1. Attention: We have put together a thread with tips and a tutorial video to help with using the new software. Please take a moment to check out the thread here: Trapshooters.com Tutorial & Help Video.
    Dismiss Notice

Eye Dominance? your thoughts

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by gun fitter, Jan 21, 2012.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,959
    I hear a lot about eye dominance here. Can any one explain what it is and how it works.

    We see our of both eyes all the time so how can there be a dominance? Is there really such a thing? After all it's not like throwing a ball with one hand where the other hand is inactive.

    I would like some thoughts explanations to see what most of you think.

    Joe goldberg
     
  2. DTrykow

    DTrykow Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    1,542
    (1) an unconscious preference to use one eye rather than the other for certain purposes, such as sighting a rifle or looking through a telescope. (2)Eye dominance (sometimes called eyedness) refers to the tendency to use one eye more than the other in certain tasks involving precise hand-eye coordination and a reasonably distant target. In normal binocular vision there is an effect of parallax, and therefore the dominant eye is the one that is primarily relied on for precise positional information. This may be especially important in sports which require aim, such as archery, darts or shooting sports. I'm left eye dominant. Vision wise, my left eye is 15 and my right is 20. I can Feel that my left eye is stronger. Dave T.
     
  3. Uncle Sam

    Uncle Sam Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    Messages:
    887
    It is the answer to the "Phantom Miss"......Your sailing right along and the shot looks perfect and ........"lost"!!!! And...you never know when you are going to crossfire.........very, very frustrating. Uncle Sam, Pa.
     
  4. Martinpicker

    Martinpicker Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    Messages:
    1,177
    It absolutely is real!!! With both eyes open look at a distant object...then take your first finger and with arm extended put the end of your finger on the object. Close one eye. If the finger is still on the distant object, that is your dominant eye. Jack
     
  5. Hill topper

    Hill topper Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    547
    do a search.

    All kinds of threads on the subject

    ed.
     
  6. Uncle Screech

    Uncle Screech Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    Messages:
    224
    It's real... If you're lucky enough to be dominate on the same side as you mount your gun you can get a feel for what it's like my shooting a couple shells from your weak side.

    I'm left handed and right eye dominant. I've tried numerous ways to get both eyes open including shooting from my right side (that works but it feels like I'm "throwing like a girl"). I have finally settled on just closing my right eye and leaving it at that. It works for me.

    Greg
     
  7. trapshootin hippie

    trapshootin hippie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2007
    Messages:
    5,252
    Eye dominance is a myth. Just gives shooters an excuse for missing. I can shoot as good lefthanded as I can righthanded, both eyes open. One day I hope to score past 34.

    GneJ
     
  8. Writer_Ron

    Writer_Ron TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2012
    Messages:
    1
    The problem is all too real for me. I'm right handed but have a left dominant eye ... so when I try to catch a ball with my right hand, I often miss.

    Practically speaking, it's difficult for me to keep both eyes open when I shoot a shotgun, which I hold right-handed (butt against right shoulder). I often put Scotch tape on my left eyeglass lens; this year I'm trying to learn to keep both eyes open.

    Ron
     
  9. skeeter1956

    skeeter1956 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2011
    Messages:
    97
    eye dominance a myth... good luck with that one. when i started shooting in 1979 i would regularly miss straight away targets, the coach would say just look straight up the rib, well my left eye is much more dominant than my right eye and i see the left side of the barrel not straight up the rib. run with a patch, makes it all good
     
  10. psfive

    psfive Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2006
    Messages:
    672
    trapshootin hippie
    Eye dominance is a myth. Just gives shooters an excuse for missing. WHAT!

    Eye dominance is as real as the sun. More than once I have proven it. If a shooter shoots off his opposite side from hie dominate eye he should more than likely switch to his dominate eye side to mount his gun and shoot from. It takes a while to learn the new muscle memory. Unless there is a physical reason for shooting from the off side. Have switched several and nothing but better scores and happy shooters.

    This is my experience and I'm sure to catch a load of opposition for it but I have broad shoulders and can take it. Paul in Nebraska.
     
  11. dead on 4

    dead on 4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2009
    Messages:
    3,070
    There are two factions, the one's who don't believe eye dominance is real and the problem lies with gun mount, gun fit or where the eyes are looking when calling for a target. In this group are a whole body of shooters who believe they can shoot two eyed, some can for short period of times, but not over the long haul, they won't believe they have a cross dominance problem and they speak against it. If you stand and watch shooters for some time after a while you can pick out the cross dominate one's by the way they move their guns, it's a very common problem.

