Junior Shooting Sports

HS Air Rifle Shooting eventThe American Legion Junior Shooting Sports Program is a gun safety education and marksmanship program that encompasses the basic elements of safety, education, enjoyment and competition. Shooters use the .177 caliber air rifle. Both males and females can participate, through Legion sponsorship; disabled youth are encouraged to join, as competitive shooting is a sport that creates an equal playing field for all competitors. Contact your local Legion post, Sons of The American Legion squadron or Auxiliary unit for information about affiliating as a club or individual.


Air Rifle Competition

The annual 3-Position Junior Air Rifle National Championship is a tournament that begins with postal matches. State and/or regional champions are determined and advance to a qualification round (also a postal match) to determine the athletes who will earn expense-paid trips to compete in the national championship. The national championship is a shoulder-to-shoulder match held each July at the USA Shooting range facilities at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.

 The Americanism Division wishes to make you aware that as a result of Public Law 115-126, Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act of 2017, The American Legion now mandates that anyone 18 years of age or older who is coaching, volunteering or otherwise participating in the Junior Shooting Sports program must annually pass a criminal background check and sexual abuse awareness training.  Detailed information and guidance is provided in “The American Legion Risk Management Guidebook for the Junior Shooting Sports National Tournament” .

The American Legion national organization mandates that criminal HS air rifle shooting contestbackground checks for national youth programs must be conducted by an exclusive commercial vendor engaged by the national organization.  The use of a single provider for background checks ensures screening consistency and enhanced confidentiality.  The mandated exclusive provider is “Protect Youth Sports.”  The cost of a criminal background check with Protect Youth Sports is $20 for The American Legion Junior Shooting Sports National Tournament, which is two rounds of postal matches administered by the national organization.  This amount is the cost for those who are needing a background check that reside in the United States or a United States territory.  For those living outside the United States or its territories, the cost will be dependent on the country in which they reside.  Cost could vary from $75 to $150. That Protect Youth Sports fee also includes the mandated sexual abuse awareness training. The national organization does not fund or collect any costs associated with the background checks or training.  A link to Protect Youth Sports is provided the during the registration process for a club to participate in The American Legion Junior Shooting Sports National Tournament.  Please note – sexual abuse awareness training that is current and successfully passed through the U. S. Center for SafeSport may be accepted in lieu of the abuse awareness training offered through Protect Youth Sports. 

Proof that each “designated individual” as defined in the risk management guidebook has successfully passed a criminal background check through Protect Youth Sports and a certificate of completion for sexual abuse awareness training, through either Protect Youth Sports or the U.S. Center for SafeSport, must accompany the affiliation form when it is presented to the affiliating American Legion post for verification and signatures.  Affiliating American Legion posts are unable to sign the affiliation form without verifying those two documents for each designated individual.