Archery Tab or Archery Glove ?

Protect your hands and fingers

You know how important it is to cover your hands with a pair of gloves or a tab before you attempt to shoot using any bow. Ignoring it can lead to serious damage in the ligaments and finger tips. Choosing between a glove and a tab may be an issue, here are some features below for both of them, read on and find out which one you would like to go for.


Features of a tab:

A tab is used by target archers mostly but nowadays many traditional archers have also started using them. A tab is a simple piece of leather with two slots for fingers. It has the following parts:

  • the platform on which you can position your hand under your chin to exactly position the shot
  • the finger spacers as the name suggests, are responsible for maintaining a fixed distance between the fingers that are being used to shoot
  • the thumb rest enables the thumb to stay at a fixed position while shooting.

Tabs come in many different shapes and sizes and you can choose between triangular tabs, Cavalier shaped tabs and so on. Tabs are available in S, M, L and XL sizes and you must wear them before buying to check that they fit you appropriately. Your fingers must be completely covered with the tab. If the material of the tab is too thin, then your fingers may become sore and if it is too thick, then you will suffer from a great loss of control. Experienced shooters have claimed leather, specially Cordovan leather to be the best material for a tab. A tab can be customized according to your own needs and sizes. Prices of simple tabs start from around $2.5 and may increase in cost depending upon their size and material. A good quality tab with a metal frame may cost around $20 - $25. Many synthetic and natural materials can be used to make a tab. Oberon is one synthetic material that is highly recommended for a tab face. Another renowned synthetic material that is widely in use for a tab face is Vulcolan.


Features of gloves:

A pair of gloves is a simple yet comfortable way to cover your hands while shooting. Your fingers will fit in easily and  it will be easier to move your hand and thumb freely. Many archers prefer gloves because of their simplicity and a wide variety of choices of materials. You can go for leather gloves or those made of deerskin. Some gloves are totally covered, with the whole hand up till the wrists get inside them, while some available in the market are such that they cover only three fingers and contain a strap that fastens the glove to the wrist.

You must attempt to shoot a few arrows before you finalize your selection for the type and size of glove you need for yourself. A pair of gloves may cost around $15 - $25 depending upon the size and material used.


What is best?

Whatever you find comfortable is best for you. As said earlier, attempt to perform a shot with using a pair of gloves or tabs and buy and use whatever suits your hands and shooting style. The most important point here is to cover your fingers and hands while shooting, whether you use a glove or a tab. Otherwise, your finger tips may become sore, ligaments may permanently weaken or calluses and minor wounds may appear with the force and weight of the shooting instruments.