Oldest model of bows, the English bow was commonly used in Middle Ages Europe. The use of the English bow goes back to the Nordic Vikings. Also called longbow, it was made to fit the stature of a man. However, skill and patience are essential for an archer to use a longbow. Indeed, mastering recreational or sport archery with this type of bow requires commitment, great sensitivity and training.
To achieve a good performance with the English bow, it is necessary to have a good physical and mental balance. This type of traditional or recurve bow requires more concentration and physical condition than modern bows. This is why it is perfect for instinctive shooting and therefore hunting.
Originally, the longbow or English bow was made of a long strip of wood the same length as the opening of the arms of the archer who was to use it. The standard size is about 72 inches (182.88 cm).
Today, a wide variety of models are produced, now using all types of wood and increasingly using the multi-layer technique. The bow is then coated with a thick layer of fiberglass, giving it consistent power and performance over time.
Modern English bow
Today's English bows generally consist of a central riser, two limbs and a string. When the bow is loaded, the limbs should have a single radius of curvature, with a maximum tolerance of 5 mm of backbend from the tip. The thickness of the tip shall not exceed 20 mm from the string groove to the outer face of the limb. The maximum length of the tip, from the recess in the string housing to the handle, should not exceed 50 mm.
If your bow has a window, it should not extend beyond the centerline of the bow. The string is attached to two grooves at the end of the two limbs by means of two rings. The string must have a single notch point formed by one or two references to secure the notch.
On the bow and string, there must be no obvious signs, decorations or devices that could constitute a reference for aiming.
Accessories used with the English bow
Several accessories can be used to embellish or customize your English long bow.
- The quiver: if mounted on the bow, it should be installed on the opposite side of the window, inside which no part of it should be visible.
- The finger guard, which serves to protect the fingers from the friction of the string.
- The stabilizer, which helps the archer to balance the bow during the shot.
- The clicker, which helps the archer to ensure that each shot is made with the same power and length.
There are also various pieces of equipment that serve to protect the archer or to equip him well. We can mention for example the arm guard, the lanyard, the tab, the glove, the chest guard or the archer's ring. Everyone can equip themselves according to their needs and requirements.