Choose the Perfect Bow First!

Selecting the Proper Hand Orientation


There can often be confusion when selecting the appropriate hand orientation. Knowing which hand to hold your bow and which hand to draw your bow is easiest determined by knowing which hand you're most dominant with. For instance, if you write and/or throw a ball with your right hand then you are right hand dominant. Conversely, if you write and/or throw a ball with your left hand then you are left hand dominant. When choosing the correct hand orientation for a bow, simply select the option that is your dominant hand. The dominant hand is used to draw the string of the bow while the opposite hand holds the bow stationary.

  • RIGHT HAND - Right Handed bows are held in the left hand and drawn with the right hand.
  • LEFT HAND - Left Handed bows are held in the right hand and drawn with the left hand.

Selecting The Proper Draw Weight


When it comes to selecting the proper draw weight, it certainly can vary among different archers. Determining what is right for the individual greatly depends on the skill level and what that person hopes to achieve as an archer. Making sure the correct draw weight is selected is a critical choice for any new archer. The learning experience can be greatly hindered if a new archer struggles to draw their bow, sacrificing the ability to focus on form and consistency. Typically, we would recommend sticking to the lower draw weights until you are comfortable shooting your new bow. Just always keep in mind that starting off over bowed is a sure way to sabotage progression.

Any archer is going to naturally progress the more they use their bow, which will eventually lead to stepping up the draw weight. The draw weight of the bow can always be changed down the line by purchasing and installed a set of either higher or lower weight limbs. This is convenient if you prefer lower weights for target shooting and then want to use the same bow in a higher draw weight for hunting. All Southwest Archery Takedown limbs are 100% interchangeable amongst Southwest Archery risers (excluding the 54" Little Tiger).

If this is your first bow, check out the charts on the left to further assist you in selecting the appropriate draw weight! Disregard this chart if you already have experience with a recurve bow. Compound experience does not count as it is entirely different.


How to Measure Your Draw Length

Weight for a recurve bow is measured at a draw length of 28". If your draw length is longer than 28" then the weight you pull will be more than the bows labeled weight. To determine extra draw weight over 28" add 2lbs for each inch. If your draw length is 30 inches and you order a 30lb bow your actual draw weight will be 34lbs. We strongly recommend anyone with a draw length of 29 or more inches to get a Spyder XL.