You’re tired of your kids staying indoors, so you decide that you’re going to get them into a sport that you know they’ll enjoy, archery! Your child’s going to love it! What a good way to get them active!
Or maybe you just watched a movie where one of the characters was an archer that your child wants to be just like now, and they’re begging you to buy them a bow, so they can be just as cool as that one guy! (Merida from Brave, Robin Hood from Robin Hood, Hawkeye from The Avengers, etc.)
Whatever the reason, you may feel a little reluctant or unsure about what kind of bow to get your child, especially if they’re on the smaller side. Picking the wrong size and draw length of a bow can be dangerous and potentially harmful to the archer that shoots it, especially smaller children.
No need to worry! You want to give your child a bow that will be fun and also appropriate for them. So I put together a guide of the 11 best bow and arrow sets for kids under 11! This list provides an extensive review of several types of bow and arrow sets that parents everywhere have approved and survived giving to their child!
This list will provide details about the sizes and draw lengths for bows, how kids have reacted to them, and why this bow might be good for your child.
Warning: All the bows listed below are not toys, and when parent supervision is advised at all times when children are using these.
For parents who have no idea what their child needs, I also wrote a little guide on things to look for and be aware before you make your purchase, so your child has the safest and most enjoyable experience with their new bow and arrows!
Every parent just wants their child to be safe and happy, and if your child is looking to get into archery, these bows are guaranteed to make sure that your child is safe and happy!
Tips to Think About Before You Pick
Before we get right into talking about the types of bows that are right for your child, there are a couple of things that you need to take into consideration before you make your decision.
The first one is to identify your purpose in buying this bow. Is it just a toy for your child to play with? Will it become practice for learning how to hunt with a bow? Or will your child actually be learning the sport of archery? This will help you narrow what you want to a specific category of bow and arrow sets.
The second is to take your child’s age and size into consideration. Depending on the size of your child, what kind of bow you buy will completely change.
You will need to know your child’s draw length. The draw length is a measurement of how far you can pull the bow back. The draw length is found by measuring one’s arms from one fingertip to the opposite fingertips, and then dividing it by 2.5. The resulting number should be your appropriate draw length.
These numbers measured for one’s draw length are normally used for when buying compound bows, but for buying recurve and longbows, the draw length has to match the length of the bow, because the longer the draw length, the longer the bow needs to be in order for it to feel comfortable.
Then, find out which hand and which eye is dominant. There are different types of bows for different types of hand dominance, and often, eye dominance is correlated with the dominant hand as well. A right-handed archer will shoot with their right-hand, while a left-handed archer will shoot with their left hand.
An easy way to test for eye dominance, is to have the child point to an object on the wall and close one eye at a time, while still pointing the object. If the child’s finger moves off the object when he closes one eye, that means that the closed eye is the dominant eye, and therefore he or she should shoot with the corresponding hand.
For example, if the child closes their left eye and their finger moves off the object, then that means that the child is left-eye dominant and should shoot with their left hand.
It’s also important to know the draw weight of the bow corresponding to the size of the child. The draw weight is the amount of force that is required to pull the bowstring. This chart, courtesy of Target Crazy, demonstrates what draw weight correlates with what weight of the child.
|Child Weight Range (lbs)||Draw Weight Range (lbs)|
|50 – 70||< 15|
|70 – 100||15 – 25|
|100 – 130||25 – 40|
|130 – 150||40 – 50|
Also understand that some bows are adjustable, so that as your child gets older, the bow can “grow with them” in a way, as you can adjust them to your child’s growing height and weight.
1. Genesis Youth Compound Bow
Genesis Archery is a company that focuses primarily on youth bows, and their Mini Compound Bow is the main bow of NASP (National Archery in Schools Program). This bow is used by thousands of kids across the world and in thousands of schools.
So you can imagine that they have this game down.
The Genesis Mini Compound Bow is geared towards younger kids, 3 – 7 years in age, so older children will probably not want to use it, as the draw length and weight are not adjustable, so when your child gets bigger, you will have to buy a larger size.
This model is incredibly light, only 2 lbs, which makes it especially appropriate for little children.
The draw length ranges from 14 inches to 25 inches, and the draw weight can be lowered all the way to 6 lbs and goes as high as 12 lbs. This bow is incredibly easy for small children to shoot.
