Archery is gaining traction among the younger generation. Be it for hunting, target shooting, or pure fun; it makes good sense. Compound bows, for instance, are getting faster, accurate, and more efficient. However, that can’t be said for all models. So, if your kid wants to leap into bow hunting, you need the best. But with so many models available, getting the best youth compound bow is no easy task.
I think it’s time I take the wheel ad point you in the right direction. In this article, I’ll round up the best compound bows for youth. For whatever age group, price range, or purpose, there’s something for you.
10 Best Youth Compound Bow Reviews
1. Genesis Original Bow
Genesis needs no introduction. It’s a leader in youth compound bows and a go-to choice among most newbies.
Among its best creations is the Genesis Original Bow, a pioneer of the zero let-off design. It’s a one for all bow, perfect for beginners and intermediate archers alike.
Hassle-free single-cam mechanism
Genesis Original rewards you with a single-cam system. Well, it’s not as fast or as solid as dual-cam counterparts. However, it doesn’t need as much tuning. Moreover, the single-cam design makes it quieter and more precise.
Less tuning, in particular, makes it user-friendly. And that’s some good news for those who are new to archery.
Zero let-off design
The zero let-off design does away with specific draw length requirements. Hence, the draw length is always right.
And with a light draw, it covers all standard draw lengths, from 15-30 inches. So, it’s pretty much a bow for everyone, regardless of age and size.
Genesis Original has an adjustable draw weight of 10-20 pounds. Well, it’s a light draw, no doubt. Surprisingly, it stores and releases more energy. For the most part, you get an energy equivalent to a 35-pound recurve bow.
Well, the energy behind this bow is pretty impressive. But I would recommend it more for target practice. However, if hunting is your plan, then a small game, such as rabbits, will do.
A multitude of color options
Well, the Genesis Original bow doesn’t tie you to one color. From camo patterns to solid colors, there’s a multitude of options. So, it pretty much meets the whims of all young archers.
Available in all orientation
Genesis Original has both the left and right-hand versions. Hence, it’s comfortable for all shooting styles.
NB: Genesis Original has an axle-to-axle length of 35.5 inches. Though it fits everyone, the 3.5-pound weight might be too much for very young archers.
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2. Barnett Vortex 45-Pounds Youth Archery Bow
Barnett Vortex promises smooth draws and accurate shots. Though advertised as a youth compound bow, it suits adults as well.
It’s affordable, but still top quality. Moreover, it’s no bare-bone bow as it comes with quality accessories.
Mossy Oak camo pattern
It might not be the quietest compound bow out there. But it doesn’t lack when it comes to stealth. Thanks to the camo pattern, it makes it easier to stalk game.
Light but well-equipped
Barnett Vortex is a lightweight compound bow, making it easy for teens. Despite the smaller package, it combines the functions of a full-sized bow. Such thoughtful design accommodates both young and beginner archers.
Adjustable draw modules
Barnett Vortex bow grows with the young archer. It has adjustable draw modules for the draw weight and the draw length.
You can adjust the draw weight from 19-45 pounds. The draw length, on the other hand, is adjustable from 21-27 inches.
Well, such specs make it ideal for teens and average-sized adults. Moreover, it has plenty of power to bring it out on a hunt. Armed with the right arrow, Barnett Vortex can take down a whitetail.
The 3-pin sight improves accuracy. Alongside other accessories, Barnett Vortex is accurate up to 60 yards. Well, that’s pretty impressive for most hunting situations.
Well, the package includes more than the compound bow. It comprises three arrows and a bow arrow holder. Also, the package doubles as a carrying case.
NB: Barnett Vortex is only available for the right-hand shooting style. So, it’s a bit lacking in terms of orientation. Nonetheless, it’s not much of an issue to make it a deal-breaker.
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3. Bear Archery Scout Bow Set
Bear Archery boasts decades of experience. This American brand is the undisputed champion in youth archery.
