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How to Shoot With Both Eyes Open – Navy SEAL Teaches Ocular Dominance

Hey Guys Chris Sajnog from center mass
group today in this video I want to talk to you about your dominant eye and how
it works when you shoot with both eyes open if you’ve read my book or you
follow my blog you probably know by now that I’m a big proponent of shooting
with both eyes open but it’s not the easiest thing to do especially when
you’re starting out to really understand how it works
so in this video I want to try and clear some of that up and I’m going to show
you actually what I see when I shoot with both eyes open so like I said
shooting with both eyes open can be pretty tough it can be challenging if
you don’t know what that should look like when you’re actually shooting with
both eyes open and I get a lot of questions on exactly how does it work
and the question normally goes something like you know I’m shooting with both
eyes open I’m trying it but I keep seeing two sight pictures how do I get
rid of that second sight picture well the truth is you don’t want to get rid
of that second sight picture that’s the whole point of having both eyes open but
you do need to train your brain to just see one sight picture and not pay
attention to the other one because that’s what your dominant eye is your
dominant eye is what your brain pays attention to more because your brain has
to make a decision between two pictures that it’s receiving one from your right
eye one from your left eye and your brain has to decide especially when it
comes to very small distances such as your front sight post which one to pay
attention to more than the other one so you’ll see that when I’m looking with
both eyes open and I’m shooting I see two sight pictures but my brain is just
paying attention to one so your dominant eye basically has what’s called ocular
dominance so that just means that your brain is paying more attention to the
visual input from that eye than it is from your other eye it doesn’t mean that
it’s ignoring it it’s kind of like you’re being either left handed or right
handed it’s not that when you you your dominant hand your other hand goes
to sleep or doesn’t work it’s just that you prefer using that hand over the
other hand they both work just as good so that’s how your dominant eye works
all right so hopefully you learn something about eye dominance how that
works and what we actually see when we’re
shooting with both eyes open so you can make sure you do this dry-fire try it
out and teach your eye which picture you want to see and it’ll help make you a
better shooter so thanks for watching and we’ll see you next time


  1. SAR-1076 Author

    I'm right handed but left eye dominate. In the Army the drill instructors assumed since I was right handed I was also right eye dominate. I learned to shoot with my right eye. After I retired I learned I was left eye dominate and started shooting that way. Now I can shoot with both eyes open but I have to slightly tilt my head one way or the other. 

    If I shoot right handed I turn my head to the left a little and it works. When I transition and shoot left handed, I turn my head a little to the right and it works.

  2. John Rozsnyai Author

    I have always known that I am left-eye dominant and right handed. Shooting a pistol with my left eye or both eyes open is natural. However, when shooting a rifle right handed, I have to use my right eye, so I have to get a good sight picture with my left eye closed and focus my brain to keep that same right-eyed sight picture when I open my left eye. Hard to do at first, but wihh practice, it gets a little easier. The challege is tricking your brain back and forth when moving between the pistol and rifle. Does anyone else shoot a rifle right handed but use their left eye? Seems nearly impossible to me.

  3. Chaz Scribner Author

    great vids..this is my problem…I am near I wear corective lenses…when I try to focus on the front sight  while wearing glasses my mark (that I've made on the front sight post) is blurred..conundrum …should I not try to wear protective lenses while practicing?

  4. Re Ann Rothwell Author

    Its almost or maybe it is the same as instinctive shooting a recurve. I shoot instinctive and the more I practice my instinctive shooting my pistol shooting improves.

  5. Lance Cochrane Author

    Watching this video I have a question. Are you right handed and right eye dominant ? Or are you right handed and left eye dominant ? or left handed and….you get what I'm asking. The visual of the sight picture, and your hold on the firearm did not seem to match….Just curious..

  6. Abdul Rahman Rahim Author

    hello , i have a serious problem i'm cross eye dominant and i cant shoot in my left hand it's difficult to me are there any solution to train my brain to make my right eye dominant for example? i talk in rifle situation

  7. Thor Velasco Author

    amazing.  I just came from the focus on the front sight video, not knowing you had posted this.   I commented that I just learned how to do this.  I see 2 targets and 1 front sight.  is that right?  it's like i'm turning stereo vision into mono left and right.   now I have Foreigner "Double Vision"  in my head.   you are a sight picture jedi.  thank you.

