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Service Rifle Positions


Today, we’re going to cover two of the rifle contact points. The butt stock placement, and the forward hand position as used in shooting the standing, sitting, and prone firing positions. 




The butt stock placement and forward hand positions can be adjusted to get the shooter a correct head position, and to get the shooters natural point of aim on target without inducing muscle tension. The butt stock placement is going to be a little different in each position. So, let’s begin in the standing position. 


As you can see the rifle is high in the pocket of shooter’s shoulder. This brings the rifle up to the shooters face, keeps the shooters head and upright, and dominant eye behind the rear sight. Depending on the shooter’s body type, this position in the shoulder will vary a little bit. But, once you find the right position for your rifle in the shoulder, you are going to want to make a mental note of that to keep it consistent from time to time when you shoot. 


In the standing position, we generally see the forward hand in one of two positions. Either underneath the slip ring of the rifle, or gripping the front of the magazine well. There are many different variations of these two hand positions. The main goal of any of these two is to bring the muzzle to the target without holding the rifle using muscle tension. 



Now, the sitting position. You’ll see that the rifle is a little bit lower in the shooter’s shoulder, but still high enough for him to maintain a good upright head position. This upright head position is going to ensure the shooters dominant eye is directly behind the rear sight aperture. It’s also going to ensure the good solid head pressure is going to help control the recoil during shooting. 




In the sitting position, the forward hand will normally be between the slip ring, and half way down the hand guard. Again, the shooters body type will dictate the forward hand position. Any movement of the forward hand will have a drastic impact on the muzzle. So, small adjustments should be made to get the sights on target. 




Our third position is the prone position. As you can see, the rifle butt is buried in the pocket of the shoulder. Depending on the shooters body type, small adjustments will be made in the shoulder to keep the shooters head upright, and directly behind the rear sight. While in this position, the forward hand should normally be between half way down the hand guard, and all the way out against the forward sling swivel. The key is to find the position that allows you to keep the forward arm totally relaxed. Again, small adjustments can be made to keep your position solid and on target. Just like in the sitting position, in the prone position, moving the non-firing hand will drastically effect the elevation of the muzzle. 




Finding consistent butt stock placement and forward hand placement for the prone, sitting, and standing firing positions will help you become a better shooter. Until next time, stay Army Strong.




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