The 10 Best Shooting Rests

Updated May 07, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

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We spent 46 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. There is no better way to accurately sight in a rifle than by using a stable shooting rest. These devices minimize recoil and allow for minute adjustments that can almost eliminate errors invariably made when a firearm is supported by an unassisted shooter. Many also help with safer, more accurate use of handguns as well. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best shooting rest on Amazon.

10. Caldwell Pistolero

If all you shoot are handguns, then you don't need to buy an overly large unit that accommodates all types of firearms. Instead, stick with the Caldwell Pistolero, if you want something that is compact and easily stored or transported.
  • comfortable hand support
  • weatherproof construction
  • stability could be better
Brand Caldwell
Model 562771
Weight 2.1 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

9. Infityle Sand Bags

Simple, yet effective, the Infityle Sand Bags are available in three different colors and come as a set that includes front and rear units, all for less than $20. They can be used to support practically any type of long-range firearm.
  • water-resistant 600d polyester
  • hang over the shoulder for carrying
  • don't offer any adjustability
Brand Infityle
Model pending
Weight 7.2 ounces
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

8. Primos Group Therapy Bench Anchor

The Primos Group Therapy Bench Anchor is made with a substantial all-steel frame and features studded feet that create a reliably sturdy support even when you're using a seriously high-powered long gun. The butt plate guard almost completely cancels out recoil, too.
  • ideal for sighting in new hardware
  • two inches of elevation adjustment
  • needs some mods for ar compatibility
Brand Primos Hunting
Model 65452
Weight 20.4 pounds
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

7. MTM FRR-30

The MTM FRR-30 is a great choice for the handgun enthusiast who wants to ensure accuracy when firing his or her pistol. Its wide rubber shooting pad can comfortably support revolvers and semi-automatics, along with rifle barrels.
  • lightweight and easily portable
  • budget-friendly price
  • pad can separate from base
Brand MTM
Model FRR-30
Weight 3.3 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

6. Caldwell Tackdriver

For those days you don't want to deal with a complicated adjustable stand, the Caldwell Tackdriver fits the bill. It is a simple bag-style option that features an integrated carrying handle and self-tightening design to hold your gun in place securely.
  • never damages firearms
  • works for rifles and shotguns
  • arrives unfilled
Brand Caldwell
Model 191743
Weight 13.6 ounces
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

5. CTK Company P3 Ultimate

The CTK Company P3 Ultimate is both long and broad, yet allows for simple length adjustments, accommodating and stabilizing everything from a 9mm handgun to an AR-15. Its three legs allow for easy leveling using its flower-petal-shaped dials.
  • manufactured in the united states
  • optional gun vise attachment
  • doesn't interfere with magazines
Brand CTK Precision
Model pending
Weight 9 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

4. Caldwell DeadShot FieldPod

If you prefer to shoot from a standing or seated position rather than lying prone when in the field, you'll like the Caldwell DeadShot FieldPod. It adjusts quickly from 20 to 48 inches high and, at just six pounds, you can strap it to a pack for convenient carrying.
  • available in three sizes
  • non-marring front and rear yokes
  • can also be used with crossbows
Brand Caldwell
Model 488029
Weight 7.2 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

3. Caldwell The Rock Deluxe

The Caldwell The Rock Deluxe is a lifetime purchase, thanks to its durable components and precision engineering. When used in concert with a rear shooting bag on a table or by a shooter lying prone, it helps ensure accurate shots round after round.
  • broad base offers good stability
  • integrated carrying handle
  • well-placed adjustment knob
Brand Caldwell
Model 383774
Weight 9.9 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

2. Guide Gear Bench

You will be hard pressed to find a high quality option at such a budget-friendly price as the Guide Gear Bench. This lightweight and basic device has a powder-coated finish and is perfect for use with rifles and pellet guns.
  • rear-yoke can be adjusted as needed
  • works well for handguns too
  • good for rifle cleaning sessions
Brand Guide Gear
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

1. Caldwell Lead Sled DFT 2

The Caldwell Lead Sled DFT 2 offers windage and front and rear elevation adjustments to help you get on target, and once tuned in, it will keep you on target shot after shot. It allows for ambidextrous use and provides an impressive amount of recoil reduction.
  • large baffled weight tray
  • high-traction rubber feet
  • accommodates a range of rifle sizes
Brand Caldwell
Model 336677
Weight 24.1 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

The Three Main Types Of Shooting Rests

When it comes to shooting rests, you have three main styles to choose from: lead sleds, shooting bags, and front rifle rests. Each shooter will find a different type of shooting rest that best compliments their shooting style. Some shooters may find that a certain type of rest is ideal for hunting game, but use an entirely different style when practicing on the range with non-moving targets.

