We all know how important it is to keep our bodies fit by keeping active and maintaining a regular exercise routine. But did you know that you can exercise your eyes as well?
Much like any other part of the body, the eyes require exercise in order to function and perform at their best.
Eye exercises are designed to strengthen your eye muscles, improve focusing, eye movements, and stimulate the vision center of your brain. Although there is no scientific proof that eye exercises will improve your eyesight, the exercises may help to counteract existing eye problems you may have and maintain your current eyesight level.
How to Prepare for Eye Exercises
- Before you attempt eye exercises, it’s a good idea to get a professional eye exam done by your optometrist. Your optometrist can then tell you if you have any existing eye problems or issues.
- Before you try eye exercises, you should ask your optometrist if these exercises would benefit your eyes.
Keep in mind that eye exercises will not help people who have nearsightedness, dyslexia, or excessive blinking or squinting of the eyes. Also, these exercises are usually not effective for paralysis of an eye muscle, or eye muscle spasms such as eyelid twitching.
There is no harm in trying these eye exercises if you do not have any eye conditions that will be aggravated by prolonged use of your eyes. But if you have serious eye conditions like cataracts, or a recovering cornea injury, avoid doing these exercises.
Eye Exercises – General Instructions
In order to achieve your goal of improved vision, it is important that you have a quiet and private space with good lighting.
Smile and get in a positive mood – this can help you to reduce any tension you might be holding in your eyes. So, smile through this practice and as you go through life. Keep smiling all the time while doing the following exercises.
Breathe – As in yoga, good breathing technique is essential to getting the most out of your exercises. Breathing regularly will bring more oxygen to your eyes and reduce stress on your vision.
Enjoy and have fun – These exercises should be something you enjoy doing rather than a task you have to get through.
Make a commitment – As with anything you really want in life, it is important to commit yourself to your goals and in this case, your goal is to improve your vision.
Don’t move your head – Move both eyes in all directions as shown below and make the movements as big as possible
Take your glasses off.
How to Exercise Your Eyes
Directional Eye Exercises
1. Up and Down – Look up and focus on what you see. Look down and focus on what you see. Look up and down 5 times. Repeat this cycle 3 times.
2. Left and right – Look to the left and focus on what you see. Then look to the right and focus on what you see. Move your eyes side to side 5 times. Repeat this cycle 3 times.
3. Diagonal vision exercise – Look straight ahead. Look down and to the left. Then move your eyes diagonally and look up and to the right. Focus on what you see. Repeat this exercise 5 times, then look straight ahead and do the same exercise looking down and to the right and then looking up and to the left. Repeat this cycle 3 times.
Up and Down Zig Zag – Look straight ahead and move your eyes in up and down in zig zag movement as in the illustration above.
The Figure 8 for Relaxed Eye Movement and Clear Vision
This is a great exercise to practice controlling the physical movement of your eyes.
Imagine a giant figure 8 on the floor, about 10 feet in front of you. Trace the figure 8 with your eyes, slowly. Trace it one way for a few minutes and then trace it the other way for a few minutes.
Use both the standing and the lying figure 8.