One of the most asked questions about archery hunting bows is whether to buy a recurve bow or a compound bow?

This post will help you decide the type of bow that fits your hunting preference. Now, let’s look at a few criteria that distinguish a compound bow from a recurve bow.

1. Practice Time to Master

The recurve bow takes time to master how to shoot than the compound bow. Why is that, you ask?

First, you will need to learn how to release the bow to help you shoot accurately. And this requires you to practice often, so you don’t shoot differently.

Unlike the recurve bow, a compound bow doesn’t require much practice. They come with sights in the form of peeps and sight pins to aid your shooting and give you the best accurate shoot. They also offer releases, which has a trigger to assist your shooting and give you a clear shot on target.

So, if you want to be very good at shooting within a short period of time, the compound bow is your best choice.

2. Weight

The weight of a recurve bow is lighter than that of a compound bow. But why is the weight significant?

The reason is that recurve bow will come in handy and be able to pack along easily if you have plenty of stuff with you.

Unlike the recurve bows, compound bows are pretty heavy if you are using it to shoot at a game. As a beginner, you won’t have a steady hand using the compound bow because of the heavy weight. Meaning, you have to continually train with the compound bow to help you build up your muscles and prevent your hand from shaking when shooting.

3. Portability

The recurve bow has a lightweight design, and it is easy to take down. For example, have a look at martin saber takedown recurve bow review too see how easy it is to do. You can easily unscrew a recurve bow and put all the parts into your rucksack and be on the fly.

This makes your movement through the woods a lot easier. So, when it comes to traveling on foot, the recurve bow is the better choice.

Compound bow, on the other hand, is pretty heavy and awkward to disassemble while on the move. Put it to a bow case is a better choice.

4. Easy Repair

If by chance you ripped off the sinew or the bowstring of your recurve bow in the woods, you can use a paracord and make out some emergency post string. Although the paracord is not going to be as fast as the bowstring, it will still do the job.

Unlike the recurve bow, the compound bow is hard to fix if you rip off the parts in the woods. For instance, if you break anything on the cam part, it will be difficult for you to repair it in the wilderness.

Even if you have an extra cable as a spare, you still need a bow press to help string the cable into the cams. So, if you have any issue with your compound bow while hunting, it is very unlikely that you can repair it in the wilderness.

5. Distance from Target

You only need to draw recurve bow back as far as you can, to maintain an effective distance. The more you draw it, the more the weight will increase and better you will have an accurate and powerful shot within a shorter distance.

Unlike a recurve bow, a compound bow has a faster arrow speed that can conquer any distance. You don’t need to draw the bow with all your might to get an accurate shot on target at a particular distance. An arrow from a compound bow will fly above 300 feet per second (FPS).  But Recurve bows range 140 to 160 per second (FPS) no matter the draw.

6. Let Off

The good thing about compound bows is that it comes with pulleys that help the archer to pull the bow with less strain and tension to produce a let-off effect. This effect ensures your energy is preserved in any given distance.

So, with minimal tension, you can pull back as far as you want without feeling  overwhelmed by any tension it produces.

But for a recurve bow, an archer will  get lowered accuracy due to the fatigue experienced from pulling the bow.  With the inclusion of pulleys in a compound bow, the issue of strain, tension and fatigue is solved.

7. Accuracy

The recurve bow requires you to use all your strength to pull the bow without any help. This can lead to less accuracy due to fatigue already experienced.

The compound bow, on the other hand, comes with perfect precision to let any archer take a long draw and produce more force. It is more precise and shoots like a rifle because of the cam system.

They offer let-off that will let you hold the bow easily, and produce less energy when pulling the bow. This will then lead to a stable and more accurate shot on the bullseye. With some aim on your compound bow, plus with the best drop-away arrow rest, you are going to improve in your shooting.

8. Price/Cost

In general, compound bows are more expensive than recurve bows. The reason for this is that compound bow comes with a lot of technical parts, which adds to its manufacturing cost and the time it takes to assemble them.

Unlike Compound bows, recurve bows are cheaper because it only has two screws and one razor with one sinew. So, if you are on a budget, then the recurve bow has the advantage.


Both of these bows are great in their unique ways. A recurve Archer is a living paradox. It features attachments that are standard in modern-day competition. Although the accessories look complicated, the bow’s function and techniques are fundamentally simple.

So, if you are looking for something that is lightweight and flexible, the recurve bow is the right choice for you.

The compound bow, on the other hand, is a modern evolution that uses stiffer limbs and a Pulley Cam System to create a more efficient and accurate bow. Although the bow can be hard to draw, when the Cam rotates, the draw weight becomes lighter. This type of bow is designed to shoot at close perfection as possible.

If you are the type that hunts big games a lot, then a compound bow is the best choice for you since it is more accurate than the recurve bow. It will get you high results, and help you acquire the skills of Archery within a short period.