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Bow permits for hunters with disabilities

A person with a temporary or permanent disability may apply for a permit to allow them to use a crossbow or modified bow during the late archery season in the Upper Peninsula or the Bear Archery only season. A physician can automatically certify a hunter as eligible for a disability bow permit if the hunter:

  • has an amputation involving body extremities required for stable function to use conventional archery equipment, or
  • has a spinal cord injury resulting in permanent disability to the lower extremities, leaving the applicant permanently nonambulatory, or
  • has a permanent wheelchair restriction.

If none of the above criteria apply, physicians, physical therapists or occupational therapists can certify hunters who fail:

  • a functional draw test that equals 35 pounds of resistance and involves holding it for four seconds, or
  • a manual muscle test involving the grading of shoulder and elbow flexion and extension, or
  • an impaired range-of-motion test involving the shoulder or elbow.

In addition, a physician can recommend a disability bow permit for other temporary or permanent disabilities, such as neuromuscular conditions. For more information and an application, call 517-284-6057.

This permit allows modifications to a compound bow, including the addition of an overdraw lock device. This modification may not convert a compound bow into a crossbow. 

On August 17, 2010 the Michigan Natural Resources commission approved the expansion of crossbow regulations to include the use of a modified bow wherever crossbows are legal.

Click here for an application for a disability bow permit.