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Old February 7, 2011, 01:03 AM   #1
Kimio
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Both eyes open, or keeping one eye shut, is either one the proper way?

Or is this something that is more akin to one person says potato and another says potatoh.

While practicing with my Mosin Nagant I tend to close my left eye, since it allows me to focus my sight on the irons and align them appropriately, however, I have been told that I may want to try practicing keeping both my eyes open, however, doing so usually causes me to lose sight of the iron altogether, or screws up my vision to where I can't align my irons at all.

I understand that some modern optics are made so that you may target something down range with both eyes open, but as for me, I've always found that closing one eye is easier.

Is it something I should be concerned about? I assume some of this would be valuable if I were to be in combat, but since I'm not, I don't know if I should stop a habit or not.

Suggestions?
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Old February 7, 2011, 01:48 AM   #2
dawico
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Closing one eye feels more natural, but it is wrong to do. It puts strain on the open eye, changing the way it sees. It doesn't do much harm in normal shooting, but extended shooting sessions or very precise shooting may be affected.

I used to close one eye also, but after learning this, I taught myelf to ignore the vision in the non viewing eye, or transfer vision to check for other targets or movement.
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Old February 7, 2011, 05:07 AM   #3
kadima
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I've been trained in the army to aim with both eyes open, in order to mantain some form of peripheral vision to keep you aware of what's happening around you and the target.

I must add that now I do better results with my iron sights surplus rifles with both eyes open rather than one eye.

In any case, it could be better to put something in front of the non aiming eye rather than squeezing it shut, if one decide to go the one eyed way...

Hope this makes any sense, because to me it doesn't at the moment (as quite often happend when I am typing)...

K.
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Old February 7, 2011, 11:50 PM   #4
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If you don't have any issues with eye dominance then both eyes open will generally provide better results with iron sights or unmagnified/low magnification optics.

If you have eye dominance issues or use an optic with significant magnification then closing the off eye may provide better results.
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Old February 21, 2011, 01:30 AM   #5
Bernieb90
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It depends on what I am doing. For precision rifle shooting either with a scope, or iron sights I close my left eye (I shoot right handed). With non- magnifying optics (red dot, reflex etc.) I shoot both eyes open with focus on the target. Tactical pistol shooting is done with both eyes open for peripheral vision. On long range pistol shots I may close my left eye for better precision.
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Old March 10, 2011, 03:20 AM   #6
Crazy Carl
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I'm right handed/left eye dominant. I have to shoot long guns with my left eye closed, as my left eye totally takes over & I can't shoot left handed. Sucks, but it is what it is. I really need a 2A friendly optometrist that can do me up some glasses, both for pistol shooting & rifles.
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Old March 10, 2011, 09:13 AM   #7
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When using a telescope, we advise the user to keep both eyes open and simply cover one with a hand. That's usually not an option when shooting, so I would think it best to keep both open and learn to ignore what the non-dominant eye is seeing. I have also seen Bullseye shooters who use glasses with one lens blocked, which also permits both eyes to remain open for maximum relaxation.
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Old March 10, 2011, 09:39 AM   #8
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The best, for precision, is probably to occlude the non-dominant eye, but not to close it. This is why target shooters use occluders on their shooting glasses. But actually closing the non-dominant eye causes sympathetic dilation of the dominant eye, diminishes the ability to focus and introduces fatigue.
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Old March 10, 2011, 10:05 AM   #9
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I have never seen or heard any well qualified coach or instructor teach or recommend shooting with one eye closed.

Even with eye dominance problems there are ways to allow you to keep both eyes open.
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Old March 10, 2011, 10:43 AM   #10
Mike Irwin
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I keep both eyes closed...
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Old March 10, 2011, 12:53 PM   #11
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A patch on the off eye lens if you cannot make yourself focus on the front sight. Other wise hold the barrel elevated a few degrees and put both eyes on the front sight. Can you focus on it and see it clearly? If you can you can lower the barrel and keeping both eyes open find your sight again but with the strong side eye using the rear sight. Strange at first but when you get used to it your groups will improve.

The problem with one eye is it is an unnatural strain that really shows up after a days worth of competition or a couple of hard shooting hours plinking. The other problem is if you are using one eye you will tend to bull gaze. Your focus will be between the front sight and the target and as a result it looks like you are lined up but you aren't really seeing the sight or the target clearly. No matter how much you shoot you just won't get any better than you already are.
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Old March 24, 2011, 08:02 PM   #12
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If for instance you can not shoot with both eyes open, no matter how you try, with iron sights on your rifle.

Take a 1" long piece of scotch tape, the opaque one, not clear.

Aim from bench, shut left eye (non dominant eye) good sight picture with right eye, now close right eye, open left, stick tape on left eye shooting glasses lens, so it blocks your non dominant eye.

Now with both eyes open, no messing with focus, no twitches. I did that for years in formal pistol matches, IDPA, or any other combat style use, both eyes open.
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Old March 26, 2011, 12:27 PM   #13
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Alright, I was shooting the day before yesterday. Really happy with myself that time will all guns not just a few.

Ok...


Well this topic came up with a guy who was next to my buddy on the right, he was telling him to shoot with both eyes open and yadda yadda yah...

For ish, and giggles I just LOOKED at the sights with both eyes open and I saw two sets of guns and sights. One in each eye.

Let me pick up my 1911 and do it again just to make sure..one sec...

Yeah no even worse...I tried, same thing. I tried looking at the front sight and then saw 2 rear sights.

Then looked at my rear sight and saw no front sight.


