Junior Shooting Sports

The American Legion Junior Shooting Sports Program is a gun safety education and marksmanship program that encompasses the basic elements of safety, education, enjoyment and competition. Shooters use the .177 caliber air rifle. Both males and females can participate, through Legion sponsorship; disabled youth are encouraged to join, as competitive shooting is a sport that creates an equal playing field for all competitors. Contact your local Legion post, Sons of The American Legion squadron or Auxiliary unit for information about affiliating as a club or individual. Junior Shooting Sports is a three-part program that combines the Basic Marksmanship Course, Qualification Awards and Air Rifle Competition into a well-rounded activity.

Basic Marksmanship Course

The Basic Marksmanship Course, given to Shooting Sports participants, offers comprehensive instruction for beginning shooters with little or no marksmanship experience. Designed for an instructor’s easy use, the course teaches gun safety and marksmanship fundamentals, using short lectures or discussions, followed by hands-on activities. The package includes:

  • Instructor's guide
  • Student handbook - Now in its third edition, a comprehensive reference text for beginners that thoroughly covers the fundamentals of position shooting.
  • Learning tools - Six quizzes and a final exam

Qualification Award

Graduates who want to keep improving their skills can enroll in air-rifle qualification courses provided by the National Rifle Association and the Civilian Marksmanship Programs. These courses offer personal skill-development ladders for shooters to achieve established performance standards.

Air Rifle Competition

The annual 3-Position Junior Air Rifle National Championship is a tournament that begins with postal matches. State and/or regional champions are determined and advance to a qualification round (also a postal match) to determine the athletes who will earn expense-paid trips to compete in the national championship. The national championship is a shoulder-to-shoulder match held each August at the USA Shooting range facilities at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.


The annual Junior Air Rifle 3-Position National Championship is a shoulder-to-shoulder match that will be held at the USA Shooting Range Facilities at the Olympic Training Center, Colorado Springs, CO., The National Champions in both categories receive $1000.00 college scholarships generously donated by the Sons of The American Legion.

Competitors will shoot from prone, standing and kneeling positions in either of two categories, determined by rifle type: Precision and Sporter. The American Legion recognizes that guns are a part of sports and recreation in our society and strives to teach youngsters the proper use of firearms before accidents occur. Many local Posts sponsor Junior Shooting Clubs which provide training in gun safety and marksmanship for junior shooters. The Legion hosts an annual national air rifle tournament that draws more than 1,200 contestants annually.

The American Legion Junior Position Air Rifle Tournament is an annual tournament that begins with postal matches to determine state and regional champions and the top thirty competitors in the Precision and Sporter categories. For more information on forming your own team, contact the Utah State Office.

Chick here to view a application.

For information about this event, please contact:

Randy Knight (801) 539-1013