  8. Um ? Author

    I'm new to shooting and was wondering why I have a problem sometimes. I close my left eye and that's my dominate eye. As I watched this video I looked down the Trijicon NS on my Glock 22 and with both eyes open got my site pic. Closed my left eye as usual sight way way off. Did the same with my right and it was On Point. I'm right handed but left eye dom. Like my skating I skate left handed but am right. Opposite. I can't wait to start really pounding my Gong. Hehe

  9. mica H Author

    I am not convinced 2 eyes open make you a better shooter than using one. Plenty of people using one eye can put a raggedy hole in the center of the target.

  10. David McArthur Author

    Not so easy with bifocals….have to learn to switch from far distant uppers to front sight lowers… this going to take some time. But good video

  11. TUCOtheratt Author

    Ok Chris, I was sold on your system until I watched this video. In the video you showed a graphic of what you see when you shoot with both eyes open(2:20) that's what I see too WHEN I FOCUS ON THE TARGET INSTEAD OF THE FRONT SIGHT (except the target is clear). In your other videos you speak at length about the importance of focusing on the front sight. If you shoot with both eyes open you will get a double image of either the front sight if you focus on the target or a double image of the target if you focus on the front sight. At least that's the way my eyes work.

  12. pirateturns360 Author

    I've been a professional photographer for 26 years, and even before then I was a very avid student/hobbyist all the way back into my teens. After 30 years of looking through a camera's view finder I have developed a very formidable habit. Beyond that being that I am such a visual person I've taken eye dominance tests and even though I almost always look through the camera with my right eye (I also grew up shooting rifle) the tests are not affirmative. Actually when I shoot my camera I do keep both eyes open and depending on the situation I sometimes find myself using my left eye, BUT the camera body/hand blocks the vision of the other eye. I understand that in a self defense situation you don't want to close your eye, but every self defense video I've seen says the attacker will be within few yards and it will happen so fast you won't take time to aim, you will point and shoot. I've also heard that if you do shoot someone say around 20 yards away you are going to prison. But I don't have a CCW I just want to compete.

    Being a photographer and "shooting" action sports, combined with shooting iron sight rifle since I was 5 has honed my reaction, aim, and timing reflexes that when I picked up a pistol for the first time I shot tighter groups than my friend who is Mr. Glock, GSSF, tactical man. I grouped inside 12 inches from 20 yards by the end of my first session with a pistol and am now grouping inside 8 inches from 20 yards. (furthest distance at my range) Of course my GSSF friend said I wasn't shooting correct, but my way of shooting made tighter groups than what he did.

    At close range I can make out the sight like you show in the video and still see the target, but for long range (range that is way outside of self defense) either the target is blurred beyond recognition because I'm focusing on the front sight, or I lose the sight to see the target.

    I've been at this for several months now, practicing sighting with my gun unloaded and mag out at home and I've been going to the range about twice a week since the first of the year. I shot 400 rounds today (4 boxes of CCI mini mags, not 9mm) and was able to do what you explain at about 5 yards and I'm starting to shoot almost as well as I can with one eye at close range. But that's at 5 yards. 10 yards the target starts to get too blurred for me make a distinction of the ring edges, and 15-20 yards it's a blurry mess. I'm trying to aim at a fuzzy shape that has no definite edge. I am guessing at where the center is. I used a shooters eye patch and loved it. It was like shooting with my camera. If there's a way to bring the target into focus and keep the sight in focus with both eyes open at a distance I'd be interested in knowing how that can be done. Am I doing something wrong, not doing something, should I get a shooter's eye patch? I made quick progress to 5 yards, I'm closing in on 10 but the progress has slowed to an apparent stop. Any advice?

  13. kickn-aDead-cat Author

    Question, I have trained myself to look at the front without seeing the back sight doubled. But my target is doubled. I am right eye dominate. So I shoot at the right target because when I blink that's the one I am aiming at. Have you ever heard of this and what can I do to correct it.

