Pistol Shooting with perscription eyeglasses


August 10, 2009, 02:49 PM
Picked up my first pistol, a G19, the other day. Have had a few good sessions with it, and now I'm trying to progress to shooing with both eyes open. Thing is though, though I'm clearly right-eye dominant in addition to being right-handed in literally every test I've tried, with it comes to lining up the sights my slightly too weak, old, perscription for my left eye messes up my sight picture when shooting with both eyes open. If I pull my glasses way down on my nose, making the right lens less powerful for my right eye (nearsighted), the problem goes away.

So it's time for a new prescription, been planning one for a while actually, but I was curious - anyone here use a slightly weak prescription for their shooting eye to aid their sight picture? Any recommended eyeglass frame companies for nearsighted prescription shooting glasses?

Maybe I should also look at different sight options? Just using the standard plastic fixed sights on the G19 right now. A pity you can't have a RDS without the bulk.

Thanks :)

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August 10, 2009, 05:03 PM
I wear graduated (seamless) bifocals.

I can tilt my head back slightly and find a sweet spot with exactly the right focal length to see the front sight clearly.

Any optometrist should be able to have lens made to focus at front sight distance if you tell them what you need in inches.

Google "prescription shooting glasses" and you will get a lot of hits where they can be custom made to your prescription.


August 10, 2009, 05:26 PM
I had glasses made for shooting took my gun and checked.but I was shooting compitition so had the right eye centered high and right.:rolleyes::uhoh:

August 10, 2009, 06:01 PM
I had a special pair made for pistol shooting. I add +1.25 diopter to the distance prescription for the right eye, leave the left normal. I then take 1.25 off the right add, leave the left normal. This makes the front sight nice and crisp, the target looks crisp too, and it leaves both adds at proper reading distance.

While this would be good for the right handed and right eyed, I am cross dominant, right handed and left eyed. This also helps with the cross dominance issue since the front sight looks sharp to the right eye and the brain (What's left of it.) picks up on the sharper image.

Vice versa if you are left handed and left eyed.

August 10, 2009, 06:21 PM
From another thread: Here are a couple of links that make some good reading


Dr. Norman Wong's writings put down in Ed Hall's website is EXCELLENT reading


August 11, 2009, 12:15 AM
I hate glasses, I have astigmatism, so I have to wear them when shooting.

I don't have a weaker prescription for shooting.

I generally run pistol targets out 20 to 30 feet...

Here's 30' on a 8" VisiShot - This was taped over the head on a B 27..

Not too shabby I guess...


The flyers are from rapid fire...

No matter what I do I'm always a bit up from dead center...

August 11, 2009, 12:32 AM
I wear seamless bifocals, and the optometrist set up my right lens for handgun shooting--really not an issue.

Now, however, I am into the "pre cataract" stage, and the image is messed up, with one or both eyes open. The sight picture literally changes from shot to shot--sooner or later will come the new lens surgery, I guess.

How old are you, Dannix? If you're 60-plus (I am), consider a full opthamological workup, and maybe inquire about his ability to tweak your prescription for shooting.

Jim H.

August 11, 2009, 03:02 AM
I'm about a 1/2 to 1/3 your age jfh and nearsighed as all getout.

I think the issue has to do with my old prescription and/or this prescription influencing how I've used my eyes over the years (have had this prescription for about the last 1/5 of my life). If I'm in an audience, I'm uncomfortable looking at the speaker with only my left eye (say someone's head is in the way of my right eye) -- the speaker isn't just lacking some sharpness with my current prescription, but my eye hurts a little if you will for lack of a better term. So at distance, clarity is delivered with my right eye. So perhaps the other side of the coin is that for near objects, my left eye does the clarity, sharp job with it's weaker prescription.

It's like for close objects I'm cross-eye dominant. I have no problem shooting both eyes open if I focus only on the target, but if I change my focus to the front sight, then the left eye rules and messes up the sight picture. If I then change my focus back to the target, all is well again, only that the sight are fuzzy.

All this said, my both eyes open shooting time has been about 5min. total dry-firing. So perhaps I just need to give it more time (and an updated prescription).

Edit: Was reading the above linked Dr. Wong articles. Looks like I simply don't suppress my non-shooting eye very well. :\

August 11, 2009, 07:33 AM
I wear trifocals all the time and am right dominate. It's not easy because the front sight is always blurry. I practice a lot at the 25' targets and used to be all over the target. Eventually my shots got better and now I'm in the center ring most of the time. I think it's a combination of point shooting and sighting the target.
Since I carry my gun all the time I figured I needed to shoot with what I have. If I'm ever in a situation I wouldn't have the time to put on special glasses. I never intended to shoot precise shots, I just want to hit what I'm aiming at.

August 11, 2009, 07:41 AM
Buy an eye patch, paint a skull & crossbones on it, and everytime you either hit the bull say, "Aye, maytee...that's how we do it," or if you shoot an airball, growl "Arrrr..."

Pirate lingo always makes the shooting session more fun :neener:


August 11, 2009, 07:59 AM
I hate glasses, I have astigmatism, so I have to wear them when shooting.

Same affliction, but I wear contacts - much nicer having all of my peripheral vision (mostly shoot shotguns)......

August 11, 2009, 05:51 PM
Like ar10 I once wore trifocals. Spent all my time bobbing my head up and down like a bird trying to keep things in focus. Shooting with iron sights, rifle or pistol, just didn't work anymore. I changed to progressive lens several years ago because the trifocals were about to drive me nuts. What a surprise. I can use iron sights with a pistol again. Didn't do much for the rifle though. I'll never go back to lined glasses again.

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