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6 Archery Chest Guard FAQs


What is a chest guard for in archery?

A chest guard and/or chest protector is used to prevent injury or soreness to the breast of male and female archers and to retain loose fitting shirts or blouses or billowing clothing from interfering with the bowstring, especially when the archer is wearing clothing in cold weather or in wet conditions. It will prevent your clothing from coming in contact with the string.

Related Video.


Why wear a chest guard in archery?

Remember chest guards works the same as arm guards. It protects the archer from get the sting from the bowstring. Although, when an archer shoots his/her arm, it's more likely it's related to his/her form while shooting his/her chest is a natural body shape fact. (not an actual problem, just as it is.)

Chest guards are also commonly used by girls for obvious reason but some guys with a slightly longer draw length might use it as well for protection. As I understand it the chest protector is simply to allow you to pull the draw very close to your chest without it rubbing and hurting (and to prevent it getting caught on something)

So my advise is to wear it for protection. If you shoot enough arrows in a day (competition archers are going to practice a lot!) then I guess it's easy for your chest to get sore and irritated.

Is a custom archery chest guard better?

I've seen people use file folders, place-mats, and I believe laminated sheets and make them work. And it does appear that they are stitching right on to the guard. Haven't found any video that shows how they are put together though.

Looking at photos it seems there is no one way to do it. It does look like some stitch it directly on the material. It looks like some put another section of fabric over the edges to hold it all in place. My wife has a sewing machine that just might be strong enough to put a guard together. She told me she was thinking about using a bias tape around the edge to hold it all in place and then some as backing on the top back where there can be no additional overlap.

We are going to do a test design this weekend with printed material that has been laminated. We think laminating will be better than say the other materials mentioned as you will get a better seal. I did buy an Easton chest protector, then had my wife tear out the underarm seam and replace it with velcro. Now I can open it up and slip in any picture or pattern I want between the mesh and the inner lining.

I'll use a different one each day I shoot, swapping between the ones we'll make and the one we modified to see which one is most comfortable.

Is the female archer chest guard different from the standard guard?

It will vary on the chest guard. Standard guards I always assume all the smalls are made to fit children and maybe small bust/framed woman, with men's guards a small will more likely fit a slightly larger bust.

Then there's woman guards that provide a better fit for a woman's chest and sizing will go up from bust size so if you have bigger boobs go a large. So the basic things to consider are do you have a large bust? Do you have a small, medium or large frame? And what guard you're looking at i.e male, female or both.

Unless someone can give you a more specific answer, I can answer in general. The size will correspond to the mesh area coverage over your bust, and some chest guards are adjustable in the length of the strap. A medium guard would give a better chance of helping you overall if you have an adjustable strap. Especially if you are trying to go over hoodies and keep loose clothing close to your body, a medium size would keep more of the clothing against you.

So I would recommend a medium chest guard that has an adjustable strap.

Is a leather archery chest guard better than other materials?

Short answer is probably not. It really depends on if you are looking to match other equipment but I don't really think leather will give you much more protection.

Who needs A chest guard?

Was pretty much answered at the beginning of this post. The answer is that it can not hurt (pun intended) to have a chest guard. Especially beginners who haven’t found the right technique yet can hurt themselves when shooting a bow.

When you have the feeling that your chest can get in the way of the bowstring you should really think of getting some protection. This is also important for women and I highly recommend it to every woman who wants to participate in archery. A bowstring shoots forward with a lot of speed and power. Imagine it hits your breast at full speed. That would cause serious pain you could have prevented with a chest guard.

 Also when you are shooting outside on a windy day, your clothes could get entangled in the string which can also cause injuries to yourself or damage your clothes or bow. Getting this kind of guard can help everybody whose chest gets in the way of the string or keep the clothes under control.



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