Determining Your Dominant Eye for Archery

Determining Your Dominant Eye for Archery

Identifying Your Dominant Eye for Enhanced Archery Precision

Whether you’re an aspiring archer or just getting into it, understanding your physical strengths and aligning them with your archery technique can make a world of difference. One key factor in this equation is eye dominance. But you may wonder, “How do I determine my dominant eye for archery?” Well, today, I’m here to help you answer that question. Let’s embark on a journey to uncover the secrets of eye dominance and learn how identifying your dominant eye can improve your archery performance.

Understanding Eye Dominance

ocular dominance test

Eye dominance, or ocular dominance, refers to the tendency to prefer visual input from one eye over the other. It’s similar to being right-handed or left-handed but with your eyes. In a formal Optometrist’s office, they have a test for ocular dominance that uses a hole in a piece of plexiglass to assist in isolating which is your dominant eye.

When it comes to archery, understanding your dominant eye is crucial because it significantly impacts how accurately you aim and shoot.

Why is Eye Dominance Important in Archery?

Archer aiming his bow sight

Similar to aiming a firearm, In archery, we rely heavily on our eyes to aim at the target. Therefore, determining your dominant eye will help you align your bow correctly and aim more accurately. By closing one eye, you limit your field of vision, but by using both eyes with the dominant eye in control, you can maintain a wider field of vision and better depth perception.

How to Determine Your Dominant Eye

Determining your dominant eye is quite a straightforward process and can be done at home. There are several methods, but I’ll guide you through one of the most common techniques, often called the “Miles Test.”

The Miles Dominant Eye Test

Follow these steps to identify your dominant eye:

  • Step 1: Extend both arms before you, forming a small triangular opening by touching the tips of your thumbs and the first knuckles of your index fingers.
  • Step 2: Choose a small object about 10-20 feet away from you. With both eyes open, look at the object through the triangle formed by your fingers and thumbs.
  • Step 3: Close your left eye without moving your hands or head. If the object stays in view, you are right-eye dominant. You are left-eye dominant if the object disappears from view or shifts significantly.

What If I’m Cross-Dominant?

Cross-dominance, or mixed dominance, is when your dominant eye and dominant hand are on opposite sides. For instance, you might be right-handed but left-eye dominant. This situation can present unique challenges in archery.

If you’re cross-dominant, you have a couple of options:

  • Shoot with your non-dominant hand: You could learn to shoot with your non-dominant hand to match your eye dominance. This approach may initially feel awkward but could lead to better accuracy in the long run.
  • Train your non-dominant eye: With practice and patience, it’s possible to train your non-dominant eye to take the lead when shooting. This method might be easier for some than learning to shoot with their non-dominant hand.

How Eye Dominance Affects Your Archery Equipment

Archer sighting in compound bow

Once you’ve determined your dominant eye, it’s essential to consider how this can impact your archery equipment choices. For instance, if you’re right-eye dominant, you’ll want a right-handed bow; if you’re left-eye dominant, you’ll want a left-handed one. Remember, bows are designed with eye dominance in mind, so ensuring you have

the right equipment is crucial for optimal performance.

Determining Your Dominant Eye for Archery Conclusion

In conclusion, understanding your eye dominance can significantly enhance your archery experience and improve your shooting accuracy. Determining your dominant eye is simple and can be done in the comfort of your home. With this knowledge, you’ll be better equipped to align your shots, choose the right equipment, and adjust your technique if you’re cross-dominant.

Determining Your Dominant Eye for Archery FAQs

Can my dominant eye change over time?

While it’s rare, your dominant eye can change, especially due to changes in vision quality with age or eye injury. Regularly performing the dominance test can ensure you’re always aware of your current dominant eye.

Is it common to be cross-dominant?

Cross-dominance is less common than having your dominant eye and dominant hand on the same side, but it’s not rare. It’s estimated that about a third of the population is cross-dominant.

Can I be successful in archery if I’m cross-dominant?

Absolutely! While being cross-dominant may present some initial challenges, you can still achieve great success in archery with practice and the right technique adjustments.

What if the dominant eye test results are inconclusive?

If the test results are inconclusive, consider visiting an optometrist. They have more comprehensive methods for determining eye dominance.


  • Michael Hodgdon

    A firearm, shooting, outdoor, and hunting enthusiast for over 35 years. Thank you all for the suggestions on topics you would like to see; we'll keep posting as you keep sending them in. Please comment; we will try to answer all comments quickly.

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