How To Shoot An AR 15 – Step By Step

The popularity of the AR-15 rifle is unquestionable. As per statistics, there are over 5 million AR-15 rifles in civilian hands. And if you are looking to join the AR-15 bandwagon, you need to know how to shoot an ar-15.

This is the topic that we will be covering in this article. One of the best things about this rifle is that it is highly customizable. You can purchase the best AR 15 lower receiver on the market to replace your gun’s default receiver.

This customization is one of the reasons why this type of rifle is popular. It is also why learning how to shoot one is not always straightforward as there are numerous variations of the AR-15, each with its strengths and weaknesses. 

How To Shoot an AR 15 Properly

The proper Position

The basics of firing an AR 15 rifle is knowing what Position to assume. There are generally four positions you can take, standing, kneeling, prone, and sitting. Of the four, the standing Position is the most common. Using a quality bipod can change your game so whether you are choosing one of those 4 positions try to buy the best AR 15 bipod for your shooting success.

However, the shooting stance to assume will depend largely on the purpose of firing the rifle. The standing Position offers mobility. Thus it is the stance taken when in a range or a shooting competition when you need to be constantly on the move.

AR 15 position

The sitting and kneeling positions are intermediate and help you take advantage of cover. As such, you may want to assume this Position when hunting in thick cover. The prone Position is lower than the other three and offers stability.

It is important to note that different shooters prefer different shooting positions based on their physique.  

Holding the rifle

Now that you have settled on your preferred shooting position, next is how you hold the rifle properly. When not engaging a target, the rifle trigger should be on while your trigger finger should be away from the trigger guard.

There are two ways of placing your rifle when not engaging a target. The first is called the ready position. In this position, the butt of the gun is on your shoulder with the muzzle pointed towards the goal. The gun is slightly lower to allow you to see your target over the sights.

The second is the indoor ready. In this Position, the rifle butt is also placed shoulder level with the muzzle pointed down to your off-side. 

Mounting your AR 15

So how should you mount your AR 15 in readiness to fire? One basic rule of thumb is that you should bring the level of sight with your eyes. And not you lowering your head to be level with the gun sight.

Use the pistol grip to hold the rifle and pull back towards your shoulders while you should hold the gun firmly and tightly don’t hold it too tight. The AR 15 is a rapid-fire weapon and should be held as tightly as a bolt action rifle.


How To Load Your AR 15 Rifle

  • The first thing to do before loading a round is to check if it’s already loaded. The last thing you want is to load two rounds into the chamber by mistake.  
  • To check if your rifle is already loaded, pull the charging handle backward as far as it will go. If there is a round in the chamber, it should pop out. 
  • Next is to insert the magazine; to do this, all you need to do is insert the magazine into the rifle’s magazine well. You should hear a click sound when the magazine is inserted correctly. 

How To Fire The AR 15

How To Shoot An AR 15

Now that you have a magazine inserted, the next thing is to fire. First, hit the bolt release. The bolt moves forward, chambering a new round from the magazine. After some time of usage, you may find it hard to press the bolt release with your finger.

In such a scenario, use the heel of your hand to hit the bolt release. When the magazine is empty, the bolt will lock back. It is essential to verify that the bolt is locked again. To do this, turn it so that you can see the ejection port.

With the bolt locked back, you should be able to press on the magazine release and drop the magazine.

Important Safety Tips Before Firing AR 15

A rifle is a dangerous instrument, and it is essential to know how to handle it safely. Here are important safety tips that every gun owner should be aware of.

  • Assume every gun you handle or hold is loaded. 
  • Do not hold a gun pointed in a direction where it is likely to cause harm in case of accidental firing. 
  • Until you are ready to fire your trigger finger should always be away from the trigger.
  • When shooting at targets ensure there is nothing or anyone behind the target.

How To Shoot a AR 15 With Rifle Scopes and Sights

Scopes are great if you are going to be doing the long-range shooting. For example, 300 yards and above. To use your scope efficiently, here are a few things you need to take into consideration.

Eye relief. Typically a long eye relief is better as it guarantees safety from eye injuries related to recoil. An eye relief of more than 3 inches is recommended. This is standard for most rifle scopes, both budget, and high-end scopes. 

Reticle. Reticles come in a variety of types. The purpose of this component is to paint a target on what you are aiming at. In some cases, the size of the reticle will be affected by the magnification range. This is referred to as the second focal plane.

 If the grouping is slightly to the left or right of your intended target, then you need to adjust the windage accordingly using the windage adjustment knob. Also If your rounds land either too low or too high from your target, then you need to adjust the elevation of your scope using the elevation knob until the shots land on the target.

If you’re a beginner, you can find some excellent scopes for AR 15 under 100, which will serve you well. For more experienced shooters, you can find scopes for AR 15 under 200 with excellent capabilities to take your shooting to the next level. 

Finally, It is essential to keep your AR 15 safely to protect it from scratches and impacts, especially during transportation. For this, you need either a soft case or a hard case. The best ar 15 hard case will be crash-proof and watertight. They will also have reinforced locking points and wheels for easy transportation. If you choose to use a soft case, then the best ar 15 soft case is made of nylon or ripstop fabrics for durability. They will also have muzzle and stock pockets and some compression straps.

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