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Thread: What is an "average" draw weight for women?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    NE Washington
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    What is an "average" draw weight for women?

    My wife and I have been doing some research, and I have asked a few questions here on her behalf. I don't want to push her too hard to get into it, but I think she is very interested.

    She shot a G5 Torch the other day. We hit 2 shops. She started on a Genesis I think.

    Her draw length was measured at both shops. One had her at 26". The other at 27.5". So that gets us out of the "Women's Specific" bows.

    But then came the draw weight question. She was having a pretty hard time with 30 pounds. The second day she could not draw 34 pounds.



    I picked on her a bit(in good fun), but I think she got pist. She is very athletic and in stellar shape. I just expected her to be able to draw more.

    So now we are limited by draw weights.

    Can anyone weigh in on if that's a somewhat "normal" rookie draw weight, and if 40 pounds(legal minimum) is possibly attainable starting at 30 pounds?

    Lastly, I posted asking about Pink bows. I think she is now ditching the pink. She wants Black Out with purple anodized cams and guards......But that's what I wanted so I won't biitch. She will get it.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    My Wife and her friends all pull from 35-38#. She has pulled 43# max but one of her friends couldn't do it. All of them are 23-25 draw lenght.
    May's Custom Archery

  3. #3
    She'll be able to move onto a heavier weight eventually. If her form improves the draw will get easier on her. Make sure she draws using her back muscles- once she builds up some strength there the draws will get a lot easier. It wont take as long as you'd expect. After a couple weeks of starting to shoot consistently at a club I thought my 60# bow had been damaged or was defective because the draw had gotten really easy- I put it on the scales and it peaked out at 62#. Next bow is ordered in 70-60#.

  4. #4
    Most women beginner should start on 15-20lb. Many spouses or boyfriends would like to show their macho-ness, whatever that means, to their opposite sex, if their partner can not draw heavy weight bow, there is something 'wrong'. But this is why many women or youth stopped archery. BTW, I also think most boys or men beginners are also over-bowed, they only stayed on 'with the program' because there is that psychological pressure to show that their poundage is at the least on par with their shooting buddies or the guy shooting on the shooting line next to you.

    But the fact is, if you are truly serious to get her started (or any beginners for that matter), you would want her to have a bow which has a wide dynamic range of weight adjustment so she can start shooting and being able to hit where she is aiming at lower poundage first.

    Here is the rationale:

    - any training is based on a system of "effort vs reward". By being able to hit where she is aiming at lower poundage bow, she will shoot and practice on her own because she is being 'rewarded' for her effort.
    - after she is able to hit the target time and time again, she should be the one who is asking to up the poundage. Because only if she practices at lower
    poundage, she will be able to shoot time and time again without getting tired.

    After their muscle developed, most women would be able to draw 45-60lb if they practice regularly. Some can draw 70-90lb. I have even heard an older lady drawing 105lb!


    Quote Originally Posted by Jesse Jaymes View Post
    My wife and I have been doing some research, and I have asked a few questions here on her behalf. I don't want to push her too hard to get into it, but I think she is very interested.

    She shot a G5 Torch the other day. We hit 2 shops. She started on a Genesis I think.

    Her draw length was measured at both shops. One had her at 26". The other at 27.5". So that gets us out of the "Women's Specific" bows.

    But then came the draw weight question. She was having a pretty hard time with 30 pounds. The second day she could not draw 34 pounds.

    I picked on her a bit(in good fun), but I think she got pist. She is very athletic and in stellar shape. I just expected her to be able to draw more.

    So now we are limited by draw weights.

    Can anyone weigh in on if that's a somewhat "normal" rookie draw weight, and if 40 pounds(legal minimum) is possibly attainable starting at 30 pounds?

    Lastly, I posted asking about Pink bows. I think she is now ditching the pink. She wants Black Out with purple anodized cams and guards......But that's what I wanted so I won't biitch. She will get it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Central, NH
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    My wife just got a Heart Braker about a month agoo and she was able to pull at 35lbs but when we got home we dropped it back to 30lbs show she could shoot more. Being able to put more arrows down range is what she needs more of right now. We will increase the weight slowly over the next couple of months. By the time deer season comes around she will have no problem pulling back 40lbs.

  6. #6
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    Dec 2010
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    New Mexico
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    I have a Razor Edge. I started out at 30# and am now shooting at 46# The time from 30 to 40# was rather short too. Archery uses a different combination of muscles than most people are used to using. That is why people can have great upper body strength and still not be able to pull a lot of draw weight. I am sure that she will not have any problem working up to 40# rather quickly. The biggest thing is to not push. She will let you know when to turn up the weight.

