Strength & stability exercises for bow shooting

[Updated 1 January 2024] After a day at the shooting range with a few buddies; I realized my shots getting sloppier as the day went on.  My arms and shoulders became slightly numb over the course of just a few shots. The strings on my bow are relatively new. But, I didn’t have the necessary upper body strength to hold the bow stable enough before I take the shot. I realized that body stability together with hand/eye coordination are a few of the deciding factors that go into the perfect shot.

A few days after, I told my sister about what I realized. She recommended that I come with her to the gym. And consult a trainer about body strengthening and stability. I took her advice and the trainer really helped. It was because I had a clear reason for why I wanted to get better!  I learned that there are muscles in the body that work together to make a straight and more stable shot for archery. Here are a few exercises you can do to improve your balance, stability, and strength for a perfect shot on a bow and arrow.

One Arm Dumbbell Row

This Strength & stability exercises develop your arms as well as your lats. It can be done in a gym or at home with a straight bench and a bottle full of coins as weights if you don’t have a dumbbell.

Affected muscle groups for this exercise

1armdumbbelRow 1200x630px

  • Deltoids
  • Biceps brachii
  • Serratus anterior
  • Trapezius
  • Triceps brachii
  • Latissimus dorsi
  1. 1 Starting Position 1024x630pxGrab a dumbbell (10+lbs) and position one knee and one hand on a bench for support. Stretch out the opposite leg back away from your body with the foot planted on the ground to keep your balance. Keep a straight back with a slight curve in your lower back, your chest out and your chin up with eyes looking forward.
  2. 3 MidROM 1024x630pxFrom a starting position of the arms with the dumbell stretched perpendicular to the ground, pull the weight towards your rib cage with your elbow. Avoid putting pressure on your wrist and hold the position for at least one second.
  3. 2 PeakROM 1024x630pxVery slowly release back to the starting position and repeat at least 12 repetitions until you reach your strength limit. Do the same for the opposite side.

It is recommended to start with your less dominant side and max out your strength limit. Do the same number of reps and sets with your dominant side to even out the strength on the left and right sides of your body.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

How do you increase your bow strength?

The following are some archery exercises you should perform to improve your bow strength.

  1. Single-Arm Dumbbell Row
  2. Single-Arm Dumbbell Raise
  3. Plank

What muscles does archery workout?

  • Shoulders: The superior part of the shoulder is anterior deltoids for holding the bow, and posterior deltoids for drawing the bow.
  • Chest: The muscles on your chest are called pectorals. They’re used to holding.
  • Back: The latissimus dorsi, rhomboids, trapezius, and teres major and minor muscles all aid in the drawing process.
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