Dominant eye issues

Dominant eye issues

This is a discussion on Dominant eye issues within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; OK guys...I have been involved with hand guns for about 1 year now. I would say I'm an ok shot on a good day. I ...

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Thread: Dominant eye issues

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    Member Array Shanester66's Avatar
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    Dominant eye issues

    OK guys...I have been involved with hand guns for about 1 year now. I would say I'm an ok shot on a good day. I believe my main issue is I'm right handed but left eye dominant which, I think causes some issues for me. I have been trying to train to shoot with both eyes opened but it's very challenging for me. I would like to hear of any techniques you guys might use for the same issue (right handed-left eye dom).

    Thanks in advance.
    Regards,
    Shane Stagg
    Coopersburg, PA
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  2. #2
    JD
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    Cross dominant shooting is a funny thing, I'm left eye dominant and right handed and I've noticed the following:

    With pistols, I shoot more accurately using my left eye, but I've always been center when shooting with my right eye only, I just shoot tighter groups closing my left eye.

    With pistols, I can get good two eyes open sight picture by indexing my chin on my right shoulder and score good quick hits and maintain more peripheral vision than shooting with one eye open and one eye closed. Some like to cant the gun to the left at around a 45 degree angle and have good results, but I didn't like the way the gun handled during recoil in that position.

    With rifles I've always shot right eyed only and managed to qualify mid to high expert multiple times while in the Marines, that's shooting with iron sights out to 500 yards and scoring hits on man size targets, shooting at 300 yards and 200 yards. It's not that big a deal being cross dominant with rifles if you're using iron sights. Some issues start up when you being using 1X optics, I can NOT get a good sight picture (proper sight alignment applied to the target) with an Aimpoint or EOTECH unless I close my left eye. Again canting the firearm will probably help, but I haven't really tried it with an optic equipped rifle. So with rifles I will shoot right eye only.

    As a cross dominant shooter, if you are going to shoot trap or skeet using your strong hand, you're screwed. You need to shoot the shotgun with whatever hand matches to your eye. You can probably learn to do it with the other hand, but it's going to be a pain in the rear.

    Back to pistols...

    There are many different schools of thought on cross dominance, I've been looking into this for a couple years and reading what others have to say on this matter and I've seen the following arguments.

    1: You should shoot with both eyes open for the improved peripheral vision.

    That only works if you can actually see your sights with both eyes open, unless your point shooting you need to see your sights to make hits. Not to mention that in times of mass adrenaline, we have the tenancy to go into tunnel vision and that improved vision of having two eyes open may not matter at all.

    2: You should shoot with whatever hand corresponds to your dominant eye.

    I don't know about everyone else, but my left hand is damn near useless. But here are two more points, one for and one against the above statement.

    A: Using your off hand that corresponds to your dominant eye will leave your strong hand available for negotiating obstacles and your mag changes may be faster.

    B: If you've been shooting with your hand that doesn't match your dominant eye, it's going to take a lot of practice getting used to drawing, aiming, and firing with the same precision* that you get with your dominant hand.

    3: You should cant the gun closer to your dominant eye.

    As noted above, guns are meant to recoil on a vertical plane, that's usually means that the gun is going to go with the front sight and travel at an arc. Canting the gun to get better sight picture is aligning the gun to hit you in the face and take your sights further off target while firing.



    So here's the real deal from what I've tried and what I've learned from other instructors.

    Use whatever method works for you and improve that method.

    If you find that you get better hits and better performance using your right eye only, stick with it. If your left eye is dominant but you close it, your right eye is now dominant by lack of options.

    If you want to shoot with two eyes open, adjust your head laterally until you find the right sight picture and practice alot with it until that position is where you naturally end up after drawing and presenting the gun on target. It's taken me almost two years but the practice is finally paying off and I'm getting that "instinctual muscle memory" sometimes I lapse and find myself closing my right eye but for the most part I'm doing OK.

    If canting the gun works for you, use it.

    You don't have to shoot the same for every ocassion. If I'm shooting a rimfire bulls eye competition where I'm not over working my left hand, I'll shoot left handed as that's where I get my most accuracy. If I'm shooting close up defensive stlye I use both eyes open, if the target is a little further out and smaller, I will close my right eye for the most accuracy while using my dominant hand as it gives my best overall performance under prolonged use.

    There is no right or wrong way to shoot if the results you get with a given method work for you.


    * Accuracy vs. Precision: Accuracy is doing somehting correctly, precision is doing something accurately a number of times in a row and acheiving the same result at the end of an action. I can shoot more accurately left handed, but as time goes on, my left arm wears out faster than my right and my accuracy is effected as a result of "the shakes". While shooting right handed, I acheive an acceptable level of accuracy and due to the greater strength of my right side, I get more precision, that is to say I can acheive the desired result (a good hit) more often while shooting right handed.