The Genesis Mini Compound Bow, is available in a wide variety of colors, and in addition to the bow, the kit includes: a belt tube quiver, an adjustable arm guard, 5 aluminum arrows, and a hex wrench for adjusting draw weight.
This Mini Compound Bow is the most widely used bow for youth and institutional archery, and therefore is guaranteed to satisfy your budding archer!
2. Barnett Archery Outdoors Vortex Youth Bow Package
Barnett Archery is a fairly well-known company, that originally specializes in crossbows and slingshots, but surprisingly also has a fair quantity of youth bow and arrow sets and beginner bows. They’re known for excellent quality and durability in their products, so I’ve featured three of their most popular youth bows in this article.
One of these bows is the Barnett Vortex Youth Bow. This bow is on the heavier side and therefore should be used for children who are older, ages 10 and above. This bow only comes in the right-handed version.
The draw weight of the Barnett Vortex Bow is 19 to 45 lbs, which is a pretty heavy weight range. Some people say that this bow is appropriate for hunting small game, but I’d advise approaching this with caution.
When you buy the Barnett Vortex Compound Bow Package, you get 3 arrows, a 2-piece arrow quiver, a 3-pin sight, a carry case, and an arrow rest.
However, most people complain about the quality of Barnett’s arrows and say that they are made of poor quality and therefore should be replaced with different arrows immediately.
However, the bow itself is great for older children, and especially for young archers who are interested in getting into bowhunting!
3. Bear Archery Brave Bow Set
Bear Archery is a highly acclaimed archery manufacturer with a large presence in the archery equipment community and is considered to be a ground-breaker for modern bows, and their youth bows are amazing, which like Barnett, is why I have multiple products featured in this article.
“For more than 80 years, Bear Archery has been America’s No. 1 brand in youth and institutional archery. “– Bear Archery
This bow set is particularly popular, and it’s no question why.
The Bear Archery Brave Bow Set is a compound bow and is generally recommended for children over 7 years old. The draw length is 13.5 inches to 19.5 inches, and the draw weight is generally 15 to 25 lbs and is adjustable for children of different sizes.
The bow is 26 inches from axle to axle, and comes in all sorts of different colors, from purple to pink to camo to orange, etc.
The bow set includes all your child needs to get started in the sport of archery.
Featuring the company’s specially crafted SafetyGlass bows (2 included in the set) and their Whisker Biscuit arrow rest, the Bear Archery Brave Bow Set also includes a 1-pin sight, a 2-piece quiver, a finger tab, and an armguard.
While this bow is of great quality and has lots to help your little archer get shooting, this bow is only made for right-handed shooters, which is a problem is your child is left-handed. You might have to seek other options for them.
But say for example if your child fell in love with archery after watching the movie Brave, they might be excited to learn that their bow also has the same name as their favorite movie!
But Disney movies aside, this bow is of great quality and is one of the best of Bear Archery’s Youth bows!
4. Bear Archery Titan Bow
Back to Bear Archery! If you look at the bows listed in this article, you’ll notice that the majority of them are compound bows. But if you’re looking for a recurve-style bow, you might want to check out the Bear Archery Titan Bow!
Not only is this bow a recurve bow, but it is also an ambidextrous bow! All children, left or right-handed, can shoot this bow!
The bow is about 60 inches in length, with a draw length of 22 to 28 inches, and a draw weight of 20 to 29 lbs. The manufacturer’s recommendation is that this bow is for children ages 12 and up, so the usage of this bow is limited to older children.
The kit included has a lot of furnishings and accessories for your child to get started with. This kit contains two SafetyGlass arrows, a 2-piece arrow quiver, a sight pin, a finger tab, a paper target, and an armguard. This kit has everything that your child needs!
While this bow is limited to older children and teenagers, it is a great entry-level bow with all the things you need to start shooting!
This set is available for purchase at Bear Archery.
5. Barnett Wildhawk Compound Bow
You’ll find that most of the bows listed here are for right-handed children only, which while right-handed children are much more common than left-handed children, it can be frustrating to find something if your child is left-handed.
But fortunately, the Barnett Wildhawk Compound Bow has got you covered! This bow is made to be ambidextrous, so both your right-handed children and your left-handed children can shoot it with ease!
This archery set is one of Barnett’s most popular and widely sold archery sets, and is well-made!
The draw length for this bow is 15-22 inches, and the draw weight is 17 lbs., which makes it perfect for younger children ages 5 to 8 years of age!
