26 June, 2007
Military Shooting Training Program
It is a pleasure to present You our proposition for Your military small arms shooting training
concept and the realisation of the concept using the best possible military shooting training
system, the Noptel 2000 and required accessories.
Our idea is to encourage the Army to develop the training system starting from conceptual level
rather than just buying some hardware. A concept helps to optimise the use of resources and the
training result in a long run. We have a concept, which is based on a long history and experience
regarding the subject. We dare to promise that the employment of our concept will give you better
training results than you get with conventional approach.
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In addition to the concept we present here a training plan and the products to realise the plan. The
system uses the latest hi-tech, is safe, transportable and simple to use, minimising the overhead
time to conduct training sessions. This will result in maximum efficiency of the training.
The offered systems make it possible to train everywhere indoors or out of doors at real distances
and in real environmental conditions bringing realism to the training! The training is divided up
according to our concept into two major phases: the Marksmanship Training and the Field
Training. Our marksmanship training products make it possible to analyse every shot according to
our shot model (hold, aim and trigger control) objectively. Therefore the trainer is able to instruct
the shooter correctly in real time making the training extremely efficient. On the other hand, our
field training products facilitate in transferring the basic shooting skills into a form necessary for
military applications. As a result you get fighters being able to use their weapons in an adequate
manner in combat situations. We use here the term fundamental shooting skill of a fighter.
We emphasise here that Noptel is manufacturing and offering shooting training systems. The
systems for tactical engagement (TES) or combat simulation, for example, are not in our production
line. The tactical engagement systems (force on force) are normally used by the armies in special
combat training centres (CTC), where all kind of weaponry is employed. The emphasis of the TES
is in troop tactics training of a war situation and individual shooting skill is presupposed to exist
already! Therefore it is important to realise the conceptual difference between shooting
training and tactical training. Both are necessary for soldiers but the best training result is
achieved by separate training of the skills.
We present here first a draft for your future training program based on our concept. After the
program, You will find some background material to support the proposition.
The objectives of the assault rifle shooting training
We talk here about the fundamental shooting skill of a soldier/fighter. The main objective of the
military small arms shooting training is to reach the fighting skill level required in combat
situations. Most part of the skill should be achieved during the primary training period, which
could be 2 months, for example.
The fundamental shooting skill is composed of a basic marksmanship skill and a field shooting
skill. An adequate marksmanship skill allows the soldier to hit with his assault rifle, in different
environmental conditions of the combat field, a 50 cm (diameter) static target in prone and kneeling
position at 150 m shooting distance, and the same target at 50 m distance in standing position.
The marksmanship skill is the starting point for further, more demanding training. The fighter must
improve his skill in order to hit a 1 m static target at 300 m and moving targets at shorter distances.
He also has to be able to shoot short automatic series and make accurate shots in darkness when the
target environment is momentarily illuminated. After the primary training it is important that the
fighter will make periodically sustainment training to keep the marksmanship skill “alive”.
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It is clear that tens of hours of training and several hundreds of shots are required at individual level
to reach the above goal. Since time and resources are always limited, the organisation should
develop such a training system, which would optimally accomplish the objectives.
The training challenge and its solution
The starting point today is that a recruit/trainee with almost no shooting experience enters the
service. The following picture illustrates the training challenge of the military organization.
Problems faced in
shooting training :
lack of time Training
lack of material system
difficult access to
a large and
heterogeneous Solution: A systematic
group of trainees training concept
An optimal training system is based on a comprehensive concept, which covers the whole training
process and thus helps in fulfilling the training objectives in the best possible way. Noptel’s
training concept for professional users, the Noptel 2000, is based on a long history and extensive
experience in military shooting training, and is an optimal platform for efficient training of
professionals. We recommend using the Noptel 2000 concept either as such or as a base for a
tailored system. The concept is described in the next chapter.
Since we understand that each Army has its own ways of managing things, we are not saying that
You should realise the training system exactly according to our concept, but we are rather saying
that it is a clear advantage to have a concept for the training! The realisation of the concept is, of
course, another thing and many organisational issues have an influence on the preferences.
26 June, 2007
The Noptel 2000 training concept
The following picture illustrates Noptel’s military shooting training concept.
Training Field Training
BT – RT – MT – SC – RC –
Basic Range Maneuver Simulated Real
Training Training Training Combat Combat
Basic Shooting Range Shooting Field Shooting
Progressive shooting skill development
Military shooting training is a progressive process from Basic (Shooting) Training (BT) to
Maneuver (shooting) Training (MT), after which the soldier has an adequate skill to use his weapon
in simulated and real combat situations. The concept is based on the one hand on skills’ learning
psychology and on the other hand on the requirements of military tasks. Since the whole process
is a continuum, there is a grey area between the MT and the Simulated Combat (TES). Noptel
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provides a training device, which makes it possible to shoot against other soldiers but we are not
producing systems for the tactical training. Although the training starts from the left and proceeds to
the right, the trainee will be brought back to train the basics whenever needed. Shooting skill is
tested in every step of the program.
