Frequently Asked Questions

“As most of you know, over the last three years we have had more sailors on the ground in CENTCOM supporting the war on terror than we have sailors on board ship. This is clearly a requirement the Navy will have to fill for many years to come. The skills you are displaying and honing today will be in demand more and more. I challenge you to continue to not only increase your personal proficiency and instructor skills but become the advocates in you parent commands for greater small arms training and safety. This basic core war-fighting capability has been ignored in our Navy for too long…I count on each of you to help us bring it back!”
— RADM David O Anderson, USN, Vice Commander US Fleet Forces Command at the U. S. Fleet Forces Command East Rifle and Pistol Matches, May 2008

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[accordion-item title=”1. What is the role of the U.S. Navy Marksmanship Team?”]The USNMT supports the Navy , thus contributing to national defense, by training Navy personnel in small arms marksmanship and safety. Sailors who have been trained are more effective watchstanders aboard ships and at Navy installations, and they are able to provide small arms training to shipmates in their home commands.

In preparing for and participating in competitive marksmanship events, USNMT members test and validate small arms technological innovations developed by armorers and engineers at Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division, Crane, Indiana. Team members also serve as instructors in the Army Marksmanship Unit’s Small Arms Firing School, conducted during the Civilian Marksmanship Program’s National Matches , at Camp Perry, Ohio.[/accordion-item]
[accordion-item title=”2. How do Sailors become members of the USNMT?”]Team membership is achieved through participation in the Navy’s Fleet Forces Command (East) Rifle and Pistol Matches and Fleet Forces Command (West) Rifle and Pistol Matches. Team membership is sustained through regular participation in the Fleet and/or All Navy Rifle and Pistol Championships and/or, as members of the Navy and Naval Reserve Rifle and Pistol Teams, by competing in the annual Interservice Matches, the Civilian Marksmanship Program’s National Matches, and the National Rifle Association’s National Championships, and/or by providing marksmanship training within individual commands and assisting in the preparation and conduct of the Fleet and/or All Navy matches.[/accordion-item]
[accordion-item title=”3. What kind of marksmanship training does the USNMT conduct and who is eligible to participate?”]The USNMT conducts the annual, week-long Navy’s Fleet Forces Command (East) Rifle and Pistol Matches and Fleet Forces Command (West) Rifle and Pistol Matches, in which hundreds of Sailors are trained in the basics of marksmanship, small arms safety, and competition procedures. Classroom training sessions are followed by a variety of individual and team competitions with Service Rifles and Service Pistols. Between matches, veteran Team members coach Sailors in “dry-fire” exercises in the various shooting positions used during live-fire on the ranges. The Fleet matches are open to all active-duty and reserve Navy personnel. Retired Navy shooters may participate on a space-available basis in all Navy matches, while other military personnel and civilians may participate on a space-available basis during Navy EIC matches.

Included in the week-long Fleet events are Excellence-in-Competition (EIC) matches, in which Sailors can achieve “leg” points and corresponding Gold, Silver, and Bronze Badges towards their Distinguished Marksman (rifle) and Distinguished Pistol Shot badges. In EIC and other individual Service Rifle matches, Sailors can earn marksmanship ribbons and medals, and meet watchstander qualification requirements.  For more information about Navy Marksmanship Awards and EIC/Distinguished badges, click here.

Sailors who have fired a qualifying score in a Fleet match are eligible to compete in the annual All Navy Rifle and Pistol Championships, held immediately after the conclusion of the Fleet matches. The All Navy events are a stepping-stone for Sailors participating in the Interservice Matches, and the National Matches and National Championships. Sailors can earn the same marksmanship awards and qualifications that can be earned in the Fleet matches.[/accordion-item]
[accordion-item title=”4. How can a person with little or no prior experience get involved in target shooting?”]Go to the NRA’s website to identify shooting clubs, associations and ranges in your area. You can also e-mail NRA your questions or phone them at 1-800-NRA-CLUB. Call local clubs to inquire about training programs and matches they offer. Many offer “CMP Clinics,” which teach shooters the basics of rifle marksmanship and High Power match conduct, and usually provide all the equipment you need. “CMP” stands for “Civilian Marksmanship Program,” the title of the Director of the Civilian Marksmanship Program before it was restructured in its present form. On its website, the NRA also provides information on getting started in a wide variety of target shoot disciplines.[/accordion-item]
[accordion-item title=”5. What kinds of firearms do USNMT members use for competition?”]Service rifles used by the USNMT are limited to M1 Garand (both .30 caliber and 7.62 NATO), M14/M1A,and M16/AR15. Service pistols are limited to military specification M1911/M1911A1 .45 cal and M9 9MM (Beretta M92FS).  Note, that the USNMT OIC and/or the Match Directors may allow additional service pistols in accordance with the latest CMP list of approved service pistols found in their most current rulebooks.
Additionally, a limited number of navy match-grade M14 and AR-15 rifles and M1911A1 pistols are available for loan at the matches for use by competitors who have no personal equipment.

Contact a Regional POC to find out if there are Team members in your area who may be able to provide guidance. Also, the NRA has about 38,000 Certified Instructors throughout the country.[/accordion-item]
[accordion-item title=”6. In what kinds of target shooting competitions do USNMT members engage?”]See this page for Courses of Fire…[/accordion-item]