Hamilton County 4-H Archery Club members will need a bow of their own, in order to practice at home (or at another location) between club practices. In addition to a bow, each club member will also need their own arm guard, arrows, and target. Club members who want to start out with a recurve bow should also purchase a sight.
Many sporting goods stores and archery pro shops carry the equipment needed to get started in archery. Some local sporting goods stores may carry a better selection of archery equipment online and may be able to order what you need.
Some sporting goods stores that carry archery equipment include:
Cabela's - (350 Cobb Parkway, Ringgold; 706-956-2800)
Bass Pro Shop - (1000 Bass Pro Dr., Chattanooga - on the road to Camp Jordan in East Ridge; 423-242-4000)
Sportsman's Warehouse - (6241 Perimeter Drive, Chattanooga; 423-892-6300). Sportsman's Warehouse will install finger savers on your bow. If you buy the finger saver there, they will not charge extra to install it.
Academy Sports - (5929 Hwy 153 or 2220 Hamilton Place Blvd., Chattanooga; 423-870-7930 or 423-490-2300)
Archer's Choice pro shop - (3889 Hixson Pike #107, Chattanooga; 423-443-4138 - call first to check hours).
Lancaster Archery - online
3 Rivers Archery - online
which Bow to purchase?
What kind of bow should you get? If you are new to archery, plan to try out different bows at the fall practices before you decide.
Keep in mind in selecting a bow:
Keep in mind in selecting a bow:
- Shooting distances for new archers - the target distances for 4-H archery at the local and state levels (including the spring jamboree/state competition) are 10 and 15 meters (for Genesis archers) and 15 and 20 meters (for recurve and open compound division archers).
- A toy bow or one with a draw weight of less than 15 pounds minimum is unlikely to consistently reach this distance and will be frustrating to a new archer.
- On the other hand, new archers should not get "overbowed" - trying to learn good technique with a bow that is hard for them to pull back. An archer should be able to pull back and hold a bow at full draw for ten seconds multiple times in a row. A draw weight of less than 25 pounds is usually best for new archers.
- Available competition levels - some bow divisions in 4-H have more (and higher level) competitions available than others.
- Genesis - The original Genesis bow is a great way to learn archery! The draw weight is easily adjustable, which is a huge plus for new archers. 4-H Archery Club members of all ages can compete at the state 4-H archery jamboree in the spring in the Genesis division with these bows. No modifications to the bows are allowed (such as sights or releases), so the state competition is a level playing field with all of the archers in this division having the same equipment. Archers compete by grade level (juniors, junior high or senior high). Available 4-H competitions: state jamboree
- Recurve - The recurve bow is favored by traditional archers. With a sight installed, it can be extremely accurate. This is also the type of bow used in the Olympics. 4-H Archery Club members of all ages can compete (by age group) in the recurve division at the state 4-H archery jamboree in the spring. Senior high archers (grades 9-12) who do well at the state competition can also compete at the state 4-H invitational competition in October. The top four archers at the October invitational can go on to represent Tennessee as they compete at the National 4-H archery invitational in June. Available 4-H competitions: state jamboree, state invitational (sr high), national invitational (sr high)
- Open Compound Division - This is the 4-H competition division for all compound bows that are not Genesis youth bows. A wide variety of attached equipment is allowed in this division, including sights, releases, etc. (see equipment standards, below, for details), which allows these bows to be extremely accurate. 4-H Archery Club members can compete by age group in the open compound division at the state 4-H archery jamboree in the spring, and the scores of the winners in this division are often close to perfect scores. As with the recurve division, senior high archers (grades 9-12) who do well at the state competition can also go on to the October state invitational and, if they place in the top four there, the national invitational. Available 4-H competitions: state jamboree, state invitational (sr high), national invitational (sr high)
Suggested bows that have proven successful for 4-H Archery Club members in the past (along with links to some of the companies selling them):
- Recurve (Tips for bow size) Purchasing a sight is recommended. Look at the Avalon Tec One. Bows to consider: Samick Polaris or Sage, PSE Theory
- Genesis youth bow: The Original Genesis bow - not the Pro or Gen-X version - is the only Genesis youth bow allowed at present in the 4-H Archery Jamboree's Genesis compound division. The mini-Genesis is not allowed at 4-H archery competitions.
- Compound: Diamond Infinite Edge