Bear Scout is among its flagship models. Well, I wouldn’t say it’s a youth compound bow per se. Instead, it’s a small kid’s bow that offers an easy transition to youth compound bow.
Made for small kids
Bear Scout compound bow has a draw length of 16-24 inches. Also, it provides a draw weight of 8-13 pounds. Well, the light draw and short draw length make it ideal for small kids. I’d recommend it for kids aged 4-7 years or with a height range of 3-5 feet.
Regarding the draw weight of 8-13 pounds, I wouldn’t consider it for hunting. But for target practice and bow fishing, it will more than suffice.
Solid dual-cam design
Bear Scout bow set boasts a twin-cam design. Well, it’s not as quiet or as accurate as single-cam counterparts. But it rewards you with a more sturdy built.
Built for short-range
Unlike its counterpart, the Bear Archery Brave, this bow doesn’t shoot as far. It can shoot targets up to 30 yards. Also, it’s accurate to within 5-10 yards. But for a small kid’s bow, the shoot-ability is impressive.
Well, Bear Scout is an ambidextrous bow. Hence, you can convert it for left or right-hand use. That makes it ideal for all shooting styles.
The package includes a single-pin sight, a bow rest, a quiver, and finger rollers. Also, it comes complete with two 28-inch fiberglass arrows. The single-pin sight and bow rest come in plastic. Though not as durable, they’re sufficient for the price and purpose.
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4. Bear Archery Brave Bow Set
Like Bear Scout, the Bear Brave bow set targets younger offspring. Notably, it includes an extremely durable arrow rest. To me, it’s one feature that sets it apart from other youth models.
Well, it might not compete with teen bow models. However, few can match the durability and value in this bow set.
A sturdy little shooter
At 26 inches, Bear Brave is a lot more compact than the 33-inch Bear Scout bow. It has the same durable composite limbs and sturdy twin-cam design. And at 2 pounds, it offers a sturdy, well-constructed little shooter.
Decent introductory bow set
The specs of this bow set is pretty much for young kids, say 8-11 years. The draw weight is adjustable from 15-25 pounds. So, it packs a bit more energy than the Bear Scout bow set.
Though not adjustable, this bow set has a draw length of 15.5-19 inches. I’d say it’s pretty small for teens. But for young kids, it allows for a smooth draw cycle.
The bow is accurate up to 20 yards. Moreover, it can shoot up to 50 yards. But like the Bear Scout, I’d recommend it for bow fishing and target practice.
Long-lasting arrow rest
Most compound bows in this category come with cheap, plastic arrow rests. But for Bear Brave, you get the best beginner youth compound bow out there. It comes with Whisker Biscuit arrow rest. Unlike conventional rests, it durable and safer. Hence, you won’t have to upgrade in the future.
Since it would have been pricier buying separately, it offers more value for the money. And as far as shooting accuracy goes, it makes a big difference.
An extensive range of accessories
Bear Brave bow set packs more accessories. It includes 1-pin sight, a quiver, and an armguard. Also, you get two 26-inch fiberglass arrows.
NB: Bear Brave is a right-handed bow set. So, it might not fit left-hand users.
5. Elkhorn Youth Compound Bow
Elkhorn youth bow is an excellent way to ascertain if your kid is interested in archery. Well, it’s not for tiny kids. Neither is it for teens. I’d say it’s for pre-teen with intermediate skill.
It’s well made and comes at a very affordable price. So, even if your kid loses interest, it isn’t much of a loss.
Durable all-weather construction
Elkhorn has a durable, heavyweight composite built. Moreover, it boasts heavy-duty, all-weather strings. Hence, it offers long-life durability and superior shooting in all conditions.
At 3.3 pounds, this crossbow set is a bit heavier. But it compensates for with a versatile, balanced design. Also, the 33-inch axle and 8-inch brace provide ultimate forgiveness in each shot. And with the twin-cam system, it offers outstanding shooting performance.