    The other group are one's like me who fought cross dominance for years by doing body and eye exercises diet changes, gun fittings, different rib heights and on and on. When nothing worked long term, I resolved myself to being a one eyed shooter with a whole bunch of tape on my glasses.

    The biggest crime I see is when someone talks a cross dominance shooter into believing they can shoot two eyed, what a disservice to that person, it just screws them up even more. Trap shooting is not a sprint, it's a marathon. Just becuase you can run one or two traps or even more doesn't mean you're a two eyed shooter. Fatigue is what wears most shooters down preventing good scores, the eyes are one of the first to fatigue and this is when cross dominance rears its ugly head.

    The problem with people, we want everyone to do and be like us because we know best.... The fact is everyone of us are different, what and how you see may be nothing like what I or someone else see's no matter how much you want us to see what you see, it just doesn't work this way.

    In my opinion, Phil Kiner has the best handle on the cross dominance problem and I encourage shooter who have or think they have a problem start by looking at his video.

    Surfer
     
  12. miketmx

    miketmx Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,964
    Joe, I read somewhere that you used to work clinics with Dr. Frank Rively and he taught cross dominate shooters to shoot with both eyes open. I don't want to get into any kind of a pissing match here but I think there is a difference between someone who is cross dominate according to the standard finger pointing tests and someone who sometimes crossfires because the wrong eye supposedly takes over. I may or may not fall into the 2nd category, I'm 72 now. I have shot with both eyes open for 55 years and when I try to shoot with a tape patch on my off/shoulder lens my scores drop especially in Handicap. I seem to get by reasonably well with a rib blinder and holding a fairly low gun over the trap house. Joe, what can you share about the occasional not consistent crossfire ?
     
  13. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,959
    For those with closed minds please keep in mind that within in the last 20 years particularly the last 5 or so there has been a revolution in the medical community related our understanding of how our brains function. Much of what was believed about its function and ability to learn or compensate has been drastically changed.

    Eye dominance is a myth. It simply has no basis in fact but is used to loosely describe what is actually a perceptual condition. There is no visual information with out the eyes however it is the brain that perceives and reacts to the information not the eyes. Since the eyes project equally to both hemispheres of the brain when we are referring to central or Macular vision as referred to in the medical texts.

    Which half dominates this process can vary in strength and frequency. Understanding the causes can in many instances allow us to either prepare or train for less undesirable results.

    What is happening is a Neurological preference which is best described as laterality. The same process occurs in handedness. You don't throw or catch with either hand unless the brain tells you to; the same applies to vision.

    Convince or habit happens to be a rudimentary explanation of what many are trying to express. The brain takes the easiest route for it to comprehend; usually the one with the most complete information. This process usually relies on the sharpest image projected.

    Unfortunately for shooters when looking for a particular object like a target there are things that can short circuit the preferred or correct process for many of us. If you see a target with an off eye and start to react before the target is in full vision of the preferred eye there are at times undesirable results. The same can be said for the brighter image if your eyes vision is partially obscured by being to low on the gun and having the receiver in the way of light entering the correct eye then the off eye may take over. Having the outside eye closer to the target seems to create this effect; but it is my suspicion that it is actually that it has a greater view of the desired area and allows for the off side image to take over.

    When all conditions are ideal for shooting then the issue of (Eye Dominance) or laterality rarely exists.

    Joe goldberg

    Yes I have worked clinics with Frank and Harlan. Frank is himself a right handed left eye dominate shooter and has been a AA, AA, 27 yrd shooter Pa state doubbles champion and he shoots right handed with both eyes so don't say it can't be done. It can and untill learned it's very difficult.
     
  14. MTA Tom

    MTA Tom Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    1,301
    "For most people, shotgunning is easier and more effective with both eyes open. Binocular vision facilitates the estimation of distance, speed and angle, and helps one to get the full benefits of hand-to-eye coordination (if you doubt it, try catching a ball with one eye shut). There are other benefits to binocular vision such as reduced tension and fatigue. However, do not believe those who tell you simplistically that everyone should shoot with both eyes open. It is just not that simple (which condemns more than a few shooting tomes to the pyre): the critical consideration is eye dominance.

