A bow release is an aid to help archers shoot their arrows more accurately and obtain a smoother release.  It is a mechanical aid which helps you get a clean shot by reducing movement and increasing your performance.  When using a release, there is only one point of contact instead of three fingers touching the string.  There are various types of releases which include wrist and handheld models.  Bow releases have become so popular that it is good to have a backup release because it is easy to lose it or to inadvertently drop or damage it, especially if it is not around your wrist. It is often harder to draw back a bow with a handheld release versus a wrist model.  Wrist models are generally preferred and easier  because the draw weight is distributed around the wrist, resulting in less effort during the draw cycle than with a handheld.

Below are some of the best compound bow releases on the market:

#1: Tru-Fire Patriot Adult Black Release

The Tru-Fire Patriot is a black, nylon, padded Velcro strap that is very easy to put on.  It is designed to fit left and right handers and does not include a two-way trigger. This dual caliper economical release is American made and has coated jaws and a trigger that will last for years. Simply push the trigger forward to close the jaws. This wrist strap is adjustable and provides smooth trigger action.

#2: TRU-FIRE Hurricane HC-EX-BW Extreme Buckle Web Release

This American made dual caliper, camo nylon TRU-FIRE Hurricane release comes with a spring loaded trigger, and the jaws are opened by pulling back the trigger; and, closed by let off of the trigger.  This release features an Evolution buckle strap which is the simplest and most comfortable strap on the market. Also included is a ½” web connection system.  There are a number of possibilities for length adjustment, and you do not need tools for adjustment.  In addition, the webbing will not stretch or move.

#3: Scott Archery Shark Double Caliber Release

Scott Archery’s dual caliper release is created using a symmetrical design that ensures even distribution of friction, resulting in enhanced bow tune-ability.  The revolutionary compact dual-jaw design has a wide roller-sear which creates an extremely smooth trigger pull.  Other features are a forward trigger and a four-position length adjustment which are perfect for high performance, short axle-to-axle bows.   A pivoting head offers outstanding consistency and accuracy.  These releases are generally known for heavier trigger settings.

#4: Tru Ball Max Hunter Pro 4 Release

The Max Pro 4 release is part of T.R.U. Ball’s Max Hunting Series.  It is a handle release with a smaller head and jaws for more bow speed and maximum draw length.  The head on this release swivels 360 degrees and it has an adjustable sensitivity screw.  It offers absolute quiet when loading and maximum loading speed.  Simply activate the trigger to open jaws, and let up on the trigger to close them.

#5: Mossy Oak A.X. Caliper Release

The Mossy OAK A.X release has a 1-piece, preset trigger that provides excellent shooting precision, and a compact dual-jaw design.  It features a buckle strap that fastens securely to your wrist.  The rope connector has an adjustable length which ensures a comfortable fit.  The trigger on this release is made to open and close manually.

Additional information: Preparing for a hunt? Check out our guides to compound bows and hunting arrows.

What is a bow release?