If you’re like most of us some things on your body began to droop a bit with the passing years. Perhaps your chin got a little chunky? Or maybe it was your biceps that began to soften? Or was it your belly that started to shift and sag?
It happens to the best of us. And the good news is you don’t just have to give up and give in. You can fight back with exercise.
But for many folks it’s not just a loose chin or belly that they’re facing, it’s fading eyesight too. Menus become harder to see. Reading can be exhausting. And driving—especially at night—isn’t always as effortless as it once was.
Sound familiar? Well it turns out that just like exercise can help you firm up those loose biceps, it can help you tighten up your vision too. Because just like exercise strengthens stretched out muscles in a drooping belly, it can firm up the weakened muscles around your eyes that lead to blurred vision and trouble focusing as we age.
Following are six simple eyesight-strengthening exercises you can begin doing today for better vision starting tomorrow.
1. Rapid Blinking:
While it’s true that we blink all the time, concentrated Rapid Blinking can reduce eye strain and help strengthen the muscles around your eyes. For two minutes blink your eyes every three to four seconds. When you’re finished you’ll notice that your eyes feel fresher and focusing may feel easier.
2. Figure 8’s:
Figure 8’s help with flexibility and muscle strength. Focus approximately 10 feet in front of you. Envision a figure 8 there. Tip it onto its side, so it’s shaped like an infinity sign. Now, without moving your head, trace the sideways 8 with your eyes. Go in one direction for a minute, then reverse and go in the opposite direction for a full minute.
3. Near and Far:
Near and Far strengthens your eye muscles and can help you improve your overall vision. Hold your thumb in front of your face about 10 inches from your nose. Focus on your thumb, take a slow, deep breath and exhale. As you exhale, shift your focus to about 20 feet in front of you. Inhale slowly, and as you exhale shift your focus back to your thumb. Repeat this process 10 times.
4. Side to Side:
Stand up straight and look forward. Without turning your head shift your eyes so you’re looking as far to the right as you comfortably can, and hold for five seconds. Shift your eyes back to the center so you are once again looking forward. Focus ahead for five seconds and then shift your eyes all the way to the left, once again without turning your head. Hold for five second and then return to center. Repeat the entire sequence five times. Try to fit in three sets of Side to Sides a day to build muscle strength and improve focus.
5. Up and Down:
Similar to the Side to Side, with the Up and Down you start by looking forward. Without moving your head shift your eyes upwards and focus on something on the ceiling for five seconds. Shift your eyes back to the center and focus forward for five seconds and then shift them down to focus on something on the floor. After five seconds return them to the center. Repeat the sequence five times, and aim for three sets a day.
This last one helps tackle focus issues while building muscle strength and improving overall eyesight. Stretch your arm out in front of you, with your thumb pointing up. Focus on the tip. Slowly, keeping your eyes focused on the tip of your thumb, bring it towards your nose until it’s approximately 3 inches away from your face. Extend your arm again, always staying focused on your thumb. Repeat for two minutes daily.
Exercising your eyes is easy. You don’t need any special equipment and you can literally get started right away. Before you know it you may find yourself chucking the reading glasses and finally seeing what you’ve been missing. See like a teen again, starting today!