In my last post I answered the question “What is a compound bow?“.
Today, the question “What is a mechanical Release?” will be covered.
Jump right in:
When you have followed through my archery training, you know how to release your arrow properly.
In archery we talk about “release” when we let the arrow fly. We mostly don’t say “shoot”, as we don’t do it actively.
All we do is to let the bowstring and arrow go; we don’t pull a trigger like with a crossbow or a gun.
The mechanical release, however, is a different story.
It is a small device, that will release the bowstring when you pull its trigger.
You don’t release with your fingers anymore, when you are using this type of release.
Many compound bow archers use a mechanical release, but it is also used by some recurve bow archers.
The mechanical release gets attached to the bowstring where you would usually hook the bowstring in your finger joints or to the “D loop“.
Then you hold it in your hand and draw the bow as usual.
The big difference now is, that you don’t release the string anymore by increasing your back tension and letting the string go around your fingertips, but you actively pull the trigger of your release.
It is much more like pulling the trigger of a gun.
I want to add, that there are many different types of mechanical releases. Some of them even use back tension as a trigger, but many others rely on a mechanical or hydraulic trigger.
Using it can have a view advantages:
I always like to say, that you need to find your routine when shooting with a bow. Only when you try and do every shot exactly the same way than the one before, will you be able to become a good archer and eliminate all your mistakes.
Using a mechanical release will improve your release of the arrow immensly, because all you have to do is to pull its trigger to let the arrow fly.
Without a mechanical release you have to do this part manually and this can bring inconsistency into your archery experience.
While there are different types of releases, one features a wrist band. They are called wrist triggers and are very popular amongst hunters.
We usually draw the string back with three fingers, which can be a painfull experience, when shooting for a long time.
Using a wrist trigger will spare you the pain, because you pull the string back with your whole arm (and with your back, of course).
Handling a bow can be a challenge for beginners.
I see quite a few archers struggling with drawing the bow and when the string is not hooked properly, they might release it too early accidentally.
This can have ugly consequences:
They can hurt themselves and, of course, others around them when the bowstring slips from their fingers.
This can’t happen when you are using a mechanical release.
As long as you don’t pull the trigger, it will hold the bowstring safely and won’t let it go.
Let’s talk about the most common releases:
I already mentioned the wrist triggers, which have a wrist band that is wrapped around the archers wrist.
Another often used release is the t-handle release. They won’t have the advantage of relieving your fingers, but are prefered by archers who shot without a mechanical release for a long time, as they don’t have to relearn releasing the bow as much as they would have to when using the wrist trigger.
Additionally there are differences how the release is triggered.
There is a positive and negative trigger:
When you use a positive trigger, you will pull the trigger with your thumb when you want to let the arrow fly.
A negative trigger works the other way around:
You hold down the trigger the whole time, when you draw the bow and take aim. When you are ready you take your thumb from the trigger and this will release the bowstring.
The choice is yours.
While I don’t use it for my longbow and recurve bow, I always used it when I shot with a compound bow like the PSE Stinger Compound Bow.
I think it does make sense when you are shooting with a compound bow and recommend to try it when you haven’t already.
If you are more into traditional archery, you will use a longbow or recurve bow anyways, but if you like the futuristic design of a compound bow you can go the whole way and use the mechanical release besides all the other attachments this bow features.
I hope I was able to answer the question “What Is A Mechanical Release?” in a way that you know now perfectly what it is all about.
If you have more questions about it, or want to share your experience with me and other readers, please leave a comment below and I will come back to you quickly.
Have a great day and may your arrows always fly straight!