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 men and women 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.
The Junior Shooting Sports program combines the following three parts into a well-rounded activity:
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.
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.
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 every August at the USA Shooting range facilities at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.