  14. Ash Scott Author

    I only found out today that I'm cross-dominant. I've never looked at the sights, only the target. I guess it explains why Ive always felt that sights on pistols are a waste of time…partly

  15. KingCrashPLAYZ Author

    I have bad eyes (I play video games a lot) so when I went with my dad to a shooting range I noticed seeing to figures of the Same target. I thought my eyes were really bad but this helped a lot.

  16. John Johnson Author

    How does shooting with both eyes open work when shooting a rifle with a scope?  If you have a target at 100 yards, one eye is looking at it through the magnified scope, the other isn't.  Thanks!

  17. tomellis37 Author

    This is an excellent presentation on a topic that I, as a new shooter, have received conflicting recommendations about. Intuitively, I don't think I could close one eye when addressing a threat. It makes sense to keep both eyes open to be fully aware of one's surroundings. Chris, you've given us a plan on how to train to ignore the input from the non-dominant eye. Many thanks!

  18. Patriot.Pedigree Author

    Whoa, glad I found the last two video. I just watch the vid about front sight post focus and this video. I'm cross-eyed dominant and while at work sitting at my desk I realized with better focus (not looking) and knowing which eye is my dominant eye. If I keep both eyes open I'll need to focus on the object on my left instead of my right. This should really help when I take this to the range. I can squint and that helps, but I'd rather keep both eyes open so I don't loose that bit of Peripheral vision I might need.

  19. b curren Author

    Great explanation. I am extremely left eye dominate but right handed. Pistols are fine with me but my big problem is rifles. I can not keep both eyes open due to this cross dominance unless I shoot left handed.

  20. BlueMagi6 Author

    I must have weird eye sight i only see one set of sights either with one eye closed or both eyes open. I know it goes against ever thing every one says but i shoot but with one eye either closed or half closed. But i can hit with both eyes open just not as accurate

  21. joemrp05 Author

    I have no issue doing this but my target becomes blurry. I can hit center mass no problem but being more accurate than that becomes difficult. any suggestions?

  22. Sam Maggard Author

    So my issue is that my dominate eye sight picture is more blurry than the non dominate eye picture. I see two sight pictures but the one that is more clear is my non dominate eye. Yet when I have a vision test I read past the 20/20 line. Any suggestions?

  23. Tom Heyl Author

    If I'm shooting through a scope, should my dominant eye be focused on the reticle or the target? Sorry new to both two eye shooting, and shooting in general.

    Also do you have any tips to avoid focusing on the target if I'm supposed to be focusing on the reticle?

  24. Matt Lord Author

    I always practice the opposite eye, so that if I ever get injured I am somewhat effective with both hands and eyes. better than good vison helps, but just found out I need my right shoulder replaced which is my normal main arm I use because I am right handed. funny thing is I always shoot better with my left.

  25. OrangeCounty92 Author

    I only see one gun with I aim down my sights. Back sights are blurred along with the im aiming at is also blurred. My front sights are clear and in focused, but I shoot too low and too far to the left according to my groupings.

  26. Steven St Author

    I have noticed that I am a better instinctive shooter, then I am using sights on anything. Whether it's shooting from the hip with a gun, shooting a bow and arrow without sites, or shooting darts, even pool, The more I try to aim the worse I get at hitting targets, the more I rely on instinct the better shot I am. But I just got my concealed carry permit because I am disabled cancer survivor and 47 years old, and hate to be a victim of an attacker, but scared that I will miss if I don't use sites. I am great at instinctive shooting maybe from all the years shooting pool,and darts and bows, so how can I fix this? After playing the guitar for 30 years I know it is hard to fix habits, but have no idea what to do, after 1000's of rounds fired from air soft, bb, and real guns I still miss unless I use a platform to support my pistol or AR. But instinctive shooting I can hit very close to the bull's-eye more times than not. Just would like to be more confident if I need to use my gun to defend myself and not hit anything in the backdrop if I miss target.

  27. Sadpants McGee Author

    1:01 – I thought you were supposed to focus on the front sight? If this is what your sighting looks like, then you are focusing on the target, not the front sight. Focusing on the front sight would have one front sight and two targets, and the two rear sight pictures would be almost overlapping. That's what I see when I focus on the front sight, and it makes it impossible to aim with both eyes open.