    I have read in several place that 40-45# is the average for women. There have been polls done here and on other women's hunting sites that confirm that number. Of course you have those that pull more or less, but that is very common. Besides with the technology of todays archery equipment, you don't really need more than that to ethically kill most deer and other game (becomes a point of contention when it comes to elk or larger game as to how much is REALLY needed - but most legal draw weights for those animals is the same as for deer).

  7. #7
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    Aug 2009
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    Southern Maryland
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    when I first started I could probably pull about 30 pounds... so I picked up a garage sale youth bow for 20 bucks and practiced the draw and my boyfriend and I tried any excersise that might possibly mimic the drawing of a bow... Not sure which helped more but when it came time to make the big purchase I was able to pull 40 pounds.... I can now pull 50 pounds at 23 inches...
    Make me sweet again
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  8. #8
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    They do have these exercise equipment that mimics the different draw weight and allows you to use those muscles if you are unable to get to a range and practice regularly. While nothing is quite the same as shooting an actual bow and feeling what THAT feels like, the equipment is a great alternative....

  9. #9
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    Feb 2009
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    I was shooting a right handed Genesis to start with, and then bought a left hand Alphamax. I started out with the bow turned down to 32 pounds and it took me almost 3 months of shooting daily to work up to 42 pounds. One of the things that helped push me was the man who sold me the bow said he would not sell me a sight for my bow till I could pull 40 pounds. He wanted me to get stronger, work on my form, and not worry about aiming. I don't think he thought it would take me near as long as it did but I think at least for me it was very good advise. I would love to pull more but 42 pounds is where I'm comfortable and I can shoot for a few hours and enjoy myself.
    Bowtech Invasion - Black Ops 27", 42#, 275fps
    Hoyt AlphaMax 32 - 27", 42#, 262fps

  10. #10
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    Mar 2010
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    It all depends on the bow too. Some bows will have a smoother draw or less of a hump so will be easier to pull more weight. I started out at 35lbs and by the end of the summer was pulling 50lbs on a newer bow. I couldn't pull 50lbs for hours everyday without getting a sore shoulder so backed that bow down to 41lbs. I have a new bow now and am comfortably pulling 48lbs. If she practices it won't take her long to build the muscles to make the jump to 40lbs. Get her something adjustable to start with. The BowTech Soldier can go from 25-65lbs. Well, with 2 different sets of limbs.

  11. #11
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    I started pulling 40# when I first started and have worked my way up to 50# but have backed my bow down to 48# so my shoulder quits hurting me. Its best to keep the bow easy to draw so she can work on form. Speaking from experience if you turn the draw weight up to quickly her form will suffer. I did this and found I was "cheating" when I was drawing with my hand placement and started having problems torquing my bow.

  12. #12
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    My wife started out at 35 lbs about 3 years ago, she is shooting 39lbs right now very comfortably.
    2010 New Breed Genetix- 60lbs. / 28.5" = 370 grains @ 282 FPS
    2012 New Breed Eclipse- 65lbs. / 28.5" = 370 grains @ 291 FPS

    2015 New Breed ??? - 65lbs/ 28.5"
    Carter's Archery- "Get Crackerized" , Starrflight FOBs- "Fletchings Only Better"

  13. #13
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    Feb 2010
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    My wife is shooting a PSE Vendetta xs 26" @ 41 lbs, her target bow is a Hoyt Protec @ 38 lbs. Daughter is shooting a Hoyt Katerra 24 1/2" @ 47 lbs. both are comforatble with draw weights. My job is to encourage them and buy equipment that fits them. (yes they both can beat me on occasion)

  14. #14
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    It's great that you're helping your wife get into archery, but please don't make her feel like she's got to start with a heavier DW than she can really handle. Archery uses a unique set of muscles that most of us don't otherwise use, not matter how athletic we are. I thought I had a lot of upper-body strength before I started archery (weight lifting, doing push-ups, etc.), so figured I would have a pretty high DW. Boy, was I WRONG! I had to start at about 22-24 lbs! But it only took me about 7 months to get up to 45#.

    Another thing to consider is that many (but not all) women need to practice regularly to maintain higher draw weights (talking 45#-60#). Give your wife some time and let her increase the DW at her own pace. The last thing either of you need is for her to develop a joint injury that would prevent her from shooting at all. On the bright side, although most women need to start at what men consider low DWs, we tend to progress very quickly! Good luck, and I hope you find a great bow for her!

  15. #15
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    No, I don't want to discourage her in the least. The problem just arises with bow selection. I am funding the project. And I just drew a Multi Season permit here, so I am going to get into archery again.

