"Punching the trigger" is the biggest shooting problem among bowhunters today. The very best way to avoid this problem and shoot well consistently is to use a surprise release.

The index-finger release facilitates punching. That is, it makes it easy. That's because the index finger is very easily controlled. It has great dexterity and can work with lightning speed.

If you have a problem with punching the trigger, use a different style release aid altogether. Try a thumb-style release aid or, better yet, use a back-tension style release aid, which all but guarantees a surprise release.

If you insist on using an index-finger release, there are several things you can do that might help. First, try gripping the release aid deeper — up to the second joint of your index finger. Don't pull with the index finger, but rather use the large muscles of your back to trigger the release. If that doesn't work for you, try using a spring as a trigger instead of a solid post. The spring bends farther and farther as you pull with your finger until the release fires.

Remember, you can always get on the trigger quickly if you must in a hunting situation, but during practice, always use a surprise release.

Recommended for You


Slow Cooker Venison and Cabbage Stew Recipe

Jessyca Sortillon

This Venison and Cabbage Stew Recipe is meaty, easy to make in a slow cooker, and exactly what...


Veteran Elk Addict Shares His Bowhunting Wisdom

Dan Evans

Dan Evans shares his tips for tagging bulls after decades of success.


10 Workout Routines Every Bowhunter Should Master

Adam Holt - May 12, 2016

As a bowhunter, you need complete faith in your physical ability to hike in to your hunting...

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

2018 Bowhunter TV Episode 8: Canyon Ranch Roundup, Part 2

Bowhunter TV's Derek Mleynek and Equipment Editor Tony J. Peterson head to Texas for a late-season mixed bag hunt in a truly target-rich environment.

Spot-and-Stalk Texas Hog Bowhunt

Bowhunter Equipment Editor Tony J. Peterson spot-and-stalks hogs and whitetails in Texas.

Mountain Caribou Hunt

Curt Wells can't pass up this opportunity to hunt mountain caribou in the Northwest Territories.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

Other Game

Tips for Bowhunting Predators

Joe Bell

Chasing predators is great for calming big-game nerves.


Heavy Vs. Light: Choosing The Best Hunting Arrow

Curt Wells - June 21, 2016

Whether you bowhunt with a recurve bow, a longbow, or a compound bow, choosing the best...


Tree Saddle Demo Climb With Aider Use

Mike Carney - June 07, 2019

Go farther, hunt deeper, and trek lighter while enjoying all-day comfort.

See More Stories

More How-To


Tips for Stalking Mule Deer

Matt Palmquist

Follow these tips for spotting and stalking mule deer with a bow!


Small Prescribed Burns for Your Treestand Locations

C.J. Winand

A micro project could enhance the action.


Summer Scouting from Scratch

Tony J. Peterson

New year, new look at your whitetail ground

See More How-To

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services


GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.