By Kerrin Brinkman | October 13 2011 10:32

NRA's Disabled Shooting ServicesAnother weekend means another road trip for NRA Disabled Shooting Services. Competitive shooting is one of the few sports where people with physical disabilities and handicaps can compete side-by-side with their able-bodied counterparts. Although the shooting sports provides an equal opportunity for these competitors, limitations may exist that require them to compete with a special adaptive device or from a different position.

NRA’s Disabled Shooting Services has created a way to make it easier for disabled shooters to shoot in NRA competitions thanks to a Special Authorization Card. But what exactly is the “special authorization” that disabled shooters are receiving? As Jessi McClain, our Disabled Shooting Services Coordinator explains, it allows them to shoot from a modified position based on the type of disability or handicap.

“Physical limitations may prevent a shooter from getting into a certain position to compete. For example, a paraplegic can’t shoot from the standing position, so they would use an adaptive shooting position when competing,” explained McClain.

Special Authorization Cards are required for competitors to shoot from any modified position whether they have a permanent or temporary disability.

To obtain a Special Authorization Card, competitors should download two forms online. The first should be completed by the shooter, and the second by their doctor. The forms can then be emailed or mailed to NRA Headquarters along with pictures of the modified shooting position and/or adaptive device being used to compete.

The Manager of the specific shooting discipline (rifle, pistol, air gun, etc.) then reviews the request and photograph and if approved, a temporary card good for one year is issued. The NRA Protest Committee reviews the request as well and makes the final approval for a permanent Special Authorization Card to be issued.

“Special Authorization Cards for junior shooters are issued for several years at a time so that a reevaluation can be completed if necessary as children’s bodies change,” McClain shared.

For questions or more information on obtaining a Special Authorization Card or NRA's Disabled Shooting Services, please send an email to  

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