    It is a curiosity of the binocular system of human vision (at least in most adult males) that one eye tends to control pointing. If a finger were pointed at a distant object, there would be a straight line relationship from object to finger to eye. The pointing eye, whichever it may be, is called the dominant or master eye. The majority of adult men have eye dominance which matches their handedness and, once this is confirmed, are well advised to shoot with both eyes open. There are other possibilities. Some may be cross-dominant (e.g., right-handed with a left master); a few have central vision (neither eye dominating); and others may be predominantly but not fully dominant in one eye. For those shooting a standard gun who fall into one of these categories, the best advice is usually to shut or squint one eye. In women and children, absolute dominance in the eye overlooking the breech is the exception, and one-eyed shooting is often the simplest remedy too.

    Eye dominance is an intriguing phenomenon in which biological, environmental and experiential factors appear to play a role. Eye dominance in boys typically becomes more absolute with advancing years. In middle-aged men, however, it may become less absolute. It may be affected by training (disciplining oneself to sustain focus on the bird and ignore any “ghost” image), but results are unpredictable. It is (largely) unrelated to visual acuity (one can have poor vision in one eye yet it can still be more dominant as far as the control of pointing is concerned). It can vary in the same individual. It can be disturbed by fatigue, ill-health, staring at computer screens, long-distance driving and low light levels. It is not just a physical phenomenon, but a mental one as well. Having considered some of the scientific literature while researching this book, it appears that gunfitters may have a more profound understanding of eye dominance than anyone else (especially with regard to sex and age differences).

    The diagnosis of eye dominance certainly involves far more than a simple – and potentially inaccurate – observation that an individual is right or left eye dominant (any testing method that only gives “either/or” results is worthless). It is common, for example, to find a male client who has what might be called “pseudo-dominance”, i.e., when tested, one eye appears to be almost – but not quite fully – dominant. Such a condition is easily overlooked by an inexperienced or sloppy instructor (typically being misdiagnosed as full dominance). However, the effects on shooting can be profound. Typically, there will be many inexplicable misses on quartering and crossing targets where the lead does not favor the dominance.

    It is not uncommon, moreover, for shooters to be wrongly advised to switch shoulders having been told they were cross-dominant, when in fact their dominance in the opposite eye was not absolute (much better and simpler advice would have been to stick to the “strong” shoulder and squint an eye). All of which leads me to conclude that the precise diagnosis of a client’s eye dominance is one of the most vital considerations in shooting instruction. One need make no apologies for dealing with it in the most scrupulous manner….

    A right-hander with a left master eye (or a left-hander with a right master eye) has a number of options. One of the easiest, in the former case, is to shoot from the right shoulder but closing or dimming the left eye prior to firing. Rather than keeping the eye shut throughout the pickup, swing and mount, it will be better for most sporting and game shots to dim the eye as the gun comes up to the shoulder. This way one gets some of the benefits of binocular vision and has an increased field of view during the critical pickup phase. It is a definite mistake to dim the eye only at the last moment as this may be visually confusing.

    The offending eye may be covered with a patch (although instructors who inflict this on novices should try it themselves), or if the student wears spectacles, a block to vision may be placed over the appropriate lens. This need not be a full-sized patch but may be a much smaller block, refined so that it is no more than a half inch across. One may use electrician’s tape, a smudge of Vaseline, chapstick, typing correction fluid or a Magic Dot on the lens to achieve this (once the position and size are confirmed, glasses may be permanently and neatly modified by sandblasting in an optical workshop)…. Kay Ohye, the famous trap shot, developed a “blinder” to be attached to the rib near the muzzles of over-and-unders. It has subsequently been manufactured by several firms. Another clever device consists of a U-shaped channel with a fluorescent sight at one end. This may be attached to the barrel and when in place, the brightly-coloured insert can only be seen by the eye looking along the rib. A similar effect may be achieved by using the thumb on the forend to block the vision of the eye not looking down the rib (as practiced by both Churchill and Barry Simpson)….

    A traditional remedy for those whose master eye and handedness do not correspond, is to learn to shoot from the left (or weak) shoulder with or without a suitably adapted (cast-off changed to cast-on triggers reshaped) gun. I do not usually favour this course (though it is sometimes appropriate). The advantage of binocular vision may be outweighed by the awkwardness of the manoeuvre. It is my experience that few of those who are forced to take this route develop into really first class shots (although many one-eyed shots, beating the odds, do)….