    I have 2 bows to purchase and outfit in a short amount of time.....And I just want her to get the best bow that will last a while. I don't want to invest $600 and then have to dump it in 3 months.

    I am thinking a Hoyt Rampage, which states 30-40lb range. Which in reality should get us to 28lbs to maybe 42ish?

    And she has stated that she is not really interested in hunting right now, but again, if that changes, I am hoping that she can make the 40 pound minimum draw wt.

    So I just wanted a ball park of averages and if she is at 30 pounds currently, if 40 is out of the question in the next 3 months, or even the next year.

    Thanks

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jesse Jaymes View Post
    I don't want to invest $600 and then have to dump it in 3 months.
    I am thinking a Hoyt Rampage, which states 30-40lb range. Which in reality should get us to 28lbs to maybe 42ish?
    I can certainly understand that. At least you don't have to worry about a short DL, too! That's even more of a headache! If you're looking for a versatile DW, I think that many (if not most) of the Martin and PSE bows actually have ~15# range. My 40# PSE Chaos could safely go down to about 22#. But you might want to double-check with the manufacturer or a pro shop. And I know there are good bows with even more DW flexibility than that.

    As far as progress, if your wife enjoys shooting, and practices regularly, she very well could get up to 40#. Whether it's in 3 months or a year really just depends on her--results definitely vary!

  17. #17
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    Dec 2010
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    I am slightly biased, but you can get a Diamond Razor Edge for 329. That comes as a package with sight, quiver, wrist sling, peep sight, and hostage arrow rest. DL is 19"-29" and a DW range of 30-60# This is a great bow and one that will not break the bank and she can grow in to.

  18. #18
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    stubby'smom made a good point, a lot depends on the bow.
    i shoot a martin mystic at 32# with 25" draw length in 3d womens barebow. our maximum distance is 30 yards, shooting with fingers, unsighted. we all shoot round the 30# in this division.
    32# on this bow is so much easier than 32#on the hoyt rintec XL which i shot last year, and easier than 32# on my beginner bow a browning micro midas. i still have these.
    the martin mystic has 25-40# available with the current set up of small cams and modules and 1 H limbs. i practice a few times each week and am a lot stronger than 12 months ago. good form and technique helps develop strength and avoid injury. suprised that i shot it at 36 easily when it arrived before putting it on the scales, but 32# seems to work well. perhaps buy lower poundage second hand, short but regular practice, good technique, increase small amounts gradually with whats comfortable.

  19. #19
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    Take a look at the Diamonr Razors Edge. It goes from 30#-60#. My girl friend started at 28# and the next year she was at 46# and a 25" draw.

  20. #20
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    I started shooting at 30# and am now pulling 55-60#. All women will be different and there is no "average". If she can't draw it while sitting down, then its too heavy for her.

    Shooting uses muscles that most people don't use every day. Even if she's in great shape, those muscles arent used to working that much. She will develop more strength in time, but if she pushes too hard she will get hurt. Find her a bow that will be comfortable for her NOW or she won't continue shooting.
    Don't ever tease her for that- it may be enough for her to not want to shoot with you. Archery is a male-dominated sport and while I think most women feel very welcomed once we get used to it- it can be intimidating to start. And remember- she may soon be able to shoot better than you. Turn about is fair play. My guy used to think it was funny to shoot an arrow at the X on my target, so I'd think I hit it. Then I'd get down range and see it was his. He's spent a long, long time paying for that.

  21. #21
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    id blame it on usin the wrong muscles... tell her to use her back and maby do some workouts to improove thoes muscles

  22. #22
    I started at 30lbs 2 weeks ago and have already been able to move up to 32, not a huge jump but again its only been 2 weeks I have been shooting. Plus I watched some videos on a Peterson sight and started working my shoulder, back and arm muscles with 10lbs weights. So that's an idea for her as well.

  23. #23
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    i have been shooting olympic recurve for the last 4 years so i have got some back muscle built up but i have just picked up a compound and am shooting it at 27inch DL and 41lbs
    "From the outside looking in, you cant understand it. From the inside looking out, you cant explain it" Texas A&M Archery
    "A good archer does it until they do it right. A great archer does it until they can't do it wrong." (the original)
    *2007 Hoyt Nexus* *2010 Hoyt Vantage Ltd*

  24. #24
    I just shot a bow for the first time EVER yesterday (see Newbie intro for story). I started at 45 lbs. Purchased my first bow today (Bowtech Soldier)and had it set to 42 lbs. That's where it felt comfortable for me. I'm hoping to be up to 55 lbs by Fall.

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