Many of you have seen professional shooters at the Olympics who wear large contraptions on their glasses when competing. These are called blinders. Much like blinders on a horse, shooting blinders help to eliminate outside distractions and help the shooter focus on the target. While this is beneficial in some shooting sports, it can hurt you in others, such as 3 gun, which require the competitor to be aware of their surroundings and focus on multiple things at once. The main benefit to blinders, however, is for people who suffer from cross dominance. If your dominant eye is different from your dominant hand, then shooting blinders may be an excellent way to increase your comfort and accuracy.
Short On Time? Here Is The Bullet List
- Best Product to Completely Blind One Eye: Flents eye patch- 3 pack
- Shooting Glasses with Blinders: Bedgood's Mirror Polarized Clip on Sunglasses
- Make Your Own Shooting Blinders: 3pk Blue Painters Tape
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Types of Shooting Blinders
Clip on Shooting Blinders
The most common scenario where an average shooter would benefit from blinders is in the case of cross dominance. This happens when a right-handed shooter has a dominant left eye, and vice-versa. Most people know which is their dominant hand, but determining your dominant eye can be a bit tricky. For starters, pick an object about 20 to 30 feet away, and focus on it. After that, make a circle with your hands, and place the object in the center of the circle. Now, keeping the object in the circle, slowly bring your hands back until they are resting on one of your eyes. This will be your dominant eye.
There are several other methods of determining your dominant eye, but this is the method outlined in the NRA basic pistol course. If you are a right-handed shooter and your right eye is dominant, then you have little need for a blinder. However, if your dominant hand and dominant eye differ, then your shooting could benefit from placing a blinder over your dominant eye. This will cause your brain to use your non-dominant eye to focus, which will allow you to shoot using your dominant hand.
Side Blinders for Shooting
A less common scenario in which to use blinders would be when shooting with iron sights for the bullseye of a single stagnant target. Placing blinders on the sides of your shooting glasses would help you to focus on the target and nothing else by eliminating distractions that are not in front of you. This is a very niche area of the competition shooting world, as most shooting sports require engaging multiple and/or moving targets. However, if you enjoy shooting bullseye pistol matches, you may benefit from a good set of side blinders.
One Eye Blinder
The easiest and cheapest way to solve your problem of cross eye dominance is a piece of tape. This is the preferred method for clay target and competition shooters because it allows you to still retain some peripheral vision from your dominant eye. Also, the transparency of the tape allows you to customize the level for your own personal needs. Some people only require a small square of translucent scotch tape to focus properly, while others may need a large patch of duct tape.
If you find that a piece of tape over your dominant eye does not do the trick, then an eye patch may work better for you. This will completely block out the vision from your dominant eye, which will force you to use your non-dominant eye to focus. This does severely cut down on your peripheral vision and depth perception, but in many cases, this may be the only solution for cross dominant shooters. Additionally, eye patches are only slightly more expensive than a roll of tape, but you do not run the risk of ruining your shooting glasses with sticky tape residue. Also, there is the added bonus of looking like a pirate!
Best Blinders for Shooting on the Market in 2020
Best Product to Completely Blind One Eye:
The Flents eye patch is an excellent choice for the shooter who struggles with cross eye dominance or simply does not want to put tape on their shooting glasses. These patches are concave, which means that it will put minimal pressure on your eye. This feature may make them uncomfortable to wear with certain pairs of glasses, so if your shooting glasses are tight against your face then this product may not be the best. They are soft and relatively comfortable, but they do contain latex, so those with an allergy will want to find a different product. While this patch will work well in certain scenarios, most shooters will want to explore other options first.
Shooting Glasses with Blinders:
While these Bedgood flip-up lenses were not designed to function as shooting blinders, they work quite well as them, with a little modification. All that is required to turn this economical pair of flip-up sunglasses into an effective blinder is to cut or break off the lens that covers the eye you want to see out of when you are shooting. This allows you to have a functional blinder that clips onto your regular shooting glasses without any permanent modification or sticky residue on your shooting glasses. The blinder can be finished one of two ways, depending on your needs. If you only have slight issues with cross eye dominance, then a tinted lens over your dominant eye may be all you need to focus with your non-dominant eye. However, if you need a denser blinder, you could either place tape on the lens or spray paint it until it achieves your desired level of opacity. This will allow you to quickly place or remove the blinder while you are shooting and requires no permanent modification to your shooting glasses.
Make Your Own Shooting Blinders:
For most shooters, a simple piece of tape placed over the lens of your dominant eye is all that you will need to focus with your non-dominant eye. For that, this blue painter’s tape may work well. Painters tape differs from other kinds of tape in that it is easy to remove and is much less likely to leave a residue. This lessens the chance that you will leave behind a sticky residue, ruining your shooting glasses. This tape sticks well to safety glasses, and the 1-inch width is the perfect size to place a small square on your lens. If you are looking for a quick, easy, and cheap way try out shooting with blinders, then this may be the best option for you.
Best Blinders for Shooting Final Thoughts
Out of the four products mentioned here, the best choice for most shooters is going to be the tape. This method is quick, cheap and easy, and has little to no permanent effects on your glasses. It allows cross-dominant shooters to shoot with their dominant hand and non-dominant eye, which can vastly increase accuracy and efficiency. If you are a cross-dominant shooter, then you have nothing to lose by trying this method, and I have a feeling that you will be pleasantly surprised with the results.
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