Lead sleds are one of the best options for reducing the possibility of human error when firing. Lead sleds are designed to completely contain a rifle. This ensures the rifle stays stable throughout the entire aiming and firing process. It also significantly lessens the recoil force the shooter feels. Lead sleds are ideal when using a scope and shooting at stationary targets, especially those far down range. The ability to make minute windage and elevation adjustments makes it is easy to hone in on a target after a couple of test shots. If live game hunting in the field, however, you may find lead sleds to be more of a hindrance than a help. Their size and weight makes them a hassle to carry on long treks. It is also difficult to make split second aim adjustments on a lead sled, since you have to fumble around with fingertip controls rather than just slightly lifting or lowering the butt of your rival.

Shooting bags are a great, relatively lightweight and compact option, making them ideal for field use. They come in a variety of sizes, materials, and styles. Depending on the style, a shooter may place a shooting bag under the butt of the rifle, under the barrel, or under their arm. You can attach many butt and barrel models directly to your gun or just toss them on the nearest surface and place your gun against them when it is time to shoot. Shooting bags aid in rifle stability and help to absorb some recoil force. Because shooting bags don't require much set up, and they only support one area of your gun, they allow you to easily adjust your aim and track moving targets.

Front rifle rests are sort of like a combination of the previous two types. They are comprised of a small stand and a bag-style barrel rest. Front rifle rests are smaller than full led sleds, but still provide a good amount of stability and recoil reduction. They will generally allow the shooter to make slight elevation and windage adjustments via the use of finger screws. Since front rifle rests don't hold the butt of the gun, it is easier to get on target and make aim adjustments more quickly than with a lead sled.

The Benefits Of Using A Shooting Rest While Hunting

Whether you choose to go with a shooting pod or shooting rest, having some type of rifle-stabilizing device offers a number of benefits to hunters. While some people view hunting as a politically incorrect and savage sport, hunters know this isn't true. It is easy to see the hypocrisy in someone who eats meat judging a person for hunting, especially considering the horrid conditions cattle and other animals in the meat industry endure. All true hunters know it is their ethical responsibility to make a good clean shot that results in a quick kill with little to no suffering. A good quality shooting rest can often mean the difference between making that shot and botching it.

Shooting rests provide shooters with a sense of stability that is almost impossible to achieve in unaided shooting. It is not uncommon for hunters to experience a surge of adrenaline when a large twelve-point buck makes an appearance. This adrenaline can easily result in shaky hands. Using a shooting rest ensures that the rifle will be steady, no matter how much the shooter's hands are trembling from excitement and adrenaline.

If sitting in the brush waiting a long time for a turkey or deer to make an appearance, a shooting rest allows you to keep the rifle set in a horizontal, ready-to-shoot position, without a lot of strain on the body. Keeping a gun in a ready-to-shoot position minimizes movement when the animal appears, reducing your chance of scaring it off and improving your odds of making a clean shot.

A Brief History Of Shooting As A Sport

Shooting isn't only done for hunting. Shooting for sport has a long history, as well. Historians have found mention of shooting for sport, rather than military pursuits, as far back as the 8th century B.C.E. Early sport shooters used bows and arrows, instead of guns, but the basic principle was the same — proving who had the most skill and could make the most accurate shots. Ancient Greeks, Indians, and Persians held archery contests to honor the gods.

Germanic people formed the first official shooting clubs that made use of firearms in either the 13th or 14th century. Competitions of the time were festive events where participants would shoot at ornately painted targets. Competitors and club members in these early competitions used either matchlock or flintlock rifles. In 1871, Civil War Colonel William C. Church and General George Wingate formed the National Rifle Association, which is today most commonly referred to as just the NRA. They were motivated to promote shooting as a sport because of the large amount of poor marksmanship they noticed during the civil war.

In 1872, the NRA established their first official shooting range on Creed Farm in Long Island. During the early 1900s, the NRA went on to found number of shooting clubs at colleges and universities across the nation. These clubs proved to be extremely popular, and it wasn't long before thousands of people were regularly practicing the art of shooting. These days, there are countless ranges scattered all across America.

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Last updated on May 07, 2018 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.

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