Eye dominance is an important consideration for both coaches and bowlers. This is especially important in cross dominant situations in which the bowler’s dominant vision is driven through the eye on the other side of the swing line. Clearly, this presents a problematic situation for accuracy in hitting intended target lines. Due to this reality, bowlers who are cross dominant will improve accuracy by altering how they target. But, how should a cross dominant bowler target for maximum effectiveness?
Eye dominance corresponds directly with handedness in 65 percent of the general population. In other words, if a person is righthanded, it is likely he will be right-eye dominant. Of the remaining 35 percent, crossed dominance only occurs in 18 percent of individuals. The rest are either non-dominant or only have one eye. By deduction, we can assume that approximately 1 in 5 bowlers will be cross dominant. In other words, their dominant eye is opposite of their handedness or the ball they throw with on the lanes. (See tests at the end of the article to discover your dominant eye).
Discussions on eye dominance and targeting are not new in the world of sport. Particularly in shooting sports, line of sight alignment and choosing a specific shooting hand are well documented. But, very little research has explored the effectiveness of specific targeting method of bowlers with eye dominance that is opposite of their handedness.
For example, what targeting method would be most useful for a righthanded bowler who is left-eye dominant? Would closing the non-dominant eye improve accuracy? Would simply shifting your visual target to compensate for missing toward the dominant eye be most effective? Or, would targeting longer improve target proficiency?
Historically, many coaches have advocated simply looking further to the right to compensate for left-eye dominance. But, is this simple adjustment the most effective to improve accuracy?
In this issue of Slowinski At Large, I share with readers a research project on left-eye dominant righthanded bowlers and the effectiveness of various targeting methods. The findings from this study reveal some important evidence that bowlers with left-eye dominance can improve their accuracy significantly by altering how they target.
The genesis of this research came from reflections on improving targeting accuracy for bowlers. As a coach, I often ...
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