I really want to do both eyes open. It only seems right. There is NO other time when someone in life, not optic lens shooting or anything. No other time when someone should be only looking with one eye open..Driving, watching TV, etc. So why now? I want to shoot with both eyes open, but

I was taught, "don't fix what isn't broken" I'm shooting great with one eye. But I'd prefer to do good with two as it seems to be more natural and better off.

I'm seeing double people. Should I only be looking at the front sight/target then?
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Old March 26, 2011, 03:29 PM   #14
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Snap caps in your guns, dry fire, dry fire, dry fire with both eyes on that front sight till it becomes natural. There are two images, one the dominant eye see's and one the off eye see's. The clearer image will be the one the dominant eye is seeing and your brain will eventually learn to disregard the other target.

The target won't be moving like a squirrel or deer or boogerman. What moves is the front sight so the critical part of being able to hit the target and group consistently is being able to keep that front sight in focus. Your mind will center the sight in the rear sight, when its centered the front sight will be clear, the rear sight will be fuzzy and the target will be down there out of focus but patiently waiting for you to make that bulls eye. Imagine the front sight as one solid piece of metal tied to your trigger. When you pull that trigger back you are pulling that front sight back through the center of your sight. You will be looking at that sight and controlling its movement so hard you won't notice when the shot is about to break.

Succeed and you have a good shot, do it 10 more times and there will be 10 holes in the same general area. Rifle, pistol, revolver, black powder, air gun, it doesn't make a difference. Aperture sight, square notch and post or round notch and bead, it doesn't make a difference.

Ain't easy to get past that double target and wanting to bull gaze stage but once you master it your improvement will make the effort worth the pain and frustration.
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Old March 26, 2011, 08:06 PM   #15
j3hill
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Both eyes open, always. Closing one eye causes fatigue when looking thru scoped rifles, and leaves you blind on one side. Of course I take everything from a combat perspective. So it is always both eyes open, with everything from pistols too squad autos.
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Old March 27, 2011, 01:37 AM   #16
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Alright Old Grump, so practice makes perfect type thing? There shouldn't be a reason to fail at this then right?
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Sáncte Míchael Archángele, defénde nos in proélio, cóntra nequítiam et insídias diáboli ésto præsídium. Ímperet ílli Déus, súpplices deprecámur: tuque, prínceps milítiæ cæléstis, Sátanam aliósque spíritus malígnos, qui ad perditiónem animárum pervagántur in múndo, divína virtúte, in inférnum detrúde. Ámen
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Old March 27, 2011, 10:29 AM   #17
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Although this thread seems to be predominantly about rifles, this "one eye or two" issue and the doubled sight images produced by two eyes seems to be another good reason to practice point shooting (handguns). Then you just have to worry about focusing on your target.
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Old March 27, 2011, 11:10 AM   #18
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Point and shoot? Like what they taught in SWAT? I'm going to try that one out again. Haven't in a long while. Even forgot the outcome.
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Sáncte Míchael Archángele, defénde nos in proélio, cóntra nequítiam et insídias diáboli ésto præsídium. Ímperet ílli Déus, súpplices deprecámur: tuque, prínceps milítiæ cæléstis, Sátanam aliósque spíritus malígnos, qui ad perditiónem animárum pervagántur in múndo, divína virtúte, in inférnum detrúde. Ámen
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Old March 27, 2011, 12:30 PM   #19
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Alright Old Grump, so practice makes perfect type thing? There shouldn't be a reason to fail at this then right?
If you want to be a marksman then yes that is correct. I have a friend that can get 6 shots into a silhouette at 7 yards before I got off my second shot, it is what he practiced. His ability to keep his shots on paper at 15 yards was poor and at 25 yards he was almost hopeless. He had a skill set very good for SD but if you needed something shot with a handgun at 50 yards or a rifle at 300 yards then you want a marksman. You pays your money and makes your choices.
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Old March 27, 2011, 03:05 PM   #20
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Gotcha...thanks pops. I really appreciate it. Next time I head out to the range I'll practice this and let you know how I do.
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Sáncte Míchael Archángele, defénde nos in proélio, cóntra nequítiam et insídias diáboli ésto præsídium. Ímperet ílli Déus, súpplices deprecámur: tuque, prínceps milítiæ cæléstis, Sátanam aliósque spíritus malígnos, qui ad perditiónem animárum pervagántur in múndo, divína virtúte, in inférnum detrúde. Ámen
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Old April 15, 2011, 08:23 PM   #21
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The way I learned to do it was to slightly turn my head so that my dominant eye was the only one that was able to see the sights. Once I was comfortable with that I began moving my head back to straight on. A few sessions of dry fire practice is all you need to train your eyes and your brain.
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Old April 15, 2011, 10:29 PM   #22
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People get all dogmatic about doing it THE right way. Both eyes open is probably preferable but if you can't do it, you can't do it. So close an eye.

No biggie. If you're teaching someone to shoot and they can't shoot like that, then are you going to make it a miserable experience for someone?

Not me!

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Old April 16, 2011, 04:37 PM   #23
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Constantine,

I am a right handed shooter, but am left eye dominant. For pistol shooting I tuck my chin to my right bicep and look down the sights with my left eye and keep both of them open. Closer than 7 yards just point and shoot using natural point of aim.
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Old April 24, 2011, 08:15 PM   #24
BRE346
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Crossed eyes?

Naw, I'm teasing.

On dryfiring my new snubbie, I discovered that left-handed looks through the left eye, right-handed looks through the right eye. I wink to make sure. Yep.

Both eyes open after finding the target. Crazy.
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Old May 2, 2011, 10:19 PM   #25
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I learned to shoot with 1 eye but I have been working on shooting with 2 eyes for several years now... I still catch my self occasionally trying to close my left eye.
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