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Old March 17, 2005, 01:17 AM   #1
MTMilitiaman
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Shooting both eyes open...

Which I have been told is the correct way to do it. It makes sense with teloscopic sights and such, but I sometimes wonder if I am the only one who can't do it with iron sights.
I do have astigmatism but most of it is corrected, along with my vision, with eyeglasses. Whenever I try line up sights, I see doubles or my vision gets blurry. I find I can do it to some extent if I only use the front sight, but it would seem like this wouldn't be accurate enough for all but the closest handgun engagements. So do you guys actually use both eyes open with iron sights, if so are you able to properly align the sights, and if so, then why the heck would I have so much difficulty with it?
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Old March 17, 2005, 01:43 AM   #2
Zak Smith
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I shoot everything including practical pistol & rifle with both eyes open. I only close one eye when shooting weak-sided with a rifle, or sometimes when using a high powered rifle scope.

Which eye is used for the primary focus can be changed by your brain -- by thinking about it. Assume a shooting stance with whatever gun you're trying to learn the technique on (rifle, handgun), and then close the off eye. Notice what you're focussed on. Now open the off eye and retain the same focus. Eventually, you'll be able to selectively focus on the "correct" of the two images. For handguns, you should have the front sight in focus, unless you're doing something advanced for IPSC.

-z
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Old March 17, 2005, 03:44 AM   #3
NSO_w/_SIG
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Shoot what ever way works for you. That is the only correct way to shoot, if it is one eye or both eyes.
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Old March 17, 2005, 04:11 AM   #4
357SIG
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If the "right" way to shoot is with both eyes open, why is it that you can find special "glasses" that actually cover up your other eye?
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Old March 17, 2005, 12:59 PM   #5
Zak Smith
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Note that shooting with one lens obscured does not mean that eye is closed, it means that you can't see past the lens.

In any action shooting discipline, you really want both eyes open. It will increase your situational awareness and speed.

When one eye is closed or it covered and receives much less light than the other, the "open" eye will sympathetically dilate the "open" eye. That along with the muscle contraction between sides of your face will reduce the acuity of your open eye. If you must occlude one eye for stationary target shooting, a much better idea is you cover one lens of your shooting glasses with a piece of scotch tape so that the light still enters your eye, but you cannot focus through your off-eye.

When shooting iron sights under compromised target contrast conditions, I find that having more visual information from it coming in through both eyes helps in sight picture definition.

-z
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Old March 17, 2005, 01:08 PM   #6
tjhands
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I don't use both eyes, but I can. Your brain is much less "confused" when you only use one eye, because it only has one image to line up. When you use both eyes, you have two images in front of you, but you're only trying to focus on one (your dominant eye's image on the sights).

If you want to use both eyes, it's easy after a little practice.....

1) Line the sights up on your target as you normally would, with just your dominant eye.

2) Without changing anything, open your non-dom eye.

3) The picture(s) you see is how a lined-up target should always look when both eyes are open. If you do this "drill" enough, you can train your brain to ignore what the non-dom eye is seeing and concentrate on the picture (sights and target) of the dominant eye.

That being said, to me it's not worth the hassle; I shoot one-eyed.
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Old March 17, 2005, 01:10 PM   #7
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Sorry, Zak.....I see you wrote practically the same exact thing in your first post. I must've been using my non-dom eye when I was skimming over the posts.
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Old March 17, 2005, 01:15 PM   #8
NSO_w/_SIG
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here are more of my thoughts

yes shooting both eyes open may be the better way all things being equal, sure you can be more aware and observant to other things happening around you but if you can't hit sh*t shooting that way what is the point? You have to shoot the way that is most comfortable and effective for you. Nothing else matters.
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Old March 17, 2005, 01:42 PM   #9
USP45usp
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You can train yourself. When I first started it was hard to do but after a surprisingly(sp?) short time I found that I could do it, shoot better, and I still had my "side vision" with both eyes (I can't spell the per**** word). My aim as well as my shot placement vastly improved.

Yet, I know that some people can't do it (my best friend comes to mind). He did try and he stayed with it for a time but he just couldn't do it.

Wayne
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Old March 17, 2005, 01:48 PM   #10
NSO_w/_SIG
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For me

I can only shoot scope both eyes open.
Iron sights or even the peep sight on my bow I have to shoot with one eye closed
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Old March 17, 2005, 02:11 PM   #11
too many choices!?
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Magnifying optics two eyes open?! You guys are wierd/unique.....

