Handheld Binoculars

You will not see as much with your binoculars when you hand-hold them as you will if you mount them properly. However, if you use your binoculars for quick "grab-and-go" observing sessions, if you are using them for quick sky-scans in conjunction with a telescope, or if you are using binoculars because they can be hand held and are therefore the ultimate in a portable observing instrument, then you will not want to use a mount. Small and medium-sized binoculars up to about 10x50, depending on the ergonomics of the particular binocular, can be effectively held for medium periods. Slightly larger ones can be held for short periods and for "quick peeks." These periods can be extended and made more effective if ergonomic considerations are taken into account. Some people consider an extended discussion of hand-holding to be overkill, but if by understanding and applying a few simple principles you can increase the efficacy and enjoyability of your observing sessions, this discussion is worthwhile. There are four "basic" ways in which a binocular can be held: the normal hold, the triangular arm brace, the rifle sling hold, and the double-handed hold.

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