Qualification Training

Although marksmanship is a continuous training requirement, units normally conduct a refresher program before qualification. Soldiers must be well-rounded in marksmanship fundamentals and have preparatory marksmanship training before qualification. This applies to qualification for the entire unit or for newly assigned personnel. All trainers must understand that rifle marksmanship is not a series of exercises to be trained in a planned sequence. The unit must prepare for training by --

• Issuing soldiers a serviceable and accurately firing rifle.

• Repairing and replacing bad magazines.

• Issuing and assigning each soldier his own rifle that only he zeros and fires.

• Considering available or required resources early such as targets, ranges, ammunition, training aids, devices, and publications.

Before the soldier can fire, he must know how to adjust rifle sights and should understand ballistics to include the effects of wind and gravity on a bullet strike. A refresher training program can prevent frustration and loss of confidence in the soldier, and also prevent wasting ammunition and training time. This program is conducted for all soldiers so they can meet the standards outlined in this manual and soldier's manuals.

NOTE: Many individual marksmanship tasks, such as operation and function checks, immediate action, target detection, and dry fire, DO NOT require live fire.

Feedback (precise knowledge of bullet strike) must be included in all live-fire training. Downrange feedback, known-distance (KD) firing, or scaled-silhouette target exercises provide the results at extended ranges. Feedback is not adequate when bullets from previous firings cannot be identified such as previous shot groups on a zero target that are not triangulated and clearly marked.

The initial live fire should be a grouping exercise, which allows soldiers to apply marksmanship fundamentals to obtain tight, consistent shot groups. Following a successful grouping exercise, zeroing is quick and simple using only a few rounds.

After zeroing, downrange feedback should be conducted. A series of scaled-silhouette targets provide unlimited situations for training on the 25-meter range if modified field-fire or KD ranges are not available. The timed-fire scaled-silhouette target can add to successful record fire performance since it represents targets at six different ranges, requires quick response, and allows precise feedback. It is another way to confirm zero and requires the application of the four fundamentals. This exercise can benefit units that have access only to 25-meter ranges. (See Appendix E for use of scaled targets.)

Field-fire training is a transitional phase that stresses the focusing on a certain area. Soldiers must detect the target as soon as it comes up and quickly fire with only hit-or-miss feedback; this is an important combat skill. Soldiers who are exposed to the field-fire range before they have refined their basic firing skills cannot benefit from the exercise. For example, if most 175- and 300-meter targets are missed, additional feedback or PRI training should be conducted.

The Army standard record fire course involves an element of surprise in that the soldier is not be familiar with the lane in which he qualifies. He must scan the sector and apply detection skills and range estimation skills. However, practice can be repeated on the record fire course when available. This course provides the best opportunity for practicing target detection skills and for engaging targets at ranges from 50 to 300 meters.

For poor firers, remedial training is conducted to include the use of the Weaponeer device discussed in Appendix C. Soldiers proficient in marksmanship skills can assist in the remedial training effort.

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