Finger Tabs Guide For Bow Archery

What is a Finger Tab Used for?

Finger tabs are your basic necessity in archery.

They’re right there along with a bow release and an arm guard in terms of necessity, and you’ll see many archers using them with every single shot.

But what are they, and why are they even a thing? Let’s talk about that.

First and foremost, finger tabs are there for protection.

They protect your skin from abrasion from the bowstring during dry firing, as well as general discomfort and irritation.

When you fire over a hundred arrows on a Saturday, that’s a hundred times you’ve brought a tense bowstring against your fingers.

It’s going to have an impression.

Finger tabs aren’t just for onefinger though.

Some are, but most of them wrap around all of your fingers to produce a band that your fingers rest on.

Finger Tab Size Guide

finger tab protection

First thing you should know is that there are two different ways to size a finger tab, and they’re both fairly different.

Everything is explained below…


  • 7.5” up to 8” is considered a small size.
  • 8.5” up to 9” is considered a medium size.
  • 9.5” up to 10” is considered a large size
  • 10.5” up to 11” is considered an extra large size.
  • There are no known sizes above this outside of custom work


  • 8” up to 8.5” is considered a small size.
  • 9” up to 9.5” is considered a medium size.
  • 10” up to 10.5” is considered a medium size.
  • 11” and up are considered extra large sizes.
  • There are no known sizes above this outside of custom work.

Are Archery Gloves the Same Thing?

right hand leather finger tab

More or less, yes they are the same thing.

Finger tabs are there to be far less constricting than archery gloves.

Some people don’t like the feeling of having leather around all their fingers when they’re trying to judge the draw weight of the bowstring.

It can make it difficult to feel your grip on it, but with a finger tab, there’s still immense pressure on your fingers.

Archery gloves aren’t full gloves at all.

They usually wrap around your wrist and cover three fingers.

Then there are some that cover your pinky, ring and middle finger but leave the index and thumb open.

The style you choose is up to you, but if you want something more lightweight and versatile, you should go with a finger tab.

You can use archery gloves in place of finger tabs if you wish, but before you do, check out the list of finger tab benefits below.

Benefits of Finger Tabs

hand protection - simple design
  • Reduces Trigger Thumb:
  • Trigger thumb is something serious that you can get some archery.
  • It’s when your joint locks up and refuses to let go.
  • This is symptomatic of arthritis, but it’s different entirely.
  • Your joints don’t simply release though, they can require surgery to repair, and in most situations, there will be a long recovery time.
  • With a finger tab, you’re using a lot less pressure on your fingers, reducing your chance of getting trigger thumb in the first place.
  • Better Comfort:
  • You don’t want to stop archery just because your fingers feel a bit numb, do you?
  • No, you don’t, and instead of doing that you can simply use a finger tab.
  • By removing the direct skin-on-bowstring friction, you’re improving your comfort.
  • Whether it’s a nylon or a leather finger tab, it won’t dig into your skin like the bowstring does.
  • It’s a little less intimate, but it gets the job done without causing you harm.
  • Cheap:
  • Tabs are super cheap to purchase, and don’t require much upkeep.
  • In fact, you could buy half-a-dozen finger tabs for the same cost as a single archery glove.
  • It’s much easier to slip a finger tab on that an entire gloves, cutting down on your carry weight.

With the plus side of anything, you always have the negative.

It’s a preference thing, but many users don’t like the feeling of a finger tab.

In fact, they don’t care for gloves either, because it’s not skin-on-string contact.

It does have a slight feeling of loss of control, especially since it’s safe to assume you were taught without a finger tab.

How to Make Your Own High Quality Finger Tab

diy finger tab

The easiest way to get it done is with a simple piece of leather, and a pair of scissors.

Use this quick instructional guide to show you a simple, yet not quite as good as the store-bought way to get a finger tab.

1. Trace the design for the finger tab in a thin piece of leather. You will need two pieces in total, so draw them similarly.

