The editor presents an open and shut case for a fun­da­men­tal tech­nique

Air Gunner - - Contents -

The editor says, ‘ Do as I say, not as I do!’ when see­ing dou­ble is the next best thing

Like many of you, I take my marks­man­ship se­ri­ously and I do every­thing I can to im­prove it. I prac­tise my tech­nique on a reg­u­lar ba­sis, and if I dis­cover a bet­ter way to do some­thing, I in­cor­po­rate it into my shoot­ing. This month’s Top Tip, how­ever, deals with some­thing I just can’t seem to do, but I think, if you’re not do­ing it al­ready, you should give it a se­ri­ous try.

I’m talk­ing about shoot­ing with both eyes open, and the ad­van­tages to do­ing so are sig­nif­i­cant to say the least; so sig­nif­i­cant, in fact, that I’m de­ter­mined to master it no mat­ter how long it takes me. Mean­while, let’s ex­plore the main rea­sons I’m ask­ing you to do as I say, not as I do.

Open to im­prove­ment

The first ad­van­tage any shooter has when keep­ing both eyes open, is that he im­me­di­ately dou­bles his field of view. This is a ma­jor plus, be­cause not only does that wider view al­low the

“See­ing twice as much sim­ply has to

be a bet­ter deal”

hunter to see more op­tions, in terms of bet­ter tar­gets to go for, but it also gives far greater warn­ing of any­thing en­croach­ing into the line of fire. See­ing twice as much sim­ply has to be a bet­ter deal, no mat­ter how you look at it.

Next, clos­ing your non-shoot­ing eye re­quires mus­cu­lar ef­fort and ten­sion, and that’s never ideal. It’s far bet­ter to re­lax as much as pos­si­ble, in­clud­ing your fa­cial mus­cles, and I’m told that there are 17 mus­cles re­quired to keep that eye closed, which would oth­er­wise be nice and re­laxed.

An­other ad­van­tage en­joyed by the ‘two-eyed’ shooter, is wind-de­tec­tion. The fact is, there’s no finer de­tec­tor of a breeze than a naked eye­ball, either di­rectly as the wind blows on it, or through its abil­ity to spot the ef­fect of the wind on fo­liage or long grass. Our abil­ity to de­tect the pres­ence of wind, and there­fore the need to con­sider it when de­cid­ing where to aim, is such a vi­tal part of our shoot­ing that any tech­nique that helps us with this has to be con­sid­ered.

So please con­sider train­ing your­self to shoot with both eyes open, and I’ll con­tinue to do the same.

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