Close this search box.

Five Common Archery Mistakes and How to Fix Them

Bull’s-eyes all day long would be awesome, but to get there you need to avoid making a few common archery mishaps. Don’t worry – we’ve got your solution with five fixes to focus on.

Dropping Your Bow Arm

Are you experiencing the occasional low shot? You might be dropping your bow arm in the short amount of time between your release and the arrow leaving the bow. When you lower your bow arm before the arrow clears the bow, you’re changing its trajectory. Even a slight change can have a noticeable impact downrange.

To avoid making this common mistake, focus on maintaining a strong bow arm until you hear the arrow hit the target. Also, resist the temptation to watch your arrow in flight. Peeking at your arrow flight can cause you to move the bow low for an unobstructed view.

Punching the Trigger

Relax your fingers until the arrow naturally releases. Photo Credit: World Archery

Archery isn’t a contact sport, but a common bad habit is to “punch” the trigger, which means activating the trigger in one swift motion. This method can provide acceptable accuracy, but it can also cause target panic. The best alternative to punching is placing your finger on the trigger and slowly applying pressure.

Trigger punchers must train their brains to think they can touch the trigger without the bow going off. You might have to increase your trigger pull at first, and steadily increase the time it takes the bow to go off.

The goal is to look where you want to hit while the pin floats around that spot. You should not have a “shoot now” moment. Apply steady pressure, and let the release surprise you.

Failing to Move Your Sight

Most of our misses are archer-induced, but sometimes the equipment causes your misses.

If you are consistently shooting great groups, but the groups aren’t landing where you are aiming, it’s time to move your sight. You are doing the hard part correctly; you only have to make a quick sight adjustment so your scores reflect your consistent shooting.

Simply move the sight in the direction your arrows are grouping. If your arrows group to the left, move your sight to the left. If your arrows hit to the right, move your sight to the right. If your arrows hit high, move your sight up. If your arrows hit low, move your sight down.

To help remember which way to move your sight, imagine adjusting it until it covers your group. Make small adjustments until you get a feel for how far to move the sight. Here’s a tip: Close distances require greater adjustments to see results. Farther distances need smaller adjustments.

Peep Alignment

Compound bows have a peep sight that needs to work in tangent with the sight housing. Photo Credit: ATA

Compound bows are outfitted with peep sights, which assist in creating a consistent anchor point. While most archers understand the need to look through the peep, a common mistake is to overlook aligning the peep with your sight housing. When properly aligned, the peep and sight housing create two concentric circles. This alignment ensures maximum consistency in your anchor point.

Find an Archery Coach

Ultimately, the best solution for common archery mistakes is to seek help from an archery coach. To find an archery coach near you, click here.



If you liked this one, read these next




Learn the basics here, from the different styles of archery to how to choose the bow that’s right for you.


Stay Up to date on everything archery with our newsletter


Locate archery stores and ranges in your neck of the woods.