The squatting position, otherwise known as “Rice Paddy Prone,” isn’t as common as it once was. It is a moderate stability position that supports both elbows, making it more stable than kneeling yet keeping a high level of mobility.
Jeff Cooper, in The Art of the Rifle, stated that the seated position is the most useful for hunters. Military shooters use it less because it’s neither as low as prone nor fast like squatting or kneeling.
Many view the notorious “chicken wing” as a defining trait of a newbie. Tactical instructors, and the enthusiasts who follow them, will all claim it’s a surefire way to get your arm shot off in a fight. So why is it still so prominent?
The standing position is simultaneously the most common and least useful of the standard rifle positions. The thing is, outside of competition, if you need to use it then you need to use it right now!
Kneeling is a moderately stable position, being better than standing but not as good as sitting or prone. It’s the go-to when mobility is the priority, though.
The prone position is the bread and butter of a skilled rifleman. It is the most stable position you can get using only your own body. When you attend any shooting school, you’re going to spend a lot of time in the prone. But it’s not without its limitations. Let’s take a good look at the most classic of rifle shooting positions.