Athletes are becoming increasingly more aware of the advantages of superior vision to their game. High level and professional athletes are becoming more involved in neuro-visual training for sports vision performance. They are enhancing their visual skills to improve their game and give them the much desired edge over their competition. Sports vision training is becoming the new frontier in improving sports performance for athletes.
Consider all the different skills a player needs to be good at. Imagine a player that has a good shot but slow skating, they can make the play when the puck is passed to them, but they're not able to win a footrace to the puck to get it themselves.
Now imagine a player that has super fast skating but poor puck handling. They can make it to the puck first but then is more likely to lose it if they try to carry it.
Everyone wants to be that “complete player” and all of those skills are needed to be optimized for success. These skills are so important that they’re tested by teams and scouts.
NeuroVision As The Foundation
NeuroVision (how the brain and eyes work together) is an underlying, foundational skill for Physical, Mental, and Emotional effectiveness. Deficient NeuroVision skills can impact Physical, Mental and Emotional effectiveness and manifest in the game, for example, as a player that has poor decision making, lack of confidence with the play, loses track of the puck, poor eye-hand coordination, or poor awareness of the surrounding ice. These same foundational NeuroVision skills are necessary for efficient academic performance, as these underlying skills affect our abilities in every aspect of our life.
There are many different visual skills which are all individual tools that all need to be optimized to be proficient. When you’re stronger in some visual skills than others it affects your overall performance. Just like a hockey player that could shoot well but had poor skating ability. Imagine a handyman who only had a hammer. They would find ways to use the hammer to do the jobs that require a drill and wrench! And also, avoid work that required a drill and wrench. The result is it’s not efficient. It takes longer, requires more energy, AND it doesn’t do a very good job! The same thing happens with our visual skill “tools”. When one isn’t working as well we find other ways to compensate that aren’t efficient nor give the best results. And we do not even know it because it is our “normal”.
We focused on three NeuroVision skills in 5 players that are critical to the game, to determine the effectiveness of a 12 week virtual NeuroVision sports vision training program.
These three skills were:
1. Peripheral focus
2. Near far focus
NeuroVisual Training activities are all designed to address all of these components: knowing where you are in space (peripheral vision), knowing where things are, what they are, and where they are going (tracking and near/far focus). These NeuroVision skills coordinate the body to respond and react. The vision directs the action!
After 12 weeks of our Virtual NeuroVision Sports Vision Training Program we recorded the following improvements:
These results are in line with what we expect for improvements after 3 months of NeuroVision training. We expect near full recovery of these skills after 6 to 12 months of NeuroVision training depending on the individual.
Emphasis on Periphery!
Image: Central-Peripheral for a Goalie – the blue portion is where the goalie’s central focus is; whereas the red is what their periphery will pick up
We have 7 different ways that we measure peripheral function.
Peripheral vision is arguably the most affected skill on average, which also takes the most time to improve. Peripheral vision is also arguably the most fundamental and important neuro-visual skill since it supports and enhances the other separate visual skills. It includes having a wide field of view in all dimensions of space: 1. Above and below, 2. Side to side, and 3. Near to far. Narrow focus in the game limits decision making and options, as well as not seeing defending players and the ability to protect oneself in the game. When peripheral focus is maximized, athletes have a heightened awareness of what’s developing in the play. They see more of the field of play, seeing more options for greater anticipation and opportunities in the game. The more open the peripheral vision is, the more areas of space a player is going to be able to track and focus change! We recommend a minimum of 6 months in NeuroVision training to optimize periphery. Peripheral focus training in all 3 areas of space is built into every NeuroVision technique.
We strive to provide sports vision enhancement to developing players virtually and demonstrate the advantages and benefits to broader audiences. We are looking for a study group of 20 players aged 10 to 14 to participate in our Phase 2 NeuroVision Sports Vision Training Study. This is a 12 week study using our on-line platform allowing us to develop our model that is highly efficient and effective along with tracking and publishing progress results.
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