Ripcord Arrow Rests
FULL DRAW HOLDING TIPS
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
Bou'bound 12-Oct-19
Brotsky 12-Oct-19
Russ Koon 12-Oct-19
GF 12-Oct-19
JohnMC 12-Oct-19
Franklin 12-Oct-19
Ken 12-Oct-19
t-roy 12-Oct-19
Glunt@work 12-Oct-19
SixLomaz 12-Oct-19
Bou'bound 12-Oct-19
Bowboy 12-Oct-19
wyobullshooter 12-Oct-19
808bowhunter 12-Oct-19
IdyllwildArcher 12-Oct-19
TD 12-Oct-19
Bloodtrail 12-Oct-19
Buffalo1 12-Oct-19
x-man 14-Oct-19
GF 14-Oct-19
Bou'bound 15-Oct-19
pav 15-Oct-19
Vonfoust 15-Oct-19
sdkhunter 15-Oct-19
StickFlicker 15-Oct-19
wyobullshooter 15-Oct-19
elkmtngear 15-Oct-19
GF 15-Oct-19
From: Bou'bound
12-Oct-19
Any tips for holding at full draw for an extended time. Comments about reducing bow weight, building strength, or increasing let off percent not needed.

From: Brotsky
12-Oct-19
Press the bottom cam into your thigh. Will help a little.

From: Russ Koon
12-Oct-19
Hmmm.....That just leaves practicing holding, as far as I can tell. It is a separate and distinct part of the shooting process, and an important one to retain if we are to remain free of the dreaded target panic, and retain our ability to wait out that critter that seems to have a sixth sense warning him from exposing his vital area in a timely manner.

I'm currently at that stage of regaining my former hunting form, after a few years of struggling to regain the strength and overcome the "yips" that have sent many arrows into places where they'll never be found due to a nervous breakdown in anticipation of the release. Finally getting locked on target again, and holding long enough to usually touch and squeeze, but only if the hold has been short. Working on a mental regimen of slowly counting to three while holding on the spot. If I knew a shortcut, I'd sure tell you about it, but I suspect the hard truth is that it just takes lots of practice.

From: GF
12-Oct-19
Crossbow.

Might as well, ‘cuz what’s the difference?

Seriously, though.... Whatever happened to learning when to draw your bow as an essential skill for Bowhunters?

From: JohnMC
12-Oct-19
Bou just get a crossbow/gun and you can hold all day.

From: Franklin
12-Oct-19
Don`t hold the bow in the shooting position, draw the bow and hold in a semi-relaxed position at waist height.....then move to shooting position when ready to shoot.

Holding at the shooting position will tire your muscles far quicker than holding the bow drawn at a lower height.

From: Ken
12-Oct-19
What Franklin said.

From: t-roy
12-Oct-19
What Brotsky said^^

From: Glunt@work
12-Oct-19
You can hold an Oneida rested on your thigh all day.

Having to draw in the presence of game is part of what makes bowhunting hard. Bowhunting being hard is part of what makes it satisfying.

From: SixLomaz
12-Oct-19
After full drawing bring the elbow on the release arm down, next to your body, straight down. Bring the lower cam to your thigh. You should be able to hold for a long time. When ready to shoot just go back slowly in shooting position. Practice few times to get used.

From: Bou'bound
12-Oct-19
Some good tips. Helpful for guys who don’t know when to draw ( apparently this is an essential skill best not lost ) or should just be using a crossbow.

Clearly there is no situation in the field that can not be planned and accounted for by experts and novices alike that would result in being drawn with no shot to take and too big a risk to let down.

From: Bowboy
12-Oct-19

Bowboy's Link
Try one of these. Remember not all states allow them.

12-Oct-19
Yep, I’ll admit I’ve lost that “skill” of reading a bull’s mind and not knowing when he’ll decide to stop one step before exposing his vitals. Good grief.

From: 808bowhunter
12-Oct-19
I practice holding full draw each summer then making best shot possible at the end of each practice session. I start at 45 seconds and im shaking like a leaf but build up to a minute 30 seconds pretty quick. Had to hold for about 45 seconds this season before I got a shot on my bull.

12-Oct-19
Don't overbow.

Lower weights are easier to get used to holding right above your let-off. One more reason not to shoot a high-poundage bow.

From: TD
12-Oct-19
What Brotsky said, spot on. Most compounds you can hold for a REAL long time with the bottom cam rested on something (usually my thigh). Reduces the weight of holding the bow out with you bow arm to practically nothing and the leverage on the cam reduces let-off a good deal as well. I kneel a good bit hunting on the ground and once you get it down it can be a game changer.

Certainly helps to practice holding as it can strengthen the necessary muscles. And also necessary to use a low enough draw weight to be able to slowly, smoothly draw the bow from ANY position with little movement. Should be able to sit flat on your butt with your legs straight out and smoothly get to full draw and shoot without any contortion. (watch that lower limb for clearance though..... =D)

From: Bloodtrail
12-Oct-19
I like the info so far. At full draw I can point the bow down a little and then hook my thumb on my release hand behind my neck to take stress off my shoulder muscles. Or.....if you’re stuck with the bow up....you can hook your thumb behind your neck too.

From: Buffalo1
12-Oct-19
+1 IndyllwildArcher and own an Elite bow that can be held forever.

From: x-man
14-Oct-19
Breathe, relax every muscle not needed, breathe, rest your cam on something(leg), breathe, relax, breathe. The lack of oxygen is your biggest enemy.

From: GF
14-Oct-19
“Yep, I’ll admit I’ve lost that ‘skill’ of reading a bull’s mind and not knowing when he’ll decide to stop one step before exposing his vitals.”

