How To Measure Draw Length On A Compound Bow: 3 Easy Process

Draw length refers to the distance from the nock point (string’s attachment point) of a bowstring to the throat of the bow grip when the archer is at full draw. It is a crucial factor in archery as it directly affects accuracy, consistency, and overall shooting performance.

The perfect draw length on your compound bow is crucial for comfort, accuracy, and overall performance. But how to measure draw length on a compound bow?

To measure the draw length of your compound bow, first measure your wingspan and divide it by 2.5. Or, you can use an uncut long arrow. However, these methods are not 100% accurate. The most accurate method is measuring the length from the nocking point to the pivot point and then adding 1.75″.

In the next sections, we will talk about all the methods of measuring the draw length of a compound bow.

How To Measure Draw Length On A Compound Bow?

You can measure your draw length by using different methods. These methods are simple and easy, so no worries. Let’s see what these methods are-

Method One: Get Draw Length By Measuring Your Wingspan

This is the best and the easiest method of measuring your draw length. For this, you will only need a tape measure. If you can get some help from someone else, that’s better. If not, you can measure it yourself.

Calculate Bow Draw length By wingspan

First, stand with your hands spread on both sides like a T. You don’t need to stretch out more than you need to, just stand normally and relax. Use the tape measure to measure from the tip of your right middle finger to the tip of your left middle finger.

Draw length chart Based On Wingspan Length

Arm Span / Wing SpanDraw Length
57″ – 59″22″-23″
60″ – 62″23″-24″
63″ – 65″24″-25″
66″ – 68″25″-26″
69″ – 71″26″-27″
72″ – 74″27″-28″
75″ – 77″28″-29″
78″ – 80″29″-30″

Now, all you need to do is divide the number by 2.5 and get your draw length. For example, if your wingspan is 70 inches, then 70/2.5 = 28 inches, which is your draw length.

But this is not 100% accurate to find an approximate draw length.

Method Two: The Standard Method Of Measuring Compound Bow Draw Length

How To Measure Draw Length On A Compound Bow

If you use a caliper release for your compound bow, you can use this method for measuring your draw length. Here are the steps to follow- 

  • Hold the compound bow using the caliper release.
  • Draw the bow, creating back tension on the caliper release.
  • Measure from the point on the release (or nocking point) where the back tension is applied up to the throat of the grip (pivot point). This measurement represents the distance from the release point to the deepest part of the grip.
  • Add 1.75 inches to the measurement taken. This compensates for the standard distance from the deepest part of the grip to the front of the bow (riser).
  • Round down the resulting number to the nearest whole number.
  • The rounded-down measurement represents the draw length for that particular compound bow.

Method Three: Using an Uncut Arrow To Determine The Draw Length

If you have an uncut arrow, you can use it to measure your draw length. However, this might not be accurate and will give you only an approximation.

To measure your draw length using an uncut arrow-

  • Take a long, uncut arrow and attach the arrow’s nock to the bowstring’s knocking point.
  • Draw the compound bow while maintaining proper form and technique.
  • Mark a line on the arrow shaft at the point where it intersects with the throat of the grip.
  • Measure the distance from the throat of the grip to the mark on the arrow shaft. This measurement indicates the draw length.
  • Measure from the throat of the grip to the knocking point on the bowstring, representing the distance from the grip to where the arrow is nocked.
  • Subtract the measurement obtained in step 6 from the measurement in step 5 to determine the draw length.

Can You Adjust the Draw Length On A Compound Bow?

Yes, it is possible to adjust the draw length on a compound bow. For that, your bow must have an adjustable mod. Here is how to adjust the draw length on a compound bow-

  • Loosen the screw and turn the mod.
  • Some bows will have a set of numbers next to the holes in the mod, while others will have symbols. The symbols will correspond to different draw lengths, which you should be able to find in your bow’s user manual.
  • Put the bow in a bow press and remove all tension from the string and cables.
  • Untwist the string or cables to adjust the draw length.
  • Adjust the tension of each arm of the bow to the preferred weight.
  • Draw and hold the bow for several seconds to get an idea of how it needs to be adjusted.
  • Use average draw weights for reference.

Remember, adjusting the draw length of a compound bow depends on the specific brand of the bow and the mod it is using. So, if you are confused, it’s better to consult with your dealer.

Also, if you do not have an adjustable mod, you may need to replace the mod. In that case, you still need to contact the manufacturer to find out which mods are compatible with your bow.

Factors That Can Affect Your Draw Length Measurement

While measuring the draw length, you need to be careful of some things. These will hamper the measurement process. As a result, you will get inaccurate measurements.

  • Body Alignment: Ensure that your bow arm and the tops of your shoulders form a straight line. Your drawing elbow should be positioned behind your head. Maintaining good bone alignment is crucial, with someone observing from above should see proper alignment.
  • Shoulder Position: Avoid allowing your shoulders to pop up or shrug. Keep them firmly tucked in a low, natural position, particularly your bow shoulder.
  • D-Loop Usage: If you use a “D-Loop” on your bowstring for your release aid, be aware that it can slightly shorten your draw length. Take this into account when selecting your bow.
  • Anchor Point Placement: Consistency is key when it comes to where you hold the string on your face. Choose either the front of your chin or midway along your jaw, and maintain a consistent anchor point.
  • Head and Neck Position: Ensure that your head and neck are not straining backward. Keep them relaxed, with your head positioned over the center of your body.
  • Release Aid Length: Certain mechanical release aids can increase your draw length. Consider this factor when choosing your bow and equipment.
  • Posture: Maintain proper posture while shooting. Avoid slouching or standing overly tall, which can lead to back arching.
  • Drawing Wrist: Keep your drawing hand’s wrist relaxed and supple. Avoid straining or arching it during the draw.
  • Back Muscle Engagement: It’s essential to engage the back muscles near your scapula and move the entire shoulder unit toward your spine. This engagement promotes consistent draw length and improves overall performance.

So, while measuring your draw length, it’s better to practice caution.


There are different ways to calculate the draw length of your compound bow. Now, after this discussion, you should know how to measure the draw length on a compound bow.

Measuring the draw length is easy, but if you face any problem, you should go to your local archery store, and they will take care of you.

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