Traditional Archery Discussions on the Leatherwall

Shooting with a cant

Messages posted to thread:
Tethered Falcon 22-Sep-22
Uncle Rico 22-Sep-22
Orion 22-Sep-22
fdp 22-Sep-22
bentstick54 22-Sep-22
mahantango 23-Sep-22
Missouribreaks 23-Sep-22
Don T. Lewis 23-Sep-22
Live2Hunt 23-Sep-22
Jinkster 23-Sep-22
Viper 23-Sep-22
Tom McCool 23-Sep-22
Stilltrying 23-Sep-22
Stilltrying 23-Sep-22
shortdraw 23-Sep-22
N Y Yankee 23-Sep-22
Red Beastmaster 23-Sep-22
George D. Stout 23-Sep-22
Rick Barbee 23-Sep-22
B.T. 23-Sep-22
HEXX 23-Sep-22
dnovo 23-Sep-22
msinc 23-Sep-22
tradslinger 23-Sep-22
bldtrailer 23-Sep-22
Juancho 23-Sep-22
Rick Barbee 23-Sep-22
From: Tethered Falcon
Date: 22-Sep-22

I have always wondered how do y’all who shoot with a cant keep it consistently at the same angle? I shoot vertical and that’s pretty easy to keep the same I have experimented a bit but just can’t do it. I’ve shot small game running canted but that’s just to keep the arrow on as I swing.

From: Uncle Rico
Date: 22-Sep-22

It seems to be natural for me to end up in the same place. The only reason I can think of that it works for me is I am a three under shooter and I have a very high anchor RIGHT UNDER my eye. I started out shooting split finger, and it was an unmitigated disaster. The minute I went to three under everything seemed to make sense and I really started improving.

So I think what happens is I naturally (sub-consciously is probably a better word) cant the bow until I am looking right down the arrow. The other reason I naturally ended up being a "cant-er" is that when I started shooting these highly addicting sumbyaaches if I didn't cant I would thwack/smack the tip of my nose with the string.

Everybody has a different cranial formation, arm length, eye separation, etc. Since I started dinking around with stickbows one thing I learned is the sport is super unique to the shooter. Nobody is right, nobody is wrong. I have shot with upright shooters that are way better than I am. But I am determined to catch them....

Happy hunting.

My cant is about 1:30 to 1:45ish if I had to guess.

From: Orion Professional Bowhunters Society - Qualified Member Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 22-Sep-22

It's not necessary to cant the same amount on every shot. Whether one cants a few degrees more or less one way or the other from one shot to the next just doesn't make a difference. In fact, if the arrow is kept in relatively the same position in relation to the eye, it doesn't matter if one cants 2 degrees or 90 degrees. The brain accounts for any minor discrepancies and places the arrow where the shooter wants it to go.

From: fdp
Date: 22-Sep-22

If you are aligned properly you are looking right down the arrow whether the bow is, or isn't canted, whether you anchor high or low or shoot 3 u set or split.

You should be able to shoot a vertical or canted bow as the situation requires.

From: bentstick54
Date: 22-Sep-22

I have shot a canted bow since I started as a kid. I’m 68 now. Probably started because that was the only way I could keep an arrow on the shelf of my Ben Pearson Fiberglas bow. It just became natural to shoot that way. I don’t have to think about it, it’s just there, and I’ll bet consistently within 2 or 3 degrees each time. For me to shoot with the bow vertically, I would have to concentrate on doing so, which would add a new “unnatural “ step to my ingrained process. I can shoot a vertical bow, just choose not to relearn what now comes natural.

From: mahantango
Date: 23-Sep-22

What Frank said. Well-tuned arrows help too.

From: Missouribreaks
Date: 23-Sep-22

I do not cant the same on every shot. I take hunting shots sitting on my butt, on one knee, off a stool or log, standing on the ground, sitting or standing in a tree, and peaking up over the grass or sage. Sometimes I am near vertical, 45 degrees and occasionally almost horizontal. It does not matter as I have practiced accordingly for over 56 years. No such thing as consistent alignment and muscle use for me. Hunt close!

From: Don T. Lewis
Date: 23-Sep-22

I can’t think of shooting any other way. In a lot of hunting situations it’s just done automatically and just feels so natural when required. You should be able to shoot your bow totally vertical. Or at any angle. Known as the can’t.;)

From: Live2Hunt
Date: 23-Sep-22

Yes, as stated above I shoot so I can hit in every situation from vertical to full horizontal. My natural hold when just shooting is a cant and it just falls into place when I draw.

From: Jinkster
Date: 23-Sep-22

There's 2 different ways my cant angle is established...

I generally use this first method when tuning and/or target shooting (groups) where I keep my cant angle consistent by visualizing a line that extends from the outside top corner of my bows sight window to the centerline of the arrow and canting the bow to where that visualized line is vertical.

The second method is more or less the result of of the first method above but at this point my cant has become automated where my grip, form and facial reference points has become ingrained and I no longer need to be so cerebral about things unless I'm shooting a real tight or distant shot and then I'll take a quick glance and double check my cant angle.

