"Keep your eye on the ball!" "Look the ball into your glove!"
Sometimes that's easier said than done!
The ability to track a 90 mph fastball depends on excellent dynamic visual acuity, depth perception, and visual pursuit skills. The ability of the pitcher to release the ball to the plate properly with the correct speed and spin requires excellent vision, near-to-far focusing and eye/hand/body coordination.
We feel under game conditions, vision training ranks right up there with weight training and conditioning. The very best players are said to have a "great field of vision." The receiver that drops the pass, the batter that strikes out, and the unsuccessful free throw shooter; all may have 20/20 vision, but chances are they lack in one or more critical visual skill areas which may in fact reduce their performance.
If the visual information is inaccurate, it can throw off the body's timing and cause the performance level to drop. However, vision skills - like all physical skills - can be taught, trained, practiced, and perfected. Sports vision testing and training as well as the typical mainstream training regimens, have helped many amateur and professional athletes significantly improve their competitive performance.
POTENTIAL FOR MAJOR IMPROVEMENT
Professional and amateur athletes are remarkably skillful at adapting to their vision problems and level of vision skills. Some assume that everyone sees the way they do. Others have good vision skills that enable them to play well but, if sharpened, could help them play even better. Simply, it's a matter of how good they are, compared to how good they could be. There is no question that sports vision training can help improve performance.
Common symptoms of basketball players that may be related to vision problems:
- Being short or long on shots
- Difficulty passing the ball accurately
- Inconsistent play
- Not knowing where you are in relation to your teammates or opponents
- Poor free throw shooting
- Dropping passes thrown to you
- Difficulty putting the ball on the floor and moving around an opponent
Common Symptoms of Quarterbacks that may be related to Vision Problems:
- Difficulty scanning the field and reading defenses quickly
- Poor timing on passes
- Over- or under-throwing receivers
- Inability to lead receivers
- Unable to look off defensive backs and pick up secondary receivers
- Difficulty spotting the open receiver
Common symptoms of receivers and running backs that may be related to vision problems:
- Dropping catchable passes
- Running poor routes
- Unable to run timing patterns correctly
- Not seeing the ball quickly enough to adjust
- Not getting off the line quickly
- Picking the wrong hole or not breaking big runs
- Dropping passes because of "taking eyes off ball"
Common symptoms of defensive backs that may be related to vision problems:
- Difficulty with balance
- Difficulty reacting to receivers
- Inability to scan the entire field
The skills required in golf, as any other sport, can be taught, practiced and honed to perfection. One of the most important aspects of golf is good visual skills. A golfer may have a perfect stance, flawless backswing and uncanny talent for hitting the sweet spot, but what good will it do if one is unable to properly pinpoint the target in the first place?
Golf manuals and trainers teach grip position, club shaft alignment, swing plane and weight distribution. They stress total body fitness and prescribe exercises to strengthen the back, shoulders, rotator cuff, and abdominal muscles. However, they often miss the very important aspect of visual fitness and fail to teach the visual skills necessary to make a player the best he can be.
Sports vision enhancement training is an integral part of a total athletic training program. Surprisingly, the visual dynamics of golf are similar to those of other sports; good visual and ocular motor (eye muscle) skills, along with increased concentration capabilities, can dramatically improve golf performance.
Training of visual skills results:
- Raise your game through increased awareness of the position, speed and direction of the puck and players as well as the location of lines, goal and boards
- Efficient visual memory skills help offensive players remember the defensive players? weak sides
- By training your visual memory and recognition skills you will be better able to recognize other teammates, opponents and position of the puck as well as where opposing players position themselves on the ice
- By enhancing your depth perception you will increase your ability to judge the position of puck in relation to players and their positions on ice.
- Enjoy a better and more accurate passing game.
- Shoot with confidence and accuracy
- By training your reaction time, tracking and eye flexibility you can better anticipate the angles of passes
- Use all of the ice and all the players on the ice.
- For goalies, visual tracking, eye flexibility, depth perception, reaction time and visual memory are key for recognizing and reacting to the speed, direction, and height of the puck. Goalies need to continuously monitor the position of offensive and defensive players while watching the puck
Training allows athletes to:
- Perceive the game better in its entirety: the puck, players, lines, goal and boards
- Shoot more consistently, and accurately
- Remember the patterns and weaknesses of the opponent
- Pass more crisply
- React to fast-moving shots and passes
Vision training helps soccer players in the following ways:
- Improving watching the ball, your opponent, and teammates simultaneously
- More consistent connecting on passes or leading teammates
- Ability to react to opponent's moves
- Improve catching passes
- More consistent play
- Better shooting accuracy
- Being in the right position during play
Vision Training improves skills for Tennis Players:
- Getting to the ball quickly enough
- Hitting in the center of the racquet more consistantly
- Forehand better than backhand or vice-versa
- Picking up the speed of the ball better
- Better at judging where the ball will land
- Hitting the ball in court more often
- Reacting Faster to an opponent's shot
- Better Concentration during long volleys or long matches
- More consistent play