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Unread 11-27-2013, 10:17 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 3
Re: MARKSMANSHIP BASICS - Prone position

My body is 45 degrees from my rifle, my feet are flat on its side, and I have my nose against my buttstock.
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Unread 03-11-2014, 10:06 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: North Central Valley California
Posts: 2,254
Re: MARKSMANSHIP BASICS - Prone position

Please describe your optimum prone position for best accuracy in the field. Angling (30-45 degrees?) to target or torso in a straight line?

My prone shooting involves the use of a bipod.
I make every effort to position the body in as straight a line with the rifle as possible. The controlling factor is how the rifle meets the shoulder and, where necessary, I adjust a few degrees off center to accomodate that proper rifle butt/shoulder connection.

#2 Please describe the position of your feet - flat to ground or upright on an angle.

I allow my feet to assume a natural position (which often depends on the terrain) so that the legs and feet are relaxed. The legs and feet must not introduce tension to the rest of the body at any time. That most commonly results in a toes out position for the feet.

#3 Please describe, if you have not covered this in #1, the position of your elbows, head and neck.

The butt of the rifle rests on a "butt bag" ...........................
My right elbow rests, without tension, to the side of the rifle in a position that compliments the required angle of the right hand's position on the stock. The left elbow is forward of the head and bent to position the left hand near the butt of the stock. The left hand sometimes comes into play for fine elevation/windage adjustments (however, once any windage adjustment is made the lateral pressure on the butt is removed) to put the sights on target.
I use an adjustable cheek rest - it isn't truly a "rest" because cheek pressure is kept to an absolute minimum - to align my sighting eye with the scope eyepiece at proper eye relief.
My right hand touches the rifle only lightly - I do not grip the rifle by folding the right thumb over the stock. The right thumb remains pointed forward along the right side of the stock. The fingers of the right hand press firmly but gently to maintain positive contact between the shoulder and butt.

I have a great woman, fantastic kids, a warm place to sleep and an accurate rifle. Life is good ..............
Hunter Safety Instructor - California Hunter Safety Meritorious Service 1971 - 1972. Rifle/Pistol Marksmanship Instructor - NRA Life Member

American rifleman's triad - God, guts and guns. It built America and it'll preserve America. Abandon one and you lose them all.

As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.
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Unread 11-06-2014, 02:47 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 187
Re: MARKSMANSHIP BASICS - Prone position

#1 Body straight, gun straight parallel to the spine.

A straight spine is critical in my opinion, yes you can shoot very well laying at an angle. However once you start getting into calibers with recoil laying at an angle will cause your body to "twist" during recoil moving your muzzle up and to the side. This makes it almost impossible to keep a natural point of aim shot to shot, and if you miss its impossible to accurately measure how far you were off. All you know is you were "about a foot and a half high and maybe am foot left" Laying straight puts your entire body behind the rifle, and under recoil you get pushed straight back then you come straight forward again. Even with punishing rounds like a .338 if you lay straight behind the gun and load the bipod you can maintain visual with the target during recoil and you will come right back on target very close to your original natural point of aim, allowing you to accurately measure the difference between point of aim and impact. That way if you did miss on a game animal you can make accurate corrections on your own, and you dont have to rely on a spotter to guess.
#2 My feet are a few inches on either side wider than shoulder width apart.

Keep your feet as flat as possible, if you cant lay them flat go as far as you can, if you try to balance your feet with your ankles in the air any movement will go straight to the muzzle

#3 My Elbows are pushed out in front of me, I put my left hand on the rear bag and my right on the grip. I slightly push back with my elbows to coil up a little bit then put the rifle in the pocket of my shoulder then relax my muscles and "lean into" the rifle loading the bipod legs, Also I just rest my face on the stock, I dont put any pressure or try to lift any off, if you just use the weight of your head to guage pressure you are alot more consistent.
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