How Fast Does an Arrow Travel?

Are you new to archery and wondering how far does an arrow travel? Then, you are in the right place.

Before we begin, let us get to know our tools. A bow is an elastic device used for launching long-shafted arrows. Together these components make up a ranged weapon system.

Archery, usually used for animal hunting and sports, is the skillful practice of using bows to shoot arrows.

The individual performing archery is known as an archer or a bowman. If you are interested in mastering the art of archery, having a complete understanding of arrows is essential for you. Here is all you need to know about the weight, speed, and range of an arrow:

How Fast Does an Arrow Travel?

The speed of each arrow differs as it greatly depends on several factors. Following are some of the things that determine how fast an arrow can travel:

Draw Weight of the Bow

Draw weight, also known as the power of a bow, is the total force that is required to hold the string still at full draw. Using your maximum accurate draw weight will provide the best results in case of speed.

Bowstring Material

Bowstring is the cord that is waxed or sized and connects the ends of a shooting bow. Common bowstring materials are vegetable fibers, rawhide, silk, linen, sinew, and hemp.

Materials that can transfer more strain energy in the bow limbs to the arrow fill to give you extra speed.

Draw Length

Draw length is known as the distance from the throat of the grip to the nock point plus 1.75 inches. Ordinarily, the arrow that is required by the compound archer is also of the same length.

If all other factors remain constant, between two archers, the one with the longest draw length will have more arrow speed.

Limb Material

The upper and lower portion of the bow that is quite thick and stops the bow is known as the limb. It twists when you draw it. The stiffer the limbs are, the more efficient the bows become. Stiffer limbs enhance the speed of the arrow.

Type of Arrow

type of arrow

Along with other factors, the type of arrow shot also plays an important role in determining its speed.

Recurve Bow Arrows

These arrows are known to travel faster and more powerfully relatively because of their three-number shape. They can shoot up to 225fps or 150 mph.

Compound Bow Arrows

Compound bow arrows, due to their higher-rigidity and higher-technology construction, can shoot faster. They can travel up to 300 feet per second or 200 miles per hour.

Longbow Arrows

Due to the weight of longbow arrows, they travel slower as compared to the other arrows. Even at the speed of 300 feet per second, a longbow arrow takes a second to reach a 90-meter target.

What Is the Average Speed of an Arrow?

arrow speed

As the speed of each arrow differs greatly from the other and depends on so many factors, it is difficult to explicitly state the average speed of an arrow.

As mentioned earlier, the average speed of recurve bow arrows is 225fps (150 mph), for compound bow arrows it is 300fps (204 mph) and for longbow arrows with 100-pound drawing weight, it is 180fps (122 mph).

Now keeping these figures in mind, we can conclude the average speed of an arrow to be 235fps (160 mph).

How Far Will an Arrow Travel?

speed of arrow

The answer to this question again greatly depends on the archer himself. His ability and skills to shoot an arrow will determine the length that he can reach.

Several bowmen can shoot arrows at 50 yards. Some can do so at 40 yards while some wouldn’t even consider taking a shot further than 30 yards. However, the furthest an arrow has flown is known to be a distance of 168 yards.

For those individuals who are considering performing long-range shots with a standard bow and arrow, they are highly recommended to do so with extreme caution and at their own risk.

Modern bows are believed to shoot several hundreds of yards under ideal conditions, but it is the responsibility of every bowman to understand where the arrow will land before they release it.

How Much Does Arrow Weight Affect Speed?

arrow weight

With modern bows and arrows, there is a vast range of options available for you in the market.

From materials like aluminum to cross-weave all carbon arrows, there are many to choose from. But remember, the weight of an arrow plays an important role in determining its speed.

The lighter your shaft is, the more speed your arrow will gain. Precisely, for the reduction of every five grains of arrow weight, you will see an approximate increase of 1fps in speed.

Remember, it is important not to overdo the reduction in weight. There is a limit to the lightness of your shooting equipment. A risky practice is going below six grains of arrow weight per pound of draw force.

This can result in increased absorption of vibrations in the bow and it might make the experience more difficult for you.

The bow and arrow market is extremely versatile; they offer a variety of options for you to explore.

Select the best equipment for yourself that has the appropriate and accurate features to fulfill your needs and enjoy the experience to the fullest!