Last Updated: June 7th, 2024By

Cadets from the 1st Regiment, Advanced Camp participate in a group and zero

exercise. Basic marksmanship training focuses on teaching Cadets to achieve a tight

group of shots with an M4 Carbine. Once they achieve proper grouping, Cadets then

focus on zeroing, adjusting the settings on their sights to achieve a tight shot group.

After achieving a tight group, the Cadets work on moving that to the center of the target.


Group and zero exercises are essential in marksmanship training for several reasons,

including accuracy, optic calibration, skill improvement, and weapon familiarization. After

each round of shooting, Cadets receive personalized feedback from their Cadre,

providing them with methods on how to enhance their performance.


| Photo Credit: Ayiana Andrella, Ohio University, CST Public Affaris Office

University, 1st Regiment, Advanced Camp practices her shooting stance and learns

techniques with her unloaded M4 Carbine from Staff Sgt. Jay Vandyke, Fort Carson, Co.

Weapon Squad Leader. “Staff Sgt. Vandyke pushed my weapon into different positions,”

said Presley, “simulating the weapon’s recoil to show me how my body would react if I

stood unsupported.”


It is important for Cadets to learn from the group and zero exercise and apply this

knowledge to successfully pass the M4 Basic Rifle Marksmanship Qualification. After

improving his shots in the second round, Cadet Nico Berrera from Texas A&M

University,1st Regiment, Advanced Camp, advises other Cadets to “Just slow down

and breath,” says Berrera. “I encourage everyone to take their time and slow down

because paper doesn’t lie when they rush things.”


| Photo Credit: Ayiana Andrella, Ohio University, CST Public Affaris Office

When going through these exercises, it is important for Cadets to implement patience,

focusing not only on their marksmanship techniques but also on regulating their

breathing to achieve a proper zero and qualify with their weapons.

About the Author: Ayiana Andrella