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    Member Array Shanester66's Avatar
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    Thanks so much for your reply. Its been so frustrating for me. I just bought a shotgun and have no problem shooting it lefty so that seems to work ok for my eye issues. I will be purchasing an AR soon and think Im going to go with the left handed version 2TL from Stag Arms. I'm going to work on canting the gun to the left and see what kind of result that gives. Again thanks so much for your incite.
    Regards,
    Shane Stagg
    Coopersburg, PA
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    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    Take Brownies class and will not need sights at all.

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    Member Array greenLED's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JD View Post
    3: You should cant the gun closer to your dominant eye.
    You don't really need to cant the gun. Simply shift the pistol so the sights align with your dominant eye. Check yourself by closing your non-dominant eye, and then open it again. (works for me) Practice makes Master.
    If handguns cause crime, mine are deffective - Ted Nugent

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    Member Array BaserRonin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greenLED View Post
    You don't really need to cant the gun. Simply shift the pistol so the sights align with your dominant eye. Check yourself by closing your non-dominant eye, and then open it again. (works for me) Practice makes Master.
    that is how my girlfriend coped with it. Worked well for her.

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    Quote Originally Posted by greenLED View Post
    You don't really need to cant the gun. Simply shift the pistol so the sights align with your dominant eye. Check yourself by closing your non-dominant eye, and then open it again. (works for me) Practice makes Master.
    The biggest reason for canting the firearm is to block your weak eye from being able to see the sights.

    I'm left-handed but right eye dominant & have been doing this for years.....it works!

    look here for some other info:
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...archid=2588164

    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...ou-deal-w.html

    I'm left-handed & right eyed.

    My solution has been to tip the handgun toward my strong eye & turn my head slightly more to my strong side.

    When it comes to handguns, I don't recommend shooting with one eye closed.

    In this picture you can see the alignment of my strong eye & how far removed from the sight picture my weak eye is when performed this way.

    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...hts-eyedom.jpg

    (yes...the firearm IS LOADED, but there in NO ONE behind the camera. The self timer was used for it & it's an old camera & I wouldn't care if it was destroyed.)
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    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    I am semi ambidextrous with my left hand, but my right hand is dominant. I eat, drink, throw a frisbee, shoot a bow, and all my long guns left handed. My sidearm is a right hand draw. I draw right handed...shoot with both eyes open and "turn" my left eye and head at the neck to the right, toward the front sight just slightly. No cant to the gunor my neck. Works for me. I did not figure out my cross eye dominance until my early twenties. If I had known it in my adolescence I would have been a much better athlete. LOL
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    Member Array Shanester66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goawayfarm View Post
    The biggest reason for canting the firearm is to block your weak eye from being able to see the sights.

    I'm left-handed but right eye dominant & have been doing this for years.....it works!

    look here for some other info:
    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...archid=2588164

    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...ou-deal-w.html
    I will have to give that a try.
    Regards,
    Shane Stagg
    Coopersburg, PA
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    Member Array Shanester66's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Thanks everyone for all of your input. It is so beneficial to have a forum like this!
    Regards,
    Shane Stagg
    Coopersburg, PA
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    Member Array purwater's Avatar
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    A guy on youtube that goes by hickok45 shoots his pistols right handed using his left eye. He locks in his right arm straight and then when he looks down the sights he can use his left eye. I've tried his method and I can't seem to get it to work for me so I kept my original weaver stance. Look at some of his shooting videos on youtube and it might give you something else to try.
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    Member Array Shanester66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by purwater View Post
    A guy on youtube that goes by hickok45 shoots his pistols right handed using his left eye. He locks in his right arm straight and then when he looks down the sights he can use his left eye. I've tried his method and I can't seem to get it to work for me so I kept my original weaver stance. Look at some of his shooting videos on youtube and it might give you something else to try.
    Yes, I have seens his vids. He is a damn good shot! He uses a modified weaver. I was not aware he was left eye dom. Maybe I will shot him an email (no pun intended)!

    Thanks for your input and help.
    Regards,
    Shane Stagg
    Coopersburg, PA
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    Distinguished Member Array PastorPack's Avatar
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    For me closing my right eye works wonders.

    On pistol, I did not have to change anything about my grip.

    On long arms, I am learning to shoot lefty. Shotgun accuracy went way up!
    God is love (1 John 4:8)

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    Member Array phantom1984's Avatar
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    I am left eye dom. I shoot rifles and shotguns left handed as well as when i shoot pool. I use my right hand when i shoot pistol's I have tried closing each eye and with both eyes open. I am a much better shot using my left eye open and moving my grip to the left with a lot of practice i can hit my target 100% of the time this way.
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    Member Array davidw's Avatar
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    I have only been shooting for about 3 weeks now. I just found out I am left eye dominany and I am right handed. Went to the range today. First I shot aiming with my right eye. Then I shot using my left eye (right hand). I think I did equally as well. Maybe a little better with the left eye, not sure.

    Then I did rapid fire 10 shots with each with one eye closed. Not really aiming but just looking at my target and in my peripheral keeping the front sight on the target. I think my groups were a little tighter with my left eye open. However, with rapid fire both with left eye and then right eye I was off about the same distance to the right of where I hoped to be.

    So, what would you reccomend I do to aim. Both for target and defensive shooting?

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