The English Longbow is one of the most famous types of bows, and historically speaking, it was one of the most effective during times of war.
The longbow is a taller type of bow (hence the name!) that is usually as tall as the user. This allows for a longer draw, allowing it to shoot the arrow at a further distance!
Longbows were one of the main weapons used in English armies during the 14th century, and up until the introduction of the first few firearms. So that is why the longbow is often referred to as the English longbow.
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But let’s get back to the question. How far can a longbow fire an arrow? Well, thanks to the bigger size, and the long draw, a longbow could fire an arrow up to roughly 350 yards away.
If you pair that up with the fact that experienced archers could fire up to around 6 arrows per minute, you can imagine how scary a weapon they were in times of war!
However, some exceptionally good archers in olden times would reach up to 400 yards of distance when firing their longbow! And on the other hand, modern longbows have a reduced average range of between 200 and 250 yards in distance.
How far can an archer shoot?
Let’s ignore longbows for a minute, and take a look at how far an archer can shoot, in general. For this, we need to look at the average range of a bow.
On average, the normal range is between 30 and 35 yards, with professional archers pushing that average up to between 50 and 75 yards. So if you’re a bowhunter, and you want to shoot responsibly, you should account for a maximum range of around 80 yards, within which you might hit something (or someone).
However, the range of a bow depends on the type of bow, as the size and the design are very important factors that directly influence how far the arrow will make it once fired. While the average bow will fire at a range of around 40 yards, longbows, for example, can reach a far more impressive distance of 300 yards!
When it comes to Olympic archery, which is a pretty good place to look for averages (if we consider professional levels to be average, of course), then the indoor range is set at around 25 yards, and the outdoor range is set at around 70 to 80 yards. (It can also depend on the category, as well as the bow type used).
The world record for the farthest arrow shot (as in the farthest accurate shot in which the arrow hit a target), is at a distance of 310 yards. This was achieved by Matt Stutzman, at the TPC Craig Ranch in Texas, United States, in December of 2015. This was done under the World Archery Conditions, using a bow that would be sanctioned for use in Archery.
Because, of course, the distance would be far greater using a different type of bow, such as the longbow!
Which bow has the longest range?
You might think that the bow with the longest range is the longbow, and traditionally speaking, you would be right. For many years, it has held the record for the longest range of any other bows.
However, nowadays, we have a type of bow that can fire arrows way farther: the flight bow. And as the name suggests, it is a bow that has been designed to make those arrows fly, to achieve record-holding distances!
The modern conventional flight bow is the one that holds the record for the farthest shot arrow, using a handheld bow. With an astounding distance of over 1300 yards!!
As you might imagine, this type of bow is specifically designed for incredibly long-distance shots, and not necessarily to hit a specific target. So accuracy isn’t the aim, distance is!
This type of bow is also carefully designed to help achieve as much distance as possible, and it fires arrows that are manufactured to be as light as possible so that they don’t hinder the flight in any way!
Let’s sum up all of the questions answered in this article.
A longbow can fire up to around a distance of 350 yards, traditionally. With modern longbows having a slightly reduced range of around 250 yards. Historically speaking, they are the bows with the longest range, and they are the deadliest in times of war!
As for how far an archer can shoot, the average is set at around 30 to 35 yards. Although the average range for professionals is closer to around 70 yards.
And finally, the flight bow has overtaken the longbow in records of range, as it is specifically designed to fire arrows as far as possible, and it can reach an astounding distance of up to around 1300 yards!