eyesight, as well as your dominant hand.

How to know if a compound bow is left or right handed?

There are various ways to tell if the compound bow that is meant for you is going to be right handed or left handed. The most reliable and recommended way is by lifting the compound bow yourself and determining its orientation through your own dominant hand and eye use.

How To tell if a Compound Bow is left or right Handed

The draw hand of the bow

Depending on the way you hold up a compound bow, you can determine if it is right or left handed. If you hold the compound bow up with your left hand, and then you draw the string with your right hand with exact alignment, then the compound bow is a right handed bow. This means that the draw hand of a compound bow is the dominant hand of that compound bow.

The eye dominance for the compound bow

To be a good archer, you need to be aware of your more dominant eye which would help you in making a choice of a left-handed or right-handed bow. The dominant eye has more clarity and often correlates with your dominant hand which is quite an advantage to help sharpen your skills. The eye which is dominant is expected to align with the bow string perfectly, and so it is even more important than the hand in determining if the compound bow is left or right handed.

The sights of the compound bow

The sights of a compound bow are small pegs that help to determine the aim of the archer. A right handed bow would have the sights located on the left hand side of the bow, while a left handed bow would have the sights located on the right hand side of the bow. Usually, before purchasing a compound bow, you would test the use of the bow to know which one is right for you.

The arrow stabilizer of the compound bow

The arrow stabilizer is usually found on the riser of a compound bow and helps to keep the bow balanced in your hands. It is also a good way to know what type of compound bow it is you are buying. Like the sights, the arrow stabilizer is also located on the opposite side, that is, a right handed compound bow would have the arrow stabilizer located on the left side of the riser.

The arrow rest of the compound bow

An arrow rest is just as its name signifies; the part of the bow on which the end of an arrow rests upon as you draw your bowstring. The arrow rest is shaped as a crescent, slightly curved towards the left or the right. If the arrow rest is found on the left side of the compound bow, curving towards the right, then the bow is a right-handed one. However, an arrow rest can be set up for both sides as seen often in compound bows.

The riser of the compound bow

The riser is the mid aspect of the compound bow, which serves as the support structure. It gives a clue to the orientation of the compound bow, depending on the way the archer finds preferential in holding the bow using the riser. The shape of the riser is usually designed in a specific way that is not often ambidextrous, and therefore requires specific dominant hand use.

In conclusion

Selecting a compound bow requires you to pay attention to the more comfortable alignment, especially considering your dominant eye as well as your preferred hand. What matters the most is finding balance and ensuring you can accurately aim with the choice of compound bow you decide to purchase.