Thinner comfortable grip
This compound bow has a rather thin grip. Well, it isn’t as comfortable for adults. But for the small hands, it’s pretty exceptional.
A moderate draw for intermediate skill level
Elkhorn has a moderate draw weight of 17-21 pounds. Also, it offers a draw length of up to 26 inches. Contrary to most reviews, the draw weight and draw length can’t be adjusted.
The shooting speed is 70 feet per second. So, it doesn’t have the poundage and speed for hunting. But it can do for bow fishing or target practice.
Includes all accessories
The accessories are a bit on the cheap side. But for the price, it’s commendable. You’ll get two composite arrows, a 2-piece quiver, and a finger tab. Also, the package comprises a single-pin sight and an arrow rest.
NB: Elkhorn compound bow is for right-hand users.
6. Bear Archery Cruzer Lite Compound Bow
Bear Cruzer Lite isn’t your average youth compound bow. For youth compound bow, it’s incredibly fast, powerful, and comfortable.
While a bit expensive, the quality and versatility are second to none. It’s as good a bow for the child as it’s for the legendary hunter.
Lightweight and durable
Cruzer Lite weighs 3.2 pounds. Though not the lightest, it’s less cumbersome to carry. And at 27 inches long, it’s compact enough for shorter hunters.
Despite the lightweight, compact package, Cruzer Lite offers solid construction. It comes in machined aluminum, providing much-needed durability in the field.
Cruzer Lite offers maximum accuracy out of the box. It has high-precision limb pockets for shooting tight groups. Also, it has maximum versatility dual-cam system. It provides a smooth draw for consistent, accurate shots.
Advanced grip design
Cruzer Lite boasts an advanced grip design. It’s small enough for kids and provides a perfect grip for large adult hands. Also, it eliminates hand torque, resulting in more accurate shots.
This compound bow offers vast adjustments. You can adjust the draw length from 12-27 inches. Likewise, you can adjust the draw weight from 5-45 pounds. So, it’s ideal for nearly everyone, from kids, teens to adults.
Suitable for bow hunting
Thanks to 70% let-off, you don’t need a lot of muscles to deliver a kill shot. The higher poundage and an impressive speed of 290 feet per second make Cruzer Lite a formidable hunter. It packs enough power and speed to take down deer, antelope, and more.
Cruzer Lite comes with high-quality accessories. It includes a Whisker Biscuit arrow rest, 4-pin sight, and dart bow stabilizer. Also, it comprises a 5-piece quiver and bow sling. All are high-quality Trophy Ridge accessories. Well, Cruzer Lite doesn’t come with arrows.
NB: Though not ambidextrous, Cruzer Lite is available for left and right-hand use.
7. SAS Scorpii 30-55 Youth Compound Bow
SAS Scorpii is a compact and well-made entry-level bow. It’s pretty much a bow for everyone, from teens, tweens, to adults.
I’d say the overall performance outshines other models in its price range. It’s fast, powerful, and dead-accurate. And with high-quality accessories, this compound bow is a steal.
Solid compact design
At 28 inches, this bow set is pretty compact. Hence, it doesn’t come in your way when hunting on a small ladder stands.
Well, the 3.3-pound weight is a little heavier, but manageable nonetheless. Besides, it rewards users with a solid built that comes in compressed ABS.
Flawless and rock-solid dual-cam system
The cam system provides a smooth draw. Moreover, it allows you to shoot with repeated accuracy. Also, the cam system is rock-solid for durability and works like a charm.
Perfect for bow hunting
This compound bow has the right specs for bow hunting. Its draw weight is adjustable from 30-55 pounds. Also, the draw length can be adjusted from 19-29 inches.
Considering the 30-35 pounds draw weight, I wouldn’t recommend it for kids. Instead, I’d recommend it for more athletic teens and adults.
The higher poundage and excellent shooting speed of 260 feet per second make this bow an excellent choice for bow hunting. It’s powerful enough to take down deer and whitetails. Also, it’s one heck of a bow for bow fishing.
