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Gun Shooting Technique With Both Eyes Open



Feature | Man target shooting | Gun Shooting Technique with Both Eyes Open

Gun shooting technique with both eyes open is not only for the advanced shooter. It's a great way to develop your shooting fundamentals early!

In this article:

  1. Gun Shooting Tricks Sight Alignment
  2. The Tricky Start
  3. Overcoming the Dominant Eye
  4. Treat Shooting the Same Way
  5. Practice Will Eventually Train Your Eyes to Stay Open

How to Fire Your Gun with Both Eyes Open | Gun Shooting Technique


Gun Shooting Tricks Sight Alignment

Shooting with your dominant eye is the way we all learned, but with practice, you can learn to keep both your dominant eye and your other eye open, and still look through the crosshairs to shoot your weapon effectively.

Crosshairs Definition: A focus for gun sight aiming and positioning used as a precision marking to hit the target.

Sight alignment may prove difficult at first, your body naturally wants to close your other eye as a reflex, but with a little trigger training and target practice, you'll be shooting your gun with both eyes open in no time.

Trust me, it is easier than you think. Develop these basic gun shooting techniques as you read on.

The Tricky Start

This strategy is common in any gun shooting tutorial. Open your other eye in point shooting and I know that could be tricky.

First, position your hand out in front of you. You’re opening both eyes, right?

Now, look at your nail only and both eyes are still open.

Overcoming the Dominant Eye

Naturally, shooters will want to shoot a pistol with just the dominant eye. Which eye is dominant?

You can find this by holding your hands in front of you, and make a triangle between your thumbs and forefingers. Focus on your target, now shut one eye.

Did the target or sight picture disappear? Shut your other eye.

Which eye were you able to see the target with? Now open both eyes, and move your hands so you can see the target through both of them.

This will help you practice centering your vision when you shoot. A shooter must get used to this sequence before it's time to pull the trigger.

RELATED: Pistol Shooting Tips: Introduction To One-Handed Pistol Shooting

Treat Shooting the Same Way

Woman practice her shooting | Gun Shooting Technique with Both Eyes Open

A shooter should practice looking at the target with both eyes. It’s a matter of training your brain to work with both eyes functioning together.

This is normal when you’re driving, talking, eating and drinking, almost anything. But as soon as there’s a target involved, we naturally want to close one eye.

If you must, close it for a second. Make sure your vision is in line with the sights, then open it again, aim and fire.

Practice Will Eventually Train Your Eyes to Stay Open

With both eyes open you are now allowing more light on your shot. You will also be more aware of your surroundings, which will help you stay protected in a crisis.

At the end of the day, the reason you have a firearm is to protect loved ones and others, so knowing this extra skill will be all the more helpful. It just takes a little more time and effort.

The real crisis is not like in the movies. The real crisis isn’t produced in a studio to make awesome target angles for the audience to admire.

Real crisis is REAL. You don’t know how many attackers or environmental issues might be opposing you.

You might need to be shooting while scanning the scene for more predators. Having both eyes open might just be what you need for your trigger finger to go hand in hand with.


Watch this video by NSSF to see an example of this gun shooting technique:

Using your weapon with both eyes on the target is a good skill to master in any given situation. This helps you to be aware of the area while point shooting, particularly your peripherals.

In an emergency, you can’t always control your environment, you don’t know who or what could be coming towards you at any angle. Trigger control in these situations can be difficult to manage.

Having this extra eyeball could save your life. Or the life of a loved one, neighbor, beloved pet… Having your best game-face on is key, and this time, we’re talking eyes wide open.

Is opening both eyes a helpful gun shooting technique? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Up Next: The Best Revolver for Concealed Carry Handguns | 5 Top Handguns

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in November 2017, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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  1. Darkman

    December 16, 2017 at 9:21 AM

    Was taught to shoot this way over 50 years ago by my father. One eye on the target. The other on the surrounding area. Never understood way anyone would close one eye to aim. Seems counter productive to me.

  2. Cookie

    December 3, 2017 at 5:57 PM

    I I was just diagnosed with macular degeneration. The first thing I thought was I won,t be able to shoot anymore. I hope this works, at least it gives me some hope. Thank you

  3. Jim

    December 3, 2017 at 2:21 PM

    What you say is true & I have been teaching this for sometime, however it is not near as easy as you say & requires a lot of continuous practice. Once you master it you still need to practice often or like anything else you will revert to old habits. Train, Train, Train, believe when you in a shoot or combat situation you will revert to your training. I know this first hand with both Military & Police back ground of over 30 years.

  4. What do you do if you have to shoot with your left hand but your dominant I is the right one

    December 3, 2017 at 8:03 AM

    What do you do if you have to shoot with your left hand but your dominant I is the right one

  5. amy goins

    October 1, 2015 at 9:14 PM

    just tried this at the range this past weekend.. it’s tougher than i thought.. will definitely be working on it..

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