As said above, our training concept utilises the “secrets” of the skills’ learning psychology. The
main points of which are:
• Concentration on one thing at a time
• Correct repetitions
• Active learning in real-time and rapid
• Elimination of unnecessary distractions
A more detailed description of the training steps can be read in the following table:
Basic Shooting Range Shooting Field Shooting
Indoors Outdoors Outdoors
Classroom Field Fire range Maneuver range
Dry firing Recoil simulation Recoil simulation
Recoil simulation Blanks Blanks
Object: Object: Object:
Acquisition of basic Transfer of basic Situational training under
Shooting techniques techniques to field quasi-combat conditions,
conditions incl. tactical aspects
Real shooting distances Shooting on the move
Shooting positions Real weather conditions Field conditions
Holding Real lighting conditions Pop-up targets
Shooting noise Moving targets
Pop-up targets Small-scale combat
shooting, in pairs or
Ready for live fire Ready for Range
exercises and safe Range Shooting using live fire and → Ready for live fire
Shooting safe team fire exercises training at the Maneuver
The main idea is to proceed from elementary training to more demanding and complex training in
an optimal manner with respect to learning the fundamental shooting skill of a soldier/fighter. It is
expressly important to realise the negative impact of different distractions to the learning process.
A major distraction comes from using live fire. Many recruits/soldiers will never learn the correct
skill if their shooting training starts directly with live ammunition. The recoil and bang of the rifle
disturb the learning badly and erroneous habits are easily developed. To get rid of the false habits,
the shooter must make at least the same number of correct repetitions as he made erroneously! A
lot of time and resources are then wasted.
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All the time the training consists of classroom lessons, exercises and shooting, and includes testing
of the skill in various stages of the program.
The Basic Training, BT is the key element for the success and is therefore emphasised in the
training program. The fact is that if the soldiers cannot shoot well enough in a “friendly”
environment without any distractions at static targets, they cannot shoot well enough under
pressure in a combat situation at enemies. Being able to shoot well in friendly environment does
not, however, give a guarantee for a success in combat, but is a condition for the success!
Fortunately the BT is also cheapest, since no live fire is used. It takes also less time per shot than
using live fire. It is found in Finland that three simulator shots can be executed during the same
time than one live fire shot is made. The BT needs only a classroom, which minimises the transport
time, as well.
If a soldier passes the qualification test using the training device (the limits are set by the Army), he
can move to Range Training, RT. On the range, he will train in normal outdoor conditions at
normal military shooting distances and uses live ammo for the first time! The qualification test is
executed using live ammo.
After an accepted range qualification test, the soldier is ready for Field Training, FT. Field
Training means real military type shooting. There are two steps in the RT: Range Training with
pop-up targets and Maneuver training, MT (squad level situational training or buddy pair training
against pop-up and moving targets).
The RT is based on the use of pop-up targets. If pop-up targets are not available, static targets can
also be used, but we recommend the use of pop-ups. It would be good to have also moving targets.
Either pop-ups or static targets could be installed on a moving target mechanism. At the end of the
RT, a qualification test is carried out either using blanks or live fire. It is important to use live fire
in the RT at least once, to check the soldier’s ability to handle the recoil and bang.
In the MT step, the soldiers will practice co-operation with his buddy pair and shoot in the battle
terrain against hidden hostile targets, pop-up or moving. This is the bridge to the tactical
engagement training, where the combat tactics is emphasised.
A shooting training plan for Armed Forces
The proposed plan is a rudimentary shooting training plan for the normal soldiers/fighters of the
Chilean Armed Forces. Special groups need, of course, special plans, which are not considered
here. The plan is based on the use the Noptel 2000 concept and Noptel’s shooting training products.
The aim of the plan is to create the fundamental skill described in paragraph 2. The plan contains
details, which cannot be possibly realised. The details, however, are presented to serve as an
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example of a relevant plan. The number of sessions/shots and means of fire can be adjusted
according to the available resources and goals set, but it is important to follow sequence wise the
training concept in order to get the best possible result.
The concept is shown again in a simple way (as a reminder) in the next figure.
Basic Range Maneuver
As said, the main idea is to develop the shooting skill progressively, step by step, starting with the
basics and ending up with the more demanding applications. If the progress is not acceptable, the
soldier is sent back to the Basic Training (BT). Following the plan guarantees that a maximal
number of soldiers achieve the wished level of skill, at a minimum cost!
