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First Steps Rifle Course Description
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First Steps RIFLE



Firearm Instruction, Responsibility and Safety Training - is the NRA response to the American public's need for a firearm orientation program for new purchasers. New Firearm owners are encouraged to take the "first step" of obtaining training, and the NRA FIRST Steps Program is designed to provide hands-on introduction to the safe handling and proper orientation of one specific firearm model.


In this approximately 3-hour session, you will learn the basics of firearms, gun safety and shooting fundamentals and have the opportunity to shoot live rounds at the range.  Additional topics such as range estimation, sling use and stance will be briefly touched upon. It is designed to be a fast paced informative course and enjoyable at the same time.


Since FIRST Steps orientations are model-specific, and teach only the most basic shooting skills, they are not complete "courses" in the traditional sense of the word. They do provide a thorough introduction to firearm safety, handling, and shooting skills on a certain particular model.  This course, because of its narrow focus, can be completed as quickly as three hours. Students will get the NRA's The Basics of Rifle Shooting handbook and quick practical lessons on the safe use, cleaning, and storage of their rifle. The practical exercise only covers a single firing position. As the number of participants or firearm types increases, the course will take proportionally longer.


We strive to maintain a ratio of 1-2 students per instructor and usually have to limit the number of students.


These skills require practice. Initially, this practice should take place under the supervision of a qualified individual -- like a NRA Certified Instructor or NRA Shooting Coach. For this reason the orientation encourages participants to obtain additional training in a NRA basic Firearm Training Course, and then to take the "next step" by participating in other local club activities designed to help individuals maintain and develop their shooting skills through enjoyable recreational pastimes.


Course Goal

“To provide beginning shooters with an introduction to the knowledge, skills, and attitude necessary to own and use a specific rifle model safely.”


  • Introduction to Rifle Safety, Parts, and Operation
  • Introduction to Ammunition and the Fundamentals of Rifle Shooting
  • Introduction to Rifle Shooting from the Benchrest Position
  • Introduction to Rifle Cleaning, Storage, and Training Opportunities



The are no prerequisites for taking this course and the material is accessible to appropriately supervised mature children. Be aware that the proper fitting of a rifle to a shooter is an important and ‘essential’ element that enhances safety, comfort and performance and, while well worth the effort, can be time-consuming.


Course Completion

Students will receive feedback on the live-fire exercise and a course completion certificate upon successful completion of the lessons.