No offense intended, but I find it next to impossible to do that!.....Then again I shoot hand guns with my dominant eye(left)(right handed grip on gun) and shoot rifle with my non-dominant eye(right)(right handed grip of course).....I just can't handle a rifle as well left handed so I am forced to use this method.....I always keep both eyes open(regardless of firearm) unless I am really trying to precision shoot something and don't want to see anything but the target....then I either fully or partially close the "off eye"

Ps Cross-eye dominance sux for left eye right handed rifle guys ....
But with nose to charging handle(ar) and a red dot co-witnessed to irons,
amazingly enough, my shooting without the dot has improved also !

:edited to say: right handed pattern today at the range @50yds was 6-8inches/irons sights and 3-4inches with red dot remember this is with my bad eye I hope I can out train this....

Last edited by too many choices!?; March 18, 2005 at 05:41 AM.
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Old March 17, 2005, 03:02 PM   #12
Zak Smith
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Quote:
yes shooting both eyes open may be the better way all things being equal, sure you can be more aware and observant to other things happening around you but if you can't hit sh*t shooting that way what is the point? You have to shoot the way that is most comfortable and effective for you. Nothing else matters.
That is a lame argument. I've seen a lot of people who couldn't hit anything with a pistol or rifle because they didn't know what any of the good stances/positions/techniques were, and they had no instruction, training, and no practice. Should they continue in a terrible position because compared to anything else they can currently do, it's not the worst? No, they should learn how to shoot with good technique and practice what they need to practice to improve.

Shooting with both eyes open - one occluded or not - is superior for target shooting or for action shooting. You don't have to believe me. Read Tubb's book on Highpower shooting for a target focus, or Brian Enos' book on practical shooting.

It behooves the shooter wanting to improve to figure out how to make it work for them. Patterns of visual perception are by and large learned, and you can practice switching focus and/or eye dominance in your living room.

-z
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Old March 17, 2005, 03:15 PM   #13
NSO_w/_SIG
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Zak

I am not disputing what you say.
My point is that just because someone does something unorthodox or not by the book does not mean it is wrong.
What works for me is what I go with.
My results hand gun Sig p226 combat pistol course 1 eye shooting always upper 90%

two eyes open mid to low 80%

Some of the best baseball pitchers of all time used some of the poorest mechanics but they were successful.

Ichiro hits for the highest average every year but do you think little league coaches are teaching kids to swing like him.
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Old March 17, 2005, 06:03 PM   #14
chris in va
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When shooting with my red dot on the .22 I have both eyes open. Now when I'm shooting my CZ with iron sights, the front sight is really blurry no matter how hard I try to focus on it. My left eye wants to see the target, right is trying to focus separately on it...and it just doesn't work.

I may go back to closing left eye or using a flip-down cover when at the range. In a defensive situation there's not gonna be any focusing on sights so that's a moot point.
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Old March 17, 2005, 08:54 PM   #15
JohnKSa
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For fast work and for defensive type shooting practice, I leave both eyes open. For accuracy competitions, I shoot with only one eye because I can get better precision results that way.
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Old March 17, 2005, 11:18 PM   #16
riverkeeper
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Varies

Shotgun on flying or running game/targets -- both eyes.
Handgun fast draw-quick shoot-close up --- both eyes.

Accuracy with handgun and rifle --- one eye.
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Old March 18, 2005, 03:24 AM   #17
357SIG
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Zak

Thanks for your explanation. I guess I'll have to try.
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Old March 22, 2005, 03:00 AM   #18
MTMilitiaman
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Quote:
Ps Cross-eye dominance sux for left eye right handed rifle guys ....
But with nose to charging handle(ar) and a red dot co-witnessed to irons,
amazingly enough, my shooting without the dot has improved also !
I am right handed and left eye dominant. I find it to be nearly an advantage. Your options in rifles are limited and I at least find myself insisting on ambi controls, but I also find that with my strong hand in front it is easier for me to follow game and keep the muzzle on target. And I am much faster manipulating the left-handed bolt on my 7mm than I ever was with the right-handed bolt on my .270.
Right now I am trying to settle on a handgun design on which I am comfortable to become especially proficent. I am in an experimenting stage but in the meantime, I would like to learn the basics of pistol shooting with a focus (no pun intended) on practical defensive pistol use. When I actually have a handgun that works, I'll be doing double tap drills and whatever else I can find to do. I also want to learn the right way to do things. For now, my HK will continue to allow me to practice malfunction clearing drills...
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