The training is divided up into shooting sessions in each phase of the concept. As said, the
presented number of sessions in each phase and the number of shots in each session are flexible and
depend eventually on the user’s resources and training goals. The important thing is the order of
Session Shots Fire mode Time/ Training objective
BT1 40 DF/RE 1 Fundamentals: hold, aim, triggering in prone position
BT2 30 DF/RE 1 Positions: prone, kneeling (sitting), standing
BT3 30 RE 1 Training & Test
BT4 40 RE 1 Training according to the test results
BT5 30 RE 1 Training & Qualification Test
RT1 20 DF/RE 1 Positions training
RT2 20 RE 1 Positions training
RT3 50 RE 2 Pop-up and moving target shooting
RT4 30 RE 1 Field Fire Training & Qualification Test
RT5 20 LF 1 Pop-up and moving target shooting
RT6 30 LF 2 Record Fire Training & Qualification Test
MT1 40 RE/BA 3 Situational training: defensive exercise
MT2 40 RE/BA 3 Situational training: offensive exercise & test
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MT3 20 LF 3 Maneuver Range Training & Qualification Test
DF = Dry Firing
RE = Recoil Effect
BA = Blank Ammunition
LF = Live Fire
All together 440 shots are fired. The shots are distributed as follows:
Basic Training: 100% Dry Firing and Recoil Effect
Range Training: 70% Dry Firing and Recoil Effect
30% Life Fire
Maneuver Training: 80% Recoil Effect
20% Life Fire
If the resources restrict the use of blanks, they can be replaced by recoil effect shots. Both RT and
MT are based on the use of pop-up targets and the particular sessions are constructed around them.
A detailed program can be constructed once the resources are known.
Timing and resources needed
From an individual point of view, the training time is about 22 hours, but it is difficult to tell
accurately the total time required for the above course program from a point of view of a company
without knowing the local particularities. The total time will depend on the number of soldiers and
instructors and devices available. The BT and the RT can basically be conducted in a shorter time
per session than the MT.
BT & RT
Let us suppose that there are 144 soldiers in a company and 8 soldiers in a squad. This results in 18
squads per company. It is beneficial that a soldier is training shooting once a week during the BT
and RT phases. This would mean that 18 squads must train weekly. If we suppose that a training
session takes less than an hour, about 8 sessions can be executed in an 8-hour working day, leading
to 40 sessions a week. This means that if there is a 8-shooter Noptel Marksmanship set-up available
in each company, the organisation can very well rotate such a program. However, the actual time
will depend on how much time and effort is spent in individual instruction. It is important that
classroom lessons and exercises precede training sessions, so that the actual training session can be
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The range training, RT would obviously take more time per a session especially if live fire is used
and managing things on a range costs as such more time. However, the dry firing and recoil effect
of the range training can be conducted everywhere out of doors and there is no need to go to the real
shooting range, since there are no safety issues to be taken care of! If we suppose that an RT-
session will take about 2 hours for Noptel set-up (which is definitely a very conservative figure),
one session per week -speed can be maintained also in the range.
We can conclude that one Noptel marksmanship set-up per squad is an adequate number of devices
in a company. Of course, spare devices must also be available in order to be sure about continuous
training as well as a classroom device to be used in lessons.
The MT is more difficult to estimate, since the training programs are not yet specified. If 10-15
pop-up targets are used for MT-training, one soldier can execute the shooting sequence in about 10
minutes. If no parallel shooting is wished, this would mean 80 minutes per squad. If 2 soldiers
shoot simultaneously, 40 minutes are required for getting the whole squad through the arcade.
Moreover, if a circular arcade would be used allowing several parallel users, even one company
could execute its MT-session in one day using blanks and one Noptel Field training set-up for a
squad. If a battalion consists of 4 companies, one MT-round could then be rotated in a week! The
live fire shooting is another thing and must be solved by the user.
Putting the above together confirms that using one Noptel marksmanship squad set-up and one
Noptel field training squad set-up per company will make it possible to rotate the training in an
However, as stated many times, the number of sessions and shots depends on the required training
result, available resources (human and equipment) and the effectiveness of the organisation. It is,
however, a fact that several hundreds of shots are needed for a high quality result. In each
particular case only experience would reveal how many sessions and shots are needed to fulfil the
training goal in a certain army. The experience would also tell the practical distribution of different
firing modes necessary. The recommendation is to put emphasis on the basic training, which is
cheap and easy to arrange. The better the basics are acquired, the readier the soldiers are for Field
Two different Noptel products are required for the whole rifle program: the ST-2000 MilTrainer
(or Marksman) and the ST-21 Fighter and additionally a bunch of pop-up targets and the recoil
effect systems. The products are described in other documents.