    Finally beware: not everyone who shoots as their eye dominance – as tested – might suggest. Some may be able to shoot well with both eyes open, even though initial testing without a gun indicates a dominance problem. Some will have inconsistent eye dominance (my own normally right-eyed dominance fades and can even switch when I get tired). Some will have a master eye significantly weaker than the other as far as visual acuity is concerned. Inability to focus can undermine eye dominance. (Sometimes those with contact lenses who have a slight eye dominance problem, may be advised to shoot with the left lens removed.) Some people’s eye dominance is affected by the choice of gun. Short guns and side-by-sides tend to cause more problems than the more pointable over-and-unders. Changing to longer barrels can help someone with a mild eye-dominance problem…."

    The Shotgun, a Shooting Instructor’s Handbook, Michael Yardley, copyright 2001, Safari Press
     
  15. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,959
    Looks like Yardley did the research to understand it. Thanks Tom.

    At the time or a few years earlier I would have completely agreed with what he said. The information I have gained from about 2000 to present makes me believe that a lot of the dogma about eye dominance is less than 100%. The information is anecdotal in many instances; generalities have ben applied when the information was based on individual observations that can't really reflect on the entire population of shooters.

    I still agree with much of what was trying to be said. Terms can be misleading and most of the simple explanations don't do the subject justice.

    I might add that there is a considerable percentage of the population that will test dominate to the pointing side. Left handed left eyed right handed right eyed. These individuals may have a particularly difficult time when shooting since they naturally place both sides of the brain in conflict.

    Joe
     
  16. rmctaggart

    rmctaggart TS Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2011
    Messages:
    84
    i have posted a thread about glasses before and have read many this is the most informative thread i have ever read thanks to all who have posted many deep and informative posts. bob mctaggart
     
  17. gcessna

    gcessna Member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2011
    Messages:
    119
    Location:
    Elkhart, IN
    Is it that bad to be a one eyed shooter? Like to hear the pros and cons. just getting back to shooting trap. I am not having sucess shooting two eyes. I feel very confortable shooting one eyed
    G
     
  18. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 1998
    Messages:
    2,959
    No if it doesn't effect your shooting progress.

    Most that can shoot with two eyes eventually decide that it is an advantage to use both eyes.

    Seems to be much more important to doubles shooters.

    The thing that gets in the way for many is a feeling that they loose control.
    Shooting scores less than you want when making a change is natural and should be accepted however many fight the change in stead of embracing the posibility of foward progress.

    In any changes to our shooting it is essencial that a real attempt is made and not fought because it does not feel right. If it feel right it is already a devolped habit not a devoloping one.

    I hope this helps in the understanding of what is happening.
    Joe
     
  19. luvtrapguns

    luvtrapguns Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,900
    Location:
    FL
    Joe,

    All was very nicely worded and explained. Having fought with this master eye thing (I started shooting (1971) I strongly disagree. I have shot with one eye only the entire time (almost, I'll explain later). I am a right handed shooter and have a left master eye. With both eyes open all I see is down the left side of the barrel. Close the left eye and all is well. My vision was terrible without glasses, about 20/90 in each eye but would correct to 20/15 in each eye with glasses. I tried tape, did'nt help my scores any. I even took the left lens out of my glasses frame so that I was 20/15 in my right eye but very blurry in my left. All that did was give a sensation much like vertigo. Different color lenses in each eye, no help. Left eye closed always works best when shooting righty.

    I did not shoot for 35 years and got back in the game about two years ago. I figured if I shot lefty I could shoot two eyed. I could see a bird over my barrel better than ever. Problem was I could not adapt to the left handed gun routine. How to stand, which hand to load with, no muscle memory or ability to stay on the gun, and more. I shot a complete target year, lots of practice and ATA. My average was 74.9. I finally gave up on the left side and went back to righty with one eye closed. Been shooting "A" Class or better ever since switching back.

    I certainly would like to shoot righty with both eyes open and be able to hit something. If you or anyone can come up with a solution I'm sure the financial reward could be immense. If you get it figured out please contact me, I would like to be your agent. Marc
     
  20. guinner16

    guinner16 TS Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2011
    Messages:
    308
    Gunfitter,

    when I mount the gun with my right hand I am looking cross barrel because of eye dominance (I am right handed). When i switch the gun to my left shoulder I am looking directly down the barrell with no problems at all. So are you saying the guns fits me left handed but not right handed, and my eye dominance issue is just in my imagination. Whether its my eyes or brain, it doesnt really matter. What matters is the barrel doesnt line up. Calling it eye dominance or brain dominance will not line the barrel up for me. Only a black dot lines it up.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.