How Dangerous is a Crossbow?

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Welcome to this article that talks about how dangerous a crossbow is. Shooting and hunting using a crossbow comes with inherent dangers. This is the reason why most outfitters have archers sign waivers when participating in archery. Hunters are also taking safety courses, most especially when it comes to using crossbows. However, crossbows are sometimes confused about toys that can be used without proper attention and care.

How dangerous is a crossbow? Crossbows can be very dangerous and potentially fatal when mishandled. Hunters commonly use them for shooting moose, bears, elks, and large games, so they are very lethal. The dangers of crossbows are not something to joke about. The energy stored in the limbs and string is tremendous. A crossbow can take your fingers off in the blink of an eye or shoot an arrow through a vehicle’s doors. They are powerful and should be handled accordingly.

This article does not contain any product recommendations. If you are interested in purchasing face pistol crossbows, here’s our buying guide with products.

How powerful are crossbows? How do they compare to other weapons? What are the common mistakes that can lead to injury? Are there things that you need to consider to handle the crossbow safely? These are some of the questions that we will discuss in this article. For more information, you can check out the rest of the article below.

How dangerous is a crossbow

How Dangerous are Modern Crossbows?

The modern crossbows are very dangerous because they are so powerful they can pierce through various things, including armor plates. The bolts can easily pierce through the car windows and can penetrate the skull. They are effective hunting tools equipped with high-quality features that make them more powerful, dangerous, and lethal. Below are the features that make modern crossbows dangerous.


Modern crossbows are universally powerful as compared to compound bows. Crossbows weigh around 400 grains on average, and some are heavier. Most crossbows shoot bolts at 350 fps or more. Some will push them to 375 fps, while a few will easily break 400 fps. There is no mainstream bow that is as fast as any hunting arrow. The fact is that heavier projectiles that are moving faster are more powerful at any range.


Another Feature that makes crossbow dangerous is that it has amazing consistency. Using a rangefinder and a good rest, it is easy to shoot a fist-sized group at 70 to 80 yards. It is as efficient as a good scoped .22 rifle.

Learning Curve

Those with rifle-shooting experience can easily use a sighted-in crossbow. Crossbows are easy to use because of their user-friendly composition. You can easily cock it and aim to hit your target. Moreover, you can upgrade it with additional accessories that make shooting easier.

✅ Video – How Deadly Crossbows Really Are

ANewsVanIsland shared the video below on YouTube. It talks about how dangerous crossbows really are. According to Sgt. Dean Jantzen, the velocity of an arrow shot from a crossbow, is somewhere around 500 fps that can easily kill a full-sized deer, and could also kill a person if they were mistakenly caught in the crossfire. Moreover, a bullet from a pistol and an arrow shot from a crossbow equally penetrated a 3/4 inch plywood. You can check out the video below for more information.

How Powerful are Crossbows?

As compared to other types of bows, the crossbow has a lot of kinetic energy. Some crossbows are exceptionally powerful with a draw weight of 290 lbs and 405 fps speed when firing 350-grain crossbow bolts. Take note that there is no legal limit when it comes to how powerful crossbows can be. Moreover, crossbows are superior when it comes to storing and holding energy. They are more powerful than other bows because mechanical components take all the strain and not human muscle. You can also check out this article that talks about how powerful a pistol crossbow is. We have shared helpful information that you can refer to.

How Does Crossbow Compare to Other Weapons?

Little practice is required when handling a crossbow because it fit the gun profile in various ways. The crossbow is held like a rifle and has a trigger mechanism. Most crossbows feature a scope that makes hunting easier. If you are a gun hunter, shooting a crossbow will be familiar to you because the method of shooting a gun and a crossbow is similar. The difference is the projectile in a crossbow is the arrow and not a bullet.

Moreover, crossbows have almost no recoiled when fired. Crossbows are also quieter are compared to guns. If a hunter misses the target while shooting a gun, the other game in the area will hear the shot and scamper for safety. You can also check out this article that discusses if crossbows are more powerful than bows. We have useful information that you can use when searching for the right bow.

✅ Video – Crossbow VS Compound Bow Review and Demo

Sin City Outdoors shared the video below on YouTube. It talks about the difference between a crossbow and a compound bow. In the video, different bows are compared by shooting them and comparing features. What is the best bow to choose from? Check out the video below for the review and demonstration.

What are the Common Crossbow Mistakes that Leads to Injury?

Some mistakes can cost accuracy and lead to injury if you are not careful when using a crossbow. These mistakes include not paying attention to the fingers and thumb, shooting off-hand, not doing proper maintenance, not using the correct nock, and not uncocking your bow safely. Take a close look at those common mistakes below.

Not Paying Attention to Fingers and Thumb

Many shooters who are used to shooting rifles will tend to stick the fingers of their hands that hold the rifle’s forearm straight up in the air when they cradle the rifle. By doing this with a crossbow, they will risk placing their fingers in the bowstring path that is rocketing down the rail, which will slice the fingers and thumb to the bone. Always pay attention to the placement of your fingers and thumb when using a crossbow.

Shooting Offhand

A crossbow is constructed with a lot of weight on its front end. This makes it very difficult to balance when shooting from the off-hand position. Take note that even the best rifle shooters only shoot off-hand as a last resort. This can lead to injuries. It is ideal for learning to shoot quickly from a sitting or kneeling position when using a rail for a rock-solid rest or shooting sticks.

Not Doing Proper Maintenance

You need to regularly inspect the bow for maintenance issues like frayed strings, loose screws, and wear on the rail. Note that handling, travel, regular use, and temperature changes can cause screws to loosen and the crossbow to be unsafe. Make sure that you regularly check your crossbow for any issues.

Not Using the Correct Nock

Crossbow manufacturers list the type of nock that should be used with the bows. The nock has to stay in contact with the string when fired and designed to do so under different bows’ physics. Using the wrong nock can cause the string to jump over the arrow’s back, resulting in a dry fire that can damage the bow and injure the shooter.

Uncocking the Bow the Wrong Way

Make sure that you safely uncock the bow. Take note that uncocking the bow by letting the string drop while pulling the trigger can cause injuries. One wrong move and the crossbow can blow up, and the shooter will likely end up with shrapnel throughout the body. You can carry a bag target in the field and use a bolt to uncock your bow.

✅ Video – Crossbow Safety

Keith Warren Hunting shared the video below on YouTube. It talks about the injuries that can result in not paying attention to your fingers while shooting. Check out the video below to determine what can happen to your fingers when you are not careful with the crossbow.

Related Questions

Is it Easy to Purchase a Crossbow?

Yes, it is very easy to purchase a crossbow. There are a lot of online stores that sell a wide array of crossbow for every skill level. If it is your first time using a crossbow, there are crossbows available for beginners.

Can Crossbow Pierce Skulls?

Yes, crossbows can pierce skulls. But this will have to depend on the placement as well as the bolt used. You can also check out this article that we have written that discusses if a crossbow can go through a skull. Check out the article for more details about the topic.

Can a Crossbow Kill a Human?

Yes, a crossbow can kill a human. This can happen if a clean shot is delivered at the right angle using the right bow. Another factor is the draw strength of the bow. Even the lowest powered crossbow can damage tissues easily.


We hope that the information we have shared in this article has helped you learn more about how dangerous crossbows can be. Take note that crossbows are weapons that can maim and kill, so they should be handled properly. Bear in mind the common mistakes when handling a crossbow so that you can avoid them and prevent any injury from happening. Crossbows are powerful that can kill large games and penetrate many things, so you need to be extra careful when using them. Thank you for reading!