The kit doesn’t hold as much as some other kits do, but it makes up for that in quality of the bow. The kit includes 2 arrows, soft-touch reinforced grip, finger rollers, and an adjustable sight pin. An armguard and arrow quiver are not included and need to be bought on the side, for extra convenience.
The provided arrows are junk. Please buy different ones for shooting purposes.
Otherwise, this bow is still a great option for children who are starting to get into archery, and is not as complex as a normal compound bow, which makes it less intimidating to kids and a lot of fun!
6. Crosman Elkhorn Jr. Compound Bow Kit
Unlike the rest of these companies featured, Crosman is not just an archery manufacturer but is well-known for its airsoft artillery and airguns. But that doesn’t make the archery equipment provided by Crosman has any less quality or effectiveness.
Without sacrificing quality, the Crosman Elkhorn Jr. Compound Bow Kit is not only a mini version of the adult bows offered by the company, but it is also a reasonable price of a little more than $40.
This compound bow has a heavier draw weight of 17 to 21 lbs, which is ideal for children at the age of eight and up. The maximum draw length is 36 inches, and the bow is adjustable so that when your child grows, you can also adjust the bow to the size necessary for your child.
This bow comes only in black, so if your daughter wants a pink princess bow, you might have to look for different options.
This Compound Bow Kit comes with quite a bit included in the kit. Within this kit, there is: 2 arrows, a 2-piece quiver, an armguard, a finger tab to protect your child’s fingers when shooting, a single pin sight, and an arrow rest.
When researching this Compound Bow Kit, I found that many people say that the arrows are cheap and often break easily. If you find that the arrows included in the kit are of poor quality and break, you might have to buy more arrows for your child to shoot with.
In addition to the arrows, some say that the armguard is flimsy and made of poor material, which might also require the purchase of a new and higher quality armguard.
Unfortunately, the bowstring also lacks a nocking point on the string. A nocking point is generally a small metal ring that is attached to the string that points to where to nock the arrow and provides a resting spot for the arrow.
Since it is pretty difficult to shoot a bow without a nocking point, especially for beginners, this might be something you take into consideration when you’re thinking about purchasing this compound bow set.
While the price of the archery set is on the cheaper side, and the set is generally of good quality, there might be some things you sacrifice in place of the price.
7. Diamond Atomic Youth Package
Operating under the parent industry Bowtech, Diamond Archery focuses on bringing in the highest quality compound bows to the market for men, women, and kids alike.
And the most famous of their youth bows is the Atomic. The Dimond Archery Atomic Youth Bow is geared toward children, and even has its own website where kids and their parents can learn about shooting targets and print out targets to shoot!
If you also look at the packaging that the bow comes in, then you’ll notice that the package has games for the kids to play, as well as targets for them to practice with.
Not only is this bow incredibly user/kid-friendly, but the quality of the bow is also amazing. The bow is made of high-quality materials and is incredibly versatile.
The draw weight is an adjustable weight of 6 to a whopping 29 lbs, and the draw length is normally around 12 to 24 inches. Because of its highly adjustable weight and length, children from ages 4 to 11 can use this bow!
This bows has premium parts and features an al aluminum riser, carbon glass limbs, and precision cams.
This model is also said to deliver no hand-shock to children because of its unique parallel limb design, which makes this bow ideal for children who might be a little afraid to try the bow out.
The only drawback about this bow is that the price is rather high for a beginner’s bow, with the starting price is well above $200 and up.
So if you’re willing to dish out a little more, you’re set to get a high-quality bow that your child will be able to use from their youth to their pre-teens!
8. Bear First Shot Bow Set
Again with the Bear bows! Bear specializes in many children’s/youth bows, especially to the very first beginning children. This First Shot Bow Set is made for the youngest of children, and the youngest of archers!
This bow has a draw length of 14 inches to 16 inches, and a draw weight of 8 lbs to 12 lbs, and therefore, is incredibly light and easy for children ages 4 to 7 to shoot!
If you would rather have your child start out on a recurve bow rather than the compound bow, which has more gadgets and is a little more complicated to fix up or keep in good condition, this bow is a much simpler version that’s easier to clean and to fix if broken.
This bow is also actually made in a style where children who are either left-handed or right-handed can use the bow! Many times bows are generally made for either one or the other, but this bow that comes in this set is easy to use for both hands!
