MadSci Network: Neuroscience

Re: Can you reverse the eye in which you have dominance?

Date: Tue Sep 7 15:25:35 1999
Posted By: Tom Stickel, Grad student, Optometry, Indiana University School of Optometry
Area of science: Neuroscience
ID: 936046674.Ns

  You know, I figured out about 4 years ago that I had the same problem as you 
do.  It's not easy to lean your left eye all the way over to look through an 
open sight.  So I realized I had three choices.  
	One, I could learn to shoot left-handed, which is what I do now.  I'm 
not bad with a shotgun, but with rifles I have a little more trouble keeping 
them steady.  Learning to shoot left-handed takes some practice, and it feels a 
little funny, but you can learn how to do it.  Millions of left-handed people 
do it all the time.
	My next choice was to learn to sight with my right eye.  You can't 
really change your eye dominance, but even left-eyed people can learn how to 
use their right eyes.  It's like being right-handed.  If your right hand was in 
a cast for 2 years, you'd eventually learn how to use your left hand just as 
well as your right, but you'd still be right-handed.  
	At first, it's not easy to learn to use your non-dominant eye.  The 
simplest (but not usually the easiest) solution is to learn how to close your 
left eye while keeping your right one open.  This will get easier the more you 
do it.  It's just a matter of practice.  If you just can't learn to keep that 
eye shut, then you could try putting a patch over your left eye while shooting, 
although this would be a little awkward while hunting.  Or else you could just 
get your gun out every night (without loading it, of course) and just try to 
look through the sight with your right eye.  Sooner or later, you'll get it.  
What might make it easier is to have someone cover your left eye, sight with 
your right, and then have your helper uncover your left eye.  Hopefully, with 
you already concentrating on your right eye, you'll block out your left eye 
	Eventually, though, it's just a matter of practice until you learn to 
suppress that left eye while shooting.  It's not easy.  I still have some 
trouble, and I've been shooting for a while.  If everything else fails, you can 
try the easiest solution of all:  shoot handguns.  It's a piece of cake to 
shoot right handed and aim left-eyed.  Course, you might have some trouble 
bringing down a deer at 50 yards with a revolver, but at least you can use your 
left eye!

Good hunting,


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