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Can enough practice help people pass field sobriety tests?

On Behalf of | Jan 6, 2022 | DUI/DWI

The human brain can adapt to just about any circumstances given enough time or practice. Some people will take advantage of this ability to condition themselves for certain scenarios.

For example, if you frequently drink and worry about getting arrested for drunk driving, you might try practicing the skills involved in a field sobriety test while drinking so that you can perform them properly if you ever do get pulled over on your way home from the bar.

Is it possible to practice enough to pass a field sobriety test?

There are certain things you just can’t fake

It is true that repetition can help people learn many physical skills. The more frequently you engage in certain activities, like playing the piano, the better you will become at performing them.

If you constantly practice standing on one foot while drinking alcohol, your balance while intoxicated will get better. If you frequently practice reciting the alphabet backward, you won’t stumble as much when you have to do it on request. However, while you may be able to practice your dexterity or balance, you cannot practice controlling involuntary muscle spasms.

The horizontal gaze nystagmus test is one of the standardized field sobriety tests. It requires that a driver follow an officer’s finger from side to side with their eyes without moving their head. Consuming alcohol makes an involuntary muscle spasm, the horizontal gaze nystagmus, much more pronounced and easier for a police officer to spot.

People generally cannot practice suppressing subconscious bodily reactions, which means it is effectively impossible to prepare to pass all of the standard field sobriety tests. Learning about how police determine whether to charge someone with drunk driving can help avoid them. If you find yourself facing charges, it’s crucial to seek legal advice.