How to Properly Shoot a Rifle

Hunters all know that there are two different types of shooting environments; shooting at the range and shooting in the field. Both of these locations present their own specific and distinct obstacles that need to be addressed to ensure accurate shooting.

Bench shooting offers many distractions like other shooters. It is hard to take your time and to shoot accurately when other rifles are exploding all around you. I hate being at the range when people are shooting next to me but we all have to overcome this inconvenience if we want our range time.

Another obstacle that ranges present for me is that most of their tables, benches and stools are built at a fixed height. I have short arms and legs and I have a hard time getting comfortable when I feel like I have to stretch to perform basic shooting tasks. If you are short, you will have to find your own ways to manage but if you are tall, you might want to consider bringing seat cushions and extra sandbags to get more comfortable.

Some of the basic rules for bench shooting are tried and true. Always place your receiver on a rest and not your barrel. If you are resting your barrel on a sand bag, your rifle rest is too far away from you and it will not shoot accurately. The receiver, or hand guard, is closer to the center of your gun and when you use that area as a rest, you are in a more balanced shooting position.  

When shooting in the outdoors under hunting conditions, the most important condition for being accurate is to get a good and solid rest no matter what. A good rest almost always involves three points of contact. For example, if you are laying down in a prone position you would want your body and both elbows in contact with the ground. Three points of contact can apply to many different shooting scenarios but it is a sure way to send a killing bullet downrange.

Finally, never let the butt of your stock rest on anything as this will guarantee that your bullet will not hit anywhere near where you are aiming. I once missed a deer because the butt of my rifle stock was resting against a root wad of a fallen tree. I feel ill just writing about it so please learn from my mistake.