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Traditional Equipment Rules

National Traditional Championships Equipment and Shooting Rules

Gender: Male and Female
Age Class: No separate categories. All shoot as "Senior."
Read This First

I. Five equipment divisions will be made:
a) Traditional longbow (TLB): Wood longbows/flatbows and similar made from natural materials and without arrow rests or shelves.

b) Modern longbow (MLB): wood longbows containing modern man-made materials. Arrow rests or shelves are permitted.

c) Traditional recurve (TR): recurve or similar bows with wood risers.

d) Traditional Asiatic bow (TAB): European, Asiatic, Turkic, Mongolian or similar, made from natural materials.

e) Modern Asiatic bow (MAB): European, Asiatic, Turkic, Mongolian or similar, made with modern materials.



General Rules:
1. Longbow is defined as a bow with bowstring contact only at the string nocks.

2. Stabilizers or counterweights, or bows built up to serve the same function will not be allowed with the exception of short stabilizers in the recurve division (see below.)

3. Protruding bow sights (except for traditional recurve) will not be allowed. However for longbows, a movable band/"o-ring" or rubber band on the bow limbs will be permitted as long as this band is no larger than 1/8th inch wide or high. An alternative allowed reference method is the moveable "Point-of-Aim." This cannot exceed a height of 6" if on the ground or be larger than 3" in diameter.

4. No cushion plungers or similar mechanical or metal apparatus shall be used. However, the side of the bow where the arrow comes in contact with it may be built out slightly with a leather pad.

5. Arrows will be fletched with feathers. Points shall be of a type that will not inflict undue damage to target faces or buttresses. Point weight may be of any value. All longbow and Asiatic bow competitors must shoot wood arrows. Recurve shooters may shoot wood or aluminum. Maximum arrow diameter is 9.3mm.

6. Finger protection in the form of finger stalls or tips, gloves, shooting tab or tape (plaster) is allowed to draw, hold back and release the string, providing it does not incorporate any device to help in holding, drawing and releasing the string. For example - mechanical releases or hooks are not permitted. A separator between the fingers to prevent pinching the arrow may be used. On the bow hand a glove, mitten or similar item, may be worn.

7. Binoculars and spotting scopes are not permitted.

Note: Archer should be prepared to verify bow material.


A. Traditional Longbow Division Rules:
1. British Longbows, selfbows or American flatbows or similar, composed of wood and/or other natural materials, without arrow rests or shelves. Bows may be laminated, but no man-made materials outside of glue or takedown mechanism may be used.

B. Modern Longbow Division Rules:
1. Longbows with wood risers are allowed. Wood limbs may include fiberglass laminates, carbon or other modern man-made materials. Wood risers may be reinforced with minimal amounts of micarta, phenolic or similar.

2. Arrow rests, shelves and center shot cut shelves are also allowed.

C. Traditional Recurve Division Rules:
1. Recurve or similar bows with wood risers are allowed in this division. Wood risers may be reinforced with minimal amounts of micarta, phenolic or similar. Limbs to be made of wood but may be covered with fiberglass. No carbon limb composites or foam limbs, just wooden core limbs with glass overlays.

2. Arrow rests, shelves and center shot cut shelves are also allowed.

3. Arrows may either be wood or aluminum but may not be carbon or aluminum carbon composites. Arrows must have feather fletching.

4. Bow sights are allowed that are either wood, plastic, steel or aluminum construction (no carbon) using a single adjustable sight aperture with no magnification or level and must be directly attached to the bow with no extension bar longer than 5 inches. A point of aim marker may also be used but not in the combination with a bow sight.

5. Bow stabilizers may also be used, but must be no longer than 10 inches in length and constructed either of wood, steel, brass, copper or aluminum. Rubber may be incorporated in the stabilizer but no carbon.

6. The use of a draw check mirror, level or string peep is not permitted. A riser-mounted spring steel clicker is allowed. Clickers to be used are the Hoyt stick-on or its equivalent, including the Cartel target clicker.

7. Arrow rests should not be used with a cushion plunger or Burger button. Arrow rests to be used are the Hoyt Super Pro Rest or equivalent or the Bear brush rest or equivalent.

D. Traditional Asiatic Bow Division Rules:
1. Horsebows and similar Euro/Asiatic styles, composed of wood, horn, or other natural materials without arrow rests or shelves and containing no man-made or synthetic materials outside of glue. Siyahs must be of wood or horn and uncovered. Arrows must be wood or bamboo and have feather fletching. Shooting gloves, tabs or thumb rings may be used. No aiming devices/references/markings may be used.

E. Modern Asiatic Bow Division Rules:
2. Horsebows and similar Euro/Asiatic styles, containing modern, synthetic or man-made materials such as carbon, fiberglass or plastic. Siyahs may be covered. Arrows must be wood or bamboo and have feather fletching. Shooting gloves, tabs or thumb rings may be used. No aiming devices/references/markings may be used. Bows with recurve-style grips and/or shelves will shoot in the Traditional Recurve division.


Revised March 2020

Note: The use of modern glues/adhesives is permitted in all divisions due to safety concerns.

If in doubt about equipment qualifying and/or "meeting the spirit of the competition," feel free to contact us.

In the case of archer disability reasonable adaptive accommodations will be permitted.





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