2. Cut the finger hole evenly in both.

3. Test them. Do they feel good when you use them? Does it line up with your arrow shots? If so, it’s time to glue them together with a durable hot glue.

4. The ends are going to look like a mess. Using the end of a lighter, bring it gently across the edges to singe the bits of natural polymer and even things out.

5. Let it dry and set, and see if it held together well. You’ve got yourself a finger tab.

If you want something even cheaper, you can make a DIY finger tab that takes a completely different approach.

This is basically a budget option that isn’t really recommended, but it gets the job done for the short-term.

1. Take an old cotton or leather glove and get ready to cut it up a little.

2. Cut the pinky and thumb sleeves off of the glove. You only want your three middle fingers to be present inside the glove.

3. Reinforce the wrist with a velcro strap to keep it steady while you’re shooting. If you don’t have a velcro strap, you can tie a piece of string around the wrist when you’re using your finger tab glove.

4. Hem the edges of the thumb and pinky slot so that it isn’t irritating to your finger.

It’s not pretty, but it’s going to keep the tension off of your fingers and make things a little more comfortable.

You should consider purchasing a proper finger tab for future use, but this is good for the short-term.

Can I Use Something Other Than Leather Faces?

Archery Nylon Finger Tab

We know leather can be a bit pricey, but it really is the very best material you could use for a custom finger tab.

Leather has a lot of durability due to its natural polymer, the string wont’ cut through it, it won’t truly wear it down, and it won’t lacerate the exterior of the leather.

But it’s not the only thing.

It’s quite frankly the best thing you could use.

You can also use nylon. Nylon is used in a lot of wrist straps for bow releases, and it’s also good to make a finger tab out of.

You have to be careful about abrasions to your fingertips and irritation when using nylon.

One benefit that leather has over nylon is how easy it is to stitch it.

You don’t have to puncture the material beforehand.

A soft leather can have a needle go through it and just carry the thread with little to no issue, but nylon requires a lot more force.

Why do Some Finger Tabs Have Metal Anchor Plate?

metal finger tab

To decrease the amount of pressure felt through the material.

If you’re used to using a finger tab, the pressure that you can still feel through the leather might be a bit too much for you.

The metal wing evenly distributes the pressure across it, so you’ll feel the metal press against you, but it’s wide and doesn’t cut into your fingers.

Do I Need a Lace for My Custom Finger Tab?

It’s entirely optional.

Important things to remember, some hunters enjoy tying it off to their hand, while others just want it to rest against your hand while you’re shooting.

Some will use a lace, some will use an elastic band of sorts.

It is recommended to have it attached to your wrist, but it’s not going to make or break your shot.

Upgrading Your Archery Arsenal

If you don’t currently have one of these in your archery arsenal, then it’s time to make an upgrade.

Finger tabs are excellent for all levels of skills, from novice to bowmaster, and can even help prevent trigger thumb to an extent.

It’s common for newer archers to feel silly with a ton of gear on (they think arm guards and bow releases are unnecessary), but it’s required to keep yourself safe, and reduce sustained injuries from those few and far between bow firing accidents.

If you’re looking to get gear for a newcomer to the archery world, we’ve covered releases and sights down to the best beginner compound bow.

Archery Finger Tabs – Beginner Archer

Archery finger tabs are essential for beginner archers.

They provide protection and support for the fingers while shooting.

Choosing the right size is crucial for comfort and accuracy.

Properly fitted finger tabs can improve your shooting technique and prevent injuries.

Target sights are another important accessory for archers.

They help you aim more precisely and increase your chances of hitting the target.

With the right sight, you can adjust for distance and wind conditions, improving your overall accuracy.

When selecting finger tabs and target sights, it is important to consider your individual needs and preferences.

Different archers may have different shooting styles and preferences.

Experiment with different options to find what works best for you.

Investing in high-quality finger tabs and target sights is worth it.

