I have own and shot many different recurves and longbows over the years. When shooting my bows with what I call a high wrist grip I always shot with my bow arm fully extended and the pressure from the bow resting against the web of my hand between my thumb and index finger. Shooting like this gives me a 28” draw.
Shooting an asl type grip, I shoot with a low wrist and the weight of the bow pushing against the pad of my hand below my thumb. Shooting like this gives me a 27” draw.
Using the same asl type grip and a bent bow arm elbow, which to me is the most comfortable grip gives me a 26 1/2” draw.
All these different draw lengths occur without my string hand ever changing positions on my face.
I will admit that with my asl type grips I do use the back of the point against my index finger on my bow hand to keep my draw length honest. It might be why I shoot them more consistently.
All of this makes me wonder how many shooters actually know their true draw length and use some kind of draw check to make sure they achieve it.
I'm likely in the minority, but after many years of shooting many bows I'm of the opinion that most folks put entirely too much importance on how long or short they draw their bows, or even on the arrow spines they shoot. This is from a hunting perspective, not a competitive target accuracy perspective. And of course there are limits. But I know that at close (inside 20 yards) distances most hunting bows can shoot quite a range of arrows, at a variety of draw lengths and arrow weights, and still hit pretty darned close to the mark provided the shooter uses good form and is aware of (through repetition with that bow/arrow setup) of the likely results that will occur. Some equipment combinations will of course be better than others, but worrying too much about gear and method minutia I feel is overblown for close-range shooting, at the expense of simply keeping one's shooting approach simple. Decent shooting form overcomes alot of perceived shooting problems, especially when familiarity with the overall setup is present.
I think also that your bow should be checked for actual draw weight at your draw length. If done so, I don’t think there would be so many questions regarding issues with tuning an arrow to the bow.
I'm one of those guys who shoots less than my bow is rated. My draw is 25" and all my bows are rated at 28". In days gone by I shot a 78# long bow, and it was quite a pull even though I was down into the middle to upper 60's. Funny, for a long time, I thought my draw was only slightly below 28" (Iwas shooting high grip recurves at the time). Then, when I was measured with a low grip longbow, I was quite surprised at how short it actually is. Arrow speed has never been a major criteria for me, so I simply tune to what I am drawing and go hunting with it. The loss of speed from this shorter draw is only a detriment if I dwell on it rather than concentrating on shooting form.
Two things influence draw length more than some think. Openness of the shoulders in certain positions and bow arm shoulder. Either one can make an inch or more difference, put them together and the shooter loses two inches or more. Doing a posed draw to check draw is hard to always duplicate when shooting game. Some bows will forgive a bit of slag at certain draw length more than others. My wife has two favored bows, both firstname.lastname@example.org", one is noticeably quicker than the other, but at 25.5" or less they shoot exactly the same FPS with the same arrow at the same draw length. To my thinking, the slower of the two, that shoots an arrow closer to the same speed at a shorter draw length is the better hunting bow versus her longest draw. Personally, I just tickle my index finger with the back of the head, sometimes when hunting left handed and I kill a deer and do NOT feel the head, I forever wonder how short i was, even though the arrow still went where I intended. I have yet to see an archer that did not have some variations in draw lengths under varied hunting circumstances.
"Many shooters think they are shooting more weight than they actually are." So true.
I used to build a few bows back in the day. A friend had me build his bows 70#@28. He was proud of shooting a 70# bow, but he drew pretty close to 25 inches. Still a fair amount of wewight, but most of us shot heavier bows back then. Perhaps not as heavy as we thought though. 😎
I've always kept my stumpin' arrows an inch longer in case I brake one off. I could replace a point without losing the whole shaft.. Hunting arrows are a mix of 28- 28 1/2
I can feel the head slide over my bow arm index finger...a draw check. I left my broadhead arrows a little longer...gotta go by trust on those till I work into feeling them touch my finger too.
I agree Orion. Many times at 3D shoots when we get around to talking to other shooters about their equipment sooner of later they tell you their type of arrow and length. For instance they say I shoot such and such at 29” and I have a 28” draw. Yet, after a few targets you see that they are shooting with 3-4 inches of arrow past the back of the bow when they release.
Which,by the way, leads me to another observation. Many shooters think they are shooting more weight than they actually are.
Folks who've been at this a while know their draw length changes with bow grip shape (high wrist to low wrist) and amount of bend in the bow arm. Those who use draw checks, a clicker for example, just adjust them to reflect their draw length with the bow they're shooting.
That being said, it seems most folks have a tendency to think their draw length is longer than it is, regardless of the bow they're shooting. 😉