Lemme ask you this...

If you can’t judge whether he’s going to take a step sometime in the next 30 seconds or so, how can you guess whether he’s going to take a step in the next 2-3 seconds?

Because when you take a longer shot, you’re betting the farm that he's NOT going to budge ‘til the arrow gets there.

I haven’t done it in years, but I used to be able to hold for 45-60 seconds and still hit into the old pie-plate standard at 20 yards.

But I really prefer drawing when their vitals are exposed and their eyes are not. Sometimes you have to let down and you get busted in the process. Part of the game is accepting that getting within range doesn’t guarantee you a shot.

If that isn’t what you want, buy a rifle.

From: Bou'bound
15-Oct-19
GF that is like saying why bother practicing.......... just accept that getting within range doesn’t guarantee you will make a shot.

missing is part of the game .......no need to work to minimize the chances of it. embrace it.

if you want to eliminate all risk just use a gun (because people never carry an unfilled tag at the end of a gun hunt)...no need to work to minimize the chances of it. embrace it.

why replace a worn string, using archery equipment brings about inherent risks and breaking a string is one of them. if you can't deal with the fact that bows are more fragile just pick up a gun........no need to work to minimize the chances of it. embrace it.

etc. etc.

to say why learn more about how to handle a real in-field scenario like being drawn and having the animal do something animalish just deal with it and write off the opportunity to bowhunting is silly.

"Sometimes you have to let down and you get busted in the process."................exactly and this is about how tominimize that chance. if you were not trying to minimize getting busted you would not hunt out of trees, try to control scent and play the wind, stay still in the presence of game, stay quiet when animals are around, etc. etc.

isn't hunting about trying not to get busted............................

that's all this thread is about............finding tips on how to minimize risk of one particular in field obstacle (having to hold longer than normal for an ethical shot) getting in the way of a shot opportunity. to say live with it or hang up the bow is missing the point.

From: pav
15-Oct-19
My first bull elk was walking right to left through some sparse aspens. Had a small pine tree between us. I drew when his head was behind the pine. He took three more steps and decided to stop....with only his head and neck visible. There was only 17 open yards between us, so letting down was not an option. I lowered my back elbow and laid the string across my chest. That stopped the shaking and allowed me to hold long enough for him to take a couple more steps. All I had to do once he stepped forward was raise my back elbow, aim and shoot. Think I saw that on the Archer's Choice TV show.....and it worked for me. The bull had no idea I wasn't "really" a bowhunter.

From: Vonfoust
15-Oct-19
I get tired holding the bow up before I get tired holding the string back. Resting on the thigh works well.

From: sdkhunter
15-Oct-19
I like to take my index finger and put pressure on the top of the arrow as it's sitting in the rest - that helps me a lot... Kinda depends on what type of rest, arrow length in respect to BH if that works for you...

Do have to be careful with resting the bottom cam if you go that route - I've seen guys suck up pieces of loose clothing up in their cam and derail....

From: StickFlicker
15-Oct-19
I too rest the bottom cam on my thigh when the animal doesn't cooperate and hangs-up after I've drawn. It helps a lot.

15-Oct-19
"Lemme ask you this..."

"If you can’t judge whether he’s going to take a step sometime in the next 30 seconds or so, how can you guess whether he’s going to take a step in the next 2-3 seconds?"

You can't. As others have pointed out, there are some ways you can try to extend being at full draw. My original post was in response to your ridiculous inference that if an animal stops before presenting a shot as expected, it's because said hunter somehow didn't have the "skill" to predict if that animal would stop.

"Because when you take a longer shot, you’re betting the farm that he's NOT going to budge ‘til the arrow gets there."

WTH does shot distance have to do with how long you may have to hold at full draw?! In contrast to the point you tried to make, the closer the shot, the greater the odds you may have to hold longer than you want.

"I haven't done it in years, but I used to be able to hold for 45-60 seconds and still hit into the old pie-plate standard at 20 yards."

Don't know who's "standard" you're referring to, but that old pie-plate is what, 9-10"? That's pretty piss-poor shooting in my book. Depending on where you're aiming, that's shoulder blade or gut territory. Don't think I'd be bragging about that.

"But I really prefer drawing when their vitals are exposed and their eyes are not. Sometimes you have to let down and you get busted in the process. Part of the game is accepting that getting within range doesn’t guarantee you a shot."

No shit, Sherlock. Don't know or care where you hunt, but I, and many others, hunt where it's thick. Shots are normally close, with few shooting lanes. If you wait till their vitals are exposed, so are their eyes. Typically, you have to anticipate where the shot will come, draw, then wait for them to clear all the clutter. On the good days they do, on the bad days, they stop. When you're calling and hunting solo, the odds go up they will stop. If they stop in the wrong spot, and stop too long, they win. Doesn't make it any less frustrating, but yeah, most of us understand, and accept, that it's "part of the game".

"If that isn’t what you want, buy a rifle."

At least your condescending comments are consistent, but I think I'll stick with my bow. I've done pretty well, thank you.

From: elkmtngear
15-Oct-19

elkmtngear's embedded Photo
elkmtngear's embedded Photo
Brotsky nailed it!

I never knew somebody could hold a bow for this long, till I watched my buddy hold on this bull for well over a minute, maybe a minute and a half...he eventually lowered the cam into his thigh to take some pressure off. Finally, realizing he had no shot, I raked the ground, and the bull took a step. 37 yard shot... It worked out!

From: GF
15-Oct-19
Guess they serve big pie where you come from. I think of a pie plate being 8” tops.

On an Elk, that’s pretty tolerable accuracy. And 45 seconds is a pretty long time at full draw.

  • Sitka Gear