The popularity of bow hunting, both in Spain and anywhere in the world, comes from the development of compound bows, the well-known “pulleys”. Thanks to them, the power to hunt with a bow has been made accessible to countless people and it is no longer necessary to spend hours and hours in the training field to obtain good results, although obviously the more we do it, the better shooters we will be.
In the field, the pulleys will give us excellent results in real hunting thanks to their high speed, which translates into energy and power, their aiming elements and the possibility of keeping it open and ready to release the arrow without the need for great effort physical, one of the great advantages in real hunting. That is, if the bow is 60 pounds, once the peak force has been exceeded, keeping it ready to release will require the archer, although this is variable, to hold just under 15 pounds. This very important characteristic of the pulleys is called “Letoff”.
However, this increase in the popularity of bow hunting and modern pulleys has come to the detriment of the use of the more classic bows, the so-called traditional bows. Simplifying, they are the simplest in their design and the ones that everyone knows from the cinema or literature, although most of them today are no longer made of a simple piece of wood but of different types of synthetic or natural laminations such as bamboo , fiberglass, carbon, foam … They do not usually have aiming elements and do not have the advantages of pulleys when keeping them open, so if the bow is 60 pounds, we need to hold all those pounds .
In the practical sense, comparing them with compound bows, they are much slower, which greatly affects their real efficiency in hunting, for example, the calculation of the trajectory will be much more complex for us since the fall of the arrow is much higher. Also the energy that they transmit to the arrow is lower, forcing us to make very close and safe shots, always seeking to reach the vital ones, risking as little as possible. It is always difficult to talk about shooting distances in the world of hunting since many aspects influence, but being effective with a traditional bow at more than 25 meters is reserved for the best trained archers. Without a doubt, this distance using a pulley arch is much greater. Keeping them open and ready to release the arrow requires physical effort, if the bow is 55 pounds,
Among its advantages, by design, they are very silent bows, very light, easy to transport and maintain. In hunting, they will allow us, although it totally depends on our shooting style, to make very fast shots, making them ideal for flying hunting, small game hunting and hook hunting.
To get the most out of these bows and as efficient as possible it is always advisable to look for heavy arrows and two or three blade tips that are well sharpened. Our margin of error is less than using a pulley bow, which requires us to pay more attention to these small details and be sure to do everything in our power to get 100% of our traditional bows.
Training with traditional bows must be as frequent and suitable for royal hunting as possible. Being able to concentrate on the exact place, remember that they do not have aiming elements, where we want to hit with our arrow is essential when using these bows and failure to do so is responsible for the vast majority of our failures. The difficulty of hunting with traditional bows tends to cause some frustration to the archer hunter since it tends to fail or take a long time to shoot down our first major piece. This frustration usually causes that after two or three failures, they are left aside and return to the pulleys. Personally, I think there is only one solution, which is to continue training and hunting with them, only then will we get the necessary experience to do it well next time.
As always, the practice of small game is ideal to learn and master this type of bow, the multiple sets that a day can bring us after rabbits will be of great help to us to have enough confidence before going after larger prey, such wild boar and roe deer.