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Getting off your belly or bench, alternate positions

Quite simply it is a masterpiece

Check out Sniper’s Hide for tips, videos and more information on positional shooting with a modern precision rifle. See what equipment guys are using, the techniques employed and the way this type of training will translate to open field success. We have an online training section you can upgrade to For the visually minded you can watch the videos and practice the techniques included in each lesson.

Get off your belly

In training the military we often the tell the snipers, “Prone is the Rare Shot” especially in urban areas. Both manmade and natural obstacles liter our fields of view no matter where we travel. The well-rounded marksmanship knows how to adapt their surroundings to make a successful shot. Looking at the different positions one must practice, we have:

  • Prone
  • Sitting
  • Kneeling
  • Standing

Field shooters are across the course marksman, in other words, we have to master all four of these positions in some way. That doesn’t automatically mean they are all unsupported or require the mastery of sling shooting, but it does require you get off the bench or your belly and practice them.

Supported positions are not always as easy as just dropping the forearm on to a support. There are certain aspects we want to address. The style of rifle can have a say in your success, so people have devised other tools to help with our support system in the field.

We employ a variety of bag styles to support both the shot and the shooter. The heavy sand-filled bags support the rifle on hard surfaces, while the light puff pillows support the shooter’s positions.

Instead of using shooting sticks try carrying a single tripod for a do-all solution. I often tell people, if you wanted me to hike across varied terrain with the potential of targets of opportunity along the way, a single tripod would solve every problem I encounter. There is a reason why we have invested more than $1500 on a tripod, they work.

Thanks to the competition circuit we recognize the tools and positions to execute these shots under time and using various types of support. We have adapted bags and tripods to quickly and effectively engage targets from an alternative position with a high level of success. The critical element is, of course, the proper practice.

It’s much easier to show you what these positions can look like versus talking about it. But at the same time, we do have some tips we can extend to help you determine the best method to use.

Shoulders in Front of your Hips
Support the firing elbow when possible
Balance the rifle using your support
Understand Recoil Management
Lower the Power on your Scope to open up the Field of View
Go hard of the rifle to the soft of the support when able
Tripods are your friend

The various positions are designed to get you over obstacles, the higher the obstruction, the taller the position. We highly recommend you practice these positions dry and initially focus on these two elements.

Building your positions quickly and efficiently
Understanding your wobble zone

The fundamentals of marksmanship will directly translate to these alternate positions. Think golf:

We address the ball, by lining up our body, which for us is Natural Point of Aim. We check our alignment in the swing; this is our sight picture. We open up the eye box by lowering the magnification. It’s much more forgiving to our head position changes when approaching the other positions. Then the full swing and follow through. This action is trigger control and again, follow through, the forgotten fundamental. Don’t forget to follow through it’s a must regardless of the sport.

The fundamentals will translate to every single situation and all the weapons we employ. From handguns to carbines, hunting rifles to high dollar ELR Rigs the Fundamentals will follow you regardless of the platform.

One of the best ways to practice the application of these alternate positions is to shoot a match. It’s not uncommon for the current style of precision rifle competition to have as much as 60% of the shots from a position other than prone. It’s a great way to get spun up in the best practices without having to wade through the styles that should be passed over. Today we have a host of matches across the country as well the NRL 22 league can be found just about everywhere.

Inexpensive .22 matches are a great way to get your feet wet without the big dollar commitment in both equipment and travel. One day .22 caliber matches are popping up across the United States. Their return on investment cannot be overstated. Spend a little but learn a lot in this type of event. They are often alternate position heavy events.

With .22 rifles being lightweight, inexpensive to shoot, they are the perfect training tool for the young and old alike. Heck many of us shooting the Vudoo 22 rifles have invested just as much as our centerfire precision rifles, and that’s okay. They are a ton of fun for the entire family.

Check out Sniper’s Hide for tips, videos and more information on positional shooting with a modern precision rifle. See what equipment guys are using, the techniques employed and the way this type of training will translate to open field success. We have an online training section you can upgrade to For the visually minded you can watch the videos and practice the techniques included in each lesson.

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