NB: As far as usability goes, this compound bow is only for right-hand users.
8. Genesis Mini Compound Bow
As the name suggests, Genesis Mini is a bow set for the lower age group. It’s more of a smaller-sized Genesis Original, boasting the same durability, reliability, and high-quality components.
So, like the legendary Genesis Original, it’s well-equipped but in a smaller package. Archers as young as 3-8 years will find it a handy choice.
Lightweight and compact design
Genesis Mini has an axle length of 29.5 inches. Such a compact design pretty much considers young kids. Also, it rewards youngsters with a lighter design. At 2 pounds, it’s comfortable to carry around for hours.
Durable, high-quality components
The components are sourced from high-quality aluminum. Hence, you get a solid and sturdy bow set. Also, the riser is pre-drilled and tapped to fit standard accessories.
Smooth single-cam system
The single-cam design requires little to no maintenance. Moreover, it rewards youngsters with more accurate shots. Notably, it shoots quieter.
Easy to draw
Genesis Mini provides a light draw of 6-12 pounds adjustable via an Allen Wrench. And with a zero let-off, you can use it without having to adjust the draw length. For the record, Genesis Mini has a draw length of 14-25 inches.
Excellent for target practice
Genesis Mini is accurate to within 10-15 yards. But it doesn’t have the poundage that hunting demands. As such, it’s better suited for target practice. Also, you can try it for bow fishing in shallow waters.
Genesis Mini compound bow comes fully equipped. It comprises a belt tube quiver, an armguard, a hex wrench, and five arrows.
NB: Genesis Mini is available for left and right-hand use. Also, it comes in a multitude of colors.
9. Velocity Youth Archery Race 4×4 Compound Bow
Race 4×4 is another bow that offers incredible value. Whether for target shooting or for bow hunting, it has the power and speed.
It’s lighter and compact than most youth compound bows in its category. And with vast adjustments, it makes a perfect fit for all types of archers.
Ergonomic and durable construction
Race 4×4 compound bow maximizes user comfort. At 2.8 pounds, it’s lighter for easy portability. Also, it rewards you with a compact size of 28 inches. And thanks to a small throat grip, it can fit small and large hands alike.
Moreover, this compound bow is solidly built. It has machined aluminum riser and fiberglass limbs. Such a combination promises long-life durability. It can take a beating, even in harsh hunting conditions.
Vast adjustments for every archer
This compound bow offers wide-range adjustments. You can tweak the draw weight from 11-55 pounds. Likewise, you can tweak the draw length from 19-29 inches. So, it’s ideal for adults, teens, and archers as young as eight years.
Impressive power and speed for bow hunting
Race 4×4 bow packs some serious poundage. And with impressive speeds of up to 245 feet per second, it’s tailored for the hunt. Using 100-grain arrows, you can nail medium game, including deer and antelope.
Comes all loaded
This bow is pre-mounted with all accessories to get you started right away. It includes 3-pin sight, 4-piece quiver, and fall away arrow rest. Alongside that, it comes complete with two 30-inch aluminum arrows.
10. Barnett Tomcat Compound Bow
Tomcat is a very affordable youth compound bow for very young archers. Surprisingly, it feels sturdy and constructed to the industry’s standard.
Tomcat is pretty much on the soft side. For that, it makes an ideal choice for target practice.
Manageable for most kids
Fully loaded, this compound bow weighs only 3 pounds. Again, you can remove the quiver to save some weight. Hence, it shouldn’t be too much for archers as young as eight years.
Smooth and moderate draw
At 17-22 pounds, the draw weight is pretty much average for youth compound bows. And with a draw length range of 20-22 inches, it’s comfortable for kids as young as 8-12 years old.
Suitable for shallow bow fishing
Tomcat compound bow doesn’t have the poundage for hunting. However, it packs sufficient energy for shallow-water bow fishing. And depending on one’s skill level, it can be accurate within 20 yards.
