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Old August 2, 2008, 08:15 PM   #1
Saab1911
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Shooting with two eyes open

I've often heard that I should shoot with both eyes open. Is this so that I
can see bad guys coming from the sides?

Do I acquire front sight with one eye open and then shoot with two eyes?

Is it possible to acquire front sight with both eyes open?

Can someone explain the hows and whys of shooting with both eyes?

Thanks in advance for your help.

Cheers,

Jae
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Old August 2, 2008, 08:27 PM   #2
Shane Tuttle
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Quote:
I've often heard that I should shoot with both eyes open. Is this so that I
can see bad guys coming from the sides?
Remember, the following opinions of mine is only based on how my eyes/brain operate....YMMV:
Basically to have peripheral vision of my surroundings is one of the reasons why I prefer to shoot with both eyes open.

Quote:
Do I acquire front sight with one eye open and then shoot with two eyes?
I keep them open the whole time. The double edges sword for me is that I'm cross dominant. If I sight in on one eye then open with the other also, the one that I open wants to jockey for position on the sight. This is often the exact opposite to others.

Quote:
Can someone explain the hows and whys of shooting with both eyes?
Do you know which eye is your dominant eye? My main reason why I shoot with both open even though they fight for dominance when I get fatigued is that I want to practice the same way shooting as I would in self-defense. The other reason is that it just gets tiring squinting one eye all day...
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Old August 2, 2008, 08:28 PM   #3
Rob Pincus
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Saab,

The overwhelming majority of defensive shooting is going to be done at ranges that don't require a hard sight alignment/sight picture for most shooters. Your brain will naturally focus both eyes on the threat at the outset of the attack. It is therefore going to be more efficient to shoot with both eyes open focused on the threat, whenever you can (gun in and parallel with the line of sight). When you can't achieve the necessary amount of precision (which you could learn to recognize from realistic and frequent training), you can shift focus to the front sight if necessary, with both eyes open, or close one eye and focus on the front sight for a hard sight alignment/picture over the target in an extreme situation. There is no "one way" for all situations.

If you follow the link in my sig line below to the Podcast and check out the "Balance of Speed & Precision" episode (#2), it explains this concept in more detail.
Here is a related thread as well: BoS&P Article Thread

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Old August 2, 2008, 11:14 PM   #4
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I've learned to soot with both eyes open most of the time. The U S Army teaches to keep both eyes open with a reflescope because it is much brighter. Try it, it works. You're dominant eye will rule anyway.
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Old August 2, 2008, 11:39 PM   #5
Wildalaska
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45 years ago, ya learned to shoot with one eye shut. Its more of a pita to unlearn that than to learn to shoot with both eyes open.

I only started using two hands last week

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Old August 3, 2008, 01:38 AM   #6
RigPie2005
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I have been shooting long guns since I was a kid, but rarely shot pistols. I naturally started sighting my rifles with both eyes open (always been more comfortable for me), but am finding myself squinting at the pistol range. I am going to try force myself to concienciously keep both open untill I get the hang of it, as it really helps me with the long guns.
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Old August 3, 2008, 09:33 AM   #7
Threefeathers
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It does help. Watch the Sniper competition on Discover or Military Channel and you'll see the U S Teams with both eyes open most of the time. You want to gather as much light as you can. In handgun it simply becomes natural.
Shoot any of the rapid acquisition matches with one eye, your time will be double that of others.
Gunfights are quick.
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Old August 3, 2008, 09:44 AM   #8
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If you shoot with one eye closed your eyes will tire out faster. As mentioned, shooting with both eyes open, you dominate eye will take over which is how eyes work. You dont close one eye when you're eyeballing a young lady walking by, Shooting is no differant.

If you have problems shooting with both eyes open, put a target paster on your non-shooting eye lense of your shooting glasses.
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Old August 3, 2008, 10:02 AM   #9
Wildalaska
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Quote:
You dont close one eye when you're eyeballing a young lady walking by
If SWMBO is there I close BOTH eyes

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Old August 3, 2008, 10:48 AM   #10
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The only time I can shoot with both eyes open is point shooting. If I try it aiming I see two barrels and two targets.
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Old August 3, 2008, 11:08 AM   #11
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If your accustomed to shooting with one eye open and your a descent shot chances are you already know your dominate eye. If your goal is to learn to shoot with both eyes open try patching eye you normaly close and get mentally used to acquiring target with eyes open. I took my sons shooting glasses and put black tape over sub-ordinate eye lens and that worked for him.
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Old August 3, 2008, 12:23 PM   #12
Hawg Haggen
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I have no problems shooting with one eye closed. Always done it that way. This subject came up on the SASS Wire and the suggestions here are the same as there.
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Old August 3, 2008, 10:07 PM   #13
YounGun24
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I was trained that it's a good idea to teach yourself to shoot with both eyes open due to the fact that dangerous situations tend to release adrenaline, which can impair fine motor skills. My firearms instructor said that that it becomes almost impossible to close one eye when under life/death stress. Your body keeps both eyes open as a survival instinct, and you should train for that circumstance. Think gross motor skills only when in combat. We've also been trained to rack our slide with our entire hand (four fingers over the top of the slide and squeezing against the meat of the palm...yank back) rather than trying to grab the rear of our slide with our thumb and index finger. Once again, gross motor skills dominate over fine motor skills under stress, so you might as well train that way.
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Old August 3, 2008, 10:16 PM   #14
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I shoot with both eyes open at up to 15 yards..... past that I use my dominant eye. I've tried but just doesn't work for me. Close distant, I'm looking right down my nose, gun square in front. Works for me.
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Old August 4, 2008, 02:14 AM   #15
T. O'Heir
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"...Is this so that I can see bad guys coming from the sides?..." Nope. It's depth perception thing. Your Mk I eyeballs were made to work together. You can see the front sight better with both eyes than you can with one.
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Old August 4, 2008, 05:32 PM   #16
Breadslinger
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Both eyes open no matter what the weapon or the distance. I started shooting that way a few years ago just to see if I could. It's just comfortable for me.
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Old August 4, 2008, 05:53 PM   #17
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I shoot always with both eyes open, except when I shoot a pistol left handed, then if I don't close my right eye it will be the one aligning the sights.

Try throwing a scoped rifle up to your shoulder and quickly getting on a target, it is much faster and easier with both eyes open.
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