How to shoot an AR-15

Are you looking for a rifle that is easy to use for hunting or a hobby? Well, the AR-15 is the perfect rifle for you. It is one of the easiest rifles to use. The rifle was initially made for military action and was later converted for civilian operation. To become a perfect shot, you need to perfect your shooting accuracy and handling. Having worked on these factors, you will not only become an excellent shooter, but you can enjoy your hunting escapades.

Below is a guide on how to shoot the AR-15 rifle in the most proficient way.

Origin of the AR-15 Rifle

This rifle was made by a company called Armalite. Its make is traced back to the late 1950s and early 1960s after the Korean War.

The rifle was initially designed as an AR-10, and it’s the same weapon at a higher caliber. The AR-15 is a smaller version of the AR-10 version.

The Firearm Overview

The AR-15 rifle can be broken down into ten parts. These parts include:

  • Magazine

The magazine on an AR-15 rifle holds 30 rounds of 5.56×45 mm or 223 Remington ammunition.

  • Bolt Release

The bolt release closes the bolt if the bolt is open. If the bolt is open, it exposes the inner gun.

  • Trigger

The trigger activates the firing pin that fires the round.

  • Safety/select Fire

The select-fire is a switch that takes the firing mode from safe to fire.

  • Sights/ Optics

The sight is the reticle device that is used for aiming the rifle.

  • Charging Handle

This is the handle that loads and ejects a round from a magazine once pulled.

  • Stock

The stock is the back portion of the gun, and it provides support when shooting.

  • Handguard and Rails

The hand guard hides the barrels where you hold the weapon with your front hands, and the rails create room for attachments.

  • Upper Receiver

The upper receiver contains the ejection port and the bolt that contains the firing operations.

  • Magazine Release

This is the button that releases the magazine from the weapon.

  • Attachments: Mounting a rifle sling in AR-15 is pretty easy. You can use the sling attachments or clips to mount them.

Shooting the AR-15 Effectively

How to Shoot the AR-15 Effectively

To shoot an AR-15 efficiently, you need to learn some techniques to increase your accuracy. These techniques include:

  • Proper Holding

There are four different positions you can hold your rifle when firing your AR-15. In the different positions, ensure that the way you grip and hold your rifle remains the same.

When you have set your position, put your firing hand on the pistol grip, then put your thumb over the grip’s three fingers. The thumb should be wrapping around the three fingers. This way, you will have a firm grip on your rifle so avoiding any unnecessary movements. For the non-firing hand, wrap it around the hand guard, so your fingers twist around the fore-end.

After this, ensure the back of your rifle stock is against your body. The stock should be placed on your shoulder pocket. This position helps improve your accuracy and allows fast recovery after firing. Then, place your cheek over the stock’s comb. This is called the Cheek weld.

  • Understand your positions

correct position for holding ar-15

There are four positions you can use when firing a rifle. The positions include kneeling, sitting, standing, and prone position. The standing position is the best when you are shooting and still being mobile. When you want to maintain a low profile, then use the sitting and kneeling position. Lastly, if you want to maintain optimum stability at the lowest point, the prone position is the best bet. To enhance accuracy, you need to ensure a comfortable firing position in all your circumstances.

  • Use of the Rifle Sights

In any rifle, using the rifle sights will help improve the accuracy of your shooting. The main sighting system of the AR-15 is the rifle iron sights. There are different forms of iron sight; they include front sight block and fixed rear sight.

The front sight has two “ears,” the nestle and the adjustable post. The rear sight, on the other hand, comes with two apertures. The large aperture and the small aperture. After you have secured your position, grip, stance, and cheek weld, you can now focus on your sights. Focus on the rear aperture. Then center the top portion of the front sight on your target.

  • Controlling Your Breath

Although most action involves using your hands, fingers, and eyes, breathing is also a crucial part of the firing. Controlling your breath is important since your sights always move anytime you inhale or exhale.

You need to learn to fire on empty lungs to maintain your firing accuracy. To do this, focus your sights on your targets while breathing normally. When you inhale, you will see your sights moving; you need not worry since your sights will return to their normal position when you exhale. So you will squeeze the trigger on empty lungs. However, you need to ensure that you don’t hold your breath for long periods since it may deviate from your aim.

  • Trigger Touch

How you pull your trigger will also affect your aiming. Pulling the trigger looks like the simplest step in shooting, and so most people overlook this step. While pulling the trigger, the thumb secures the right grip, and you are required to move the trigger finger only. After squeezing the trigger, maintain a firm grip during the firing motion and keep your position steady.

  • Upgrades

Lastly, you should consider some nice upgrades to ensure your rifle works perfectly. You can add an AR-15 muzzle brake. To improve your accuracy, you also need to upgrade the optic since it gives a 20/20 vision. If you are into hunting, you can choose the red dots and compact prism scopes. They will help you focus and zero on your target.


To become an excellent shooter, you need to be ready to learn and patient. You also need to understand every aspect of your rifle. The scope of your work will also determine how much learning you need. A person who needs a rifle for military purposes will need to take more classes than a person who needs a rifle for hunting. When dealing with an A-15 rifle, you need to learn the rifle parts and use them efficiently.