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In archery, a recurve bow is one of the main shapes a bow can take, with limbs that curve away from the archer when unstrung. A recurve bow stores more energy and delivers energy more efficiently than the equivalent straight-limbed bow, giving a greater amount of energy and speed to the arrow. A recurve will permit a shorter bow than the simple straight limb bow for given arrow energy, and this form was often preferred by archers in environments where long weapons could be cumbersome, such as in brush and forest terrain, or while on horseback.
Recurved limbs also put greater stress on the materials used to make the bow, and they may make more noise with the shot. Extreme recurves make the bow unstable when being strung. An unstrung recurve bow can have a confusing shape and many Native American weapons, when separated from their original owners and cultures, were incorrectly strung backwards and destroyed when attempts were made to shoot them.
Martin Archery Jaguar Takedown Recurve Kit. I picked this up several years ago in the hopes that my shoulders would heal enough to start shooting a bow again. That didn't happen. I put the bow together and shot exactly 3 arrows before tearing another tendon. Things wear out when you get old...