  28. Alex1911 Author

    Easy way to learn is first line up your sights normally with one eye, then open the other eye and now your brain will keep the correct sight picture vivid in your mind and continue to keep sight in focus. Takes a split second to line up the sights then open the other eye to have better situational awareness and vision. Once you practice like this you will eventually be able to just keep both eyes open the whole time while bring your rifle or pistol up. The training is also very non invasive to your regular shooting since you are doing everything the exact same exempt opening both eyes once you're on target.

  29. Adam Levy Author

    +Chris Sajnog,

    Thank you for your videos. This video cleared up some confusion I have been having from your previous videos. This is the first video of yours that I have seen where you have an image showing exactly what someone with both eyes open should expect to see when aiming.

    I believe a large part of the confusion comes from the word "focus." There are at least two senses of the word focus: a) to focus an image, i.e. like a camera or looking with both eyes so that a particular point at some distance is perfectly sharp (in focus), and b) mental focus, i.e. concentration. When I initially heard you say to "focus on the front sight", I understood that to mean that I should be focusing my eyes like a camera on the front sight. This of course means that the target becomes blurry. In fact focusing on the front sight in that way makes it very hard to line up the rear sights at all. In this video I finally understood that my eyes should be visually focused on the target, but the front sight should be "focused" in the sense that it is the point at which I am looking and concentrating on. When I focus (like a camera) on the target, and then focus (as in concentrate) on the front sight, lining up the sights becomes easy, my target is clear (focused like a camera), and I do have a ghost image of the sights, like in the picture in this video.

    I am sharing because I have seen a few other comments with similar points of confusion. I know that you have trained many professional and novice marksmen in this way without issue. It may be possible that anyone learning from you in person gets past this point of confusion very quickly because they would also have the benefit of your corrections and seeing the methods displayed in person. Communicating with the internet at large is a different challenge and I hope that other people find this comment useful in understanding your lessons. Perhaps you might consider adding some extra language about what you mean by "focusing" with pictures like the ones in this video to help. The images in your video "Fix your eyes, Fix your focus" video I find a tad contradictory to the image in this video. In that video the front sight is perfectly in focus and the target is blurry.

    Please do correct me if I have misunderstood you.

    Thank you for your videos. I have a lot of respect for NAVY SEALs, particularly like yourself who continue to contribute to our society beyond their military service.

  30. greg ritchie Author

    I had almost given up on this topic. I fell acorss it at work while eatting luch at my desk. Book marked! WIll watch with interest tonite as I foucus on sight and the destination target is slightly out of foucus ( to be expected) but I see 2 pistols and cannot seem to overcome this hurdle so I slightly close my left eye. But,…the process is ok for bulleye shooting but not for timed shooting. Be back.

  31. redleg1013 Author

    my problem is that my dominant eye is my significantly weaker visioned eye (like 20/60 vs 20/30). I had a lazy eye as a kid and had to do a lot of exercises to get it to track, thus it became my dominant eye. With this paradigm in mind, could one train their stronger but non-dominant eye to become their dominant eye?

  32. Chris Sajnog Author

    Hey EVERYONE – Quit talking about "My Problem is…"

    As long as you keep telling yourself you "have problems" guess what? YOULL HAVE PROBLEMS!

  33. dosdadio siapa Author

    just open both your eyes and place your handgun aligned with your dominant eye. Do not close your non-dominant eye because, accordingly, it will lessen the visual acuity of your open eye. Besides, having your both eyes open give you a wider peripheral vision while firing. I think it is the Russians that started using shooting eye patch or covering, because one Russian Olympic shooting coach observed that the open eye will have some degree of less visual acuity of around 20% when the other eye is close, so the Russian Olympic shooting team started using eye covering when they compete. they cover their non-dominant eye which is open while the dominant eye is open during firing.

  34. First Last Author

    I shoot with both eyes open. My right eye focuses and the other does I don't know what …. its very weak …. wear very thick glasses on that side.

  35. Steve Curtis Author

    I've been looking for one sight picture. Man. I needed this. I've been able to actually consolidate the sight picture at times. I was under the impression that my brain would eventually do this after practice. I've been working on this daily for over a month and sometimes I can get one without the ghost, others I cannot. I know which is which, but I have been struggling for a consistent "no ghost". So, what I'm describing is normal? Yes?

