In most countries, the minimum age to buy and own a compound bow is 18. Aside from the age requirement, you also need some required documents such as permits and valid identification cards.
Canada, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Germany are some countries with minimal requirements for purchasing a compound bow. You will only need a permit to buy a compound bow if it launches a projectile more than the required speed.
It is because these types of compound bows are not firearms by law. For example, according to the Criminal Code of Canada, you can buy a compound bow that launches a projectile velocity not exceeding 500 feet per second or 152.4 m/s by 18. Therefore, you do not need a license or a permit to purchase this compound bow.
Moreover, there is no age limit for buying bows and vanes in North Carolina. However, you must be 18 years old to buy filed points and broadheads.
In countries that are less strict with purchasing a compound bow, you can easily walk out of your local archery store on the same day without the burden of registration, permit, or license.
How old does someone need to be to use a bow?
Anyone can use a bow as early as eight years old. By that time, kids already have enough strength to safely handle a beginner’s bow. At the age of eight, they are also psychologically mature enough to listen to instructions and follow them accordingly.
According to USA Archery Organization, eight years old is the best time to introduce children to archery. It is because they can already join clubs and introductory programs that can help them develop their motor skills and ease their way to the sport at their own pace.
Archery is meant to be fun, especially for children, to learn the basics quickly. The younger you are, the shorter your attention span, so it is best to make the learning process enjoyable. You can start by making a bow from a string and stick to explain the basic parts of a bow.
After explaining the parts of a bow, you can start setting up a range in your backyard (with the approval of your local officials) to review safety procedures and measures for your child. You do not have to go straight away and buy your kids a bow as long as you can teach them the basics.
Using other learning tools, such as stretch bands, is also advisable to help the children learn the shooting steps before using a real bow. Safe and small steps always lead to a good time in the range when they are at the right age.
Once they are on the range and ready to use a bow, make it fem rather than pressuring them to be good immediately. Always review the safety rules regularly and how they should use the bow to rekindle their interest in the sport. You can keep the children engaged by putting up balloons or any alternative breakable objects they can use as a target.
Archery practice provides excellent opportunities for children to develop their skills and tweak their learning styles. Archery also gives you a chance to bond with your kids.
Who can buy a bow and arrow?
Anyone in their respective countries can buy a bow and arrow at legal age. However, that does not mean you can shoot an arrow immediately.
Usually, you can legally and easily walk into an archery store and come out with an arrow and bow without all the licenses and paperwork. However, you cannot use it right away because of the rules and regulations in each country.
For example, you can legally buy a bow and arrow in England, Canada, and the United States of America. But each country has different laws and rules on what you can do with your bow and arrow and how to use it.
Restrictions often depend on why you use a bow and other archery equipment. There are also times when you need to know the rules about bows, not just the state rules but the local rules of the town where you plan to bring your bow.
Each region and local areas have different game, terrains, and requirements for buying a bow, arrow, and other archery equipment. Each state is responsible for giving permits and licenses for buying in the United States bow. For example, New York requires you to be 18 years old to purchase and obtain a compound bow.
In addition, although you can buy a bow at 18, you cannot simply use it immediately, especially for hunting. In New York, you need to get an additional bowhunting permit or license before you can use your bow. And in most cases, before getting your bowhunting permit, you must sign up for archery classes.
These archery classes will teach and help you with the basic know-how of archery. It will also provide a refresher on the details of hunting laws in your state.
How much should you spend on your first compound bow?
You can spend under $500 for your first compound bow without sacrificing quality. A more expensive compound bow will not necessarily make your shots more accurate.
Many compound bows usually cost over $1000, but there are bows around $500 to $700 that are good enough, especially for beginners. Flagship bows from years ago are now around that price range. You can buy a more advanced bow for professional and intermediate archers for around $1000 to $2000.
Do not jump into expensive archery equipment right away. You can shoot a $600 as good as $1000 if you practice daily or weekly. Some more expensive and faster bows give beginners a bit of trouble because it is sensitive and simplifies mistakes when shooting.
Moreover, if you are not going to hunt for a couple of days, you can calculate how much you have to spend on each hunt when you pay around $400 more on a bow. With that calculation, you will know how much you need to spend to buy a nice bow if you have to shoot for a few years and year-round.
When buying a bow, you also need to add archery equipment. You must add a stabilizer, an arrow rest, sights, and a wrist strap. These accessories are available in your local archery shop individually, or you can also buy them for a more affordable “ready-to-shoot” archery package.
However, if you are new to archery, buying individual items takes more time to study each piece of equipment and decide which to buy. But as your knowledge and skills increase, you can easily buy each part or upgrade one piece at a time. After that, you will only need to upgrade your arrows and broadheads.
Here are the different levels and the best bows for each level:
- Level 1: $100 to $200 used bows for five to ten years old- These bows are best for bow fishing, beginners, high schoolers, whitetail, or even as a gift. A level 1 bow shoots well enough to enjoy target shooting or hunting a whitetail. Level 1 bows provide an excellent opportunity for beginners to try archery on a budget.
The cost of broadheads, arrows, and other gear can easily cost as much as the bow when added up. That is why a level 1 bow can help to keep your costs down as an archery beginner.
Even before, level 1 bows excel as a bow for bow fishing setups or high school kids. Because they only have one camera, the timing does not become an issue. Moreover, level 1 bows usually have a whisker biscuit rest and a stationary sight.
A regular hunter can drop one of these level 1 bows out of a tree stand and still shoot roughly the same groups. Level 1 bows offer remarkable resilience because it only has fewer moving parts, so there are only a few things that can go wrong.
Bows in level 1 will group well for 30 yards during the season. However, if you are located on the west or expect to take shots farther than 40 yards, you should use those bows in level 2.
- Level 2: $500 to $700 used bows from the last three to four years and new second-tier bows are best for weekend warriors, any species when hunting, college students, and a future backup bow.
If you use the level 2 bows and only shoot once in a few months or once in a few weeks leading to the season, you most likely do not have to replace the strings often. However, if you plan to shoot weekly, using the nest-level bows is best.
Level 2 bows can still work best as a backup bow and as a hunting bow for those who do not prioritize over everything. These level 2 bows can group well for a past 50 yards and can handle anything from antelope, mule deer, elk, and whitetail.
Moreover, a hunter can ensure that the bow can fit adequately and shoot it before buying it. Overall, the price range of level 2 bows offers a solid option for most hunters. Level 2 bows have great speed and perform better than the newer models.
- Level 3: $1000 to $1000 billion best for professionals with five or more years of experience, western hunters that usually take longer shots, the enthusiast that goes shooting every week, and for hunting antelopes and other longer-range species.
Professional archers that purchase level 3 bows can select from a variety of colors and also have a weight and draw length set precisely. Bows that are more than $1000 do not have a compromise. Archery shops often carry new mods to make on-the-spot adjustments while the techs set up the bows.
You can quickly notice the difference between top-of-line bow shoots and level 2 bows. Level 3 bows remain in tune even after thousands of shots. However, changing to level 3 is the best option if you are not shooting weekly.
Your arrow selection significantly impacts accuracy, but that does not mean you need to spend too much to get perfect accuracy. It usually costs around $1000 to $1500 for a level 3 bare-bones bow. With that, you can already have a quality drop away and sight with caliber third-axis adjustability.
When you do more shooting and increase your archery level, the cost of level 3 bows will make more sense, and the price tag becomes more reasonable.
The practice remains the ultimate determiner when it comes to bows. Be realistic and sure about how much you can spend on the bow and how you plan to use it. There is no shame in saving a hundred bucks and not having a nice bow as your buddies.