Archery is one of the most intimidating sports for beginners for several reasons. It is unlike basketball or badminton where someone can just jump on and start improving. Once someone started archery, there are things that are needed to be done in order to maintain the bow and the arrows for playing condition. The four things needed to be done in order to maintain the good condition of the bow and arrow: never dry fire, always use recurve bow stringer, do not string the bow backward, and to unstring the bow if not in use.
The first forbidden thing to do is to dry fire a bow. Dry firing a bow means to fire the bow without an arrow in place. The power that makes the arrow fly is actually from the stored energy in the bow. While firing, the arrow absorbs the shock coming from the stored energy as it flies away. If there is no arrow to absorb the energy, it will bounce back to the bow and things might get nasty when this happens. The shock can damage parts of the bow or break it in half. The shooter might also get hurt because of the impact.
The second thing to take note is to always use a bow stringer. There are different kinds of bow stringer. One example is a stringer with one limb cup and one limb block which is what a Selway Limbsaver is. October Mountain Recurve Stringer is an example of stringers with two limb blocks. Last but not least are stringers with two limb cups (an example is a Neet Recurve Bow Stringer). The reason for always using a bow stringer is for the safety of the bow and the shooter. With the same reason as dry firing the bow, the same accident can happen when stringing the bow. In this case, the shooter can get hurt by the recoil.
The third rule is to avoid stringing the bow backward. Although stringing the bow backward has been done before to store the equipment, people with experience in bows doesn’t recommend this anymore. Stringing a bow backward doesn’t have a bad effect in the bow. However, the case is different when someone who is not experienced in handling bows tried to fire it that way. It is worse than dry firing and can be damaging for the bow if it happened. If the material is not made for bending backward, the bow will break.
And last but not least is to unstring the bow if not in use. The reason for this is because when the bow is made with natural materials, it will deteriorate in time. When the bow is strung when not in use, the bow will get weaker and weaker over time. This is because the belly of the bow is under compression. If the shooter will be taking short breaks, it is recommended to leave the bow strung. However, if the shooter will take a break in archery for a couple of days or longer, it is recommended to leave the bow unstrung.