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Tips on proper hand placement while shooting a rifle

Hand placement on a rifle for increased accuracy

Improper hand placement can greatly impact your rifle's down range accuracy. Outlined in the video above are some techniques to consider the next time you go out to the shooting range to practice before your hunt.

Browning X bolt rifle closeup with elk

We have a bunch of other rifle related content in the works. As always, if there's anything specific you'd like to read or watch drop us a comment as we'd love to hear your feedback.

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Brady J. Miller
Brady M. - posted 11 months ago on 02-19-2019 09:34:39 am
Las Vegas, NV
goHUNT Team

@Marshall - I'll have to review the video again to see if I mentioned that. But if so, my bad. It was hard to focus on a quality video when it was 28 degrees at that spot where I shoot my rifle and I forgot a jacket. So my mind wasn't fully there. We have more videos in the works and I assure you these are not just target techniques.

Marshall J. - posted 11 months ago on 02-18-2019 12:34:47 pm

A cartridge case is not a bullet. Correct terminology lends to believe-ability. These techniques look great for target but would recommend some shooting in field positions to see how the group is affected.

Chet K. - posted 1 year ago on 01-17-2019 11:24:10 am

@ Brady.. Very well done Sir!

Brady J. Miller
Brady M. - posted 1 year ago on 01-17-2019 10:31:34 am
Las Vegas, NV
goHUNT Team

Glad you liked the video, Aaron! I actually have a full article that I'm wrapping up dedicated to dry fire practice both at home and while hunting. I feel it's one of the best and least utilized practice methods. I might even go so far to say it's better than just going to the range and flinging lead with no purpose.

Arron J. - posted 1 year ago on 01-17-2019 10:25:20 am

One of the best tips from this video was to practice through dry firing. Repetition by dry fire practice helps immensely in becoming a more accurate marksman, and way cheaper than firing live rounds. As a side note, I hope we continue to see more hunting firearms manufactured with accurized features like the Browning (and Leupold scope) you featured. Great video Brady.

Brady J. Miller
Brady M. - posted 1 year ago on 01-14-2019 10:39:50 am
Las Vegas, NV
goHUNT Team

@Shawn and Vance - Glad you enjoyed it! And well put, Vance. A bubble level is also an essential piece to my puzzle as well and I put them on every rifle. I'd rather have all the tools and follow their use to achieve the perfect shot.

@Warren - That's a great question! Placing your hand on the front of the rifle to hold it down just increases torque and when the gun goes off you could all of a sudden put more pressure on it and cause the gun to torque. You are also changing the harmonics of the barrel causing it to shoot differently than by letting it rise like you would in most situations. I was always taught that you can't really tame the recoil with your hand. Rifles are designed to shoot with the recoil. To put it another way, if you try to hold the front of the gun, in a sense you are masking some of the rifles natural movements. You want everything to move with free recoil. I never like to fully stop the gun from recoiling and is why I also never would use a lead sled while practicing.

@Mark - That rear rest is made by Rugged Ridge Outdoor Gear and we actually carry it in our gear shop. It is not attached and works on a micro adjustment series and can be made narrow or wider by moving into several different locked positions. You can find it here:

Note... the orange one you saw in this video is one that I just spray painted at home. I got tired of setting it down while hunting and not being able to find it. They are on the expensive side... but worth it in my opinion. I have fallen in love with their simplicity over the traditional sandbag. Plus it's so small that I carry it around in my pant pocket while hunting. It's now an essential part of my hunting and I've used it on just about all my kills the past several years. I even used it this year in Colorado when I put my rifle on my backpack and still used the rear support for extra insurance.

Mark P. - posted 1 year ago on 01-14-2019 07:50:49 am

Brady, what is that rear rest, is it attached? Does it allow you to micro-ajust like a sand sock?

Warren L. - posted 1 year ago on 01-14-2019 06:28:27 am
Shelton, CT.

with no hand on the front of rifle isn't the recoil jump going to effect the accuracy?

Vance W. - posted 1 year ago on 01-14-2019 12:13:39 am
Anthem AZ

Also, by not going thumb over it minimizes left or right torque on the rifle avoiding any induced cant. Of course if you have a level on the gun and a locking bipod this will also help. A canted rifle will put you way off target after about 300 yards. I've seen it happen where a shot should have hit home at just over 500 yards but hit 1-2 feet right in the rocks. Those McMillan Game Scout stocks (the entire Game series) are great, I've been shooting one on my LRM for 4 years, makes all the difference prone.

shawn f. - posted 1 year ago on 01-12-2019 05:43:36 am
Clovis New Mexico

Wow, I have never seen this technique anywhere. I’ve been trying to go the Ryan Cleckner route to improve my long rang shoooting. I’m going to implement this. It makes sense that less grip and less handling would decrease the amount of movement transferring to the gun. Great video !