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What is Sports Vision Training?

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A young man wearing a virtual reality headset in an eye doctor's office

Even if you have perfect vision, you may have trouble tracking fast-moving objects—and if you enjoy sports of any kind, you might know how important that skill is. But fortunately, this is something that can be improved through sports vision training.

Sports vision training, also known as sports vision therapy, is a series of exercises that can help train your visual reaction time, depth perception, and ability to process visual information. It isn’t just for adults—children can benefit from this training too.

These exercises are recommended by an experienced professional based on each person’s needs, which means you receive a custom-tailored plan that can benefit your situation. 

How Does Sports Vision Training Work?

This form of visual training focuses on improving the visual skills needed for most sports. Athletes rely on their vision for almost everything involved with their sport. By tracking moving objects correctly, utilizing their depth perception, reacting appropriately, and maintaining their focus on the field, athletes can be at their peak abilities. Sports vision therapy aims to optimize and train these skills.

By employing various exercises and activities to target and enhance these skills, athletes can refine their visual abilities. Each session is tailored to your needs and is usually issued by an optometrist or trained vision therapist. 

First, you’ll likely undergo a preliminary examination where the therapist or optometrist can assess your visual abilities. This will be similar to a comprehensive eye exam, where they’ll check things like your:

  • Visual acuity
  • Reaction time
  • Focus abilities
  • Depth perception
  • Peripheral awareness
  • Visual processing speed

Based on this assessment, they can design a plan to train your visual capabilities to improve your vision.

What to Expect From Sports Vision Therapy

Once the original assessment is done, the performing therapist or optometrist can recommend activities similar to the following:

  • Visual exercises to enhance your visual acuity and reaction time.
  • Balance and coordination exercises that help improve body awareness to help build the connection between your body and vision.
  • Sensory integration exercises focus on multi-sensory input so you can take information from several senses simultaneously.
  • Technology-assisted training utilizes advanced technology like virtual reality, interactive programs, special eyewear, or other machines designed to enhance your ability to react quickly.

Each one of these exercises is designed to train a different part of a person’s vision. They all are designed to help differently, so there is no generic one-size-fits-all approach to sports vision training. This means whatever plan is recommended to you will be specific to you.

Who Benefits from Sports Vision Therapy?

Sports vision therapy isn’t just for adults—children can also benefit from it. Whether for an adult athlete or children, sports vision therapy is an excellent choice for anyone looking to improve their visual abilities.

It isn’t just athletes that need to track physical objects, though. Professional drivers and video game players rely heavily on their ability to track moving objects and react quickly. The ability to improve your hand-eye coordination and reflex time is beneficial to all kinds of professional athletes or players.

It’s important to note that every person gets a different result from sports vision training. The results greatly depend on a person’s commitment, time investment, and the specific visual challenges they’re trying to overcome. 

A man sitting in an optometrist office looking into a machine that tests his vision.

Where Can I Get Sports Vision Training?

The availability of sports vision training clinics near you may vary depending on where you live. However, to receive it, it’s best to begin by visiting your optometrist to receive it. They’ll be able to perform a comprehensive eye exam and give you a recommendation for what your vision may be lacking. They also may know of clinics in the area that can help. In some situations, they may be able to perform the training in their clinic.

At Seal Beach Eyes, we can perform sports vision training in our Seal Beach, California clinic. We’re here to help you bring your game up to peak performance, and we can help design a plan to train your vision. Schedule an appointment with us today, and take your game to the next level.

Written by Total Vision

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