From: Viper
Date: 23-Sep-22

TF -

None of us are "perfect" shooters, and at the distances most trad types shoot, being off a few degrees shouldn't make too much of a difference. But, there's a pretty easy way to find out - try it and see what your tolerances are.

When I shot "trad" (before there was a "trad"), I always felt more comfortable with a slight/natural cant, but then and now, I shoot better with a vertical bow, so pick your poison.

Viper out.

From: Tom McCool
Date: 23-Sep-22

I shoot with very slight cant. Just seems comfortable for my hands. Moving to completely vertical feels like forcing my wrists past comfort. Maybe I am justifying a bad habit. :)

From: Stilltrying
Date: 23-Sep-22

In my opinion the arrow doesn’t move, the bow just rotates around it.

From: Stilltrying
Date: 23-Sep-22

In my opinion the arrow doesn’t move, the bow just rotates around it.

From: shortdraw
Date: 23-Sep-22

I believe G. F. Asbell wrote about it in his instinctive shooting book. He talks about canting the bow, and with an elevated rest he shows how the arrow moves off target the higher it is off the hand. He shows that the closer the arrow is to the hand the more target centerd it stays. I believe this is the reason Fred Bear had his self cut lower putting the arrow as close to his hand as possible. In his beginning he probably shot off his hand, just guessing. Canting also opens up the sight view. Works well at close shots. John Schulz talks about it in his video.With that being said, I have seen many archers shoot with an elevated rest and shoot well.

From: N Y Yankee
Date: 23-Sep-22

Close your eyes and point your bow hand finger in front of you. Don't think about it just point straight out in front. Open your eyes and you should see that your thumb is angled down toward the floor. Now have someone put your bow in your hand and the bow will be canted. That is natural for the average human. To hold your bow vertically requires an unnatural turn of the wrist. Not a problem as it can easily done but I believe canted is more natural. It sure feels that way to me. This is discussed in pistol shooting how we have to hold our wrist vertical for accuracy of the pistol when the angle is natural.

From: Red Beastmaster
Date: 23-Sep-22

I can't more on close shots, less on long shots. Just happens. I have no conscience thought about it.

From: George D. Stout
Date: 23-Sep-22

I've shot an elevated rest, instinctively, for over half a century, and you can easily do it if the arrow is under your eye where it should be. I love ol' Fred but he and I will disagree on that aspect of archery shooting. :)

From: Rick Barbee
Date: 23-Sep-22

I prefer to shoot with my bow "vertical", but I will shoot with a cant when it's necessary, and conditions will allow it. I won't force it.

I make sure my tune will allow it to within an acceptable/reasonable window of accuracy.

It does make a difference in the launch angle of the arrow though. That is due to how the arrow is resting against the strike plate, and shelf/rest. Cant, or change the degree of the cant, and the arrow "will" launch differently.


From: B.T.
Date: 23-Sep-22

I shoot with a very slight cant, I don't like to shoot with a Gangsta' cant.

From: HEXX
Date: 23-Sep-22

You may think your bow is vertical when your hunting from a tree but my old compound

days with a sight and a level told me I was not.

From: dnovo Professional Bowhunters Society - Qualified Member Compton's Traditional Bowhunters
Date: 23-Sep-22

I shoot y longbows with a cant but it's not anything I measure. It's just a natural motion.

From: msinc
Date: 23-Sep-22

As long as the shelf is nice and low so the arrow is right on the top of your hand cant doesn't matter. Hold your fist vertical out at arms length and point it to an object across the room. Turn it 90 degrees to horizontal and the object stays on top of your hand....install an elevated rest or otherwise have the arrow up off the top of your hand and all of a sudden cant has to be consistent. Fred Bear actually used the top of his hand to rest the arrow on. All this sounds great on still should shoot how ever is best and most accurate for you. I do it and it works for me, btu that don't mean it works for everyone.

From: tradslinger
Date: 23-Sep-22

I shoot split finger with my arrow nearly on my hand. I don't think about canting the bow, I just do it. It means that I can shoot in places where a straight up and down bow shooter can't. As one person already said, when I was young and shooting a solid glass Ben Pearson longbow, I had to cant to keep my arrow on the bow. Just got used to it and it feels very natural to me.

From: bldtrailer
Date: 23-Sep-22

bldtrailer's embedded Photo

From: Juancho
Date: 23-Sep-22

My bow rest in a natural position in my hand based on a natural position of my draw hand. I let the bow pivot freely on the web of my thumb. It find its own position and I don't even care to look at it anyway, or my arrow for that matter. I was thought by an "expert" target archer to keep my bow perfectly vertical and anchor on my chin , just like you see olimpic archers do. So very unnatural to me , it made no sense.

From: Rick Barbee
Date: 23-Sep-22

Juancho, that is exactly how I do it, except for the anchor.

I allow the bow to picot to where it wants to go, and that is vertical. Of course, on the rare occasion I find myself in the need to cant, I have to tighten my grip some.


If you have already registered, please

sign in now

For new registrations

Click Here

Visit A Traditional Archery Community Become a Sponsor © 2003. By using this site you agree to our Terms and Conditions and our Privacy Policy