Earn a Slot

Steps for joining the US Army Reserve Marksmanship Training and Competitive Program

1. Sign up for our Newsletter for regular updates.

2. Read this entire page first. You must be a Solider currently assigned to the U.S. Army Reserve to join. The Marksmanship Program is an additional duty, not a unit.

3. Host a local match/train Soldiers. Our Team emphasis is training Soldiers. Postal Matches are designed to teach and validate skills necessary to succeed in current Army qualifications and EIC (Excellence In Competition) events tests higher-level skills.

Download: https://www.usar.army.mil/Commands/Functional/ARMU/Resources/PostalMatch/

4. Email a report (AAR) and scores from the Postal Match or EIC you hosted with your unit along with your competition experience (current Classification, earned EIC “leg” points) to pao@armyreservemarksman.info to be added to the Development Roster and to be eligible to attend USAR competitions and training events by invitation. Sign up for the newsletter to continue to stay informed.

5. Compete on your own in competitive shooting. Follow the examples in the Event Types in the Download linked above.

6. Provide a Memo of Understanding signed by your unit commander that they will allow you to take additional duty orders with the Team.

7. Current team/program member retains eligibility of their assigned slot based on current Roster Procedures. This includes hosting a local Postal Match each year. Development Roster members are eligible to advance to the Main Roster when vetted as per current Main Roster procedures.

See videos at the bottom of this page.

More info from SFC John Hawes

Further Guidelines

“I am interested in competitive shooting.  How can I get slot in a military marksmanship program?”

When first learning about military-sponsored shooting teams many troops will ask how they can get a slot. Right now, sign up for our newsletter to stay informed.

Host a Postal Match!

Every Soldier and unit in the Army Reserve is eligible to host and participate in the USAR Postal Match program. Our Team emphasis is training Soldiers. Host a local match, for your unit or otherwise, to begin. This can be done on a civilian range if your unit or command won’t support you. Make an event happen!

Go shoot!

Your next step in earning a slot on a shooting team is to start in bigger competitive shooting. The best way to start in competitive shooting is to go find events, be it military or civilian, on your own, and start attending.

Consider a player vying for a position on a pro sports team. If he doesn’t already have years of solid background with high school and/or college teams, forget it! A couch potato who was never formally participated in that type of event is not going to be offered a tryout. Why bother?

Yet, you’d be amazed how many troops with zero competition shooting experience complain that they can’t get started because no team will give them equipment or fund their travel to a match. For every 100+ troops with no previous relevant competition and instructor experience, maybe one of them is worth a look. Even if/when you earn a slot, you’ll still have to shoot and train on your own so already having places and venues to do so will help long term as well.

Find out what ranges are in your area and look into attending organized civilian events. Where To Shoot, http://wheretoshoot.org/ is a great resource. Nearly every team shooter has a civilian shooting background and the best way to get started is to simply jump in. If you approach a team having already participated in matches and earning higher-level classifications on your own, any coach will want you to try out.

Military Sponsored Events

For military sponsored events, find a National Guard sponsored event in your state. Even if you’re not the Guard, you can shoot the EIC (Excellence In Competition) events. The Arkansas Guard, at Camp Robinson, is the national headquarters for this.

All Army is hosted by the Army Marksmanship Unit at Fort Benning every year in the spring and is open to all Active, Reserve and Guard Army personnel. Even if you’re not on a team you can register in advance on your own and be able to borrow guns and get a free place to stay on post. The event is HIGHLY recommended!

An example from All Army 2013 info, application and rules from 2013.

Service Rifle and Pistol

Two of the USAR CMP’s primary disciplines (Service Rifle and Service Pistol) are shot as civilian conventional competitions recognized by the National Rifle Association and Civilian Marksmanship Program. Shooting Sports USA a free, on-line magazine, lists events.

Shooting Sports USA

CMP Competitions

Download High Power and Precision Pistol rulebooks from NRA and CMP.

Precision Rifle/National Rifle and HunterShooter.com are other suitable outlets.

Combat/Service Conditions

Service Conditions (Combat) are NATO and Commonwealth events that don’t currently have a civilian equivalent in the United States, however, there are civilian Service Conditions matches held around the world, sometimes jointly with military-hosted events, such as in Canada under the auspices of the Dominion of Canada Rifle Association, in South Africa with the South Africa Combat Rifle Association, and in New Zealand with the New Zealand Service Rifle Association, among others.

Examples of Service Conditions matches:

MilitaryMarksman is an American service conditions event open to everyone.


In addition to Service Rifle, Pistol, and Conditions events, action/practical competition such as PPC (Police Pistol Combat/Precision Pistol Competition), NRA Action Pistol (Bianchi Cup), IDPA, USPSA Handgun and Multigun, 3 Gun, and SensibleShooter are other competition disciplines. These are also the style events you’ll find as a component of AFSAM (Armed Forces Skill at Arms Meeting), All Army, and National Guard hosted events.

The bottom line is if you want to be on a military-sponsored shooting team you need to be a competition shooter. You become a competition shooter by being a competition shooter. Host a Postal Match for your fellow Soldiers, shoot events on your own whenever and wherever you can, and earn Classifications in the formal shooting events listed above first. You must begin by doing this on your own before applying for a slot. Stay in contact with the USAR Marksmanship Program through this site and you’ll eventually be able to earn a slot.

7 comments on “Earn a Slot

  1. Oddball says:

    Spot on as usual!

  2. Arcularius says:

    The last paragraph is as spot on as it can be. It’s hard to tell Soldiers that the shooting team is not the place to learn HOW, mainly because the Army, in their vast wisdom, rid us all of the “farm team” programs that we had in the past. No longer do we have a venue to grow, mentor, and educate competent marksmanship within the Army Reserve as a whole.

    The result of that action can be compared to golf. Get rid of most the golf courses, hold no golf tournaments at local, regional, or state levels, get rid of the golf instructors and let the duffers teach.

    Answering the question, “How do I get a slot on the team?” We need shooters who can produce a score, period. The Team mission statement and goals are basically to win at “PGA” levels. How does a duffer with no supported training preform at a level to allow the team to win at that level? He/she DOESNT!

    The only way it can be done is to first understand the competitive discipline, then get the gear needed to accomplish that task and start shooting. Attend matches and clinics held around the country. Learn the how-tos and then produce the scores that will draw the attention of the teams.

    The service teams are very aware of the people who are shooting at the National Matches held at Camp Perry and look at the scores fired by Reservists there. We have made contact those Soldiers firing good scores there and have offered slots to them. We are also open to be visited while we are at any event as our new team trailer is our rally point at the events we attend. Simply put, we need to see a true commitment to shooting and the USAR.

    J. F. Arcularius
    USAR Marksmanship Program

  3. […] However, the original shooter-instructors that made the SARG effective continue to instruct via the Army Reserve Mobile Training Team as a component of the shooting teams, as directed by Army Regulation […]

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