Archer’s Dictionary

Here is a list of common archery terms:

Anchor point A point touched by the draw hand or string, usually on the mouth, chin or nose.
Arm guard A piece of material used to protect the inside of the bow arm from the string.
Arrow rest A small device on the side of the bow that’s used to hold an arrow until it’s released.
Barebow A style of shooting without a bow sight, stabilisers and release aid.
Boss A target made from compacted foam or straw
Bow hand/arm The hand/arm that holds the bow.
Bow sight A device so that the archer can aim directly at the target.
Brace height The distance from the string to the pivot point of the bow’s grip.
Cant To tilt the bow to the right or left while at full draw.
Clicker A device used to indicate an archer’s optimum draw length.
Cock feather A different coloured fletching that indicates proper arrow alignment on the string.
Compound A modern bow that uses a system of cables and pulleys.
Creep Letting the arrow move slowly forward before release (not maintaining draw length).
Draw hand The hand which draws the bow string back to the anchor point.
Draw length The distance, in inches, from the pivot point to the slot in the arrow nock when at full draw.
Draw weight The number of pounds of force required to draw a bow to its draw length.
End A set number of arrows that are shot before going to the target to score.
Equipment line A line approximately 2 metres away from the shooting line, where members put bows and stand when not shooting.
Fast A call that indicates some form of emergency. An archer should immediately lower their bow.
Finger/wrist sling A strap that stops the bow from falling when the archer shoots without gripping the bow.
Finger tab A small leather patch to protect the fingers.
Fletch To glue a feather or vane to an arrow shaft.
Fletching The stabilising fins or vanes of an arrow.
Follow through Movement of the draw hand and bow hand/arm after the release.
Full draw The position of the archer when the bow string has been drawn to the anchor point.
Grip The handle of the bow.
Grouping The pattern of arrows in the target.
Limbs The upper and lower arms of a bow.
Longbow A tall wooden bow with a D-shaped cross-section without significant curve.
Nock To place an arrow on the string.
Nocking point The point where the arrow is to be nocked on the string.
Pinching Squeezing fingers against the arrow nock during the draw, causing deflection of the arrow.
Point Metal point inserted into end of arrow shaft.
Poundage Draw weight of a bow.
Pressure button/plunger A device used to correct an arrow’s flex at the point of release.
Quiver Device for holding arrows.
Recurve A bow in which the tips of the limbs curve away from the archer.
Release The act of relaxing the fingers of the drawing hand to free an arrow from a bow (a.k.a. loose).
Release aid A device for releasing an arrow used with compound bows.
Robin Hood A term for splitting an arrow embedded in a target with another arrow.
Round The shooting of a definite number of arrows at specified target faces from set distances.
Serving The protective winding on the centre of the string where the arrows are nocked.
Shaft The arrow excluding the point, nock and fletchings.
Shooting line A line a specific distance away from the targets from which all archers shoot.
Spine The stiffness of an arrow shaft.
Stabiliser A weighted rod or set of rods used to provide balance to a bow.
Stance The position of the feet and body.
Shooting glove Protective gear for fingers.
Target face The paper which is attached to the boss and indicates the scoring areas.
Target Panic A mental condition causing a loss of control in shooting form.
Tune To adjust the equipment on the bow to achieve better shooting.