NO MATTER WHAT GENDER, AGE, OR ABILITY
Whether you’re young or just young at heart, shooting could be the sport for you. Unique to this sport is the fact that you will find brothers and sisters, parents, aunties and uncles, and even grandparents, shooting side by side. A sport for all generations.
Many people shoot purely for recreation, however, if you’ve got a competitive streak there are great options to challenge your skills through State and (inter)National competitions. Don’t be surprised to see picnic baskets appear and lifelong friendships blossom while participating in this sport.
Learn valuable skills that you can use in daily life, skills such as breathing techniques that help you focus and perform under pressure. Did you know shooting isn’t just an exacting physical sport? It also requires a very special mindset, one that is every bit as demanding as that for yoga or meditation. Where else could you do all this while enjoying the outdoors and catching up with friends and family?
So where do you start? It can be a bit of a maze navigating your way into the sport. Don’t worry, we’ve got you! Have a look at the different types of shooting, learn about firearm licenses and check out your options to try the sport first.
Why not give it a shot? It could be the best decision you’ll ever make!
Different rifle disciplines at different distances
Target rifle (TR) is shot at the longer ranges from a distance of 300 up to a 1000 yards/metres. It is known as the fundamental to competitive Fullbore shooting throughout the world. This type of shooting dates to the 1860s when it was used for training civilian militia and is now known for equality for all competitors.
It is shot with the bare eye or using prescription lenses. Scopes are not used in this discipline. Shooters wear a jacket with a sling connected to the rifle, for support while in the prone position. Rifles are loaded one shot at a time and fired on either paper or electronic targets. The rifles used are .308 or .223 (calibre) which reflects the size of the ammunition.
When starting out, a coach will instruct you with adjusting the rifle’s sights, as weather conditions like wind reading come into play. One of the most famous competitions to take part in is the ‘Queen’s/King’s Prize’, the bread and butter Championship of Long Range Target Rifle Shooting. The winning Target Rifle Shooter is traditionally celebrated.
FClass target shooting is performed at the longer ranges from 300 up to a 1000 yards/metres in prone position, using scoped rifles. This sport is divided in three different categories, also known as FStandard, FOpen and FTR. Each of these categories has their own criteria of various calibres, weights and equipment specifications that effect the precision of the shot. What they have in common is that single rounds are loaded at a time.
FStandard is using .308 or .223 calibre rifles that can be held by a bipod or stand with a sandbag rest for support. It was developed in Australia in the 1990s to assist aging shooters transition from Target Rifle to scoped rifle shooting on rests. Now, the discipline attracts shooters of all backgrounds and levels of experience.
FTR and FOpen are very similar to FStandard, though FTR is using the same rifles but has no specifications on the projectile (bullet) weight, and Fopen can use a wider range of calibre (up to 8mm) . This means that FOpen and FTR provide greater potential accuracy, using projectiles that are less affected by wind.
Field & Rimfire is a type of shooting for short to mid-range distances using multiple shooting positions. Rimfire Class is typically shot from 25 up to 50 metre, while Field Class is up to 300 metres.
The calibre used defines the Class, Rimfire is limited to calibers up to .22 and Field Class is open up to 8mm to cover the longer distance.
Both disciplines are shooting from multiple positions (Standing / Kneeling / Sitting / Prone (laying down)) at a specific range and using either Rimfire or Centrefire firearms based on the Class. These firearms types are defined by the position where the firing-pin strikes the back of the cartridge.
It is an outdoor sport and mainly enjoyed recreationally with club competitions in a casual and family friendly environment. Suited for those who intend participating in recreational hunting.
Sporter/Hunter is designed to allow shooters with standard shop bought sporting type rifles to shoot on the National Rifle Associations rifle ranges. The prime purpose for its introduction is to encourage participation, rather than competition. This doesn’t mean that there is no competition at all. There are still local competitions to be enjoyed.
This young discipline is growing from the eagerness of numerous shooters who own high quality hunting rifles that are accurate and ready to go at long range. Add a good quality scope and shooters are able to engage in long distance target shooting.
The regulations on what type of equipment can be used are pretty flexible, although your choice will have impact on the distances that you will be able to reach. Be aware that there are also range regulations like calibre and/or energy limits as designated in the Range Standing Orders and/or Police Range Approval.
Match Rifle Shooting is long range target shooting conducted over the distances of 1000, 1100 and 1200 yards/metres, but can go up to 1500 if the range allows. This discipline was established in the United Kingdom over 150 years ago.
Match Rifle shooting uses .308W rifles with telescopic sights. It can be shot either prone or supine, what means lying on your back in crunch position with the rifle in the direction of your feet. In the prone position a rifle rest is allowed.
1000 yard Benchrest
1000 yard Benchrest, also known as precision shooting, is shot from a bench. High performance scoped target rifles are used and mainly custom made. In competition two classes are used, known as Light Gun and Heavy Gun. The difference is that the Light Gun class has limitations to the weight of the rifle and the Heavy Gun class not.
1000 yard benchrest
Try Shooting and find out if one of the QRA shooting disciplines is the type of shooting for you. The specially designed GIVEITASHOT and ‘Come and Try’ events are a perfect starting point.
These programs are created for all sorts of people. Some are totally new shooters, others are people who have shot before and want to try a different shooting discipline, and there are those who’ve been away for a while and want to get back into the sport.
Find out more about the PROGRAMS and join an event.
No firearm licence is required. From 11 years of age.
Get a Firearm Licence
When getting into the sport of shooting you need to get your firearm licence. This allows you to be in possession of a firearm.
One of the mandatory steps of getting your licence is successfully completing a Firearm Safety Course.
You can either start with this process or try the sport of shooting first.
To become a member of a club you don’t need to have a licence. However, becoming a member could even support you in obtaining your licence.
And while going through the licence application process, check if you can borrow a club rifle to get you started.
The QRA offers Firearm Safety Courses on a regular basis and can support with your Firearm Licence Application.
Find out more about Firearm Safety Courses and where to book your spot.
Get introduced to a club
Ready to take on the sport? The QRA can help you find out where the Queensland based clubs are located and put you in contact with a club that is ready to take you on board. Being part of a club means you can shoot with your clubmates. The club can assist you to master the necessary skills, such as learning how to use and care for a rifle, how to create your own ammunition, , and to read the wind. And, just as important, they can also advise you on equipment selection to make sure you end up with appropriate equipment for the discipline you choose.
Belmont Shooting Complex
The Queensland Rifle Association fosters target rifle shooting and firearms training through our clubs. Different classes of rifle shooting are conducted by our Clubs under the Standard Shooting Rules (SSRs) of the National Rifle Association of Australia (NRAA).
Belmont Shooting Complex