These accessories can greatly enhance your archery experience and improve your performance.

Don’t settle for cheap alternatives that may not provide the same level of comfort and accuracy.

Proper maintenance and care of your finger tabs and target sights is important to ensure their longevity.

Clean them regularly and store them in a safe place when not in use.

This will help prevent damage and ensure they are always ready for your next practice or competition.

As you gain more experience and improve your skills, you may find that your finger tab and target sight preferences change.

Don’t be afraid to try new options and upgrade your equipment to higher levels if needed.

Continuously evolving and adapting is key to becoming a better archer.

So, finger tabs and target sights are essential accessories for archers.

They provide protection, support, and improved accuracy.

Finding the right size and experimenting with different options will help you optimize your shooting technique.

Take care of your equipment and be open to upgrading as you progress in your archery journey.

Archery Tabs For Beginners is a Good Thing

When starting out in archery, it is important to have the right equipment.

Archery tabs, also known as finger tabs, are essential for protecting the archer’s fingers and improving accuracy.

These tabs can be found at archery shops and come in various sizes and materials to suit individual preferences.

Choosing the right archery tab is crucial for a beginner archer.

Tabs with extra features, such as adjustable finger separators or ergonomic designs, can enhance comfort and control.

It is recommended to try out different tabs to find the one that feels most comfortable and provides the best grip.

Using an archery tab correctly is essential for proper technique and accuracy.

The tab should be placed on the fingers, with the index finger resting on the tab’s shelf.

This allows for a consistent anchor point and a smooth release.

Practice and proper form are key to mastering archery.

Regular maintenance of the archery tab is important to ensure its longevity.

Cleaning the tab regularly and replacing it when necessary will help maintain its effectiveness.

Additionally, checking for any signs of wear and tear is crucial to prevent any accidents or injuries during shooting.

As a beginner archer, it is important to understand the purpose and benefits of using an archery tab.

It not only protects the fingers from the strain of drawing the bowstring but also improves accuracy by providing a consistent release.

Investing in a quality archery tab is a wise choice for any aspiring archer.

So, archery tabs are essential for beginner archers.

They provide protection and improve accuracy, allowing for a more enjoyable and successful archery experience.

By choosing the right tab, practicing proper technique, and maintaining it regularly, a beginner archer can enhance their skills and progress in the sport.

The Best Finger Tab For A Beginner

The best finger tab for a beginner archer is one that is of high quality.

A high-quality finger tab provides the necessary support and protection for the fingers while shooting.

It ensures a comfortable grip and reduces the risk of finger injuries.

Older people who are new to archery can benefit greatly from using a high-quality finger tab as it helps them maintain a steady and controlled release.

The only reason a beginner archer should consider using a finger tab is to improve their accuracy and consistency in shooting.

They’re right there along with a bow release and an arm guard in terms of necessity, and you’ll see many archers using them with every single shot.

But what are they, and why are they even a thing?

Let’s talk about that.

First and foremost, finger tabs are there for protection.

They protect your skin from abrasion from the bowstring during dry firing, as well as general discomfort and irritation.

First Things You Need to Know in the Coming Years

Consistency is key in archery.

Develop a routine and stick to it.

Set goals for yourself and track your progress.

Seek guidance from experienced archers or coaches to improve your technique.

Remember, practice makes perfect.

As you gain more experience, consider participating in archery competitions.

This will provide an opportunity to test your skills and compete against others.

Joining a local archery club or organization can also help you connect with fellow archers and learn from their experiences.

Archery is a sport that requires patience and perseverance.

Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see immediate results.

Keep practicing and pushing yourself to improve.

With dedication and determination, you can become a skilled archer.

Remember to enjoy the journey of learning archery.

Embrace the challenges and celebrate your achievements along the way.

Archery is not only a physical activity but also a mental discipline.

Stay focused, stay motivated, and continue to grow as an archer.

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