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Dominant Eye Shooting

Dominant Eye Shooting

Some people say I can kill with a look. Actually no one says that, but if they did I am sure I would have to line it up with my dominant eye. Because no matter what you are shooting — rifle, shotgun or handgun — you will first need to determine which of your peepers is dominant.

What is the dominant eye? It is the eye you will use for sighting purposes. Ocular dominance is the tendency to prefer visual input from one eye to the other. The dominant eye is the stronger of your two eyes. The dominant eye can judge speed and range and it will also focus more accurately and clearer than your other eye.

The simple way to find your dominant eye: Point your finger at a distant object, making sure that object is not someone or something that does not want to be pointed at. Do this pointing with both eyes open. Then close one eye. (I usually suggest starting with the eye on the side of my dominant hand. For example, right-handed: Close my right eye first.) Then close the other. Here is the cool part: Your finger will remain lined up with the object when your dominant eye is open.

Most right-handed people are right-eye dominant (seems like this makes sense) and using that logic most left-handed people are left-eye dominant. However there are those of us out there that are cross-dominant. Wait, what?! Yeah, some of you folks are right-handed, but left-eye dominant.

So now you ask, how the heck can I shoot if I am cross-dominant? One way is if you are right-handed but left-eye dominant, to mount your rifle or shotgun to your left shoulder and shoot with your left hand, while it might feel awkward at first, practicing this way will greatly improve your accuracy.

You may find you keep using your less-dominant eye because of habit, and handiness and comfort (right hand to left eye for example). Switching hands can be frustrating, we know. We have options to help you adjust, just don’t go crazy here and remove the offending eye — we need both of them for depth perception. Try wearing a patch over your eye or even just tape up that side of your shooting glasses. It can be the difference between hitting or missing the target.

With handguns it is a lot simpler just cock your head a bit, and boom, done.


About The Author

aaron krieger

Aaron has worked in advertising and marketing for more than 15 years for such companies as Ford, The Sports Authority, the NHL and many others. He has also worked as a security consultant with national security firms and General Motors Police Vehicle Division and has written several books. Aaron lives in the Metro Detroit area with his wife and three children.

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