Ready to shoot out of the box
Tomcat includes all accessories. The package comprises 3-pin sight, adjustable arrow rest, and a stabilizer. Moreover, you get two 25-inch fiberglass arrows and soft-touch finger rollers. Though not the best quality out there, it’s more for the price.
NB: Tomcat compound bow is only available in a right-handed version and offers a 60-70% let-off.
Best Youth Compound Bow for Hunting: Complete Guide
Is your kid left or right-handed? Well, you need to get a compound bow that suits their shooting style. Most youth compound bows are available in the right-hand version. Though not as popular, you can get compound bows for left-hand shooting style.
Consider an ambidextrous compound bow if you don’t want to buy two bows for left and right-hand use. It enables you to switch between left and right-hand shooting style.
Youth compound bows aren’t that cheap. So, to reap the most out of every dollar, you need a durable bow set. Aluminum and fiberglass are a top choice for compound bows.
Of course, you don’t want a compound bow that will weigh down your kid. Hence, for comfort, consider a lightweight bow.
Well, holding the bow before you purchase is the best way to go about it. But thanks to the online purchase, that’s not possible.
But from experience, I’d recommend 3 pounds or less for kids below five years. Teens and pre-teen can handle a bit more.
The more the draw weight, the more the strength you need to pull back the string. A bow with more draw weight has more poundage for fast, forceful shots. Less draw weight, on the other hand, doesn’t have as much poundage and speed. Nonetheless, it’s more effortless.
So, what’s the general rule for selecting the ideal draw weight for your kid? For smaller kids between 60-100 pounds, I’d recommend a draw weight of 10-15 pounds. Average sized kids, mostly 100-125 pounds, will be comfortable with 15-25 pounds draw weight. For teens between 125-150 pounds, a draw weight of 25-30 pounds will suffice.
Axle-to-axle or ATA length affects performance. A longer ATA length, at least 34 inches, is more forgiving and accurate. However, there’s a weight penalty. Also, it’s only ideal in ore open terrains.
A short ATA bow, on the other hand, is more suited for confined spaces. Also, it tends to weigh less for easy portability. However, it’s a bit lacking when it comes to taking longer shots.
A proper draw length is paramount for accurate shots. For proper sizing, measure your height in inches and minus 15. Then divide by 2 to get the right draw length.
Accessories add value to the bow. Also, it’s cheaper than having to buy the bow and accessories separately. More importantly, you’re less likely to experience compatibility issues. Some of the accessories to consider include arrows, quiver, stabilizer, bow sight, among others.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Question: What’s the best youth compound bow?
Answer: All compound bows on the list promise the best quality and user experience. But Bear Archery Cruzer Lite is pretty much one step ahead of the game. It’s the most versatile and boasts the widest range of adjustments.
Question: What’s the best youth compound bow for hunting?
Answer: Most models don’t have the poundage for hunting. So, for bow hunting purposes, I’d recommend Barnett Vortex, Bear Cruzer Lite, SAS Scorpii, and Velocity 4×4 compound bows.
Question: What’s the best youth compound bow for very young kids?
Answer: Well, I’d go with two models: Genesis Original and Genesis Mini. They’re the only compound bows to boast a zero let-off. So, very young kids will find it handy.
Question: What’s the best draw weight for deer hunting?
Answer: For whitetails, consider a draw weight of at least 40 pounds. For large deer, settle for a draw weight of at least 50 pounds.
Question: Single-can Vs. Double-cam system. Which one is better?
Answer: Well, each system has its strengths and weaknesses. A single-cam system is quieter, precise, and requires less tuning. A dual-cam system, on the other hand, is faster and more sturdy.
Purchasing the best bow for your kids is not an easy exercise considering the many models of youth bows available in the market. Luckily, we have discussed in detail the best youth compound bows that you can choose from. Be sure to pick from the list we have outlined above.