Vision Stress Testing: 5K Run

Vision Stress Testing: 5K Run

April 14th, 2015 After being out for a couple of years and focusing my energy on my vision, I decided to slowly give running another try. Running is not my main focus but I try to use it as complementary training to my vision rehab. That is, when I feel I can handle it and won't go in overload. It's unfortunate that these mistreated vision problems have dragged my physical and neurological condition down to such an extent because I used to be a natural at running. My performance should be peaking rather…Read more …
Some of my current home based VT activities

Some of my current home based VT activities

Everything we do or don't do has neurological consequences. That's why everything we do or don't do matters. It's important to note that these activities are not suitable for every VT patient. Nor are they suitable at any stage in the rehabilitation process. They are suitable for me because my ability to control my eyes has reached a level allowing me to handle these activities without imploding, albeit with appropriate rest. Getting to this stage has taken a long time. I've had to do a lot of boring ground work first. Expanding the…Read more …
Setting goals for July 2015

Setting goals for July 2015

Much of VT comes down to setting small but attainable goals for yourself and then reaching them. Then doing that again, and again, and again. Three years ago a goal would be 'any reduction of the strabismus angle is a win'. The first two years I would systematically halve my strabismus angle until I saw my first single image in years. After that, I would have to solidify by increasing binocular motility and improving my vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR) so single vision can be sustained while moving. That's what I've been doing the last…Read more …

Football without stereoscopic depth perception (video + optometric analysis)

HISTORY As a strabismic child that suppressed one eye at the time, I played football (soccer) during every recess period at school. Clearly I had no stereo vision. Nonetheless I was a fairly good player and loved playing. I could be totally absorbed by it. At one point I also tried playing in a club. Because of my vision dysfunction I didn't have the energy to both keep up with my school work and go to the training sessions so I had to quit. Suppressing one eye is a wasteful business. I had…Read more …
Can standing on your head result in better vision? Please read before you go around breaking your neck.

Can standing on your head result in better vision? Please read before you go around breaking your neck.

"My lazy eye turned on on New Year's Day, I don't have amblyopia anymore and I do have depth perception for the first time in my life. The whole world is more beautiful than I ever could have imagined. I will be 70 years old in the fall.  Last June I started standing on my head every morning as a fitness exercise. It wakes up and tones the muscles all up and down my body, why not my eye muscles, too? I can't say for sure that's what turned the eye on, but…Read more …
Things that make you wonder…

Things that make you wonder…

This morning I went for an eye-hand basketball training session at the local public basketball court. Near point fixation for better reading skills is my priority but you can't focus on that all day because then it gets counter productive. On the court next to the one I was occupying there was a tall, black kid also throwing some baskets etc. We just did our thing, observing each other.  I'm pretty good at throwing baskets and dribbling, even if I say so myself. I don't look at the ball when I'm dribbling because…Read more …
Vision Therapy Loading

Vision Therapy Loading

'Loading' is a term used in Vision Therapy meaning the unconscious application of visual skills consciously acquired during therapy while doing other activities. The idea is to not only be able to point your eyes at the same place at the same time but also be able to do it by default in daily life. In other words, integrate visual skills that so many take for granted but that strabismics have mastered only after x amount of training. Personally it took me one year and eight months just to align my eyes in…Read more …

An amateur’s golf quest sheds light on how we learn: some vision therapy related thoughts

I'm working on some more technical vision nerdy posts for the near future but meanwhile I came accross an interesting Time Magazine article. A 30 year old commercial photographer named Dan McLaughlin living in Portland, Ore., quit his job and decided to make some changes. He committed himself to a goal. Someday he'd be playing the Masters Golf Tournament, but until then he had barely swung a club in his life. Since his 30th-birthday he has logged about 4000 hours of practice time and has lowered his 'handicap'. Since April 2010, he has…Read more …
The extreme visual skills of an Apache fighter pilot

The extreme visual skills of an Apache fighter pilot

My VT friend Diane Calvert from New Zealand shared a very cool excerpt with me from a book called “Apache” by Ed Macy about Apache fighter pilots in Afghanistan. Earlier I blogged about a different kind of ‘Vision Therapy’ during which a blind man learned how to see with his tongue. This anecdote is at least as interesting! “A monocle sat permanently over our right iris. A dozen different instrument readings from around the cockpit were projected into it... The monocle left the pilot's left eye free to look outside the cockpit, saving…Read more …

The relationship between strabismus and sports

I just went running. Strength is returning and I'm more relaxed. Communicating sources, I suppose. The experience I wanted to share is the following... After running for a while and especially the brief period after running lasting a few minutes, my eyes point at things more correctly. This is interesting because obviously I am getting tired, but at the same time I'm directing a lot of energy towards another process that doesn't involve too much accurate eye work. As long as I don't run into a tree, we're good. My intuitive explanation would be that…Read more …