Ready to learn more about marksmanship?
The National Matches at Camp Perry, which attracts thousands of guests each year to the historic ranges of the Ohio National Guard Training Facility, is an oasis of rifle and pistol competitions designed for experienced marksmen and curious individuals who simply want to try something new. Outside of competition, the National Matches offers an array of educational courses for those with fresh eyes on the sport as well as those eager to further develop their skills. Courses span from junior to adult – delivering a little something for everyone.
Below is a guide (ranked from Beginner to Advanced) on available learning events at the 2022 Camp Perry National Matches, set to fire July 12-Aug. 13.
BEGINNER – Small Arms Firing Schools (SAFS):
One of the most popular events of the National Matches, the SAFS course is a combination of classroom education and hands-on instruction on fundamentals, competition basics and safety. Training is led by members of military marksmanship teams as well as certified CMP instructors. At the conclusion of the course, students fire real competitions on the range, with instructors nearby. Equipment is provided by the CMP, with participants only needing a willingness to learn in order to attend. Currently, the CMP offers Small Arms Firing Schools for Pistol (M9), Smallbore Rifle, .22 caliber Rimfire Sporter Rifle and Highpower Rifle (M16) during the National Matches as well as an Advanced SAFS course for further training.
BEGINNER – M1 Maintenance Clinic:
CMP Armorers will present this two-hour clinic on disassembly, assembly and maintenance of the M1 Garand Rifle. Special attention will be given to accurizing steps that can be taken with the rifle while maintaining its legality for CMP-sanctioned As-Issued Military Rifle Matches. Topics such as head space, barrel installation, component purpose/function, general rifle assembly, rifle/component maintenance and various other techniques will be covered during the course.
BEGINNER – As-Issued Military Rifle Clinics:
Any CMP Games competitors who have not previously fired in one of these matches are required to attend a clinic before they fire. All other competitors in these matches are encouraged to attend and take advantage of the information presented.
These free one-hour clinics will cover the Garand-Springfield-Vintage Matches with instruction and demonstrations. Topics include match rules, shooting positions and techniques, scoring and pit pulling procedures and how to fire the courses of fire. The clinic is open to all competitors.
INTERMEDIATE – U.S. Marine Corps Junior Highpower Clinic:
The three-day clinic gives focus to more advanced training outside of fundamentals, including weather conditions, how to read wind, equipment use, shooting positions and rulebook standards. Juniors in the clinic spend one day in the classroom, followed by two days of live-fire on the range at 200, 300 and 600 yards. Those young athletes who would like to attend this clinic must first attend the Rifle Small Arms Firing School.
INTERMEDIATE – CMP RO Level II Training Course:
The Range Officer (RO) Training Course program, offered at three levels of instruction, was developed by the CMP to provide education for those interested in serving as qualified Range Officers in CMP sponsored and sanctioned competitions. Certification is available in different shooting disciplines, such as Bullseye Pistol, Smallbore Rifle, Rimfire Sporter Rifle and Highpower Rifle – all offered on the National Matches schedule. Individuals who attend the course will be able to take their valuable knowledge back home to apply within their own local ranges. Learn more at https://thecmp.org/training-tech/range-officer-training-course/.
INTERMEDIATE/ADVANCED – Junior Smallbore and Air Rifle Camp:
The camp is open to intermediate and advanced junior athletes who shoot both three-position smallbore and standing or international air rifle. Instruction is held on CMP’s outdoor Petrarca Range and within the Gary Anderson CMP Competition Center indoor air range, both located on the grounds of Camp Perry. Participants must be between the ages of 12 to 20 and currently involved in three-position smallbore competition matches and international air rifle. Camp will cover safety and a reinforced understanding of the fundamentals, among several other points of interest. Those juniors hoping to move their marksmanship careers on to college are encouraged to sign up for this valuable course.
ADVANCED – Team CMP Advanced Highpower Clinic:
Led by members of CMP Gold (CMP’s own competitive highpower squad), the Advanced Highpower Clinic offers more complex instruction in service rifle competition techniques using classroom and range discussion. Though the class traditionally utilizes only dry-fire training on the range, in 2021, a 600-yard live-fire portion was added. This course is only open to those who have attended the Advanced Small Arms Firing School at least once and have an “Expert” classification with the CMP or National Rifle Association.
Learn more about these and other educational opportunities on the CMP website at https://thecmp.org/cmp-national-matches/clinics/.
— By Ashley Brugnone, CMP Staff Writer
The Civilian Marksmanship Program is a federally chartered 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation. It is dedicated to firearm safety and marksmanship training and to the promotion of marksmanship competition for citizens of the United States. For more information about the CMP and its programs, log onto www.TheCMP.org.