- Jonathan Joffe
Sports Vision - How to improve your performance
Vision, just like speed and strength, is an important component in sports.
Many interrelated vision skills affect how well you play your sport.
Therefore, if you would like to be better at golf, tennis or any sport, read this article and find out how your visual skills can be improved
Sports vision is a combination of good visual acuity (20/20 or 100%) and the ability to process visual information with speed and accuracy.
The following vision aspects all form part of the skills needed to preform sport at your desired level.
For fast moving sports eye tracking is important to maintain your eye on the ball at all times without vigorous head movement. This allows for better balance and quick response.
The ability to maintain central fixation on a target and be aware of what is happening out of the corner of your eye. This may be another player or a boundary line that you need to pay attention to.
The ability to judge the speed and distance of objects accurately. This is important in locating a ball, other players, boundary lines and goals, as well as distances under water.
Visual Reaction Time
The time it takes to see / interpret / react to a stimulus, e.g., a ball. The faster the reaction time, the better your performance can be.
Whatever the sport, you can count on the fact that the eye will be coordinating with some part of the body. Eye-hand coordination is the reaction of visual information accurately guiding body movements.
Dynamic Visual Acuity
The ability to see a ball and other players while you and/or the other objects are moving quickly.
It enables you to visualize yourself shooting the ball into the hoop or sinking the putt before it happens.
Some other factors to consider are external elements affecting the visual acuity and the eye health. For example, dry eyes or seasonal allergies. These would need to be treated by an optometrist to improve comfort and vision.
Most important is to have a full eye examination and correct any refractive error. The correction can be in the form of spectacles, contact lenses or specialized sports eyewear. Sunglasses with various tints and coatings to enhance vision for a specific sport, protective eyewear or swimming goggles. All can aid making sports more enjoyable for both, those that need correction and those that don’t.
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