Vision Training for Nearsightedness

Vision TrainingWhat if you could spend a few minutes a day to make your nearsightedness disappear?

You can.

About 20% more Americans have been diagnosed with nearsightedness as compared to 30 years ago. While I’m all about blaming the industrial food complex for just about everything else, this one I’m going to have to largely blame excessive time on computers, video games, and watching TV.

I’m a pretty hard-core geek, remember fumbling around in DOS, have done my share of computer programming, and never leave town without my laptop, so this is NOT a rant that all computers are evil. Instead, it’s about taking the couple minutes a day it takes to undo what I call “computer eyes” – or the effects of spending hours at a time staring at what is largely a fixed spot.

So, how does this happen?

The eyes are controlled by muscles – just like the rest of our moving parts. In the case of our eyes, there are six oculomotor muscles that allow our eyes to look up, down, left, right, track moving objects, and let us glance from the speedometer, to the rearview mirror, and back to the road. And, just like the rest of the body, it’s a use it or lose it proposition. When we spend a lot of time doing one activity, in this case staring at a screen that is virtually always the same distance in front of us and in the same position, our muscles get really good at holding that position – and that’s about it.

Fortunately, alleviating computer eyes is more simple than you might think. Move your eyes!

I recommend:

1) Eye tracking drills

2) Eye massage

3)  Vary your work environment so you aren’t always staring at the same point

Interested in learning more about vision training and eliminating computer eyes? Drop me a note and let’s get started!


  1. says

    Jen this is cool.Something to consider: when discussing this with an ophthalmologist, she suggested that age was a consideration: by the time one is in late thirties, if you're not wearing glasses to read a screen, and you spend a lot of your life reading/computing, doing focused work deliberately to improve distance vision may have consequences for near vision. This was a surprise to me. So, would you say age is a consideration in this work? And are the drills you recommend in that "focused work to adjust distance vision" category or just generally good eye health?thanks MT Jenmc

  2. says

    mc, that's a great question. I'm not familiar with the age argument, other than the commonly-held belief that everyone will be wearing reading glasses by the age of 40. But, it seems to me that if the extraocular muscles are working well, the extraocular muscles are working well. My drills are really for general eye health — the computer thing is a good hook to people to think about their eyes and the SAID principle. And, I do think that the incidence of the severe RISE in myopia is related to the cultural shift.I do do the drills even with my 70+ year old clients. Oddly, I find them the easiest to get them to comply. They seem to intuitively get the SAID principle, and once I explain saccades, near/far, etc in the context of driving a car, they are all over it. :-)Thanks for asking the great question, mc.-Jen

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