This bow also comes in several different colors for your child to choose, and the total bow length is fairly small, about 36 inches in length, so your young child will sure to be delighted with it!
This set includes a lot of accessories and furnishings for your young archer to get started with! This kit includes: an armguard, an arrow quiver, 2 specially made SafetyGlass arrows, a finger roller to protect your child’s fingers, and a paper target for children to practice target shooting at!
If you have really young children who are eager to try their hand at archery but do it in a safe and easy manner that makes the game much more enjoyable for the kids, then you might want to try purchasing the Bear First Shot Bow Set!
9. Barnett Vertigo Compound Bow
The last Barnett bow! As if you haven’t heard enough about Barnett and Bear archery already!
The Barnett Vertigo Compound Bow is another archery set that is a best-seller from Barnett Archery.
Another compound bow, the Vertigo bow has a draw length of 22 to 26 inches and a draw weight of 25 lbs. This bow is made generally for older children from 7 through 10 year old.
This Mossy Oak Bottomland camo wrap bow set is great for boys or girls, but is a right handed bow only.
The bow kit comes with a bow with an ambidextrous riser, adjustable sight pin, soft-touch reinforced grip, visually enhanced cams, soft-touch finger rollers, with two 28″ Junior Arrows, and an arrow rest.
And you’ve already heard how I feel about the Barnett arrows, but I’ll say it again. They’re not that good.
They’re very susceptible to breakage, which is dangerous for your children, so it’s best if you buy different arrows, and keep the bow. The bow is sturdy and made of good material.
For a cheap and simple option for your older children, you can check out the Barnett Vertigo Compound Bow and see if you’re interested in purchasing this set for your child!
10. PANDARUS Compound Bow Archery for Youth
The Pandarus Compound Bow is for youth or beginners, and comes in a variety of colors. Even thought the description states it is right or left handed, they are different bows. Here is the right-handed Pandarus Compound Bow and here is the left-handed Pandarus Compound Bow.
This compound bow is ideal for any beginner or child that is interested in becoming a hunter in the future or learning more about bow-hunting, and it even comes in camouflage color.
The bow is recommended for children around 7 years of age and up and is adjustable for when children grow and require a heavier draw weight or longer draw length.
The draw length of this bow ranges from 19 to 28 inches, and the draw weight ranges from 15 to 29 lbs. The weight of this bow by itself is 2.8 lbs, and when fully geared up with all its accessories, it is generally 3.2 lbs.
When you buy the Pandarus Compound Bow Archery Set, it comes along with a 5 Brenches, a bow sight, arrow rest, arrow quiver, 12 arrows, an arm guard, and one target paper. Also includes bowstring wax, arrow puller, one bow stand, bow release, and an aluminum stabilizer.
This bow package will definitely make your little hunter happy!
11. PSE Mini Burner Compound Bow
PSE (Precision Shooting Equipment) was created by Pete Shepley, was founded in 1970 as a privately owned archery manufacturer, and specializes in creating light and user-friendly compound bows. In addition to normal adult compound bows, PSE also creates compound bows for the younger archers.
One of these most popular youth bows is the PSE Mini Burner Compound Bow. This compound bow is generally recommended for children ages 7 and older, with a draw weight of 29 to 40 lbs, and a draw length of 16 inches to 26.5 inches.
However, because of the wider range of draw lengths and weights, it can actually be easily adjusted for your child if they are a little smaller or a little older. Unfortunately, a left-handed version is unavailable at this point.
The PSE Youth Heritage Compound Set includes: 3 carbon arrows, an arrow rest, a 3-pin sight, an arrow rest, arrow quiver, and a stabilizer.
As for quality, the quality of the bow is on medium to high scale, and is a great bow for beginning archers!
With this list of possibilities, this gives you the chance to have something for your kids besides staring at the screen for hours on end! You can get bows for the whole family and make a family night out of it! You are guaranteed to have fun when the whole family is involved!
Hopefully, this list gave you some ideas for your children and some options for you to choose from! Now that you’ve chosen that perfect first bow and arrow set, be sure to keep them safe with forearm guards. Check out our top picks for forearm guards in our article for the 9 Best Archery Forearm Guards for Youths.
Why not make it a family affair?! Whether it be for yourself, a spouse, or a friend, here is a list of our best compound bows for beginners.
Have fun with your kids, and happy shooting!