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Old 08-11-2016, 03:37 PM
wally05
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Cross Dominant Shooter Looking at Competing



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Hello all!

I've been lurking for a long time and have been considering competing in small bore for several years, but as a cop, I never had the money. I'm looking to finally start. I've been shooting for awhile in AR-15s and other service-caliber rifles. I noticed right away that I was cross dominant. I shoot handgun right-handed and rifle left-handed, but I am very capable of shooting off either side.

I found a good used anschutz rifle, but it is right-handed. If I block my dominant eye and shoot off my right side, would that work well for awhile or hold me back? I'm hoping to save up and probably buy a good left-handed rifle down the road, but I can't find any used.

Last edited by wally05; 08-11-2016 at 03:49 PM.
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Old 08-11-2016, 05:05 PM
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My opinion only - others may disagree - but I think you can do very well as a cross-dominant shooter, blocking your strong eye properly.

I am cross dominant. I shot 3P in college, reasonably well. I did very well in Highpower, going Distinguished and winning a State Championship. Now I shoot 3-Gun, and I believe the cross dominance might slow me down a tad compared to the other fellas. Or maybe I'm just slow.

YMMV
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Old 08-11-2016, 05:32 PM
wally05
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Originally Posted by TT92 View Post
My opinion only - others may disagree - but I think you can do very well as a cross-dominant shooter, blocking your strong eye properly.

I am cross dominant. I shot 3P in college, reasonably well. I did very well in Highpower, going Distinguished and winning a State Championship. Now I shoot 3-Gun, and I believe the cross dominance might slow me down a tad compared to the other fellas. Or maybe I'm just slow.

YMMV
I appreciate the reply, TT. I notice it when shooting magnifies optics in reflexive situations (acogs as an example), but not real when shooting slower fire iron sights. I was forced to use the police 870 on my right side at the academy because the instructors said so... Some think cross dominance isn't an issue, but I notice it when snap shooting.
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Old 08-13-2016, 02:02 AM
tim slater

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It can be done, the 2012 Olympic champion was cross-dominant, but you are't looking at cross-dominant shooting, if you normally shoot left handed. Cross dominant means dominant hand + non-dominant eye, you appear to mean weak-sided.

That aside, if you have the rifle, give it a go. I would certainly block off your left eye; normally a translucent blinder is recommended, but you might try card instead, as cross-dominant shooters report the dominant eye still interferes with translucent plastic.

Be aware that a skill in smallbore prone is building a steady but not tense position; switching from R to L handed will take some acclimatising, as you need to relearn a lot of muscle memory. If you are looking at jackets and slings, slings can be ambidextrous, but some jackets aren't. European jackets are not cut symmetrically, so even if you swap the shoulder pad from R to L it won't fit properly afterwards.
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Old 08-13-2016, 02:56 PM
wally05
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Originally Posted by tim slater View Post
It can be done, the 2012 Olympic champion was cross-dominant, but you are't looking at cross-dominant shooting, if you normally shoot left handed. Cross dominant means dominant hand + non-dominant eye, you appear to mean weak-sided.

That aside, if you have the rifle, give it a go. I would certainly block off your left eye; normally a translucent blinder is recommended, but you might try card instead, as cross-dominant shooters report the dominant eye still interferes with translucent plastic.

Be aware that a skill in smallbore prone is building a steady but not tense position; switching from R to L handed will take some acclimatising, as you need to relearn a lot of muscle memory. If you are looking at jackets and slings, slings can be ambidextrous, but some jackets aren't. European jackets are not cut symmetrically, so even if you swap the shoulder pad from R to L it won't fit properly afterwards.
I'm actually right handed with a left dominant eye. I still shoot handguns right handed and learned to shoot well ambidextrously when it came to rifles, but I prefer right handed. I've always been right handed. I only shoot long guns left handed due to it.

I noticed that some stuff is right or left handed. That is just something that I will need to deal with money wise and go from there if I decide to switch back. I'm going to give a go and just block the dominant eye.
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Old 08-14-2016, 02:08 AM
tim slater

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If you are right handed, then shooting RH is cheaper than LH. For rifle, where the target is static, you don't need to aim with the dominant eye. So long as the vision in your right eye is good enough, or can be corrected with a prescription lens, it should not be a hinderance. Unless shooting RH feels uncomfortable, even allowing for the initial discomfort of a sling, I would not switch to LH.
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Old 08-14-2016, 02:36 AM
wally05
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Originally Posted by tim slater View Post
If you are right handed, then shooting RH is cheaper than LH. For rifle, where the target is static, you don't need to aim with the dominant eye. So long as the vision in your right eye is good enough, or can be corrected with a prescription lens, it should not be a hinderance. Unless shooting RH feels uncomfortable, even allowing for the initial discomfort of a sling, I would not switch to LH.
Great advice. Thanks, sir! And yeah, it doesn't bother me unless I'm using magnified optics for the most part.
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Old 04-11-2017, 05:58 PM
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Leaving the rifle in your shoulder prone is important

A friend and I have shot 4-position smallbore during the winter. He is right handed, but left master eye. He borrowed a right-handed rifle from me to shoot. An important part of shooting well for me prone and sitting is leaving the rifle in my shoulder. If I take it out of my shoulder during the loading process, I always shoot a substantial number of 8s and 9s.

I have really long arms, and I would have trouble reaching my left hand over the top of .22 match sights to work the bolt on a right-hand rifle. The only way my friend could work the bolt sitting and prone was to take the rifle out of his shoulder.

I would suggest you at least try shooting with a left eye blinder.
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Old 04-12-2017, 07:20 PM
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Use a piece of a gallon milk jug as a blinder for your left eye. It will let the light through and reduce eye strain over the course of a training/practice session. You can attach it to the rear sight or on a hat, etc.

Regards,
ken
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