  36. ProARify Author

    I've seen several comments here referring to double target images, or double pistol images. I am right eye dominant and when I sight on my target with both eyes open (and focused on my front sight), then close my left eye, I see the same sight picture. I only mention this because it's doable. I've been shooting a long time and I never really thought about it. Like the man said, it's just a matter of teaching your brain to technically "ignore" the other image. If I close my right eye of course the pistol jumps right and I'm looking down the left side of the frame. When I then open my right eye, for a split second I see the double image, then it's gone. Viola! Brain corrected sight picture.

  37. Nancy M-R Author

    Chris, I am working on this because I think it's really important. Every single person who has noticed or asked me what I was doing has been dismissive and told me rather dismissively "I've tried and YOU can't do it." "YOU will fail" or they've said "Only some people can do it. If you can't do it after a few tries, you aren't one of them." (All those people were men, by the way.) Just to let you know, I'm going to use your techniques AND I'M GOING TO SUCCEED.

  38. g29er Author

    I had this same problem when I started shooting and it seemed hard to overcome. I just kept concentrating on the sights and training my eyes and the "second" sight picture simply disappeared. Now when I use any sight on any gun, I get a perfectly clear picture of one sight only. Just keep at it and one day it will just click.

  39. 1973Saved Author

    No disrespect intended, but I watched the video twice, you told us to "Teach your eye which picture you want to see", but gave no explanation or examples of how to do that, so how is the video supposed to improve my shooting?

  40. TakeDeadAim Author

    I shoot a lot of high power match. I shoot with both eyes open but under some light conditions it at times doesn't focus quickly so here's what I do. I simply "wink" the other eye very quickly. Just that instant gets my brain to basically say "Hey…over there"…and it all comes back. Same thing if there's a lot of background "noise"…You'll see that when using both eyes your scores will improve and the fatigue at the end of a long day is greatly reduced.

  41. Ghostrida100 100r Author

    Chris do you suffer from shoulder problems? I noticed the discrepancy in your shoulder levels. If you do I feel you brother , I am going through shoulder issues now. A day in gym will equal 3 days of discomfort. God bless brother

  42. Chris Holman Author

    I have no problem shooting a pistol with both eyes open once I learned how to shoot as cross eyed dominant. I have problems shooting with a red dot on a rifle with both eyes open due to a lazy eye. Eye strain is also a bigger issue for people like me with a lazy eye. I am right handed, left eye dominant. I recently gave up on red dots and went to low powered variable optics with illuminated reticle. The Vortex Strike Eagle is a good choice to get started with. For pistols I use irons only.

  43. Adam Crossman Author

    My issue is, I'm semi ambidextrous.I write, throw, and bat lefty. But I use scissors, play bass and shoot firearm righty. The right is also predominantly my knife hand. Strangely enough I shoot archery lefty… long story longer, I've tried the thumb trick or making a "spade" with your hands and bring them to your face…well, my hands always end up on my nose while staying focused on the "object". Do you have any tips for that? The target is always in between the two images I see, no matter what I do and where I focus…unless I close an eye. I don't want to "guess the middle".

    Great video by the way!

  44. Nancy M-R Author

    Chris, I applied your techniques and had patience, and after an unspecified amount of time I am now able to shoot with both eyes open. Now I no longer miss seeing those pesky targets hiding on the left-hand side during IDPA and Action Pistol. THANK YOU!

  45. FB Author

    Practicing the Front Sight Focus String will train the brain in controlling ocular focusing and control. 30 minutes a day for a week. Available at Front Mass or Amazon.

  46. Angela Bush Author

    the best competition scores I ever got shooting pistol was shooting both eyes open. But then I am a clay shooter so it came naturally. And then the British government took away my pistols and banned pistols in the UK and that was the end of that

  47. M14 SMK Author

    I’m right handed in everything,& a R/H shooter my entire life but I’m L/eye dominant.Look fwd to trying this out.Jerry M.& I we’re talking the other day and he helped a lot w/my grip and in using my L/eye.

  48. aaron4820 Author

    I'm left handed and left eye dominant, but now I shoot right handed with my right eye because things in the world aren't designed to be left handed friendly, there was a time ages ago I would turn my head to look down the sights with my left, but that was just confusing especially I still end up having to use my right eye for any long guns anyway. I can reliably hit an IPSC metric sized steel target at 80 yards with a pistol with two eyes opened, target focused, as long as the blurred image of my sight picture has the target in the center, and there's equal light between the rear and the front… it works perfectly fine, and if I need to do more precise shots, I squint my left eye a little to go for front sight focus, but for most competitive shooting, handgun target distance rarely approach even 50 yards… All it took was picking a random object in the house, such as a light switch, then just repeatedly drawing and looking down sights, switching between squint front sight focus and two eyes open, target focus, to get my brain used to looking at the different plane with the non-dominant eye, and before long it becomes as natural as anything else..

  49. romulus31 Author

    Chris, I’m cross eye dominant. The drills on your associated app were immediately effective for helping me to keep both eyes open so thanks for that. I’m wondering about rifle optics. I am using my weak eye currently. Should I change something or try to adapt as is?

  50. Michael Baldwin Author

    Chris, I purchased your book and am part way through it. I am right handed and found myself to be left eye dominant. Is it possible to train my brain to become right eye dominant by placing tape over my left eye glasses and training and shooting that way? And if so how long would it take? Would there be any benefit in making this change? I also plan on joining your monthly training program after I familiarize myself with some of these concepts. Chris, I'm 74 years old and wear tri focal glasses.

  51. Husker Bowden Author

    I agree wit h a lot of the comments of he taught nothing,He just talked and did not show…I am no way trash talking this guy who is awesome and far better then I could dream of, I am just saying on this video, he taught nothing, just talked, again this guys knowledge is far greater then mine, he damn well knows what he is talking about I just wish if your going to do a "HOW TO VIDEO" then please us HOW TO

  52. Simmon Phoenix Author

    A more scientific explanation is you are moving your horopter to the target in stead of your front post. This will create the effect that the front and rear sight are outside of Panums fusional area hence being double. Our eye can only fuse an image to be one clear singular target at one focal distance at a time. Everything in front or behind this area will come across as double vision. Closing one eye will negate this double vision effect however you loose your stereoscopic depth perception. He failed to mention everyone’s amount of double vision will be differnent depending on your eyes natural point of rest. Some people are more crossed or uncrossed then others. Perceived distances can change with monocularly Vs binocularly vision. Try pulling up to stop sign in your car with one eye (safely). It will feel like a longer distance than if you use two eyes.

  53. 303badassboxer Author

    My problem is that I have a hard time getting my eyes to find the front sight. They automatically lock on to the rear sights and the front sight is hard to acquire

  54. Minh Đức Phan Author

    But how do you focus on the front sight then? because when you focus on the sight, you see only 1 picture of your gun and 2 of your target.

  55. Simply Rise Author

    I have been shooting with both eyes👀 because no one ever said to do with an eye or squint the other eye. It's natural as. Sometimes been naive is not a bad thing. On the other-hand having too much head-knowledge 🤯😵 📖📚. Do what work's for you.

  56. Richard Holt Author

    I am right eye dominant, shoot right hand dominant, shoot with both eyes open. My right eye has better vision that my left eye. I am learning to shoot with my non-dominant left hand, both eyes open, is there a technique I can use to allow me to switch to a temporary  left eye dominance as I learn shooting with the left hand. Right now, I oscillate between seeing  2 sight pictures, and seeing with the dominant right eye sight picture. Having only one eye open limits field of vision.  I am practicing injured shooter situations. Is my only choice closing my right eye in this situation

  57. Chris Sajnog Author

    Just out of curiosity… what if I promised you that I could teach you to become a better shooter, save you time and money, AND you can do this all from your home…
    I know you’re interested, so I’ll see you on the other side:

  58. Paul Olsen Author

    I was shooting my brother’s AR recently with a red dot optic of some sort that we could shoot even with the dust cap on the front side still place because by keeping both eyes open, my right eye sees the red dot while my left eye sees the target down range and my brain puts the two together. I would guess this is basically what he’s talking about in this video. Our brains put the two images together.


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